Updated: Nov 20, 2020
Why is it that women have such a hard time talking about money? I mean we lead our families, tend to our businesses, run our households. And yet we grow quiet ‒ QUIET ‒ with the mention of money. Money?!
And gosh, there are so many reasons why. Maybe it was a forbidden conversation in our childhood homes, maybe it’s a cause of stress and anxiety. Heck, maybe it’s been the undoing of a relationship, one you witnessed or one you experienced.
We should not, SHOULD NOT, feel less than when it comes to money.
You guys, even as I searched Unsplash for an image to include in this article, it was so obvious. This was the only image I could find of a woman and money. A woman holding up, what, maybe $125?! When I searched for "men and money," hundreds of images flooded my screen, images with men holding stacks of cash, men in suits standing confidently next to expensive cars, wearing luxury watches.
The same search for women resulted in pages and pages of pretty smiles. Almost all of the women were sitting down, taking up as little space as possible, with laptops perched and ready; most often in a coffee shop setting.
Well noted. Well freaking noted.
Without conversations, uncomfortable conversations, we’ll never ‒ NEVER ‒ have equality.
"I hope you will find some way to break the rules and make a little trouble out there. And I also hope that you will choose to make some of that trouble on behalf of women."
– Nora Ephron
Yes, we all know that women make less than men. Even in 2020. And women of color? Ugh, it’s so much lower. For doing the same damn job. And since that seems to be common knowledge, here are some stats that may be news to you.
4 startling statistics about women, work, and money:
Boston Consulting Group, which surveyed more than 3,000 people in the US and Europe, found that working women currently spend an average of 15 hours a week more on unpaid domestic labor than men. 
According to Payscale, women on average reach their peak earnings at age 44. Men keep climbing for much longer and reach their peak earnings at 55. 
The latest data at Pitchbook showed that venture capital investment in all-female founding teams hit $3.3 billion in 2019, representing 2.8% of capital invested across the entire U.S. startup ecosystem this year. 
According to a New York City Department of Consumer Affairs study, products marketed specifically toward women cost on average 7% more than products marketed toward men. 
So let me break this down for you.
First of all, women spend 15 more hours each week on 'unpaid domestic labor?' 15 freaking hours?! Share this stat with your partner, your support system. Talk about it and then talk some more. It's absolutely insane. And it's no wonder we are anxious. And exhausted. And feeling all the feels.
Next, how are these numbers even possible? Our earnings peak at 44?? Ladies, we are worth more. All your knowledge, all your experience, and quite frankly, all that you have endured? Yep, yep, and yep. Definitely worth more.
And then there's the venture capital statistic. And yes, you read it right. Less than 3% of VC dollars went to female teams. I mean, what in the actual hell?!
Not only do we earn less, but we also work inside the home more. We have less access to capital for our business ideas.
And to top it off, the things we actually want to buy cost us more. It’s called ‘pink tax.’ Yep, they have a name for it and everything.
Ladies, sisters, gosh do I see you.
I see you working hard, really freaking hard, for your clients, your employer, your community. While your responsibilities at home grow and grow. The cooking, the cleaning. The virtual schooling. The caretaking. The shopping for food, supplies, gifts. All the things. All within this year of pandemic.
Dang, it is hard.
“We try to convince ourselves that somehow doing it all is a badge of honor, but for many of us it is a necessity, and we have to be very careful to remember ourselves in the process.”
‒ Michelle Obama
Please remember that you’re human. Even when your circle is calling you superwoman. You’re freaking human. Take a break. Say no. Even in this season of Covid and Thanksgiving and chaos. SAY NO. And ask for help.
Maybe it is asking your partner for more help around the house. Maybe it talking to your employer about more flexibility, fewer hours, or for a much-deserved raise. Heck, maybe it’s all of the above.
It’s time to have new conversations. New thoughts. To be aware, and to work toward a better future ‒ whatever that looks like for you.
For the entrepreneurs reading this, maybe it's increasing your rates as you refine your services. Respectfully. And with confidence. And while taking care of your female team members.
And for every woman out there, let’s stop pleasing everyone all the time. Let’s stand up for ourselves and for our well-being. For our mental health.
Before we all jump in with both feet this holiday season, in this year of chaos, and change.
Let’s take a moment to pause. And to recognize. To freaking recognize.
Look, I’m not trying to be a downer. We have enough of that in our lives. What I’m trying to do is to open your eyes ‒ my eyes.
“Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.”
— Maya Angelou
We know it. We see it. Now let’s do better.
The first step, start a conversation with those closest to you.
For me, I've been having quite a few conversations. As this business of mine continues to grow, as it gains momentum in this year of change and pure craziness, I’ve found a way to keep going. To push past. And beyond. And heck, right through my limiting beliefs about money. To ask for what I’m worth, and to show up in a way that my services are appreciated.
As women, we are the future. And we sure as shit are raising the future. These daughters of mine, they are watching.
And I’m all about sharing what is working.
I’ll let you in on my best investment yet… a part-time nanny. She comes 2 days a week, for 4 hours a day. She works with my 6yo on all things virtual schooling and plays with my 3yo.
She gives me time to focus on my business. Really focus. And refuel. And she gives my girls a mentor, a positive role model, a light with all the change they’ve experienced.
Gosh, she has been a welcomed addition. A game-changer. My first big, recurring investment as a business owner. A real Godsend, if I’m being honest.
My wish for you, this holiday season, is (1) a peaceful heart, (2) time to pause, and (3) the gift of clarity.
If you’re looking for a way to carve out space to reflect, to plan for the upcoming season ‒ instead of just reacting to it ‒ check out All Things Business. It’s 2-pages, and it’s free. My gift to you. It’s what helped me prioritize and then put the plan in place to not only find, but also hire a nanny.
Because being a woman is tough. It’s really freaking tough. And at the same time, it’s so dang rewarding. To nurture, to love, to care for those that mean the absolute world to us, it's such a blessing. And it's the privilege of a lifetime.
In this pandemic, remember, we are carrying the load.
You. You are carrying the load.
Hugs to you, my friend.