Learning to deal with finances is something that should be taught in school. The senior year of high school should focus on “real life.” I mean, c’mon, who cares when and why the Magna Carta was signed when much hotter issues await the attention of young adults, like how to: buy a house, buy a car, balance your checkbook, prepare a simple tax return, get and maintain good credit, shop for a mortgage, among others? Teaching these courses should be a priority.
And so we have a nation filled with folks who have learned through hard knocks or many who have learned nothing at all and are struggling to maintain any sort of economic status quo. In my business I see all different financial types — a range from those who manage well to those who don’t manage at all.
According to Donna Colfer, CMC, AFC, a money coach in Sonoma, there are eight different financial archetypes that are based on childhood experiences and role models. They indicate money patterns and behaviors and how they are currently activated. She has based her money coaching style on the writings of Deborah Price, author “Money Magic,” with whom she has traveled and given presentations on the topic all over the world.
“There is a psychology behind money matters,” Colfer says. “It’s not just about financial literacy, it’s also about who you are being around money.”
And how a person deals with money ultimately affects how they deal with tax issues. And believe me, having a healthy management style with money will keep you out of trouble with the tax man.
Take the Money Quiz to determine which money type you are. There is no intent to label; it’s about understanding your relationship with money and how you stored your money memories.
Innocent. Ostrich approach. Never taught financial responsibility, so consequently doesn’t know what to do. Overwhelmed and living in denial. When it comes to taxes is likely a non-filer.
Victim. Had some financial disaster in the past and is still living in the story of woundedness. Always waiting for the other shoe to drop. Passive aggressive. Sense of entitlement. Likely a non-filer.
Warrior. Goal oriented, conscious, calculating and collaborative. Self-reliant. Out to conquer the money world. Probably does his own taxes and does them well.
Martyr. Too busy taking care of others. Perfectionist. Living in high drama. Will file an extension or just be late in filing.
Fool. Not a fan of details. Flies by the seat of his pants. Restless. Part of the underground economy. First to fall for a Ponzi scheme. Taxes aren’t fun so he’ll never file.
Creator/Artist. Money is not spiritual, therefore inconsequential. More important to look for truth and authenticity. But the artist enjoys what money can provide thus creating a love/hate relationship with money. Likely a non-filer.
Tyrant. The control freak. Financially successful. Money is more important than relationships. Will hire the right person to do his taxes. Will review and question each line item.
Magician. Has the combination of all the positive characteristics of the above seven types. Has faith patience and love. Knows that his needs are always met. Always files. Always ends up with the money he needs.
In conclusion, Colfer states, “Bear in mind, these archetypes are general tendencies. The first step in solving a problem is to identify the problem. By recognizing your financial type and learning how your money patterns and behaviors were developed, you will be able to improve your financial condition and, therefore, your tax situation.”
Bonnie Lee is an Enrolled Agent admitted to practice and representing taxpayers in all 50 states at all levels within the Internal Revenue Service. She is the owner of Taxpertise in Sonoma, and the author of Entrepreneur Press book, “Taxpertise, The Complete Book of Dirty Little Secrets and Hidden Deductions for Small Business that the IRS Doesn’t Want You to Know.”