Investing

The Power of Celebration

Here’s a question for you. When was the last time you celebrated or simply acknowledged yourself for making the tiniest bit of progress—despite the difficulty?

Sadly, the answer for most will be ‘I can’t remember.’ Perhaps this is why so many struggle, in vain, to change.

Positive reinforcement—anything from patting yourself on the back to popping open the bubbly—works for one simple fact. Rewarding yourself feels good.

And any pleasant sensation triggers the release of pleasurable chemicals, like dopamine, encouraging the brain to keep repeating the behavior.

“It’s no secret that we derive pleasure from doing things we enjoy,” said neuroscientist Rui Costa, CEO of Columbia’s Zuckerman Institute. “The brain learns which activity patterns lead to feel-good sensations and reshapes itself to more efficiently reproduce those patterns.”

It’s why teachers give kids gold stars and cute stickers to encourage behaviors that may not come naturally or feel good right away.

Rewiring for Wealth is anything but pleasurable in the beginning because it often requires delayed gratification. There’s no immediate reward for spending less, saving more, or investing wisely. But the feel-good payoff for dining out, buying a new pair of shoes, or traveling to Tahiti is instantaneous.

Thank You!

Today, in the spirit of Thanksgiving, I’m taking this opportunity to say Thank You…

…to all of you who are reading this blog, even if it’s the only time you ever do, I truly appreciate you reading it today.

…to everyone who’s ever written to tell me how my work has impacted your life, you have no idea how your words have impacted mine. In fact, your notes and emails are tucked in a box beside my desk.

…to anyone who’s bought my books and perhaps passed it onto a friend, this means more to me than you can ever know.

…to those of you who’ve joined my groups or signed up for coaching, I’m endlessly grateful you trusted me to guide you while teaching me to be a better guide.

…to my amazing team—Lynda Jo, Carney, Jayme & Ben—for taking care of all the details I abhor and for supporting me in such a deeply loving way. I really would be lost without each of you.

…to my ex who gambled away my inheritance and my father who wouldn’t lend me money, you taught me that, indeed, the obstacle is the path, leading me straight to my life’s purpose.

…to my wonderful financial team, because despite current events, my portfolio has more than doubled since I first found you.

…to McGraw Hill, the publisher who said yes to my latest book, when all the other said no.

…to my kids and grandkids who are coming to spend Thanksgiving with us. Truly, my cup runneth over.

…to my beloved husband who rarely lets a day pass without expressing his love, appreciation and support for me.

Once again, from the bottom of my heart…THANK YOU ALL!

I’d love to know who’d you like to thank this holiday season. Leave me a comment below.


I’m so excited! My newest book Rewire for Wealth is available for preorder. And, if you order before January 12th, I have some fun bonus gifts for you. Learn More!

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Investing During a Pandemic…Isn’t it too Risky?

Yes we’re in a pandemic. Yes, investing now may feel very risky. But understanding risk is what makes you wealthy. And so few people actually get it.

You want to know your most dangerous risk? It’s not the market’s gyrations. It’s your emotional reactions.

The emerging field of neurofinance has proven that most investors, regardless of gender, tend to act on emotions, not rational thinking, when making financial decisions.

The reason? Our brain registers risk even before we’re conscious of it. Consequently we tend to make rash decisions that rarely end well, even if we know better.

So when markets take a tumble, our emotions, especially fear, take over. And we make very bad decisions. It also happens in reverse.

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I Know What To Do! So Why Don’t I Do It????

Could this be you? You’ve read a ton about investing, attended some classes. You understand stocks, bonds, and the value of diversification. You own a few funds in your retirement account.

Still, you continue to ignore or neglect your money, even though you know better. Why?

Blame it on traditional financial education…where the emphasis is on filling your head with facts rather than fostering your courage to change.

Raise your hand if you’ve ever been given the tools to boost Self-Efficacy, the most powerful predictor of financial well-being. (I didn’t think so.)

Self-Efficacy—a concept developed by the Stanford psychologist Albert Bandera—is a person’s belief in their ability to succeed in a given task or goal.

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Words of Wisdom for Weathering A Crisis

I’ve been wracking my brain all week…wanting to find just the right words for these whacky times. Then a newsletter from Ellevest—an online women-centric financial firm—showed up with the perfect message.

I could not have said it any better.

Three Things I’m Telling Myself 

By Sallie Krawcheck

What we’re going through is scary. On many levels.

As an investor, it’s been stomach-lurching. And so I keep reminding myself of three things:

  1. We’ve recovered from every recession and depression. Some have been longer; some have been shorter. But we’ve recovered from every one of them since 1854, and the economy has continued to grow.

