Posts Tagged ‘debt’

House Rich, but Savings Poor – A Great Example of a Financial 1/2 Truth

The following short summary for financial advisors of a recent study on savings and debt levels in Canada got my attention, and not for the stats it revealed, rather for what it isn’t say – as always…

My comments are written in italics for you to see why our current world view of finance is NOT God’s plan – no matter how much we try to add scripture to support a debt free lifestyle.  God’s plan is for increase and sustainable income that benefits everyone.  A financial model that focuses on saving for retirement for self isn’t sustainable, and in fact feeds the self-focus that leads to a life of debt.  This doesn’t mean ‘don’t save’ it means that saving is only 1/2 the truth.  God’s plans are about Him, community, and increase – not about lack, uncertainty, or financial slavery.

The latest Manulife Bank Homeowner Debt Survey reveals many Canadians find it difficult to pay for today and plan for tomorrow.

  • Only 4 in 10 are very confident they’ll save  enough for retirement
    • We don’t actually need savings in order to leave work.  We need income to support the plans and purposes God has placed in each of our hearts to fulfill.  The concept of saving for retirement assumes that you will then use or draw down those savings (or hope to accumulate enough savings to live on the interest generated from them. The common teaching is to grow the savings, then live off your savings and hope you have enough after you ‘retire’.  Mathematically this requires approximately 1/3 of your after-tax income in order to maintain a similar lifestyle after leaving work and invokes fear and insecurity over ‘not having enough’.   
  • 1 in 4 expect home equity to make up more than 80% of their wealth at retirement
    • Another ‘depletion’ strategy that anticipates drawing down savings, and encourages chasing high returns in order to accumulate savings and / or equity.

Faced with rising housing costs, homeowners struggle to balance saving, debt repayment and daily expenses. [Interesting how the concept of earning additional income through entrepreneurial thinking isn’t even mentioned as an option]

Many may arrive at retirement house-rich, but savings-poor, which could require them to make difficult decisions [A series of defeatist, depletion-type strategies not in alignment with God’s plan for increase, abundance, generosity and prosperity in ALL areas of life]:

  • retire later than planned
  • accept a lower standard of living
  • downsize their home
  • borrow against home equity

Helping your clients achieve the right balance of saving, spending and debt repayment can start with a simple conversation. Visit the Solutions Centre where you’ll find tips to start the conversations, debt-management worksheets, and more insights to support your advice.

What can you do with $10 in 10 days?

Greetings,

What can you do with $10 in 10 days? I just discovered I can write an entire book. A 52,000 word manuscript was started last Thursday and delivered today as a submission for a publishing contest with www.wordalivepress.ca . If you want to find out how you can start with $10 to create an infrastructure for ongoing and sustainable income then let me ask you what you’re doing for the next 3 months?

If you’d like to find out what and how you can create immediate and ongoing income within the context of a solid financial foundation for yourself over the next 3 months then let me invite you to join me starting the first week of July for the first ever Power Money Course.

In the last 3 months I’ve set up a website and ecommerce platform and have started working with 10 Project M Leaders and Participants on the development of their income projects and on the development of Project M to reach a wider audience. What would you like to establish for yourself as a foundation for creating income?

I’m getting ready to launch the first ever Power Money program to run this summer. In the 3 months from July to September I’ll share all the specific information, strategies and plans for you to develop your own income plans starting with $10.

The Power Money course covers the entire Project M blueprint. Project M is the year long program to start with $10 and double it each month so that over the year your income target is over $40,000. The course provides training on:
· Developing a wealthy mindset,
· Implementing solid money management skills, and
· Creating sustainable income.

Here’s how you can get involved:
1. Take the Power Money Course. The first session is 50% off what it will be this . The program starts the first week of July so don’t wait! All the sessions are recorded so you won’t miss anything if you’ve already got summer vacations planned AND you’ll have everything you need to implement your own Project M blueprint. Plus, you’ll get personal attention from myself and the Project M Leader Apprentices! An amazing value!

For this introductory program the group size will be limited so it will be just right for support as well as masterminding and networking with other like-minded people.

Information and registration for Power Money here.

