ou might think that money-minded people are boring and only concerned about their bottom line. After all, wouldn’t you rather hang out with carefree party animals than fiscally responsible friends? But, weirdly, a person who understands the value of money tends to have more of it than those who don’t. It’s like birds preferring worms over candy; it makes no sense, but there you have it. So how do you keep these people as friends without drinking alone every night? There is a delicate balance between respecting someone’s personal finance decisions and pretending they aren’t insane. Here are some tips on how to deal with a money-minded person:
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Remember that money is just one part of a person.
If a person is always frugal, that’s fine, but there are also other things to that person that are worth exploring. For example, what did they do growing up? What were their dreams in life? How do they feel about family? These are just as important to know as their views on money. But if you don’t understand how someone frugal differs from someone cheap, you won’t be able to navigate those differences successfully. And that’s the first step.
Don’t try to make them understand why you do what you do.
You and your friend have different circumstances and ways of getting through life. You have a life experience, and they have theirs. It’s like comparing apples to oranges. There is no good way to make oranges into apples or vice versa. You are where you are in life because of your past. You might be saving up for a house, starting a business, or saving up for a vacation. You might be paying down debt because you were previously irresponsible with credit cards or loans. A person might not have any of that extra stuff going on and might not understand why you do what you do. There is no point in making them know why you save, spend, or borrow money the way you do. Remember that your actions are based on your past and present experiences.
Don’t judge, and don’t be judged.
You might consider your friend’s decision to buy a new top-of-the-line laptop instead of saving for retirement. Your friend might judge you for having credit card debt and a low credit score. It’s important not to believe each other. Your friend’s financial decisions are not a reflection of you. You don’t know why they make the choices they do, and they don’t understand why you make the choices you do. So there is no point in passing judgment on each other. Don’t let your friend make you feel wrong about your options. If they push their ideas on you, smile and move on. They don’t know the details of your life and your decisions.
Talking about money can be challenging, but it helps people feel understood.
Let’s say a person is always saving while you are always spending. Talking about money can be difficult. You don’t want to hurt their feelings or upset them, and they don’t want to offend you. In these situations, it helps to remember that talking about money is about understanding each other better; it’s not about being right or wrong. If you feel like you want to talk about your financial choices, you can ask that person if they would be open to talking. It’s important not to put your friend on the spot, though. Instead, say something like, “Hey, I know we don’t talk about money much, but I’ve been thinking about this.” Then explain what you’ve been thinking about.
Offer to pay for things, and don’t let anyone guilt you into paying for theirs.
If you go out with your frugal buddy, you can expect that they will offer to pay for everything. If you try to pay for things, they will probably insist on paying for you. This can be uncomfortable and make you feel like you owe them something. If this happens, don’t let them guilt you into letting them pay for everything. If you want to pay for something, offer to do so. If your frugal friend insists on paying for everything, smile and let them. After all, they are just a good friend. If someone else in your group wants to let someone else pay for everything, let them. Don’t let that person guilt you into paying for things.
Don’t try to change them.
Money is a powerful force. It can shape our health, happiness, and even our relationships. But you can’t control other people’s spending with the power of your superior financial knowledge. You might think your friend should be putting away more money for retirement, but there’s no point in bringing it up. If your friend wants to change their financial habits, they’ll do it independently. You can help by setting a good example and providing a healthy atmosphere where they can ask questions without feeling judged.
Don’t be a martyr for the cause of being frugal.
As a frugal person, you probably enjoy finding a bargain more than most. It feels good to have money in the bank and have the freedom to do whatever you like with your time. Unfortunately, whenever you brag about your thriftiness, you make your friend feel bad about spending more than you think they should. It’s not your job to be the financial police. It’s great that you’ve found a way to manage your debt and save for retirement, but don’t kick your friend when they’re down by rubbing it in. If you see your friend making a wrong financial decision, ask them about it. Maybe you can help them find a better solution.
Understand your place in the friendship hierarchy.
Some people will become close friends, while others will be more casual acquaintances. If you have a close friendship with someone, it’s essential to understand your place in their hierarchy of friends. People with more disposable income are likelier to have casual friends than close friends. This is because they have more time to meet new people and don’t have to be as selective when choosing who they hang out with. If you’re meeting your friend’s casual friends, you have to consider that they probably don’t have the same relationship with their friends. Your friend might have known them for years, but their casual friend probably only hangs out with them occasionally. This is why your friend might spend a lot of money when you’re out with their group.
Keep having fun together regardless of how much you spend.
