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Beyond the Nuts and Bolts
by staff

Financial freedom is our birthright. That's the core of financial planner Suze Orman's philosophy about money.

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She tirelessly preaches this credo in her books, which include the best-selling The 9 Steps to Financial Freedom and The Courage to Be Rich, her television programs and her lectures. More than giving us basic practical steps on how to make our money work for us, she makes us confront our emotional ties to money and shows us how to take control.

We are not victims, she insists. It just takes some effort and learning the language of wealth to become wealthy. Orman firmly believes we can increase our wealth by shifting the way we think about money.

And her principles don't apply just to our financial lives, as she explained in an online chat with

Money is just truthfully a very small representation of our inner wealth. The laws that pertain to money are the exact same laws that pertained to not only what you have, but who you are. They can be, in my opinion, applied to your personal relationships, your professional relationships, and most important, your relationship with yourself.

From the bottom of my heart, I believe that money is the currency of life. It simply is a physical manifestation of how you feel about who you are, demonstrated by what you have. With this said, this does not mean, if you don't have a lot of money, therefore, you have low self-worth. The key here is how you feel about who you are, regardless of what you have.

Does that mean that the more money you have, the more self-centered you are?

No! There's no correlation at all. Having money does not mean that you're self-centered, and it doesn't mean that you're not self-centered. It simply means that you have money. It's what you do with the money that you have that determines if you are self-centered, financially speaking, or not.

My husband seems to have issues with money, particularly with providing for the family. Is there any way to help shift other people's thoughts/feelings about money, or is that asking for trouble?

It's not asking for trouble, but it is sometimes asking for a miracle, especially if you have not adjusted your own feelings, thoughts and actions about money. The question you should be asking yourself is why have you married a man with these types of attitudes? Why did you not recognize this before you said, "I do"? Just to hear him say, "I don't"? What are you getting out of that, which is what I would want to know from you? You're trying to change him, but yet, the question might be, are you the one who needs to change?

When we change ourselves, a very funny thing happens. Those around us change as well. We change others by example. Not by being parental to them, especially if the person is your spouse. Never talk to your husband, talk with your husband. Otherwise, he will feel that his mother, once again, is telling him what not to do and he will rebel even more. The answer to this problem lies within you, and when you figure that out, your husband most likely will change as well.

You talk about a key difference between men and women: Men have a hard time being emotional about money; women go there immediately. But men also don't know as much as they think about money. What do you do about this, especially if he is in denial?

Men have to be in denial when it comes to money, because for centuries now, they have been the ones who supposedly are the masters or the gatekeepers of the wealth. We have continued to place this unspoken burden on their shoulders and the problem is, they love their wives so much and want to provide so much for them that, in most cases, they accept this burden. Unfortunately, they have absolutely nobody to turn to for help. If you think about it, they won't even ask for directions! How do you expect them to say, "Help me, I don't know what I'm doing with my money?"

It is essential that you become powerful with your own money, with his money, with money, and that you help teach him, little by little, by loving him through the scenario. M just doesn't stand for marriage - it stands for money as well. It is very difficult to merge into a life of true financial intimacy where both partners truly fly, but it is totally possible if it is handled with compassion and understanding.

That is why I am so against women-only financial sites, women-only seminars. These types of vehicles only serve to segregate you more from your husband and make him feel more threatened. Men and women need to come together as one with their money.

Do you believe if you hold the conviction that the world is abundant, money will show up around you?

I do believe the world is abundant. However, I do not think that money just shows up around you. For money to manifest, your thoughts, your words, and your actions have got to be one. It is not enough to think that you're going to have abundance in your life, but yet say to everyone you meet, I have so much credit card debt, and I'm never going to get out of debt. It is not enough to think and say that the world is going to be abundant, and not take the actions necessary to manifest that abundance.

I do believe that financial freedom is every single one of our birthrights, and every one of us can be the master of our financial destiny. But for that to happen, we have to learn how to speak the language of wealth, we have to think wealthy thoughts, speak wealthy thoughts and take the actions to manifest the abundance that is out there.

Read the full transcript.

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Peg Downey
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Related Books
• 9 Steps to Financial Freedom: Practical and Spiritual Steps So You Can Stop Worrying, Suze Orman
• The Courage to Be Rich : Creating a Life of Material and Spiritual Abundance, Suze Orman
• You've Earned It, Don't Lose It : Mistakes You Can't Afford to Make When You Retire, Suze Orman

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