My guest in this episode is Jean Chatzky. Anyone who has spent any amount of time immersed in the world of personal finance media knows of Jean and her work. Over her 30-year career as an advocate for financial education in so many forms—be it as an expert on “The Today Show” or as the best-selling author of numerous personal finance classics—Jean has helped millions of Americans develop an increased comfort with their finances.
What I love about the way this interview came about was the serendipity of it all. A friend of a friend forwarded me a request for financial advisors willing to work with women in transition, and then tape an episode with Jean for a podcast that she was doing for AARP. Long story short, I had the opportunity to help a young widow living in Washington State get some clarity about her financial future. Jean, as well as her wonderful production team of Kelly Hultgren and Kathryn Tuggle, I hit it off. One thing led to another, and I ended up as a guest on Jean’s “HerMoney” podcast in an episode called “Invest Like a Woman.” Jean agreed to come on true WELLth to do this episode. The best part? The kernel for this connection was women helping women.
Importantly, the collaboration amongst women in supporting each other has now extended to the realm of taking charge of our money. In this interview with Jean, you will hear the ups (and there are many!) and the challenges as women step into their power around money. Given Jean’s perspective as a journalist, you will find the conversation both fact-based and emotionally aware. Enjoy!
Manisha’s Top Takeaways
- We must face a painful reality: worldwide, women are not as safe as men.
Ninety-one percent of rape or sexual assault victims are women. A more widespread understanding of the degree to which women do not feel safe is an important first step. This reality is at the heart of what Jean spoke to and shined a light on during our discussion. Safety is at the core of Maslow’s “hierarchy of needs.” Without security, it’s not easy to move up the chain of self-actualization. [10:15]
- Stepping into your power is scary.
Powerful women are not often adored. Many are viewed as threatening. So to say women simply need to step into safety, power, and confidence ignores some societal headwinds. [11:00]
- Logic makes us think; emotions make us act.
Only by fully incorporating the emotions that make us act into our financial educations can we ensure that both genders are taking steps with their finances that are the right ones for their specific circumstances. Like alcohol or love, strong emotions around money can make us do things we wouldn’t otherwise do from a purely rational standpoint. [17:55]
Other Major Topics
- Manisha’s Freudian slip when speaking with Jean (and why it happened) [4:00]
- The single biggest mistake women make when getting divorced [13:30]
- The four stages of a typical career path, and how they can hurt women [14:30]
Resources Cited in the Episode
- Jean Chatzky’s website
- Jean’s HerMoney podcast
- Jean’s books: Women with Money; Pay It Down! Debt-Free on $10 a Day; and AgeProof: Living Longer Without Running Out of Money or Breaking a Hip
- When She Makes More: The Truth About Navigating Love and Life for a New Generation of Women by Farnoosh Torabi
- Reshma Saujani’s Brave, Not Perfect book, website, and TED Talk
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