If you’re the frugal one in the friendship, you might be tempted to be a killjoy when treating your friend to things. Resist the urge. You don’t have to pay for everything, but you also don’t have to pretend like you don’t enjoy the things your friend offers to pay for. There are plenty of ways to have fun without spending money. If your friend insists on treating you to a dinner out, use that money to treat yourself to a nice dinner at home when you get back. If your friend pays for a concert, go to a free event in the park. If your friend insists on going out, try to have a good time without spending as much money.
Learn to appreciate their transparency about money.
Transparency is essential to any friendship, but it’s especially critical when it comes to finances. If you’re friends with someone who is money-minded, they’ll probably share their financial situation with you. It might seem a little weird, but remember, this is a positive thing. Frugal people often feel ashamed about their spending habits, so it’s nice when someone is transparent about their finances. In addition, making plans is easier when you know what your friend can afford.
Be upfront about your money habits.
People who are money-minded want to know what they’re getting themselves into. If your spending habits are insane, don’t try to pretend they’re normal. Let your friends know how you handle your finances, so they know how to approach you. Tell them how much you spend on food, clothing, and entertainment. Be honest about your debt and plans for paying it off. Your friends will appreciate the honesty and be able to adjust for you. A doctor can’t cure cancer if you don’t tell her you to have cancer. Similarly, a money-minded friend can’t help you if you don’t tell them what you’re doing wrong.
Ask for what you want.
If you want to go out to dinner, ask your friend to go out to dinner. It’s not rude to ask for things because your friend is frugal. You should ask for what you want in life anyway. It’s only money, and everyone needs to spend some every time. If you want to take your friend on a trip, ask them if they want to go on a trip with you. If you want to buy them a nice gift for a special occasion, ask them if there’s something, in particular, they’d like. Be upfront about your requests, and your money-minded friend can politely decline.
Keep conversations short and sweet.
You don’t need to debate the merits of investing in real estate versus stocks. You don’t need details of how much you owe in student loans. You don’t need to know how much your friends make at work. Don’t feel like you need to keep up with your fiscally minded friends’ level of knowledge. You don’t need to know as much as they do, nor do you need to have an opinion on everything they’re talking about. If your friend is getting too deep, don’t feel you have to jump in and be a part of it. Change the topic, ask a question about something completely different, or excuse yourself from the conversation.
Don’t feel guilty about leaving the room.
If your friend is going on a rant, especially if it’s one you’ve already heard, don’t feel bad about leaving the room. You don’t need to sit there and be bored to death for politeness. If your friend is talking about something, you have no interest in, politely excuse yourself and do something else. If your friend is rambling, politely excuse yourself and change the subject. If you’ve been quiet for a while, your friend might not notice you’ve left. They might appreciate the break and be happy to see you when they finish their rant.
Don’t give money advice unless explicitly asked.
If your friend asks you for advice on their finance, by all means, go ahead and give it. But don’t offer it unsolicited. Your friend probably appreciates your input if you are knowledgeable in that field. But if you aren’t asked for your advice, don’t feel the need to give it anyway. If you have your friend’s best interests at heart, you can politely ignore their financial decisions and let them know you’re happy to help if they ever need it. You don’t need to correct them or offer them advice without being asked. Asking your money-minded friend seemingly stupid questions can help you understand where they’re coming from. This will help you help them when they do ask for your advice.
Final Thoughts on How Do You Deal With Money-Minded People?
While it can be tempting to disagree with someone who loves managing their money, they don’t mean to offend you or make you feel bad. Instead, try to see past their money-mindedness and understand where they come from. With patience and understanding, you can have great relationships with people with very different money habits than you do.
Do you want to learn more about “How Do You Deal With Money-Minded People?” Check out Building a Wealth Mindset: The Ultimate Guide.
Also, check out the Best Books on Personal Finance.
James is the editor-in-chief at wealthmindsetschool.com. James is a workaholic and an entrepreneur who has been in the tech industry for over ten years. He has worked with Microsoft, owns multiple websites, and now owns a mattress shop. Furthermore, when he has time left over, he will be in his woodworking shop building furniture as a side hustle. James has a B.S. in Business Management Information Systems and a Master’s in Business Administration from Liberty University. He is currently pursuing a Master’s in Executive Leadership, and once he completes that, he will pursue his Ph.D. in Business Administration – Entrepreneurship. James also seeks investment opportunities, putting his money to work instead of himself. James is an active believer that wealth begins with developing a wealth mindset. He now teaches, instructs, and helps others achieve that goal.