Knowing your money personality type crucial

Beliefs limit our financial prospects

Unconscious beliefs about money often limit or influence the way we make financial decisions.

What money personality type are you? Picture: 123RF/ALLAN SWART
What money personality type are you? Picture: 123RF/ALLAN SWART

Unconscious beliefs about money often limit or influence the way we make financial decisions as Nedbank highlights in a soapie-style 15-minute movie, Money Secrets.

The bank has set up a quiz to help you identify your money personality and a series of interviews with a psychologist and celebrities in the Money Series can help you work through your relationship with money and make positive changes. 

The bank developed its own eight unique money personalities, one of which you may identify with:

  • The gifter whose gifts have strings attached 

You lack focus when it comes to saving and often find yourself in financial difficulty while remaining secretive about your constraints. By prioritising who and what you spend on through a budget or financial plan you can channel your generosity towards long-term financial security or your legacy.

  • The big shot with the money and who spends it loudly

Your need for instant gratification often leads to debt. You can unlock your positive money secret by unpacking the emotional triggers behind your spending and channelling this to positive financial actions like saving. 

  • The carer that will beg and borrow to help a loved one

You put too much financial energy into others and neglect to build your own financial legacy and may fall prey to financial scams. A positive money secret for you is a plan that helps you realise how giving to no end leads to financial insecurity.

  • The penny-pincher who saves for ‘just in case’

You second guess every financial decision and often lose out on good deals and investment opportunities. Writing things down and creating a budget to plan how to achieve them is a money secret here.

  • The risk-taker that ‘go big or go home’

You can correct this behaviour by identifying your enablers and triggers by, for example, setting up debit orders to override the temptation to spend available cash on risky investments.

  • The dreamer with the idea but the friend made all the money

You are so focused on your idea that you lose track of how it can make you money and find it hard to assign a value to your ideas or creativity. A positive money secret is learning to spend and invest energy in yourself so that your ideas fuel your future prosperity.

  • The mattress banker

You can work on your mistrust of financial institutions by re-assessing your values and behaviours around saving and investing and looking to diversify your portfolio.

  • The social bonder who trusts anyone willing to help

You leave the "money stuff" to someone else, which makes you vulnerable with little control over your finances. Understanding where your money is going and who controls it is vital. A financial adviser can assist you.

Gerda Nel, chairperson at the South African Institute of Behavioural Finance, explains that the bottom-line to understanding your money personality is to be able to address the shortcomings and financial challenges it presents to manage your money from a point of self-awareness. 

“The trick is to be able to remove your emotions and inherent biases when making financial decisions. A financial adviser plays a critical role in any money personality’s financial journey,” Nel says.

The latest Old Mutual Savings and Investment Monitor suggests that someone earning more than R1-million a year, which is the global average happiness level, might not be any happier than someone earning R580,000.

Nel says this illustrates that it is not so much about how much money you have but the emotional behaviour that money triggers in you. Identifying those triggers and therefore money personality type is a step to financial freedom.