Nature vs. nurture, the Darwinian argument of evolution and growth, can be applied to anything. The theory seeks to assess if species change because of conditional environments (the unexpected changes in nature, culture, surrounding, society) or because of conditioning environments (parents, schools, etc). We can examine almost any pattern or behavior to find if it is a matter of nature or nurture.
One such pattern of behavior that rarely receives this analysis is how we relate to our finances. Some people are effortlessly responsible with their finances. Not a single payment is missed, their budgets are always balanced, they have a budget to begin with, and they have money saved. For some other people, they may have more difficulty. Consistent overdraft fees, low credit scores, missed payments, and tons of debt.
There is a question here similar to the discussion of alcoholism and drug addiction: why can some handle things in a manageable manner while others cannot? Addiction and alcoholism can be traced to genetics, neuroscience, and psychopathology. Are the burdens of finances entirely to be beared by the individual?
The truth is that many behaviors are learned. How our parents treated and handled money in our childhoods has a significant influence on our financial behavior as adults.
If your parents were frugal to the point of discomfort financially, you might find yourself making it rain in dollar bills everywhere you go. Usually, this behavior ends in a tornado of debt. Feelings of negligence or being deprived from childhood due to our parent’s minimal spending can encourage us to act out financially.
For whatever reason, your parents spoiled you crazy as a kid. As a result, you acclimated to a very specific lifestyle that makes living without a challenging task. Without the right income or financial stability, you suffer from debt trying to keep up what you’re used to. You might overspend because you think you ‘deserve it’. Take that entitlement to the bank and put it in your savings account.
Your parents just didn’t teach you about money. They may have taken helped you learn how to walk and ride a bike, but they never sat down to teach you about credit, budgets, or balancing a checkbook. Part of the reason may be, they weren’t proficient in these areas themselves. There’s a whole world of finance you’re not aware of outside of your bank account. Thankfully, there are tons of new money management apps and websites that can help you grow your financial literacy.
Sound Recovery Solutions understands the importance of establishing financial security as part of the recovery process. We educate our men on financial practices and guide them through getting a job and starting to build a financial life. Recovery is about more than putting down drinks and drugs. Its about picking up tools for a whole new way of life. For more information on our treatment programs call 561-666-7427