For the past 6 months I have been running an online Money Course working with a small group of clients and non-clients on transforming their finances. And it's been a life changing experience not only for the participants, but also for me.
I got to hear in depth - from highly capable, award winning professionals, earning good income - their struggle with spending and borrowing money, their first childhood "encounter with money", their regrets over lost opportunities and their hopes and dreams for a better financial future.
I have come to realise that everyone who has participated in the course has done the best in their life to cope with whatever life was throwing at them. I also come to realise that we have all fallen victim to Consumerism's marketing machine that needs to keep us chained to debt and consumption by making us feel inadequate for not buying/upgrading the "right car", "wearing the right clothes", or "living in the right suburb".
Consumerism's mantra the past 4 decades has been "YOLO - You Only Live Once". This mantra has managed to turn even the most capable people in our society with high IQ (Intellectual Intelligence) and even EQ (Emotional Intelligence) to CONSUMERS living for the DAY and not planning for TOMORROW.
And the impact?
- Thousands of dollars lost on things that mean nothing and generate no income for old age.
- More years to keep working till their 60s and some till their 70s.
- Lost opportunities even to buy one's own home in Sydney and continue to rent in their 40s and 50s.
- Young people under 30 burdened by a mounting credit card debt with interest rates as high as 22% and accepting to live with this debt while only paying off the interest component.
- Parents feeling guilty for not doing more for their children as Sydney and Melbourne house prices lock young people out of the housing market.
Here's what one participant shared about his money story:
"I feel that I have lived my life - FOR THE DAY, and not for the future. I have been selfish in my approach to money and have utilised every penny of it in the search for happiness on a day to day basis. If I was to change anything – it would be that I could have taken more responsibility for my finances earlier in life, and had more of a balanced approach more in line with family, long term planning and being ultimately more mature and sensible with my money decisions"
Four months later, this same participant managed with his wife to create a budget to manage their household expenses and start saving. They now have money in the bank and just signed off on buying an investment property.
During the past four months I have been dealing with my chronic fatigue (read my story here) and I have cut down on activities I deemed not important so I can cope with running the practice (and sleeping in on the weekend to recover!). But when it came to running this money course, I kept going. Helping people (and growing succulents!) helped me. I realised that making a difference is one of the best things one can do in this short life.
That's why I want to do more and educate people about money so that people have a better quality of life designed by them, based on their values and not dictated by marketing moguls.
The next Money Intelligence Course is starting 18th June 2018. For the next 3 weeks I will be running a free webinar to share what this course is about, invite you to register and answer any questions you might have. The first webinar will be on Friday 1st June 12:30pm - 1:30pm.
I hope to see you on the webinar. Let's have a discussion about how you can fulfil your financial potential while we're having our lunch!
Susan Wahhab — CPA, SMSF Specialist, Entrepreneur, Working Mum, Small Business Supporter — is Australia’s leading Financial Strategist and Money Mentor. Susan is the founder and managing director of Accounting and Financial Services firm Winner Partnership Pty Ltd
Susan is the author of the transformational and practical book Money Intelligence®. Susan is passionate about helping people achieve financial liberation. She truly believes that people can become financially liberated by developing a healthy relationship with money. Buy the book in either printed copy or ebook and learn more about being money intelligent on shopify.