Link Round-up: Financial Therapy; Food Stamps; Getting Fired Over Likeability

+ Do you need therapy? Of course you do. Who doesn’t? Well, now you can get checked out and helped out by a mental health professional who has a focus on your finances and your feelings.

A financial therapist’s role is to understand the stories we tell ourselves, true or not, about money — or in the parlance of the field, our “money scripts.”

Brad Klontz, a financial psychologist in Hawaii and an associate professor at Kansas State, thought up the phrase. In his research, Mr. Klontz has found four basic scripts: money avoidance, money worship, money status and money vigilance. Each has its own complications. …

Financial therapy is meant to get people thinking about the financial decisions they make — and not about their investment returns. These methods of addressing clients could help give people of various income levels the financial security that only the wealthy enjoy.

The coolest part of this article is when the writer agrees to get hooked up to a machine that measures his stress levels while he talks about money. Although he doesn’t realize it, he’s so full of anxiety that he goes into a full fight-or-flight response. I wonder whether I would too, or whether reading or writing about money every day with you lovely people has helped calm me down some.

+ Was Ellen Pao fired from her VC job because of standard-issue gender discrimination in the “bro-gramming” world, or because she was “unlikable” — sour, introverted, and unpleasant? Millions of dollars rest on the outcome of her court case. According to USA Today, things may be looking good for Pau:

“She’s so articulate. I’m having difficulty with the criticism that she didn’t present well,” said Kathleen Lucas, a prominent employment lawyer in San Francisco who spent the day in court observing.

“I expected her to be fumbling for words,” she said. “She comes across as very capable and a good presenter.” …

Allegations include locker room talk on a private plane trip about porn stars, unwanted sexual advances and a slight nerdy-boys-club culture that excluded women, especially junior women.

The witnesses have described Kleiner as a driven, high-octane workplace full of brilliant polymaths with large personalities and, in many cases, even larger egos. It’s a mix that has created fabulous wealth and helped launch companies like Google, Amazon, Twitter and Electronic Arts.

It’s also a mix that Pao says was toxic to women, one where female partners were expected to “own the room” but not be too grabby or aggressive, even as those same traits were tolerated in men.

+ People on Food Stamps Make Healthier Grocery Decisions Than The Rest Of Us. So butt out, okay? Or, as the author puts it, “drop the stick and subsidize carrots.”

Support The Billfold

The Billfold continues to exist thanks to support from our readers. Help us continue to do our work by making a monthly pledge on Patreon or a one-time-only contribution through PayPal.