DEAR HARRIETTE: I am currently focused on building my savings account and becoming financially secure. I work a 9-to-5 job, and I bartend on the weekends, so this doesn’t leave much time for myself. Recently, my friend "Alec" told me that he sees me as something more than a friend. I could see us in a relationship, but I am honestly too focused on creating stability right now. Do I let this opportunity pass me by? I barely have time for myself, let alone a relationship. -- Riding Solo, Dallas
DEAR RIDING SOLO: I believe in creating a well-balanced life. From my perspective, that includes a partner with whom you can share your victories and challenges. Sure, it’s important to become financially secure. This should be a goal for every person. But to what end? I don’t think you need to consider financial independence as mutually exclusive of having a loving relationship.
Instead of shooing Alec away, talk to him about your goals and dreams. Ask him to share his as well. Express your focus on building financial security. Find out his perspective on finances and the future. As you talk to him about the things that are important to you, you will discover whether you two have compatible interests and goals. If you do, consider sharing some of your time with Alec as you continue with your life’s plan.
I met a couple recently who met when they were young and each dreaming about designing a better life for themselves. They started out as friends, and ended up getting married and being business partners. From nothing more than talking about the future, they built a life for themselves and a business that was worth millions.