Communicating with a Narrator About Financial Concerns


icon Narrator

Narrators tend to be fairly thrifty people. They don’t tend to embrace conspicuous consumption, they plan ahead, and they research purchases exhaustively. They prize security, predictability, and stability when it comes to their financial arrangements. Paradoxically, this can make it more difficult to communicate about financial concerns and aging, because narrators haven’t needed to communicate about financial concerns in the past. Using a communication style suited to their personality type can make it easier.

Narrators often face two sorts of broad crises when dealing with finances and aging. On one hand, their desire to plan ahead and create predictability means that they’ll sometimes slip into the role of a miser, afraid to make even necessary expenditures as they prepare for a future of uncertain length with unknown expenses. On the other hand, if a crisis hits and they don’t have the means to tackle it, it can be very difficult to find places where they can trim their budget. Chances are your narrator is already living a thrifty lifestyle focused on necessities rather than luxuries.

Because narrators are very sensitive to nagging and criticism, it’s important to start these conversations by praising their hard work, thrift, and planning. Your narrator needs to know that your concerns aren’t accusations, but a desire to provide support and encouragement. Narrators also avoid snap decisions, so do not expect quick resolutions. You’ll often need several ‘meetings’ before you’re all on the same page. And finally, narrators seek to reach a consensus that will meet everyone’s needs. Don’t railroad them or try to play the martyr. One of their goals in communication is diplomacy, not conquest.

General Tips for Communicating with a Narrator

  • Show appreciation before difficult discussions.
  • Let them take charge of planning.
  • Put discussions on the calendar.
  • Combine facts and feelings.
  • Give them space to express their opinions before you give your read on the situation.
  • Avoid criticism and nagging.
  • State the rules for the conversation at the outset.
  • Be prepared to take your time.

Discussing Financial Concerns with a Narrator

Narrators hate feeling uncertain, ambushed by events, or compelled. They seek consensus and can’t stand thinking that they’ve let someone down. Communicating well can help you play to their strengths and minimize their weaknesses. While every person’s finances are different, the following situations offer tools to help in many financial discussions with a narrator.

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Financial Discussions with a Narrator Start with Praising and Planning

Narrators thrive on praise, planning, and companionship. When you need to discuss financial concerns with your loved one, remember that they’re a companion on the journey. Include them respectfully in the process, and let them guide the planning. You’ll find yourself having fruitful conversations and reaching a mutually agreeable consensus.