2. Join me and the other special group of Project M Leader Apprentices and Participants to fully implement a Project M into your own life this year! If you’re a financial professional, life or business coach who works with people and their money, being able to integrate the Project M and Power Money courses into your practice will give you a unique program to offer your clients!

I have room for 2 people only for this one time only opportunity. One time only, because as you can tell Project M and the various components are being developed for distribution on a larger scale. Participants and Leader Apprentices are invited to share in the rewards from the development on an ongoing basis. This program is unique, it’s powerful, it’s not theory, and it’s not linked to any specific investments or businesses. AND until July 1st ONLY 2 more people have the opportunity to participate in the development and have the additional opportunity to earn ongoing royalties for their participation!

Email or call me directly about this special opportunity – just don’t wait because its summer! We can work around summer holiday’s and busy schedules, July 1st is the last opportunity to participate in ongoing potential royalties from development though!

3. Help Support the MoneyMinding Foundaton and Increasing Financial Capacity by becoming a $10 member. When you do, you get access to mVillage which give you among other things, The Death by Money Report introducing the concepts and this powerful blueprint for creating income for today and tomorrow, all within the context of a solid financial foundation.

Information and registration for mVillage here.

Blessings,
Tracy

PS – There is so much to share in the weeks ahead. If you follow me on social media you’ll be first to know and have early bird opportunities for and upcoming contest and new program!!

How to Create Unlimited Income Starting with $10

This FREE Webinar was / is available now through The MoneyMinding Foundation.  There was a huge response which really isn’t a huge surprise given the message so incase you missed it – you can access the recording here.  Below is the information on the event that I promise is packed with information and isn’t just a gimmick to get you sign up for some investment or business strategy.

____________________________________________________________

Waaaayyy too many people don’t even take the first step because they simply don’t believe. They don’t have faith. They just can’t see how it’s even possible, so they immediately dismiss the whole idea as a scam, or deceitful tact attempting to then swoop in with some sort ‘get rich quick’ scheme. They say things like, ‘what’s the catch?’ and assume there must be a product or business strategy going to be pitched.

UUGGHH! Yes, there is wayyy too much of that and for too many years people have got their hopes up only to be disappointed so now they’re jaded. Honestly, this is Tracy speaking from her heart here, “I have been so badly burned and disappointed myself over the years, that the saddest part of what I do is to listen to the naysayers who are looking for something different and are just too tired, stressed, or beat up to keep looking.

Unlimited Income is a FREE webinar. I promise you it won’t try to sneak anything funny into the process. This program is designed to give you an introduction to the question that everyone wants to have answered, “how can I do that?”. It’s your perfect opportunity to find out more about the paradigm shift that MoneyMinding presents in personal finance, AND, what that means to you – today.

My intention is to provide valuable information that you can act on immediately if you want. I’d also like to invite you take further steps in your new money journey and this event will help you figure out where and how to begin.

Click here for dates, times, and / or recordings to register!

Looking forward to sharing the ‘how’ with you!!

Write a New Money Story

Nobody likes to talk about money except financial professionals who do it for a living.  Even then they will talk with their clients about their money, and they’ll discuss the markets and different money strategies, but they will rarely discuss their own finances.

Money is a extremely personal and intimidating subject regardless of whether you have millions or minimums.  Because of this everyone is left to make up their own rules through trial and error and ad hoc learning.  (or maybe this is why it’s so intimidating, but that’s a chicken and egg story to explore later).

The ‘shoulds’ and ‘should nots’ about how to manage money are adopted over time and become our beliefs from which we make our money decisions.  But are these beliefs really serving us?  The problem is that once you have a belief about money you will hold onto it and are unlikely to question that underlying belief.  This means that you’ll make your financial decisions in line with your core beliefs – which have been adopted over time by ad hoc learning and trial and error – and may or may not be serving you.

A great example of this is the commonly expressed idea that all you have to do is ‘live within your means’.  Or said another way, ‘all you have to do is ‘spend less than you earn’.  But a subtle shift in perspective will accomplish the same thing in a way that actually increases your capacity with money, rather than reinforcing fear, scarcity and dependency.  This shift is ‘all you have to do is earn more than you spend’.

