The Four Money Personalities: Which One Are You?

The four money personalities: have you heard of them? I loved learning about these four money personalities as it helped me learn a lot about myself and my money mindset. Read through the four types with an open mind to see if you’re mostly one of the four money personalities or if you’re a bit of two (or even all four!)

As you heard in last week’s interview with money mindset expert Liz Carroll, money is not something we speak openly about in our culture which means, it can evoke some deep emotions. Because of that, please drop the judgement (of yourself or others) before reading through these four money personalities. Your job is to see what you can learn from this so as to support you, not shame you.

money mindset, growth mindset, Susie Pettit, the four money personalities, money coach

The Four Money Personalities

The four money personalities we will speak of today are: Spender, Saver, Avoider, Money Monk. 

1. The Spender

The spender likes to spend. If s/he has money, she spends it. She even spends if she doesn’t have money. Some spenders like to give extravagantly to her friends and to herself. Spenders often see their possessions as extensions of their self worth. If they have the nice car or a fancy handbag, they feel respected and important. When someone gives them a gift, they feel loved.

Common behaviors of Spenders:

-Their closet has items that have never been used, possibly with the tags still on.
-You usually have a package coming in the mail or a shopping bag in your hand.
-They may like to wow your friends with gifts.
-You have a place in your house to hide your purchases.
-They can talk themselves into purchasing something by telling yourself: “I deserve this”
-Spenders often have debt, spend impulsively, and avoid looking at bills.

Advice for Spenders

  • Look at your numbers. Separate out fact from fiction by answering these questions:
    • How much money do you have?
    • What does it take to run your house?
    • How much extra is available to spend?
    • What are your long term saving’s goals?
  • Brainstorm on the value you bring to others lives that doesn’t have to do with possessions or things. Do you enjoy sitting and talking with people? Brainstorm on what brings value to your life that you don’t have to pay for. A walk in the park perhaps? Spenders sometimes think thoughts like “people like me because of what I provide”. Which can lead to them linking their self worth with their net worth. If you have the thought that you’ll lose friends if you stop spending money on them, here’s a permission slip to get a coach. You are worth far more than an extravagant gift or fancy meal.
  • A certain amount of spending is fine yet anything done to the extreme is unhelpful. If you identify as a spender, you’re going to be your best self when you set spending limits ahead of time. Something else that works really well for spenders is to keep a wish list of things you want instead of purchasing them as you think of them. 

2. The Saver:

On the other side of the coin, pun intented, is the personality type called the Saver. Savers like to save their money. They think money belongs in a bank account and they often have trouble spending it. Often they think they don’t deserve nice things or don’t feel worthy of spending on items that are nice when there’s the option of “good enough”. 

They also have a fear of running out of money or not having enough some day. Savers see money as security and without their certain “safe amount”, they feel nervous and out of control. Yet, no matter how much money a saver has, she will always fear that one false move or unexpected disaster will make her poor.

Common behaviors of Savers:

-She has trouble spending money on herself.
-They are always looking for the best deal, a great bargain, or the sale rack.
-She has a hard time admitting to her partner (or herself) that she paid full price for something.
-Savers are always saving their money for that hypothetical rainy day.

Advice for Savers:

  • Look at your numbers. Separate out fact from fiction by answering these questions:
    • How much money do you have?
    • What is your “enough line” with savings?
    • How much does it take to run your house?
    • How much is necessary to save? What are your long term goals?
  • Set a “Spend Budget”. Seriously. If you’re a saver, push yourself to spend on nice things for you. Practice spending money on full price things for you. 
  • Choose a money mindset mantra about abundance and practice it daily.

3. The Avoider:

Avoiders avoid looking at their accounts, talking about their finances, and making financial decisions. They can be either savers or spenders. Their avoidance creates stress and friction in their lives, sometimes even in their relationships.

