A PLACE TO LEARN THE BASICS OF FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT – BY WOMEN FOR WOMEN

Archive for June, 2013

Begin with the End in Mind-Rhonda’s Rules

Some of my postings under Begin with the End in Mind have been about life insurance and end of life documents. The focus has been on organizing  personal affairs to make it easier for those you leave behind.

I never thought that I would hear about the importance of these things while watching  Wendy Williams interview a guest on her show.  Wendy is a fun, engaging and intelligent talk show host, but the subject matter is not normally about finances and personal legal matters.  I listened intently as she interviewed  Star Jones about a movement  Star has started called Rhonda’s Rules, A Women’s Guide to Getting Her Affairs in Order.

I hope you will  click here and learn more about Rhonda and the important information we all need to consider to help those we leave behind. It is a compelling story and the information Star shares is really important.  Star tells us that only 40% of women in this country have wills.  Are you in this 40%?

Be confident and proactive, even if it is a little work to create and maintain your own personal “Affairs in Order” notebook.  Call your best friend, ask if she has her personal affairs in order.  Team up and hold each other accountable.  When you finish give yourselves a reward by going to the movies or lunch or  heading to your favorite spot for a glass.  It is work, but so worth it and so worth celebrating the feeling that you have done all you can.

Until next time.

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Debra Hadsall

http://www.financialfreedomparty.com

blog at http://www.ffptalk.com

Link

Debt, Seniors and Death

I’m on a short break from blogging for FFP Talk.  After a lot of encouragement from friends and my business coach, I am writing a short booklet about creating a concierge service for seniors.  With the aging of our population and the contemporary lifestyle of parents and children often living many miles apart, the need for some help for seniors is growing.  So my husband and I had a senior services business.  We didn’t have much of a roadmap to follow  and it seemed like we were pioneering and creating a new process. A concierge service is not about medical services, there are lots of those types of businesses.  The booklet will help others to see how to do it and adapt our approach to their local area and needs.  It will soon be available for purchase at http://www.scribd.com

Since I am on the topic of seniors, there is an interesting article about what happens to debt upon the death of a parent.  Please click here to read it.

Until next time.

Debra Hadsall

financialFreedom_book

http://www.financialfreedomparty.com

http://www.ffptalk.com

Marlo Thomas, Life with Dad

Nice video from Marlo Thomas about her very famous dad and their life together.  Just click here to watch!

Success and love all together.  It can be done!

Debra Hadsall

http://www.financialfreedomparty.com

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Welfare a Career Choice–Not Really

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There has been a Facebook posting going around recently which says:

 WELFARE ISN’T A CAREER PATH

I hit the LIKE button because there is so much wisdom in so few words. 

Those of us who haven’t experienced welfare as the family business have to kind of step back and see why young folks might envision long time public assistance as the way to make a living.

Children and youth are highly influenced by their environments, parents, or whoever is responsible for raising and educating them.  So, if a young person comes from a family who accepts public assistance as the norm, how will she or he change without learning alternatives and seeing different behavior modeled?  I believe some of this learning needs to be about finances.  How can no earned income and low-income folks do better if they don’t learn the basics?

Over the last few years, I have been part of a team of women who are lucky enough to do life skills mentoring with a small group of young women who are in high school.  Some of the students come from home situations which involve parents who work many hours at low paying jobs, or who rely on some level of public assistance.  Geographically, they live in an area which has pockets of poverty and an overall cultural acceptance of pregnancy in teens. 

We feel lucky.  These students are smart and willing to learn.  This year we included an enhanced focus on teaching sound bite pieces of financial information.  Topics were as basic as understanding a checking account, using a debit card, or how the little print on credit card applications needs to be carefully understood.  The students read short quotes from my book, Financial Freedom for Women®, A Little Book about Money for Women, and from other writings.  One afternoon we bravely did a short segment on stocks, bonds, and mutual funds.  As with adults, some were interested and some weren’t.

We learned that the concept of saving (except for  purchase of an iphone) was pretty much a foreign idea in general, and that retirement savings and even being able to retire at all were totally unheard of in their community. And for now in this economy, it’s pretty difficult to show how interest can work for you (make your savings grow) instead of against you (credit card debt & student loans). As always, tiny bites work well for everyone.

At the end of the school year we offered to give each student a copy of my book at no cost.  We suggested not asking for one if it was just going to get pitched into the trash (always a possibility with anyone and financial books).  Big surprise, they all signed up to get copies.  It was exciting to know that this group of students has access to basic financial information which teaches about a life choice of creating income and the value of investing.  Will they all read and learn, hard to tell.  At least we took a chance on each other. 

I’m hoping that someday my Facebook page will show postings from one or more of these young women which read something like this:

  MC910215909 I OPENED A ROTH IRA

  MC910215909 I BECAME A FINANCIAL ADVISOR

  MC910215909 TODAY I BOUGHT LIFE INSURANCE

Then I will hit the LIKE button again and again!

Until next time.

 

Debra Hadsall

http://www.financialfreedomparty.com

 

 

Fun and Short Teachings on Stocks, Bonds, Mutual Funds +

womenmoneyblogOver the last six months I have been reading blogs, reviewing postings from the financial services industry, and really just looking around to understand what we, as women, are offered in terms of financial education.  For the past fifteen years the information I read has been targeted to financial advisory and broker professionals, since that is where I lived professionally. My information resources were probably more sophisticated than those of most of the women in this country.

What I have experienced recently is very nice; however, it seems to be about budgeting, how to save money on consumer purchases, little quotes about life insurance or wills, constant reminders that we don’t earn as much as men, and some new found interest in reaching out to women because we have become more powerful professionally and financially.  I’ve even written some blog postings along these lines, although I have had a long term interest in women and our finances.  Those  non investment topics are just easier to blast out in sound bites.