It’s only when you are faced with a significant financial situation that you’re likely even be open to new ideas that challenge your beliefs.  But, given the current economic climate it seems that people who have been intimidated to ask questions or to look at alternative views to solve their money issues are going to have to shift their beliefs quickly if they’re going to be able to navigate the changes on the horizon.

As we start the New Year, here are a two key financial areas that will challenge the conventional view of money.  These concepts are necessary to help create a paradigm shift in your thinking which will ultimately affect your plans and your results:

1.  Debt.  ‘Get out of debt’ teaching will sabotage our society; plus reinforce scarcity, inferiority and guilt.  The reason anyone wants to get out of debt is to use their money more effectively and ultimately so they have more money to spend and invest to create more wealth which creates more income which gives them more money to spend and so on and so on.

The goal is to have money to spend.  And spending money fuels the economy which is good for everyone.  This doesn’t mean that everyone should keep their unproductive debt or spend frivolously.  It means that to do a complete debt evaluation and create a debt management system, you have to develop a strategy to manage the current situation, then create income to fuel your lifestyle, and finally find out how to use this powerful tool called credit effectively to enhance your wealth.

Re-write ‘get out of debt’ and substitute it with ‘earn more income to support my lifestyle’.

2.  Retirement.  The concept of retirement is almost impossible today.  The idea of working then not working and living off your pension and your savings has only appeared to have worked for one generation throughout history:   the generation immediately following World War II.  It is virtually impossible to save enough to support your pre-working lifestyle in today’s economy.  And even if you do manage to do it, you will spend your working life wondering if you’ve saved enough and if you’re getting a good enough return on your money.  Then when you stop work you’ll be concerned with not losing what you have, or not having enough so that anyway you look at it, the concept of retirement in the conventional view is going to cause you to have financial stress.

The real plan is to become financially independent so you have enough income to support your lifestyle, whatever that might be.  This may or may not come from savings and in all likelihood is best to come from several different sources.

Re-write ‘retirement’ as ‘financial independence’ and start learning about ways to earn sustainable income outside of your job.

The biggest challenge you will find is that the commonly accepted language and strategies will all revolve around these 2 primary, seemingly sound, financial activities.  Financial professionals are trained to help their clients make investment and lending decisions and their products and services are primarily debt and investment products that are not about helping create sustainable income for life.  They can help you with income products once you have some money, but the fuel for your entire financial plan as well as for your life requires you to be able to create income that will fuel your lifestyle without you having to work 40+ hours a week until you die.  When you can take this approach your discussions with your financial advisors will open possibilities for different products and services and strategies where flexibility is important and rate of return is less important.

This means, that you will be a minority, but statistically speaking the minority is the group that ultimately has the wealth J  Happy Writing!

PS – There’s a ‘makeover’ underway at MoneyMinding.  Make sure you subscribe at www.moneyminding.com to get the new ‘Triumph Over Money’ report, and the be the first to hear about the MoneyMinding Makeover with mVillage special for only $10/month, or $100 a year!

Dressing for Success Means Planning for Success

I delight greatly in the LORD; my soul rejoices in my God. For he has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of his righteousness, as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.Isaiah 61:10

There are many references to clothing in the bible. Also, many references to His protection, confidence, wisdom, blessings, and love are illustrated using clothing as examples.  So, while I’m not a bible scholar, I am an expert in financial education that enhances financial capacity and … I’m a woman who likes nice clothes and who loves God which gives me some insight into this sensitive and controversial topic.

I’m not naive enough to say that God wants us to dress nicely and all have nice clothes, but I do have some expertise in financial matters as it relates to our outward appearance and our financial well-being.

When a bride and groom are married, they become one in the eyes of the Lord (and the world).  The Lord blesses their union as he blesses ‘his children’.  I will add that in all my years of experience working with people and their money, the issue of spending money on clothing is likely one of the most sensitive subjects because it gets right to the heart of our faith and financial insecurities.

Spending money on clothing for yourself for many people seems like a selfish act, yet look at the benefits:  you feel more confident in presenting yourself to the world which enables you to excel in your area of work or service, and economically you are supporting a business and the life of the employee or owner who works at the business.

If you feel guilty or selfish or irresponsible when you purchase clothing and dress yourself in the morning you are not clothing yourself in the ‘garments of salvation or robes of righteousness’.  In our society we are required to dress appropriately for the type of work or service we perform.  This requires some planning and management in order to present yourself in a way that is congruent with your work and who you are as a person (who God says you are), and for the work God wants you to do.

