INTERVIEW ON “LIVE WELL WITHIN YOUR MEANS”
1. Why did you decide to write this book?
I have been seeing more of my friends and colleagues struggle in vain with their money. It is most painful around the holidays, not only Christmas, but also summer holidays, or vacations. Since I had spent so much time and energy researching and creating a money system which worked so that prosperity without debt was in my life, I wanted to pass this on to other women.
2. Why is it mainly geared to women and men over 30?
By the time people have reached 30, they are tired of money problems, and tired of all the methods they’ve used to get on top of their finances which haven’t worked. They have probably tried credit counselors, debt consolidators, debt diets, budgeting and any number of workshops, but nothing stuck. They are open to a new way of doing things.
3. Why are so many of the examples to women? Don’t men have much the same problems?
As one of my readers said, financial help is welcome by everyone. While women are more likely to admit to being shopaholics, and they are more likely to seek advice, in enough pain, men will do the same. Anyone is welcome to read the book; some of the examples are for men.
4. What attracted you to the spiritual part of financial management?
I was in a spiritual study group for many years called Search for God where God was called on to help with small life problems. I decided to bring God into my financial life, and it made the practical tools stick permanently!
5. Do you actually follow all of the advice given in the book?
I use the advice that I need from different parts of the book. For example, I am not about to have a Baby, so I don’t use that part of the book. On the other hand, if one of my children told me they were pregnant, I’d dive into that section in a heartbeat.
6. What mistake do women and men most frequently make around their finances?
Most people do not subtract as they go. For example, if they had a category with funds in it for Clothes, this gives them guilt-free permission to spend it, but then they have to subtract each purchase on the shopping day. That way they know how much they have left to spend. Of course, when the fund is gone, so is the shopping!
7. What’s the worst thing that’s ever happened to you regarding finances?
My credit card bill more than doubled in one year. Since I wasn’t able to pay off the balance when it was less, I had no idea how I was ever going to pay off double.
8. How did you eventually pay it off?
First, I cut up my credit card and cancelled my account at the bank. Then I began using my new money system to live a comfortable life. That meant I wouldn’t start debting again. I moved the balance to a lower interest credit card. And I paid slowly, but consistently until the debt was gone.
9. What’s the best money management tip you have that no one else knows about?
Start a little saving fund for a lost dream. Honouring your deepest, secret wish for yourself will give you joie de vivre, and motivate you to find a better job, give up expensive bad habits, like too many meals out or over shopping. You have that dream to fund.
10. What would you recommend that women and men do as a first step to financial peace and prosperity?
Become aware of where your money is going and where it is not going. First, track what you’re spending and on what. You don’t have to show this to anyone. Then make a list of what you are not spending your money on: like massages, vacation savings, or charity. Awareness is an eye opener.
11.What financial goals do you have left to accomplish?
Any goals or dreams I have get a little part of my monthly income. There is nothing I want to do that is not funded. And when I get a windfall, like a rebate or a cash gift, I deposit part of that to into each dream or goal fund. In time, I get to do anything I want, that’s legal and not immoral!At the moment, I am saving for a recumbent bike.
12. I’m impressed that the book doesn’t urge women or men to pay off debt no matter how much they have to deprive themselves. How did you come to that philosophy?
Extensive study of human nature. Extended deprivation causes the human spirit to rebel. Just like dieting, most women can only resist for so long before that chocolate thing looks too good to resist, and then they are off to the dessert buffet. Debt repayment has to be part of a balanced spending plan which includes funding both needs and wants.
13. What’s your next book going to be about?
The Point published in 2017. It is a cozy murder mystery/thriller with a light dusting of spiritual hope.
A bed and breakfast owner, and devoted dessert-eater, overhears a murder on her baby monitor, and recognizes the voice of one of the murderers. But if she talks, her children’s lives are at stake.
Get it at Amazon!