If I were to suggest one skill essential for women to know so that they lead an empowered life, it would be financial planning.
Learning investment may prove to be much more useful to them than any other skill any day. While a successful married life depends on many factors, this skill will help them sail through the dark storms of life successfully with or without a spouse. This is not to undermine the importance of cooking and other life skills. They are equally important, if not more; but can be learnt when needed. A mistake in investment decision could have a major impact on life.
Budget queen to the breadwinner
The twenties decade saw a big change in the lifestyles of families and women in particular. As education and job opportunities increased, more woman pushed towards being income earners rather than just homemakers. More women joined the workforce and went on to hold prominent corporate positions. Others strived to be self-employed. In short, it has been an enterprising decade for Indian women. the lthoughlthough contribution to the GDP has increased quickly, big financial decisions at home are still made by men mostly. Women handle daily household budgeting effortlessly but when it comes to money management matters most women still depend on men. What stops them from getting more involved in the finances. It may be the mindset that women cook and men make money. Or maybe they are discouraged by others who wish to uphold the perceived gender hierarchy. Or a little of both.
The truth is that even though many studies (see next section) conclude that women make better investors it is not the norm for women to take financial decisions independently.
Recently, on Facebook, we discussed the reasons why some women continue to stay in abusive relationships. We agreed that although it is easier to make a fresh start if women are in a financially sound situation, being educated or earning is not enough to have the courage to walk out on an abusive partner.
Having an income is not enough if we don’t know how to use it to secure our future well.