I have learned that many women are not in the habit of seeking out, and paying for, information about investing basics.  They have never experienced an easy to understand explanation of terms such as stocks, bonds, mutual funds, Individual Retirement Accounts, the power of compound interest, market capitalization, etc.  My experience is that most women are curious about these concepts and financial tools, but some  figure they are the only ones who don’t know about them.  To keep from being embarrassed, they just try to ignore the whole conversation.

So, I have extracted sixteen pages from my book, Financial Freedom Party for Women, A Little Book about Money for Women, Workbook Edition.  Ten of these pages concern investing, savings, and much more.  They represent the short and fun way I shared investing basics with women who attended Financial Freedom Parties for Women.  Most party goers said this part of the party was the most challenging to grasp, but  also the most significant. I even had a young woman tell me that she never understood stocks, bonds, and mutual funds until she heard me present this material.  As she explained, that was especially frustrating since she had once worked at a fund company.

So click here to link to the extract.  Please share it with those around you.  Take some time to print out the information and talk about it with your friends.  Learning about finances can be fun!

I am going to make this link available for free for a limited time period only.

Until next time.

financialFreedom_book

Debra J. Hadsall

http://www.financialfreedomparty.com

My Monkey Mind-Twizzlers, Man of Steel, and Marketing

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My monkey mind postings relate to Buddha’s description of the human mind as being filled with drunken monkeys, jumping around, screeching, chattering, and carrying on endlessly. These postings come from my monkey mind.
 

Twizzlers®, those red twisted sticks of chewy strawberry delight, are addictive.  My family calls them red licorice, even though we debate whether or not real licorice can be anything that isn’t black and tasting of licorice extract.

Personally, I think Twizzlers® sell themselves and don’t need to be advertised.  I have given up my other addictions, like chocolate chip cookies, chocolate, and Diet Coke.  Red licorice is my controlled indulgence. Even so, it just doesn’t seem fair that Twizzlers® are now advertised and repackaged in interesting ways to further seduce us into buying them.  For example, today I was walking through a Walgreens store.  It was my first visit there because we just moved to a new city.  I know to avoid the candy aisle, but those tricky product placement folks had Twizzlers® displayed on the main aisle in the middle of the store.  This is the wide high-traffic aisle where we shoppers go to get from place to place. As I glanced at the bags of temptation, I noticed something new.  Now we can buy Twizzlers® in extra-long sized pieces.  I stopped and picked up the bag. Those extra-long pieces look like they are at least a foot long.  Not fair.

I should have known something was going on with Twizzlers® when I saw a TV ad for the movie Man of Steel.  According to the publicity, Twizzlers® has teamed with The Man of Steel movie for an “invincible summer”.  The ad ends with pieces of Twizzlers® woven to create Superman’s emblem. Maybe it took those extra-long sticks of Twizzlers® to make that happen. 

I admire the mighty creative marketing staff who found a way to turn Superman’s chest into advertising for Twizzlers® . Undoubtedly the results will be  consumers heading to the candy counters at the movie theaters, or into the local stores. I am working hard not to be one of them!

The marketing of Twizzlers® is pretty awesome.  However, it is only marketing of a candy product and a movie.  This got me to thinking (a monkey mind thing) about just how powerful the results would be if the financial services industry could be as creative in marketing the information and products it provides. I am ready to be a part of that process. 

For the moment, I am staying away from Walgreens, and trying to visualize the Superman emblem when the focus was on Christopher Reeve’s chest.  Keeping my Twizzlers® consumption down is my version of an invincible summer.

Until next time.

Debra Hadsall

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http://www.ffptalk.com

http://www.financialfreedomparty.com

Before the Kardashians

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Today, while channel surfing, I was lucky enough to land on the HBO channel which was showing a documentary about Gloria Steinem.  Lucky because most of the attention on other channels was focused on current media favorites, the Kardashians.

I used to assume that most women know about Gloria Steinem, Ms. Magazine, Bella Abzug, and others in the women’s movement which gained momentum in the 1970s.  Whatever you may have felt, or still feel about this time of great change, the results of the efforts of Gloria Steinem and others around her have had a significant impact on the personal, professional, and financial lives of women.

Recently I have begun to wonder if the young women of today are being taught about powerful and successful women who have helped us to arrive at where we are today.  Have they heard the names of Gloria Steinem and Oprah Winfrey as often as they experience minute-by-minute reporting on the Kardashians?

Gloria Steinem is now in her late 70s and it is understandable that not all young women have studied much about her, yet.  However, I just assumed that everyone who is old enough to watch television or surf the internet would know about Oprah Winfrey.  Not true.  Recently I was visiting with a group of young women who are in high school.  I discovered they really don’t know who Oprah is, what she has accomplished, or even how rich she is.That is interesting since rich is usually something teens care about. This lack of awareness of Oprah was a big surprise.  Fortunately I have listened to Oprah’s story often enough to recite it to them.  After that, I started bringing a few copies of O Magazine so the students could learn more.  In another conversation, I discovered that each of them could immediately identify Kim Kardashian and knew all about the man in her life, Kanye West.  Major reality check for me!

It is exciting that the blogosphere allows the writer to reach out to people of many generations all over the world.  If you are reading this and find that you are clueless as to who Gloria Steinem is, or what she stands for, please just “google her” or even watch her story on HBO.  Perhaps you have only a passing understanding of Oprah Winfrey’s life and accomplishments. Once again, a quick google will teach you a lot. 

I am grateful we are no longer living in the times when Gloria and Oprah were starting out and leading their own special brand of change for women, but I do know it is important to understand the past to appreciate today!

Until next time.

Debra Hadsall

http://www.financialfreedomparty.com

http://www.ffptalk.com

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