Fight the Patriarchy, Get Paid: 7 Money Tips for Women's Equality Day

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KEY POINTS

  • Women's Equality Day is here -- but we still have more work to do.
  • Women, as a whole, are at a financial disadvantage.
  • Money moves like discussing salaries, learning more about important financial topics, and creating an emergency fund are some steps women can take to set themselves up for financial success.


These money tips can help women take control of their finances.

Aug. 26 is Women's Equality Day -- which celebrates women's voting rights in the United States. Women's rights have come a long way since 1920, but much work is left to be done.

Women across the globe, including those in the U.S., face many financial inequalities. In a patriarchal society, men rule many aspects of daily life, and sometimes it can feel like we are worthy of less.

The good news is that as women, we can take steps to fight the patriarchy and set ourselves up for better financial success. By doing so, we can (slowly but surely) change the narrative.

Here are a few money tips that can help you take control of your finances:

1. Normalize discussing salaries

It may feel taboo to talk about how much money you make, but doing so could make a huge difference. More women can realize their worth by normalizing discussing pay, benefits, and other financial matters. Don't be afraid to talk about pay with your friends and co-workers.

Through these discussions, you may find out that you're being underpaid for the work that you do -- and can then take that knowledge and seek out a new job or ask for a raise.

Women make $0.82 for every $1 a man makes. Let's change that stat. As we continue to normalize talking about pay, we can progress toward eliminating the gender wage gap.

2. Get comfortable learning more about money

If you feel uncomfortable about your level of personal finance knowledge, note that it's never too late to learn. Understanding essential money matters is a must so you can confidently make critical financial decisions.

If you're partnered up, don't fall into the trap of allowing your partner to handle every financial decision. Make sure you know where your finances stand at all times. If you're not involved in managing the household finances, now is the time to get involved.

3. Take advantage of your employer's retirement match

Investing is an excellent way to build wealth. Do your best to take advantage of this benefit if your employer offers to match your retirement contributions. If you don't do so, you'll pass up free money and be further behind in your investment journey.

4. Build your skills to boost your value

It's never a bad idea to continue learning new skills throughout life. You can boost your value by taking on new skills and experiences. You'll bring more to the table and may be able to land a better job, qualify for a promotion, or start your own business.

For women who take a career break, whether to raise children or for other reasons, it can be challenging to reenter the workplace successfully.

Consider building on your skill base at every stage of your life so that you can market your varied experience and make an income when you need it. Never stop learning.

5. Eliminate debt ASAP

Make it a goal to eliminate your debt as quickly as possible. By paying off debt, you can free up more of your income for saving, investing, and bettering your life. If you have high-interest debt, it can be helpful to pay down this debt first to pay less interest in the long run.

6. Advocate for yourself

Whether you're negotiating salary for a new job opportunity, asking for a raise, or discussing the accomplishments you contributed to a big work project, advocating for yourself is a must.

Don't minimize the value that you have to offer. Always stand up for yourself in important discussions -- especially if your finances are involved. You're worthy and deserve credit.

7. Build an emergency fund

You never know when an emergency may come up. You can feel more confident and less stressed by having the money needed to get out of a difficult situation. If you have yet to build an emergency fund, now is an excellent time to begin.

If you're in a relationship, don't overlook the importance of having your own emergency fund. By having a separate savings account, you can protect yourself in case there comes a time when you need or want to part ways.

Having your own money (and access to it) gives you power and resources, which is a big deal.

We're all humans. As a woman, you're worthy and capable of so much.

This Women's Equality Day, invest in yourself by making smart money moves so you can set your finances up for success and change how the world views and treats women.

And don't forget to use your voice and vote -- because that's important, too.

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