Yesterday, I shared Part 1 of my 3-Part Approach to Beat Inflation: Short-term strategies.
Today, I want to share Part 2 – Medium-term strategies.
Because getting on top of inflation – and staying on top – requires more than just a couple of quickie, short-term fixes.
As I mentioned in Part 1, the first place that most people start when facing a financial squeeze is by instituting cutbacks.
But cutting back on expenses will only get you so far.
And it can be painful if you have to give up items that are valuable to you.
A more powerful strategy is to grow your income.
In my previous post on short-term strategies, I could have encouraged you to develop a side gig to bring in some more dollars, but here’s the thing about those:
Quickie side gigs are fine if you want to earn a few dollars here or there using your existing skills.
🐶 Walk someone’s dog
🏠 Care for their house while they’re away
💻 Troubleshoot and solve someone’s computer challenges
👩🏽🏫 Tutor a few peeps on the side
👉 all easy-to-implement ideas that will generate a few dollars immediately.
But they require extra time, which you may not have.
Even if you have the time, you may be far too tired as it is to consider a side gig (I see you exhausted mamas!😫).
What I’m talking about in this post is more lasting change that will move the financial needle for you and provide sustained protection in a high-inflation environment.
OK, so growing your income works to beat inflation, but how do you do that in a sustainable way? 💰
In this blog post, Mr. Money Mustache suggests you ask for a raise immediately if your income isn’t keeping up with inflation.
That’s all fine and good if you’re a guy and the world is OK with you walking into the boss’s office and asking for a raise.
Men are expected to advocate for themselves and ask for more.
They’re not seen as pushy when they do this.
If they make an aggressive ask, it doesn’t have a negative impact on the way they’re perceived.
But women face a different reality. 🛑
According to a Forbes article entitled Why Women Fall Short in Negotiations (It’s Not Lack of Skill), there is a double-standard in the negotiation process:
“New research just published in the Journal of Applied Psychology suggests that backlash against women who behave assertively may be the bigger issue.”
The upshot is this: When women don’t ask for more, or for enough, they lose out.
When they do ask for more or present a more aggressive ask, it can backfire on them.
So what’s a girl to do?
Don’t just “ask for a raise”. First, you have to prepare.
🔆 Learn to negotiate effectively
The best approach I’ve found, which has worked for me and countless of my clients, is this:
1. Learn effective negotiation skills.
3. Execute repeatedly (i.e. keep at it).
Over the twenty years that I’ve been working in personal finances, I’ve read a lot of books on negotiating.
The single best book that I have found to date is Chris Voss’s Never Split the Difference.
I’ve discussed this book in my Women’s Money Group and I make it required reading for my Financial Freedom Accelerator Group.
I honestly think it should be required reading for all women.
👉 In his book, Voss will teach you how to get the outcome you want even if the stakes are high and the person you’re dealing with isn’t super happy to be receiving your request.
Critically, he will also teach you how to prepare for the negotiation so that you have tools at the ready if things don’t go quite as planned.
I can’t recommend this book enough.
🔆 Grow your marketable skills
The more your skills are in demand in the marketplace, the more leverage you have when it comes to asking for more money.
This may be a good time to explore how you can grow your skills to command a higher income.
✨ A new designation
✨ An advanced degree
✨ A different degree
✨ Experience on a stretch project
One of my Women’s Money Group members realized, as an adult and single parent, that the only way she was going to secure a good financial outcome for herself and her child was to go back to school, build her skills, and get a different degree.
It wasn’t easy, but it worked. She emerged with a degree in IT and hasn’t looked back.
Today, she is a six-figure earner in a job she loves – and which rewards her as she continues to grow her skills and abilities.
I know it’s not an easy decision to make, especially if you’re already running at a hundred miles an hour while juggling fourteen balls.
But it could be a game-changer for you and set you up well for any future high inflation periods.
It’s at least worth considering.
🔆 Find another job
If you’re in a job that is not keeping pace with inflation and you’re feeling financially pinched as a result, it’s time to reconsider where you work.
I put this option in the medium-term strategies because I know how hard it is to make any kind of change for some women, particularly single moms.
There’s a lot riding on you. You can’t just up and walk away from an underpaying job overnight.
But it can happen more quickly than you might think.
🔑 The key is to look honestly at your job and ask yourself if it’s honouring your value.
You, my friend, deserve work that pays you well and allows you to live without worrying about the rising price of milk or gas.
If you just read the above and you’re tempted to say, “Doris, you don’t understand my situation. I’m stuck.” I get it. Really, I do.
After my first husband died and I was left with $400,000 of debt, no income, and no marketable degree – try getting a job with three quarters of a PhD – I felt stuck, too.
But after my initial panic attack, I allowed myself to think, “What if?” And that’s when possibilities opened up for me.
⭕ What if it’s possible to get out of a difficult, stressful financial situation?
⭕ What if it’s possible to earn great money while doing something you love?
⭕ What if more, and better, is possible for you?
Great things happen when you start to make space for possibilities and allow yourself to look beyond challenges.
There you have it my friend – a few medium-term strategies to beat inflation.
Tomorrow, I’ll share the most powerful strategy of all – a long-term approach to beat inflation. Stay tuned for that.
Right now, I’d love to hear from you.
Hit Reply and let me know if you’ve implemented any of the strategies I’ve shared so far. What’s your story of dealing with inflation?
Can’t wait to hear from you! Let’s keep this conversation going, ‘k?
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