I just finished my copy of Suze Orman’s new book called “Women and Money” and I am glad that she is talking about the dysfunction that so many women have with money. The book is just fine and so is the information it it. But I wonder about a woman being able to work a 5 month program with a lot of information in it on her own. Women just do so much better when they are using personal support and relationships and talking to help them make lifestyle changes. It’s the difference between going to Weight Watcher meetings and reading a diet book on your own.
I notice that so many get excited and engaged when they start to talk and relate about themselves and their money but when their attention is moved to technical information, they tend to lose interest. There seem to be only a few women who truly relish all the technical information about money management. The majority of women can take this only in very small bites . It seems preferable that they come up with a simple system of their own devising that keeps them learning in a more involved way than trying to incorporate a lot of financial wisdom from the printed page. The biggest change that a woman can make in her money management is not just to master the skills but to begin to talk about it with her closest friends and loved ones. Talk about it openly. Ask questions to get a little bit of information given person to person.
This is how most women build their emotional and relationship skills. They discuss every detail of conversations with others and then ask their friends about it. A money group that you form with your group of girlfriends where you begin to share the skills that you are developing is really a great way for women to begin to overcome this. If you think about it, invite a friend over and have her/him teach you how to use financial software or how to balance your checkbook..in exchange you can do something for your friend. This is the way that women learn best and stay motivated. There’s nothing wrong with Suze’s book but most of the women I end up working with already have the money management books on their shelves, unread and it is not until we start exchanging small bits of information through personal contact that the real changes begin.