This is from my friend and mentor, Barbara Stanny. And it works for Dudes too! She writes GREAT books on money, such as Prince Charming Isn’t Coming and Overcoming Underearning and Secrets of Six-Figure Women. Go visit her at www.barbarastanny.com.
1. A smart woman thinks beyond being a wage-earner and dollar-watcher to become a wealth-builder. Wealth has nothing to do with what we have. Wealth comes from what we do with what we have. We create wealth by investing, or putting our money in assets that will grow.
2. A smart woman doesn’t wait until she has a lot of money to begin. Wealth begins with as little as $25 to $50 a month. (If we simply put $1.75 aside every day, we’d have saved more than $50 at the end of each month). Through the “magic” of compounding, we can accumulate a surprisingly sizeable portfolio.
3. A smart woman doesn’t wait for a crisis to get started. A crisis is the worst time to start anything. We can’t think straight. We tend to make terrible decisions, sink into paralysis, and leave ourselves wide open to financial losses. Instead, we must make a conscious choice to become smart with money.
4. A smart woman knows with total conviction she must do it herself. Dispelling the myth that “someday my prince will come” is the most important financial decision we will ever make. Prince Charming need not be a man, or even a person. Our “prince” could be an employer, insurance settlement, or a lottery jackpot, anything we fantasize will save us financially.
5. A smart woman is persistent when learning about money. Without fail, the moment we start learning, resistance, like a growling dog guarding the gate, is there to block our way. We don’t feel right. We get scared. We want to quit. To stay on the learning curve, we need to follow three rules: Just Start; Keep Going; and Never Give Up.
6. A smart woman deals with her unconscious attitudes to avoid sabotaging success. If we find ourselves fogging up or spacing out, if we can’t seem to apply the information we learn, or resist learning it in the first place, then chances are, psychological factors are impeding our progress. Once we identify our internal blocks, success can occur spontaneously, almost effortlessly.
7. A smart woman has no special secrets for financial success. There are, however, certain “smart things” smart women do. They trust their intuition, learn from their mistakes, start small, go slow, invest regularly, diversify broadly, and know what they’re buying.
8. A smart woman understands that risk makes them wealthy. Risk in the market refers to volatility and volatility refers to price swings. The more a stock moves up and down, the riskier it is. But those fluctuations only matter when we sell our holdings. The longer our time horizon, the less important those ups and downs are. If we’ve got say 10 years, those fluctuations are irrelevant.
9. A smart woman talks to others about money. We can learn from each other’s mistakes and draw inspiration from each other’s successes. We can use each other as sounding boards, role models, and sources of encouragement, advice, and information.
10. A smart woman recognizes that she has the resources to make fulfilling choices and the power to effect change. Taking charge of our money is a transformational experience that enhances us financially, empowers us personally, and endows us with enormous clout. When we combine our check with others – be it a charitable donation, a political contribution, or an ethical investment – we have tremendous power to create widespread social change.
Now go make some money, y’all!