  2. Time has been your friend. We’ve recovered from every “bear market” in history. Some have been longer; some have been shorter. But consider this: You could have invested in the stock market on any given day since the mid-1920s, and if you had stayed invested for 15 years, your chances of a positive return historically were 99%.

  3. Stillness is your other friend. Remember the research that women are better investors than men? That’s because women more often do what so many professionals (Ellevest included) advise: Invest according to a plan — and then leave it alone.

Click here to read the rest of the article.

Do you have an investment plan in place? Leave me a comment.

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Losing Sleep Over Sinking Markets? Advice from a Wall Street Expert…and a Veteran of 2 Major Crashes—Me!

Last week, the market took the worst dive since 1987. Ahhhhh, yes, 1987.  I remember that October day quite well. Black Monday they called it.

I’d been in the market for about a year.  I knew nothing about investing, but I trusted my broker. However, when the market went into free-fall, I went into full blown panic. 

I called my broker, insisted he sell everything. He begged me not to, insisting the market will go back up…it always does.

I didn’t listen. If I’d stayed put, like he instructed, I’d be a lot richer today.

Yet it was a priceless lesson.Ten years later, in 1997, almost to the day, the market crashed again. Only this time I didn’t see disaster. I saw a sale. 

Fast forward to today. I’m not saying you should go on a buying spree. Though it is a sale. But I am imploring you not to sell everything in a panic. Investment decisions, based on emotions, rarely end well.

However,  if your nervous system can’t stand the heat, don’t rush out of the kitchen or do anything rash. Take advice from my favorite financial writer, Jason Zweig,

“If you feel you can calm yourself only by ditching some stocks,” he wrote in last Fridays Wall Street Journal, “sell a fixed amount each month for the next year.” By taking small steps, and automating them, you take the emotion out of the decision.

And if you’re going to sell, sell the losers, he advised. “That will turn some of your losses into cash—and a write-off on your taxes.”

Or, instead of selling, “You could direct your dividends into cash, rather than more shares, for now.”

To give you some perspective, take a look at this chart, sent to me via Therese R. Nicklas, CFP:

 

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I’d love to hear how you’re reacting to this crazy market? Buying? Selling? Waiting and watching? Or frozen in fear? Leave me a comment below.


LogoCould you use some extra support during these crazy times? I’d love to mentor you in my 5-month ReWire Mentorship Program. Click here to learn more about this life-changing program.

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Investing vs Gambling…Is there a difference?

Not long ago, a woman in one of my groups proudly announced that she‘d maxed out her 401(k) and had been buying stocks outside her retirement plan based on a friend’s advice.

She had a right to be proud. But when I asked if she was following a plan, she looked puzzled.

“How do you know whether or not your portfolio is properly diversified?” I asked her. “Or if you’re taking too much or too little risk?”

I spoke from experience. For years, I bought individual stocks and mutual funds, based on other’s suggestions. I had no plan.

Then, I hired financial advisor Eileen Michaels. Initially, I wanted her to manage my individual stock portfolio. She wouldn’t have it.

“You can’t invest like that, without a strategic plan,” she told me. “Keeping your investments fragmented is how you’re keeping yourself small.” She had me at ‘small.’

Planning, I learned, is what separates investing from gambling.

Picking stocks willy-nilly, trying to time the market or deferring investment decisions to another and turning your back…that’s gambling.

It’s risky in the worst possible sense.

Investing, on the other hand, is a means to an end. The whole point of investing is to ensure you achieve your goals and protect your future.

I highly recommend hiring a fee only financial planner. Unsure where to find one? I suggest  Garrett Financial Planning https://garrettplanningnetwork.com, a world-wide network dedicated to offering professional planning at affordable prices.

Are you gambling with your future or investing in it? Let me know below.


Would you like to try out coaching with me? Join The Wealth Connection for six-months—Only $297 and get a 30- minute private coaching session with me! (The coaching alone is a $300 value.) Or take advantage of the twice monthly group coaching—only $47/month.  JOIN TODAY!

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Blame It On Your Brain

I remember a friend telling me that her son, a financial advisor, tried to explain some financial concept to her.  “I want you to get this,” he insisted.

She listened intently but when he finished, she told me, “I hadn’t heard a word he said. I went into a haze. I felt so stupid. Why do I do this?”

I see this all the time. A woman attempts to take financial control but she’s suddenly struck by a sense of foreboding. It’s as if she’s entering a place she shouldn’t be and a voice in her head screams out: Danger! Keep Out! Immediately, she shuts down. 

It wasn’t until I started studying Neuroscience that the reason for this pervasive reaction became clear. Women’s and men’s brains process financial (and other) information differently. Men see investing in the market as a challenge. Women see investing as a threat. 

Our prehistoric brains were wired to ensure our safety and survival. Anytime we feel threatened, our rational brain shuts down, sending us into fight, flight or freeze mode.    

This doesn’t apply only to beginners.  I’ve had women who work in the financial industry or manage large budgets in their jobs, tell me, “I do this for a living, but my own finances are a mess.” If you’re in this boat, there is a way out. It’s not filling your head with more facts, but instead learning to rewire your brain.

I’m excited to announce McGraw Hill will be publishing my latest book, The Rewire Response: Mind Training for Wealth, Well-being & Whatever Else You Want. I just got the contract so it won’t come out for a while. But I’ll be sharing some brand-new programs on rewiring this fall. Stay tuned.

I’d love to know… Does this help explain why you, a smart woman, have a tendency to avoid money? Leave me a comment below.


Would you like to try out coaching with me? Join The Wealth Connection for six-months—Only $297 and get a 30- minute private coaching session with me! (The coaching alone is a $300 value.) JOIN TODAY!

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A Woman’s Financial Paradise

If you haven’t heard of HERMONEY.com, I can’t wait to introduce you.  It’s a kick ass website, which co-founder, Jean Chatsky, dubs a “judgement free place to talk about all things money.”  

On the site, you’ll find a vast reservoir of rich content and fascinating podcasts. And, best of all, HERMONEY is jargon free.

Jean has a talent for making a complicated subject entertaining and clear without dumbing it down. Personally, I consider HERMONEY a woman’s financial paradise!

Jean has spent over two decades reporting on personal finance for magazines like Forbes and Smart Money, serving as the Today Show’s financial editor and writing 11 books, including her latest—Women with Money–which I love. 

Last week, I had a wonderful chat with Jean about her own struggles with money, her  excellent advice for taking financial control, and why she founded HERMONEY.com.

“I needed to educate myself,” she said of her career choice. “I was an English major who racked up credit card debt, pulled money out of my 401(k) after my first job, and ceded too much financial control to my first husband.” 

As she learned about money on the job, she told me, “I was inspired to take control.”

“What did you do to take control?” I inquired.  

“When I got divorced, 15 years ago, I automated everything I could,” she said. “I automated college for kids, retirement, savings accounts. Once a month I’d look at all those accounts.” 

Then she laughed. “Saving money is no fun. But seeing how much it grows—that’s fun!” 

Finally, I asked Jean what inspired her to start HERMONEY. 

“I wanted to grow something bigger than me,” she said. “I wanted to build a platform where all woman could see themselves.”

Check out www.hermoney.com and let me know what you think!!!


Want to take charge of your money & your life? Join me in my virtual community, The Wealth Connection. Special limited time pricing—only $47/month. Join Now!

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5 Things $mart Women Do

There’s an old joke. Why did God create economists? To make weather forecasters look good.

The truth is, no one knows what the economy, or the various markets, are going to do.

I used to think there were a list of secrets that smart people, mostly men, knew. And if I could just get my hand on that list, I’d finally understand money.

But as I grew smarter, it became apparent. There are no secrets. But there are smart things that smart people do.

Here are five of them that really helped me.

1. Trust your intuition—most smart women tell me they made their worst mistakes when they didn’t trust their better judgement.
2. Learn from your mistakes—too many women become paralyzed by their fear of making mistakes. But smart women told me their biggest blunders were actually their best teachers. You can minimize those mistakes by following the next 3 suggestions.
3. Go slow—take time to educate yourself and develop a game plan,
4. Start small. Invest regularly. Diversify broadly.—invest small amounts of money, on a regular basis, among various categories, or asset classes, putting only what you can afford to lose in any single investment.
5.Understand what you’re buying—never put money in anything you don’t understand. Not only do you not know what you’re buying, but you won’t know when it’s time to sell.

What’s the best investment advice you ever received? Leave me a comment.


There’s still time to join the next session of my 5-month ReWIRE Mentorship Program!  Click here to learn more.

Meet Barbara Huson

When a devastating financial crisis rocked her world, Barbara Huson knew she had to get smart about money… and she did. Now, she wants to empower every women to take charge of their money and take charge of their lives! She’s doing just that with her best-selling books, life changing retreats and private financial coaching.

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