If you can step outside the emotional connection clothing has to your life and look at it as a necessary tool for your life, you will then understand that God is involved in the details of your wardrobe.  He tells us not to worry about what we wear (Matthew 6:25) because if we do, He’s not our top priority.  This doesn’t mean to let yourself go and to ‘schlep’ around thinking that somehow you are more ‘godly’.  We are all living at this particular time in history because God has a plan for us.  This means, we should take heed to his prompting and plan our lives with Him at the centre – including how we spend our money on our clothing that presents us to the world where we do His work.

If God has given you an inspiration and a purpose, or has placed you somewhere to do some work or perform some service, then your obligation is to trust him to provide for you all the necessary tools for you to do that work, including money for appropriate clothing.  And in order to assist this process you have to accept that clothes are an essential item in our culture today so you have to know how much money you need to spend to provide you with the appropriate garments to do the work God wants you to do.  This means preparing a cash flow forecast that includes a line item for clothing and to being prudent with your purchases.  When you do this prayerfully, the Holy Spirit will more easily assist you with your shopping and daily ‘dressing’ routines because you are living your life dependent on the Lord, and congruently with your priorities, your roles, your values and your finances – and when the Lord has inspired your work, and you are trusting him, and putting appropriate systems in place to manage the resources He’s provided you with, then it’s also much easier and more likely that you will realize a larger provision and more resources to continue to do more good work, requiring more provisions, etc. etc.

 

 

The Eye of the Storm

Money has a way of stirring up a hurricane in our lives.  Whether something happens from a an unexpected event or whether it’s a decision that needs to be made about buying, borrowing, or investing, on a day-to-day basis, money affects EVERY area of our life.

Navigating the real-life challenges and day-to-day money decisions in your life requires a certain amount of knowledge, skill and confidence depending on the situation.  Applying all three of these areas at the right time and in the right way is a process and also requires faith.  It’s all these things working together that can create the calm in the midst of some of the biggest financial storms.

Money isn’t just technical know how.  Whether we like it or not, throughout the ages money has power and is a very emotional, controversial subject.  Bringing God, Money and Real Life together is equally as controversial and emotional but also provides a foundation for God’s blessings for powerful results beyond what we could potentially ask or imagine on our own.   

Beginning Friday, September 7th from noon 1:00 pacific time for 4 weeks during the season of transition from the relaxing, bright sunshine of summer, to the cooler, busier days of fall, I invite you to join me on a journey through the storm to discover and apply God’s wisdom to real-life money decision making today.

The program includes 4 live and recorded Teleseminar lessons and weekly homework so that by the end of September you will have fresh new insights about integrating God’s word and real-life money knowledge for earning, managing and maintaining wealth today.  The objective is to discover and apply the learning so that by the end of the month you will have new knowledge, new skills, and an action plan for you to incorporate this information into your own life.

Plus, if you’re a financial professional or counsellor who works with people and their money, you will have new tools, strategies and resources to help others navigate turbulent money situations.

Registration is $99 here, or in keeping with the principles of giving and sharing, you can also make a donation of any amount here in order to participate.

If you register and pay in full before the end of day Friday, August 31st you will also receive access to the full original MoneyMinding Makeover course valued at $250.  This program has produced worldwide testimonials because it provides simple, sequential steps of short information pages, followed by the exercises, templates, questionaires and specifics needed to implement the information into your life.  It is timeless, generic, powerful information that is not and has not been taught in school or by mainstreem financial educators!

If you’re not sure you can make all the sessions live, that’s ok.  You’ll have access to all the recordings and materials and an opportunity to interact and ask questions with the group regardless.  And if you still have questions or are not sure if this is the right program for you, call me directly at 250-592-0457 pacific time.

Blessings,

Tracy

PS – There is so much unsettling financial news today.  Now we also have hurricane Isaac occupying the news and adding to the unsettling financial news.  Thousands of years ago, Abraham trusted God with a very unsettling situation and acted in faith with preparing to sacrifice his son, Isaac.  No doubt there was great turmoil throughout this interaction before God stepped in and provided the sacrificial lamb instead of Isaac.  Today I pray for the families affected by hurricane Isaac and I pray that there is no financial hurricane causing turmoil in your life, or if there is, that you are able to weather the storm and find the peace that surpasses understanding in the eye of the storm.

Why does it seem so difficult to apply financial knowledge to get real results?

I’d like to invite you to join me in September for and exploration of God, Money and Real Life.  If the bible has so much to say about how to manage our money and there seems to be such a growing volume of people offering financial education, why do the studies also show that there is also a growing number of people struggling financially?

  • Could it by that there is a resistance to the information?
  • Could it be that vast numbers of people deny that additional financial information is important or could make a difference?
  • Could it be that the personal application of the information isn’t understood?
  • Could it be that many people just assume they already know how what to do to manage their money and make good financial decisions based on what they’ve done or learned in the past?
  • Could it be that much of the information being taught today is still only half the story?

Whatever the reason, there is no doubt that money, and in particular God and Money together, are:

  • Essential topics today
  • Controversial topics today
  • Require a fresh new look in order to create the paradigm shift so many people desperately need in their lives as it relates to money today.

I invite you to join me on a 4 week journey beginning Friday, September 7th at noon pacific to discover and apply some of God’s foundational principles of money as it relates to real life today.  The objective isn’t just more knowledge.  The objective is application, which means getting results.  And I promise you that with God’s blessing, it has the potential to provide the missing link between His living word about money, and your own life situation.

What qualifies me to teach about God, Money and Real Life?  For over 20 years I’ve been working in financial services; over 15 years ago God gave me insights to a missing link between financial information and the real-life application of that information; and his purpose for my life to share this information has taken me on a journey that sometimes feels like Joseph’s journey during the period of time from the pit to Pharaoh’s Palace:  a persevering spirit guided by the Lord.

We’ll cover:

  • Where to start?
  • What are your money goals (and why)?
  • How do you get from where you are to where God wants you to go?
  • Our financial systems are more complicated today than thousands of years ago, what do you need today to apply real life      with God’s plan for you and your money?

Here’s how it works:

1.  Register today by either:

a)  ordering online here, or

b)  making a donation here, or

c)  contacting me directly to make arrangements
2.  Before the program begins on September 7th, I will send you online access.  Depending on the total number of registered, we will either meet for our weekly sessions by phone, or by online video access.

3.  Each week we’ll meet as a group for the lessons and discussion, and each week I’ll provide you with follow up materials and ‘homework’.

4.  If you aren’t able to make a session, or if you’re away, that’s ok, because all the weekly sessions and follow up materials will be archived and available online.  The online access will also include an opportunity for you to share thoughts ideas and questions and to communicate with others in the program if you chose.

Hope you can make it and looking forward to sharing more with you.

~ Tracy

PS – If you’re just not sure, then please visit www.deathbymoney.com to order your copy of my new book, The Death by Money Report, to get the background information and to find out why this message so important today!

God, Money and Real Life

God says “But forget all that was in the past — it is nothing compared to what I am going to do.

For I am about to do something new.  See, I have already begun! Do you not see it?  I will make a pathway through the wilderness.  I will create rivers in the dry wasteland.” Isaiah 43:18,19

Because, “The blessing of the Lord makes a person rich, and he adds no sorrow with it.” Proverbs 10:22

The Past:

In 1997 while still practicing as a top investment advisor for one of Canada’s largest investment firms, I began developing the concepts that have formed the basis of the MoneyMinding programs and materials.  In 1999, God revealed himself in a dramatic way by sending an angel to our 3 year old daughter.  In 2001, both my husband and I accepted Christ as our Lord and Saviour and He has lead us on an amazing journey with some real-life challenges ever since.

This journey has so far included some of life’s biggest stressors:  a tax re-assessment and bankruptcy, a sudden close family member death, close family member cancer, another close family member messy divorce with kids involved, multiple moves, and a seemingly endless list of every day challenges with bills, cars, kids, family, etc. etc.

In 2005, we had an initial exciting financial revival after a few rough years, with a new home and successful business launch only to be met with challenges that grew out of trusting some people who had their own agenda including attempting securities fraud with my company, MoneyMinding.

