Secrets to Not Having Secrets About Money

 In Life choices, Relationships, Self Love

How
to be honest with your partner and come out alive … and more loved.



By
Christine Arylo & Noah Martin, love intelligence experts



When
you get down to what separates great, long-lasting partnerships from
ones that start with the best intentions but fizzle out over time,
there are a few very basic rules and behaviors that while seemingly
common sense, most people don’t have a clue about. The truth is
that we can all use a boost in our E.L.Q. … our emotional
intelligence when it comes to navigating the waves of our most
intimate love relationships (a.k.a. your Emotional Love Quotient.)

One
of the most vital components of keeping and growing a POWERFUL,
LOVING, and FUN partnership is HONESTY. When life is smooth, honesty
is easy. It’s when the bumps come up that the temptation to fib, to
disguise or avoid the truth seem like the simplest path. But over
time, little lies build to bigger lies and resentment – neither of
which you want hanging around your relationship.

One
of the most fertile grounds for secrecy between two people is money.
We call these ‘sticky situations’ and we’ve listed a few of the
most common. We’ve also included the most dangerous but often used
’emotionally-stunted’ responses… DO NOT try these at home! On
the flip side, we’ve outlined for you the high E.L.Q. response, one
we’ve used in our own partnership to transform financially sticky
situations into deeper connection, a better understanding of
ourselves, and more love.

Sticky
Situation:

  • You’ve
    spent a chunk of change without consulting your partner

  • You’ve
    blown the budget you both agreed to

  • You’ve
    put something on credit when you’ve agreed you are paying off your
    debt

Emotionally
Stunted Responses:

  1. Hide
    the bill and pray he/she never finds out.

  2. Feel
    guilty, wait for them to figure it out and beg for forgiveness.

  3. Sneak
    your misdemeanor into another conversation or get to them while they
    are busy or distracted.

  4. Fess
    up but slough it off as not a big deal, you’ll find the money
    somewhere.

High
E.L.Q. Response:

  1. Admit
    to yourself that you acted outside of the agreements you had with
    your partner.
    You have to accept responsibility with yourself
    that your action was outside of either a stated or implied agreement
    (we always recommend having explicit agreements about money
    choices.) But even if you didn’t have an explicit agreement, you
    knew what your partner expected. So face the music. Say out loud to
    yourself, “I chose to XX and I know that my action was outside of
    our agreements / expectations of each other.” And then take a deep
    breath (don’t skip the breath, it’s important to releasing your
    own emotions!) Coming clean with yourself will feel good and erase
    some of the guilt or apprehension. You can’t be honest with your
    partner if you aren’t first honest with yourself.

  1. Plainly
    and succinctly take responsibility with your partner and then tell
    them the facts.
    This is not the time to go into some long story
    to justify your actions. Just own what you did, not with guilt but
    with honesty. First, ask for his/her attention to talk about
    something important. Second, state that you broke an agreement. And
    third, tell them the specifics. “Joe, I broke our agreement about
    making big purchases without talking to you about it. I bought XX
    today for $XX.” Then shut up.

  1. Let
    your partner react.
    Before you get to the “Why” (which in
    your mind may either have been a good or bad reason) your partner
    will need to have their emotional response. Seriously, it’s the
    least you can do. Your job is just to listen. Let them have whatever
    feeling they have. Don’t try and defend yourself, unless you want
    to create a fight. This is also not the time to explain why. Just
    listen. If in your partner’s reaction, they ask why, include your
    response as part of step four, after you own it. (Note to
    Partner
    … you are responsible for your own E.L.Q. too. You are
    allowed to honestly react but not to bludgeon, scream, attack, tear
    apart or try and make your partner – who is trying to be honest
    with you — feel guilty or ashamed. You can be angry but you still
    owe this person your respect and unconditional love. Be angry at the
    action, not the person… and DON’T take it personally, their
    action was not a personal attack on you.)

  1. Own
    your action again, apologize for breaking the agreement and then,
    finally, you can share… not your defense but your heart.
    Your
    simple response is, “You are right. I acted outside of our
    agreement. I am sorry.” Let that apology land. Then take a breath
    and say, “I’d like to share why I made this decision…” and
    then share with them, from your heart what motivated you to make the
    choice to spend money this way. Be vulnerable. Do not get defensive.
    Do not bring up any of their actions from the past to throw in their
    face. Remember, the two of you are on the same side, and have
    committed to helping each other be the best people you can be.

  1. Create
    Conscious Next Steps.

      1. Discuss
        the “Now what?”
        Come to agreement on how you manage any
        financial stress this may cause, and work together to make it
        work.

      2. Create
        an agreement or modify the previous one.
        Converse about what
        really works for you both and talk about it until you both feel
        really good.

      3. State
        your agreed to expectations out loud.
        This will make sure
        there is no confusion, and will eliminate the need for any
        secrets.

And
our favorite last step to this whole process…

Pinky
Swear on your agreement and then seal it with a smooch!

Christine
Arylo and Noah Martin
met
in Chicago, married in San Francisco, and after 10-years of hanging
out building lives, a business and a loving partnership together,
still have the kind of relationship most people only dream about.
Their simple, fun and practical approaches to love and relationships
have been featured on ABC-TV and on stages across the country with
audiences of all ages. Arylo is the popular author of
Choosing
ME before WE, The Every Woman’s Guide to Life and Love

and Noah is a trained hypnotherapist and relationship coach. Visit
www.mebeforewe.com.

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