In Money Messages: Get Out of the Red and Into the Green, Emotional and Financial Freedom to Transform Your Life, Jody Robinson and Karen Putz come together to create a powerful book that teaches people how to look at their relationships with money and then transform them into emotional and financial freedom. Robinson is a wealth manager who has been involved in all aspects of financial planning, from wealth management and portfolio construction to tax and insurance planning. When Jody put out the call for co-writers, Karen Putz approached her to co-write this book because Karen’s mission to help people find their personal passion complemented Jody’s desire to help people live better quality financial lives. Putz is a deaf water skier and the author of several books, including Unwrapping Your Passion. Together, they have created this insightful, thought-provoking look at how we can all improve our relationships with money.
The book, which weaves together interviews and personal stories with practical exercises and reflections, is divided into three sections: Understanding Money Messages, Rewriting Your Money Messages, and Investing in You. Robinson clarifies that before we can have a positive relationship with money, we need to understand what messages we received about money while growing up, such as “Money doesn’t grow on trees,” and also the spending or saving habits we saw others emulate and which we may now be practicing, consciously or not.
In the book’s first section, Robinson takes readers on a journey to understand money. She looks at money’s true purpose, but more importantly, she asks readers to ask themselves to examine their belief systems about wealth and lifestyle. She provides tips on how to take charge of your own destiny and how to determine what money decisions you need to make for your dreams to come true.
Once the reader is clear on what they want and which Money Messages are holding them back, Robinson dives into section two where she provides insight into and exercises for rewriting Money Messages. These messages relate to all aspects of our lives, even love. She encourages us to be brave and take a leap if we realize we have to do something differently. She then walks us through how to “flip the script” to change our Money Messages.
The final section of the book is the most practical one. Here, now aware of what we want, we learn the tools to determine how to make that happen. With a new understanding of money, we are now ready to make our money work for us. Robinson addresses different investing behaviors and helps us figure out healthy behaviors for moving forward. Important behaviors include purposeful spending and saving and figuring out how to get out of debt. She then discusses various investment strategies, how to create a Plan B if our Plan A doesn’t work, and finally, how to prepare for our golden years, be prepared for any healthcare needs we may have, and maybe even leave a legacy to our children or community.
A Bonus Section includes helpful information on great books and TED Talks for further learning about money, investing, and personal transformation, to guidelines for finding a financial advisor, and even money-saving food tips. I love how Robinson compares a first interview with a financial advisor to going on a first date because you want to find the right person to lean on for financial advice for years to come.
Overall, Money Messages is a practical, insightful, yet fun book. Yes, fun, for what is more fun than finding yourself in the groove of moving toward what will make your life better? Plus, Robinson shares interviews with fascinating people from different backgrounds, including a reality TV show star, a financial journalist, and an herbalist who lives through barter and trade. You’ll even find yourself laughing along with her at some of her past mistakes. All of these stories serve as excellent examples for how we can take charge of our own financial lives.
If you are in debt, feel stuck in your career, or just want to become better at financial literacy, then Money Messages: Get Out of the Red and Into the Green, Emotional and Financial Freedom to Transform Your Life should be the book in your hands right now.