There comes a point in life when you know that the Lord has plans for your life, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future’ (Jeremiah 29:11) and that His grace is (and always has been) sufficient (2 Corinthians 12:9) to provide the courage to glorify Him through my life. (Philippians 1:20)

The Present:

The intersection of knowledge and faith came together to save my / our life in 2011.  The Holy Spirit spoke loud and clear that I was not to continue with the consultant’s plan to provide funding for the company in the public market the way he had been setting it up.  Everyone on the team was encouraging me to continue because the process had taken over a year longer than expected and money was scarce at best, and stress levels were off the chart.  The overall theme was to ‘get the money’ and get missing information later.  The process was halted and the team perceived that I had sabotaged everyone’s financial windfall.  In reality several months later, I did get the answers to the questions that had been mounting.  The funding ‘scheme’ was confirmed to be illegal and I was being set up to be responsible for the illegal activity.

Thank you Lord, for intervening when knowledge left questions and man was misleading me.

My husband, daughter and I were left with no money, minimal income, a mountain of debt, an entire mountain range of corporate administrative clean up, and no expertise or resources to carry on and re-build.  Yet the Lord has been faithful and has provided strength, money, people, encouragement and wisdom to maintain our bills, home, credit, marriage, and our health.

Surviving a devastating financial upheaval takes courage, it takes wisdom, and it takes God’s love to hold you through the long days of hard work and tough decisions.  Sometimes its only because He’s there that getting out of bed in the morning is even possible.

The Future:

My prayer is that you do not have to experience a major financial stress anywhere close to this.  Unfortunately, as I have written about in my new book, The Death by Money Report, the reality is that most people will experience some sort of financial uncertainty and struggle during their lifetime.  It could be from job loss, health issues, death, divorce, business failure, investment loss, accumulated debt, or a seeming inability to earn enough money to live the life you once hoped to be able to live.

Seven years after starting the company and marketing the information corporately, the Holy Spirit is prompting me to share the biblical principles that have combined with my technical expertise to help others navigate the world of personal finance today.  He is indeed doing a ‘new thing’ (Isaiah 43:18,19) and there is ‘no sorrow’ or ‘painful toil’ for it (Proverbs 10:22).  The principles have always been the foundation of the MoneyMinding programs; however, I have only recently started sharing with the body of Christ, the biblical integration.

Beginning September 7th, at noon Pacific, I invite you to join me for a 4 week journey:  God, Money, and Real Life.  I’ll share principles, strategies and action plans you can put into practice to experience the Holy Spirit’s power working in your finances and your life today.   God says, He can do ‘immeasurably more than we can ask or imagine’ (Ephesians 3:20).  I encourage you to join me to experience fresh insights from His living word and from the voice of experience, and expertise.  My desire is that you will be able to apply these concepts to your own situation to realize results you didn’t before think were possible!

The program is $99 for the four, 1 hour live and recorded audio sessions plus ‘homework’.  But, in keeping with God’s principles for prosperity, you can also make donations of any amount that will fit with your current situation.  If you aren’t able to attend the live sessions, that’s ok too, they will be recorded and you can still participate on your own time, including being able to ask questions and share your results.

Order here

Donate here

When your order and / or donation has been received you will receive information within 24 – 48 hours with further details and welcome instructions!

I’m looking forward to sharing more with you and to experiencing the Lord’s work in and through all of us as we journey forward together!

Abundant blessings,

Tracy

PS – This program is the first of many ‘new things’ as I also prepare to share the creative financial planning strategies and support from my long time friend and greatly admired financial advisor, Dan Loney (www.loneyfinancial.com).  He and I have discussed co-authoring a book on debt for almost 10 years now; I have come close to working with him several times in the past; and look forward to helping him expand his biblical program on financial management called, The Joseph Principle.  I will be continuing to support the portfolio of MoneyMinding content, programs, resources and materials including mVillage membership with live mentorship.  These are central resources for you to get personal and anonymous information and support and where new information is made available to members 24/7.

Debt Won’t Sabotage Your Retirement (and our economy), but how you view it will.

In the past few days I’ve received a few related articles on the impact of debt on retirement and the stress it causes.  Here are a couple of the recent ones:  Majority of Retirees Carry Debt and Boomers will Retire in Debt.