As with all of these money personalities, the beliefs and thoughts we have about money are deep routed in our past and how we were raised. Money avoiders often have past experiences (their own or some they’ve witnessed) where money was a source of disagreement, and tension.

Money avoiders tend to think of money and discussions about money with negativity, friction, or fear. It is no wonder they avoid money discussions or decisions.

Common Behaviors of Avoiders:

-They are uncomfortable talking or thinking about money.
-She may let her bills stack up because she feels a sense of dread thinking of opening them up.
-They tend to hide purchases from their partner.
-Avoiders avoid making financial goals or plans.
-They often put someone else in charge of their money (a spouse or financial planner).

Advice for Avoiders

  • Start looking at your numbers. Avoiders think they’ll avoid discomfort by putting off paying bills, looking at accounts or talking about money. In reality, they stay in a negative feeling state much longer, what I call procrastination-pain. 
  • Choose a Small Daily Non-Avoidant Action: One tool that works really well for me and my clients is using an app called MINT. It’s a free app that keeps all of your financial info in one place: credit cards, bank accounts, even mortgage or rental payments. Your first step towards healing could be to insert your account information into the account without even looking at the numbers. Second step is to set a daily alarm for you to look at the numbers every day. I do this. One click, look, and then go about your day.  Boom – your healing begins.

4. The Money Monk:

Money monks tend to think thoughts of money as being bad or dirty. They feel negatively towards money and wealthy people. Money Monks often think of money as a force unto itself, as if it is bad and, if they had it, they would do bad things. They think of it as having a power and that has the potential to corrupt you.

In general, money monks believe that “money is the root of all evil.” They tend to pass judgements on people with money and have trouble receiving money for their work in the world.

Very often, they have had past experiences when money was used to manipulate them or their family. Or they remember a family member doing work to earn money in a way that conflicted with their values. In general, they have a negative, dark view of money, almost as if money is alive and an external force they can’t control.

Common Behaviors of Money Monks:

-They resist charging a fair market value for their work or asking for a raise.
-They tend to dismiss the value of money and say things like: “I don’t need money” or “people who have a lot of money are greedy”.
-Money monks don’t think it’s okay to have more than you “need” and so will often buy the cheap brand or go without.
-They give away their work (and sometimes even their things) for free.
-Money monks don’t trust money. They think it has the power to corrupt or change them or their relationships. They hold a deep fear of money that leads them to feel out of control.

Advice for Money Monks:

  • A powerful mantra for money monks is “money makes you more of what you are”. Practice saying that daily and thinking of how you could use money to do some wonderful things in the world. 
  • Do some journaling or coaching work on how you view yourself and your worth. Remind yourself that you are here on earth for a purpose and that purpose provides a value to others. Money is a value and receiving it in exchange for your services helps you reach more people..
  • Brainstorm a list of all the rich and generous people who are in this world: Oprah is someone I always think of… Often this money personality had past experiences where money was used in a negative way. It’s helpful to start to reprogram how you view money and to look for all the great things money does for you and for others. “The more money I have, the more I can help” is a mantra I like repeating.
  • Keep brainstorming and answer this question: “If I had more money, I would….:” and direct your mind to think of all the good things you can do with money. Money doesn’t make you something you’re not (so if you’re not greedy, more money won’t make you more greedy). Money makes you more of what you already are. It’s like putting a magnifying glass on your personality. If you’re a generous, caring individual, money will allow you to be more generous and caring.

Which Personality Are You?

All right warriors, there they are: 4 types of money personalities. Which do you identify with the most? Over my life, I have had pieces of most of these personalities show up. Life is a journey of learning about ourselves. The more open, curious and kind we can be as we observe our behaviors and tendencies, the more we live a life we genuinely love.

If you haven’t worked with a coach on your money mindset, I encourage you hop in the group now. 

womens health, midlife coach, midlife women

It has been so important for me over my life to learn more about my thoughts on money, where they came from, and what I want them to be.

Listen to the episode on The Four Money Personalities with more examples here: