Why Women Won’t Invest in Themselves (and Why It Matters)
03 Mar 2016

Why Women Won’t Invest in Themselves (and Why It Matters)

I recently had a phone call with a potential client, Joanne. Joanne’s really struggling with insomnia, weight gain and just generally feeling like she’s stuck. She’s done a lot of research on perimenopause but has yet to find any real help. We talked through her symptoms, goals and ways I could help her.

At the end of our conversation she said, “This sounds like just what I need. But I have to run it by my husband.” When I followed up with her, she was apologetic and told me that her husband didn’t think this was a good time to spend the money. I felt so deflated because I KNEW I could help her.

Let’s compare this with another scenario.

Your husband’s best friend calls to tell him he’s been offered 2 tickets to the Super Bowl. In a skybox. With unlimited free beer.

The tickets are going to cost $1000 each and there will be extra cost for airfare. The friend’s contact needs an answer right now or the deal’s off. What do you think your husband is going to do? Tell his BFF that he has to ask his wife first and miss out on the opportunity? I don’t think so. He’ll be sitting in that skybox.

Why is it that women hesitate to pull the trigger and invest in a program that clearly meets their needs?

This is very different from men who, when presented with an opportunity that has value are able to get to “Yes” very quickly.  No hemming and hawing, no “Let me have a few days to think about this,” and certainly not “I have to check in with my spouse about the investment.” Ever.

Even when the woman is the primary breadwinner, she often doesn’t feel she has the authority to say yes to investing in herself without checking with her partner first. Why does this happen?

Here are the top 4 reasons I hear why women won’t invest in themselves. Sound familiar?

“I need to check with my husband (or anyone else).”

When it comes to your health (or anything else in life), you need to make yourself the highest authority on your life.  Your spouse, your sister, or your best friend does not know what is best for you. Get clear on what you need, want and deserve, and go out and get it.  It’s not up to your spouse or anyone else to give you permission to take care of your body and invest in yourself – it’s up to you.

I know you’ll say that you and your partner need to agree on your budgeting, etc. and I get that. But I guarantee you, if you get happier and healthier, you’ll be more pleasant to be around. And that alone will be worth the price in your partner’s eyes.

“I’m not sure this is the “right” time.”

There is never a “right” time to invest in yourself. If you’re feeling miserable day after day and there’s an answer out there, you are wasting precious, valuable time in your life. It is costing you much more in terms of relationships, quality of life and happiness than the amount you’ll spend to get to the bottom of whatever is going on.

“I’m not clear about the return on investment.”

Women worry, “Will I get enough out of this?” and “Will this be a mistake?” Ensuring that your investment offers a healthy return is a choice – it’s based on your actions and decisions, not some random act or chance occurrence. It requires research and due diligence to know if an investment is sound, but more than that, it requires confidence and commitment that you’ll make sure the money you spend on yourself will be worth it in the long run. And if you really aren’t clear on the results you can expect, ask questions.

“I should spend the money on my kids…or a new roof.”

Women often experience an internal struggle when it comes to spending money. Kids, husband and home maintenance may feel like bigger priorities.

I’m not talking here about women who are hesitating AND barely able to feed and clothe their children. I’m talking about women who are well-paid and have discretionary income and still have reservations about spending anything on themselves. You need to give to yourself before you can give to others.

I’m not saying any of this to criticize women. After all, I am one. And I understand that different personality types process their thinking differently.

But I also know that given enough time, we can talk ourselves out of anything. There is value in being a “quick-decider”. I learned that long ago when I began working with a coach.

Am I discerning? Yes.

But I rarely waffle if I see value and it feels like a YES!  I’ve invested thousands of dollars in my personal and professional growth.

Ultimately, here’s why this is so important.

Investing in yourself sends a powerful message to you and the world. The message is this:

I am valuable. And I am important enough to invest the resources it takes (time, energy, and money) to create results and realize my full potential in the world.

Tweet: Investing in yourself sends a powerful message to you and the world.

What investment are you putting off? Why? Please share in the comments section.


Dr. Anna Garrett is a menopause expert and Doctor of Pharmacy. She helps women who are struggling with symptoms of perimenopause and menopause find natural hormone balancing solutions so they can rock their mojo through midlife and beyond. Her clients would tell you that her real gift is helping them reclaim parts of themselves they thought were gone forever.

Find out more about working with her at https://www.drannagarrett.com/work-with-me/.

Dr. Anna Garrett


  1. I am soooo glad you wrote this post, because it is so true, we often treat our own selves as second class citizens. Thank you for having the courage to put this message out there!

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