As Black women, we work hard for our money. But does our money always work hard for us?
We checked in with personal finance expert Patrice Washington for her professional yet practical advice on helping Black women not only get more comfortable stretching their coins, but also her proven hacks to start investing as a means of building wealth. Washington, the best-selling author of multiple books including Redefine Wealth for Yourself: How to Stop Chasing Money and Finally Live Your Life’s Purpose (Seek Wisdom Find Wealth Publishing) recently teamed up with the digital finance platform Robinhood to help even more people realize their dreams of investing; regardless of their race, gender or income.
Here, the wife and mom dishes on her top five ways to grow your money and your mindset.
#1 – Get to know your real numbers. Many of us speculate about what we can or cannot do, but don’t actually know because we haven’t gotten clear about our current spending or the cost of our future goals. Concrete numbers, from credit scores to bank account balances to retirement fund amounts, allow us to create more realistic plans.
#2 – Set up money dates with a friend. Accountability is the secret sauce to abundance. Getting around people who speak the language of money fluently, makes it feel normal to regularly talk about stocks, investing and retirement. Have a friend who nerds out over money topics? Don’t run away from the conversation because you feel behind; lean in instead and watch how simple money becomes with time.
#3 – Find tools that integrate into your lifestyle easily. Robinhood is great to help newer investors get started on their financial journeys. I believe that investing small amounts of money consistently over time is an effective way to invest – it removes the intimidation and barriers. And now, Robinhood has launched the Robinhood Cash Card, a debit card that helps people start investing—and get rewarded— just by spending like they normally do—no big switches in behavior, no major dent in their lifestyle or habits. There’s also no membership, overdraft or hidden fees, plus this investment option is commission-free.
#4 – Seek independence. It has always been my goal, to help people, especially underrepresented groups — build their confidence and financial literacy to control their own lives. Even small steps like paying your own bills can eventually help to build wealth.
#5 – Chase purpose, not money. The concept of chasing purpose is really about going after the thing that brings you the most joy and fulfillment in life. When we enjoy our work and work for more than a paycheck, we naturally strive to operate in excellence. When we operate in excellence, we excel in purpose and end up attracting people and opportunities that would have otherwise passed us by, most of which can and will increase our finances. So, by chasing purpose, we may not focus on the money immediately, but we ultimately attract it and build a wealth sustaining mentality.