In a world of data and Internet searches, I want to provide information that guides you to good decisions.
Wealthy Choices: The Seven Competencies of Financial Success (Wiley, 2004)
This book is all mini dramas, stories that clients told me over the years of about how they encountered money issues on a daily basis. The small life incidents are in keeping with how most of us first learn about money. We listened to what our family and friends said about money. We absorbed early on attitudes and “rules” about what to do with our money.
Each story in the book is followed by Penelope’s Perspective, a discussion of what the root problem is and how it could be solved. The stories cover budgeting, raises, spendthrifts, estate planning, investing and much more. What do you do with parking tickets? How do you deal with the kid who shatters your picture window with a baseball? What do you do when someone steals from you?
Financial books often get lost in theory; this personal financial book lives in the everyday world of common experiences. It is easy to learn new ideas and see where you might make changes for the better.
Each chapter is devoted to a competency. If you are competent in these seven areas, your money can work for you, not against you. Quizzes at the beginning of each section help you evaluate your strengths.
The Seven Competencies are: Valuing, Paying the Bills, Losing, Leveraging, Dreaming, Growing and Gifting.
“Competency” is a reassuring word, because it does not require you to be brilliant, or perfect. It says that you are competent, fit for the job at hand, adequate. That is enough. That will do it. Being competent in each area adds up to financial success and the freedom to enjoy the part of life that money doesn’t touch.
Valuing. Has any one said to you, “I can’t believe you spent money on that.”? Whatever “that” happens to be, the question is really about you and your value system. How you spend your money tells us what sort of activities and items you value. Are you being thoughtful or sloppy about your expenditures? You may find it intriguing to do some detective work on your value system. You’ll see what is special about your choices and what makes you unique.
Paying the Bills. This seems like a routine activity, but unless you pay all your bills on time you may need some help here. You’ll see in the stories that this problem affects people with lots of money, not just people who are struggling to get by. It also includes some people, like older relatives who refuse to believe they can spend money even when they have sufficient money. The good news here is finding systems for handling the money coming in and going out.
Losing. Have you ever bought an item again knowing that you already had it at home but you couldn’t find it? Or did you buy lots of yogurt on sale and it spoiled before you could eat it? You lost money on that. A small but irritating lose of money, but what happens if that lose erodes your positive thinking about other money decisions? By recognizing your patterns you can change them and improve your situation.
Leveraging. Borrowing money is one type of leverage. It can free you to do more in your life and help you be successful, or it can lead you to bankruptcy. You will want to know some of the guidelines for using it wisely.
Dreaming. The passion for a dream brightens your life. But how do you nurture that dream and make it flourish? Can you identify when it isn’t an authentic dream? Competent dreamers are successful achievers.
Growing. Most people want more money. It seems like a straightforward statement, but it isn’t. What does it really mean and how does “more money” affect the quality of your life? What do you need to know about inflation, risk and investing to have more money? You’ll have all the basics you need to get started with investing when you finish this chapter.
Gifting. Do you like buying presents for others? Have you ever had a disagreement with someone about how much money to spend on a gift? Do you wish you could get out of overspending on holiday gift giving? Gifting can cause emotional rifts in relationships or it can create special bonds. After looking at the vignettes in this section, you will have a new appreciation for both giving and receiving gifts.
The Seven Competencies cover all our uses of money and by listening to people in the stories we can recognize our own habits and we can see alternatives and choices that can help us be more successful.
The outcome is for you to feel good about your money decisions, to have guidelines for making those decisions and to reach your goals. Being competent leads to financial success. Financial success can be bench-marked in many ways, but the most frequent expression of it is, “I just don’t want to have to worry about money.” If that sense of financial well-being is what you want, read on. It’s in your hands.” (WC, xiii-ix)
Purchase Wealthy Choices: The Seven Competencies of Financial Success Now!
Penelope’s Guide to Long Term Care
Long Term Care: How To Make Decisions That Are Right For You
Watch for the updated Kindle version of this Pocket Guide.
For anyone 50 and over, this brief, clear Pocket Guide will explain what you need to know so you can create a wise strategy for your particular situation.
Annuities: Retirement Guarantees, Promises, or Traps
Annuities can be useful in retirement planning. Before you invest in one, read this free ebook which explains critical information.
Just complete your name and email address to get your copy of this publication now: