I’m very pleased to have ended 2012 and started my New Year by getting a free copy of Joe John Duran’s book, The Money Code: Improve Your Entire Financial Life Right Now. I got this copy from the pr company so that I could provide a review on it and I’m glad I got it. I will be doing a radio show in a few weeks about Thriving and Surviving as a single woman or single mom. One of the topics that I talk about frequently is about finances. Whether you divorce or if you are single, your attitude about making financial decisions will be the cornerstone to protecting your financial future, your children’s financial future and relate to the quality of life that you’d like to have. I believe Duran’s book is a simple and workable approach to understanding your emotional state of mind when you make money decisions.
The Nitty Gritty on The Money Code
The Money Code first starts out with Duran establishing his credibility and emphasizing how most of us don’t have a good relationship with money. He simplifies that our fears about money center around a fear of missing opportunities and a fear of losing money. Duran then goes on to talk about the 5 secrets that guide your decision making. These are:
1) Your life will be filled with tough choices.
2) Your entire life is determined by how you make decisions.
3) Your biases will affect every decision you make.
4) You will be distracted by things that really don’t matter.
5) You must have a good process to make good decisions.
This all seems simple doesn’t it? This is a very short read only 168 pages, but I have found that those that need financial help the most might be like me, stressed out and not thinking in straight terms. What I love about this book is that the concepts are simple, attainable and everyone can relate to them. It seems that Duran goes out of his way to establish the importance of communicating with yourself as well as your loved ones based upon 1 of three dominant money minds that impact you and others. These three money minds are:
I personally have a fear money mind meaning that my focus is that of protector. Regardless of the amount of money and success that I have, I rarely feel secure or satisfied. I think in terms of what could go wrong and to avoid financial pain. There is a lot of good in this but also a lot of bad such as missing opportunities and experiencing anxiety over financial decisions. Much of this stems from the experience of going through a divorce, being a parent and not getting the child support that I am entitled to. Through the years I have also gone through a foreclosure and a layoff, all of which have taught me the importance of emergency savings and a nest egg. I personally worry about the legacy I leave to my children. I believe many women, especially single moms have this money mind.
Who is Jack? And why create a fictional storyline
Throughout this book not only do you have illustrative concepts, diagrams, lists and objectives but you are also introduced to a fictional character named Jack and his introduction to the Alchemist. The alchemist is a creator of a special program to help Jack and previously Jack’s sister get back on track financially. As you walk through Jack’s life you begin to realize where he is financially as well as the fact that he’s separated from his wife. You also get to the nitty gritty about his financial money mind and how much his communication style of the happiness money mind didn’t mold well with that of his ex wife who, more than likely, had a fear money mind. While many reviewers thought this extra fictional story was a bunch of unnecessary fluff, I for one loved this aspect of the book. It gave a simplistic but real world scenario that you could compare your own situation to it. As you progress through Jack’s mind shift you are taught by Duran all of the basic concepts by which truly understanding your money mind can help you with your financial decisions.
The other aspect in the teachings by Duran is not just your money mind, but some basic things that are in your control when it comes to your personal finances. These would be spending, saving, timing and taking risks. When you are making a decision look to those 4 things to determine what is in your control. In the book, Jack wanted to take a trip and he needed to evaluate his situation based on what he could control which was spending and timing.
What I liked about it?
It’s very relatable without going over your heard. While the character in the story was married, albeit separated, these concepts are something that many single parents CAN and SHOULD employ within their own lives. Many single parents definitely get into a fear money mind and are no strangers to constant self sacrifice, but employing some of these strategies can help single parents enjoy life with their children and lend itself to confidence to thrive as a single parent. I also really liked the quick blurb at the end that describes what questions you should ask your personal financial advisor. I thought these questions were spot on for really engaging someone who will be responsible with your money. As a single parent, it is obvious that you may have trust issues and you wonder whether that professional you just hired truly understands the needs of a single parent. To read these questions, you have to Buy the Book
What I didn’t like about it?
While there are visual aid drawings obviously outlining benefits, it would have made more sense to have these drawings specific to Jack’s decision making so that we not only have an checklist outline of the thought processes but the visuals.
I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that I’d give it a 5 out of 5 stars. I don’t particularly read personal finance books so I can’t compare it to others or to the Dave Ramseys, Suze Orman or Jean Chatzky books. I read a Jean Chatzky book a very long time ago and I personally did not follow it. If you are a busy single parent, how much of this offline stuff can you do when you are working, running a business, taking care of kids and trying to find a bit of me time. I say, this is a quick read that needs to be read when it comes out on January 22 as a ways to start the new year right.
Pre-Order your copy at Amazon.com today!
Disclaimer: The above post may contain affiliate links. A complimentary copy of the book was provided to Dallas Single Mom in exchange for this product review. All opinions presented are 100% my own.