Before I carry on though, it’s important that you understand that this discussion is not to be interpreted as advocating reckless spending.  I have to begin with this disclaimer because money and debt have such strong connections to negative emotions that it’s critical to pre-empt any mention of anything slightly unconventional with the caveat that there are proper strategies for all of this and that money isn’t something that most adults received a foundation of knowledge in.  Dealing with financial matters requires good communication with financial professionals, but professionals are not money counsellors, or teachers, and most of this isn’t part of the standard financial curriculum in any case. You need to do your part in understanding your options and work with professionals to implement the plans!

What is so upsetting about this emphasis on debt reduction in favour of asset accumulation is the seemingly absent recognition that consumer spending and consumer confidence fuel our economy.  The continuous emphasis on ‘get out of debt’ so you can save a big pot of gold so then you’ll have more money to spend is only a half truth.

We actually don’t need savings – we need an ongoing source of income to provide for our basic lifestyle needs and other opportunities and emergencies that come up along the way.  The fuel for spending is income.  Income can be generated in many ways, yet the conventionally accepted view is that income is a more or less static variable in the financial planning process and that providing for financial needs after work will come from selling off assets (the accumulated pot of gold).

I am not aware of anything more stressful and unsettling than to life day in and day out with a nagging voice of doubt that maybe you shouldn’t be spending money on this or that because you have to get rid of the debt and add to your savings.

This commonly accepted view not only creates uncertainty, it also creates an environment where the scarcity mentality it feeds is prone to inappropriate financial decisions, bad investmenst, and isn’t generous towards others and social causes.

The lessons we’re teaching our young people who are watching their ‘retiring parents’ is that its perhaps better to not even ‘try’ to do something significant because the cost to get there is going to be too high and they ‘won’t be able to afford it’.  (check out the CBC report on ‘Olympic Dreams and Olympic Debt’).  Instead of pursuing worthwhile dreams, many people simply resort to a life of silent bitterness or resentment where they slowly become more and more self-centred and fearful of running out of money and not being able to support themselves.

This self-centredness becomes a distraction for a whole range of social issues because people go looking for an outlet – hmm, look at how sex has become so commonly accepted in mainstream media.  People look for a way to manifest their desires somehow. Unfortunately, we are fed a constant stream of enticing images and messages about how to fuel some sort of desire we might have forgotten about or not realized we had with some kind of material good.  Of course, the fulfilment of desires through possessions has an economic advantage to the business selling the goods and on some level will fulfil needs and desires of the person purchasing so there is certainly some benefit to the marketing information – until, however, the reality sets in and guilt and fear occupy thoughts with no end in sight other than further denial.  It’s a cycle that isn’t good for the individual, for the family, for our communities and for our entire economy.

So what’s the answer if it’s not go ‘cut back spending, to get out of debt, and to save a bigger pot of gold for the fairyland called retirement’? 

The answer actually isn’t rocket science but seems to be a huge struggle for many people because they have grown up in this culture of self-centred financial support which focuses on getting a good education so you can get a good job, then learn to manage your money on your own once you’ve got the job.

It seems that conventional teaching has completely left out the fuel for the entire plan which is the creation of income.   There are many many ways to create sustainable incomes besides a job or two or three.  It doesn’t take a big pot of gold for you to be able to retire and create more income from your investments, it takes independent thinking that knows the difference between earning less than you spend, and spending less than you earn.  It also takes financial confidence to know how to maximize the effectiveness of your finances so you are ‘leveraging’ all your assets including access to credit, to create sustainable income that creates wealth that creates further income and so and so on.

We have to realize that getting out of debt by cutting back spending will actually reduce our freedoms, lower our standard of living and NOT provide the peace of mind or independent thinking that will assist in creating the extra funds for the additional spending money you’re looking for to satisfy your personal interests, desires and higher causes.

Remember, I didn’t say to continue to spend recklessly and to hold on to high interest non-deductible debt or to just spend on selfish desires.  I’m saying that the way to win the war on debt and to create financial independence that will enable you to choose to leave work if you want (ie enable you to retire) is to learn how to earn sustainable income, to manage that income and all your other financial resources effectively (not just by looking at interest rates and rates of returns), so you can maintain your personal economy, while also helping others and ultimately our entire society!

