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Understand your relationship with money

Updated Wednesday, 17th April 2019

Find out your psychological and emotional relationship with money and the implications for your own financial wellbeing. 

Money fractures marriages, drives wars, inspires art, motivates some people to great achievements, leads others to despair. Fear, desire, love, hate, jealousy, anger, anxiety, relief, shame and many more shades of emotion may attach to money in the course of an ordinary day.

Yet, much advice and policy about financial capability focuses on helping people understand facts and figures about money: how to understand interest rates, how to compare different financial products etc.

Over the last 3 decades, myself and colleagues have carried out research into how emotions and attitudes affect financial behaviour and financial outcomes. Much of this turns out to be as true for finance professionals such as investment bankers and fund managers as it is for the rest of us in our everyday lives.

Find out your own relationship with money

Here you will have the opportunity to complete a brief questionnaire based on our research, which will give you feedback on your own relationship with money and the implications for your own financial wellbeing. You will be able to compare your results with results from a national (UK) survey of over 100,000 people. The questionnaire is anonymous, and the data is only stored for long enough to give you feedback on your answers. We will keep no record of your responses.

Click on the image below to take the questionnaire. When you have completed it and received your feedback, close the window to return to this page for further information and advice on ways to improve your money management.

Money image - tipping miniatures Creative commons image Icon The Open University under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0 license

Now you have your feedback, take a while to reflect on what it means for you:

  • What insights does this give you into your own relationship with money?
  • Are there perhaps differences in your attitudes to money between you and other people who are important in your life?
  • Are there any ways in which it might be helpful to change your relationship with money?

Further information and advice

You can find links to some useful resources below if you want to follow up further, and links to some of the relevant research publications. We would be grateful if you could answer the two questions at the end to help us understand whether you found the research useful.

  • If you would like to know more about the research this questionnaire is based on, you can find an article on the BBC website here. (It also includes a great Martin Lewis video on money saving tips).
  • If you are prone to impulsive buying (or just interested) follow this link to a video from the MoneyMail website in which I discuss the tricks retailers use to encourage us to buy, and how they play on different money attitudes. I also talk about some of the ways we can avoid temptation.
  • Whatever your financial situation it can pay to learn more about managing your finances. You can study this free course at your own pace.








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