Finances are not something I like to think about. Just like my chick lit heroine Rebecca Bloom (aka The Shopaholic), I feel the urge to hide my head in the sand and brown bill envelopes under my mattress. I try to imagine that the good luck money tree that sits on my kitchen table provides all that we need to pay our bills and save for retirement.

Immature, maybe. Naive, for sure. Impractical in real life, absolutely. Especially after my husband and I separated and the (literal) buck began to stop with me.

For all of my 22-year marriage, I left the money matters and finances to my man. He was in charge of everything: our budget, joint bank accounts, mortgage and  line of credit, investments, and bill payments. Luckily, I listened to my father and had a credit card and bank account in my own name or I would have been screwed. But aside from knowing I have good credit, my financial smarts are pretty much negligible.

That’s got to change now, if I’m going to make my own way in the world. Because no matter what kind of love and life is in my future, I’ll never shy away from money matters again. I need to take control. As a strong, independent woman, I now know that there’s a lot more to my success and advancement than career—I have to plan for my family and legacy and set personal and financial goals for myself.

Some financial questions I need answered: 

  • Do I have enough money to warrant the attention of a financial planner or advisor?
  • How can I start saving more while still living the life I want?
  • How can I learn about investing while protecting my financial security?
  • How do I develop and monitor a financial plan?

My Finances: Rewriting My Financial Story After DivorceGetting the answers I need is not a desire but a necessity. I need education, and I need it now. Luckily for me, TD’s Your Story, Your Future program is a great resource. This program is Canada’s first experiential investor program for women and was developed because we influence a large and growing share of wealth in Canada but are looking for an investment experience that’s distinct from men.

Did you know that women influence $1.3 trillion—or 55%—of Canadian investable assets (either as solo decision makers or shared with a spouse)?

Combining workshops and materials with inspirational speaker events, this program was designed to help women, such as me, learn about investing, feel confident about setting and achieving my financial goals, address learning gaps I may have as a female investor and help me prepare for this important transition I’m experiencing.

I’m glad that TD offers this program. As a newbie—and there lots of women out there just like me—I’m looking for a more holistic financial advisory relationship that’s based on setting and achieving life goals rather than hitting financial benchmarks. I want to understand how my finances intertwine with how I live now and how I’ll live in the future, as opposed to just reading monthly reports. And I want to work with a financial advisor who can help me feel confident about what I do know and help me to learn what I don’t.

It’s scary to be pushed out into the financial wilds, but I know that I can do it. Just as soon as I stop hiding the bills from myself, that is.

Ready to take charge of your financial future? Join the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #YourStoryYourFuture

Note: This post was generously sponsored by TD. All opinions and life stories are our own. 

About the author

Mara Shapiro

Mara Shapiro is Co-Editor, Community of BrazenWoman. She is proof that it's never too late to reinvent yourself, and also that you cannot have too many pairs of shoes and lipglosses. A Social Media addict, Community Manager, and insatiable lover of movie popcorn, Mara is always on the hunt for the next best thing. You'll often find her laughing and dancing, phone in one hand, and a glass of red in the other. The only time she's not talking is when she's sleeping.

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