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CHAPTER 1

It’s understandable to look at the fee amount in the above exam- ple as a large amount, but often that money can come straight out of your account, rather than out of your pocket. Plus, the fee may be deductible on your federal income taxes. Financial planning fees pretty much boil down to this: Either you pay or you don’t. Chances are, if you don’t pay for your financial advice, you’re not going to get the quality advice that you need.

MONEY AND FEAR

Many people are afraid of money, especially their money. Think about it, when was the last time you were at a dinner party and every- one was talking about how much money they had, or didn’t have? Probably not very recently. While we as a society have discovered that it’s permissible to talk about the neighbor’s divorce, your sister’s therapy sessions, or your grandfather’s bout with cancer, no one feels it’s alright to talk about their financial situation. And, sure, maybe it’s not the best idea to brag about how much money you’ve saved in your company 401(k), or that you have thousands of dollars in out- standing credit card debt, but you’d be surprised at how many people feel the same way or are in the same situation.

Facing your fears about money is probably the hardest thing you’ll ever do. But what exactly are you so afraid of? Losing all your money? Not being able to afford those material things your friends can? Not having enough? And how much is enough money, anyway? In order to get control of your money and realize your goal of being rich, you need to know where you are starting from, and get hold of your fears.

Sometimes our fear of money is directly linked to a past action that drives us. For instance, when you were young did you get an allowance? What did you do with this money? Save it or spend it? Does your reaction to your allowance connect with your reaction to your current salary? In other words, do you still find it hard to part with your money, or are you spending it the minute you get it? By identifying your money habits, it becomes easier to change the bad habits. Of course, fear may drive you away from even looking at your financial habits.

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