To find out more about how a $10 solution can save your financial life, visit www.deathbymoney.com to order The Death by Money Report.  To Read my specific responses to these and other similar media articles become an mVillage member to read and respond and comment on this important issue.  To find out about live, personal and one-on-one MoneyMinding Mentoring please contact me directly at tracy@moneyminding.com to see if this exciting new concept is right for you!

 

Money Lessons For and From Our Kids

Our daughter, Jordyn Piercy, has qualified to compete at the Youth National Track and Field Championships again this year. Last year she qualified to compete during the same week that I halted the fraud from being carried out in my business. That was obviously a very dramatic financial experience. (You can read more about it in The Death by Money Report at www.deathbymoney.com because it was the non-conventional money teaching of MoneyMinding and the values approach to financial decision making that ultimately saved my / our life and is the basis of this message).

The financial nightmare, didn’t stop Jordyn from being able to fly across the country to compete. Jordyn’s attitude of success combined with my finance background turned the difficult financial situation into, ‘how can we make this work?’ and she earned $1625 in 3 weeks! ($125 more than the required budget). She reached her goal with the help of family and friends who sponsored her with cash donations, hired her to do some work, gave her bottles in a bottle drive, and other creative ideas. Here’s the link to her blog post about this process last year.

Unfortunately what we’ve discovered since then is that there are many, many talented young people who don’t get the opportunity to experience success in their field at higher levels of competition because of the financial burdens required to get there. (Here’s a CBC report on the financial realities of Olympic Athletes)

High level competitions, not only cost money, they will also, often be last minute which often requires even more expenses and challenges. In track and field, for example, you never know until a few weeks ahead of a championship meet if you will qualify to compete, or whether you will be selected to be part of a government sponsored team. This means that many families are forced to make last minute financial decisions about whether their kids will be able to compete at these higher level events. This situation is repeated in just about any sport and the huge gap between recreational sports and the level where they become eligible for professional sponsorship or government funding is daunting. Yet, bridging the gap is the key to success and where the biggest life lessons are learned.   This financial responsibility on the families leaves many (if not most) families with 2 choices: debt financing, or drop out.

This year, Jordyn and a few other athletes from lower Vancouver Island have teamed up to do some fundraising to help pay for travel costs for themselves and their coach to attend the Legion Youth National’s in Prince Edward Island (about as far away on the continent as you can get!).

The group is providing a sponsorship advertising opportunity for local businesses who would like community recognition for supporting local athletes. They have booked a full page ad in the local Times Colonist newspaper. The ads are $250 each with is the same as a regular ad of the same price, but the layout provides high visibility for maximum exposure as well as the strong community connection. If you are interested and able to support these 7 athletes please call me at 250-592-047 or email tracy@moneyminding.com right away since there’s a very short turn around time.

Additionally, my company, MoneyMinding, is building e a community initiative as a called Shoes to Success (Steps to Helping Others Experience Success). You can view the initial information on the program at www.shoes2success.com and make a donation of any amount there if you like. 100% of funds donated through the SHOES program at this time will be directed towards the athletes first, then towards launching this program for others to benefit from.

Finally, Jordyn is requesting personal support from friends, family and others and is accepting donations of any amount or sponsorship through her website at www.jordynpiercy.com.

She, along with the other young people she trains with, has demonstrated that its not just persistence that pays off, it’s living and experiencing success every day. I / we are so impressed with the kids who know that they might not always win, but that showing up day after day after day after day is what it takes to stay encouraged despite disappointments, injuries, social invitations and temptations, and other family and school commitments. Training and competing at higher levels provides young people with the experiences that will carry them through many different life circumstances. These young people are certainly an inspiration for others to reach and work towards something worthwhile.

The financial lessons from these young people are that our adult limited reality doesn’t have to create a barrier for them to expect to experience greatness. The financial lessons for these young people are the value of asking ‘how’ and to not let potential financial limitations limit their potential success. There is always a way when you’re committed.

I am sooooo proud to be part of this amazing group of kids and their families who are working together to make things happen for themselves and for others. I thank them for their commitment and I thank you on behalf of everyone for your support. Stay tuned for the updates on the road to Nationals 2012!!