My guest on show #131 was Victoria Ryce, co-author, with Gail Vaz-Oxlade, of a new book, CEO of Everything: Flying Solo and Soaring, that deals with how to cope with becoming suddenly single.
On that show we talked in detail about the emotional aspects of becoming separated, divorced, or widowed, and Victoria had a lot of practical advice for either the person who is now single, or for people who have loved ones who are suddenly single. Click here to listen to show #131.
In many relationships, one person manages the money while the other is happy simply being kept in the loop or ignoring the money completely.
This is very common, so one of the challenges when you become unexpectedly single is that you are now in charge of everything. Your first priority will be to “take stock” and make sure you have access to funds for day-to-day living.
But what’s the next step? What if you get a life insurance payout, or a divorce settlement? What should you do with the money? Victoria has some surprising advice: the correct answer, initially, may be to do nothing.
There is no urgent need to rush into an investment you may not understand. Also, you may not yet know where you are going to live, or work, so having some cash in a bank account or collapsible guaranteed investment certificate may be the most prudent course of action.
Victoria shares a lot of practical advice on the show, including in the area of debt. When you have cash in the bank you have options, but she says when you are borrowing you are “stealing from your future self”, so the most basic protection against financial problems caused by becoming suddenly single is to get out of debt.
Resources Mentioned on The Show
- Podcast #131 How to Master Being Suddenly Single
- CEO of Everything, Flying Solo and Soaring by Gail Vaz-Oxlade and Victoria Ryce
- Antifragile: Things That Gain From Disorder by Nassim Taleb
- You Retirement Income Blueprint: A Six-Step Plan to Design and Build a Secure Retirement by Daryl Diamond
- Hoyes Michalos study Why Women File Insolvency
FULL TRANSCRIPT show #133 with Victoria Ryce
Doug Hoyes: My guest on show number 131 was Victoria Ryce, co-author with Gail Vaz-Oxlade of a new book CEO of Everything, Flying Solo and Soaring that deals with how to cope with becoming suddenly single. On that show we talked in detail about the emotional aspects of becoming single, divorced or widowed and Victoria had a lot of practical advice for the person who is either now single, or for you to help support your suddenly single friends. You can hear that show on iTunes or any podcasting app or on our website at hoyes.com.
Of course this show is called Debt Free in 30 and we deal with money, so today we’ve got the second half of my conversation with Victoria Ryce where we talk exclusively about the financial aspects of becoming suddenly single where you are now the CEO of everything.
If you are the CEO of an actual company, money is one of the main things you’re going to be dealing with, if not the main thing and if you are the CEO of everything in a life because it’s the same thing.
So, Victoria what’s maybe some basic things that people wouldn’t think about and then maybe get into some more specifics. So, in your situation as you talked about in our first episode your husband passed away. Tell me what financial implications there are to that. I mean I can think about the obvious ones are, okay well somebody’s income isn’t there anymore. But there are things I guess that we wouldn’t think about. So, talk to me in terms of things like disability insurance, life insurance, all those kinds of things. What would I not think about in a situation like that that perhaps I should be?
Victoria Ryce: In my circumstance my husband was first on short-term disability and then on long-term disability. So, one of the things that happens as you, and probably a lot of your listeners know, is when you move from short-term disability [NOTE: Transcript is correct; Victoria mis-spoke in the interview; short-term disability payments are generally greater than long-term disability payments] you’re getting paid a lot of money relative to pure salary. When you move to long-term disability it goes down. I think in our case it went to 69% of income. So, I wasn’t working, I was his caregiver so now we’re dealing with less money.
I was fortunate because my husband and I both had worked in finance so we both knew money that there are some people that that’s not going to be the case. So, partly it can be that rolling scenario of okay less money and now even less money and yet we still have a lot of obligations and things to do, bills need to be paid etc. You probably in our case we had a car each, so even though only one car was being used, still two cars need to have insurance and so on.
I guess what I would say to people is that when a death occurs, which was my case that I would speak about that you think oh okay, now what? So, despite all of the shock and what am I going to do without my partner and surprise at what’s going on in your new world, what happens is they don’t pay the insurance money right away but they cut off the disability right away. Because he’s no longer short-term disability because he’s not alive, so that money stops. So, there can be a gap in between the time of when the short-term disability has ended and when you get a payment from –
Doug Hoyes: And what kind of gap could that be, weeks or months?
Victoria Ryce: It depends. And it depends because the insurance company, the longer they don’t pay you the more –
Doug Hoyes: The money is sitting in their pocket, they’re happy.
Victoria Ryce: That’s it exactly Doug. So, consequently it could be awhile. I know in my case, in my husband’s case, because we had just changed carriers, that they said well this was a pre-existing condition. So, now my blessedly lovely insurance agent fought this but that takes months. And they want to know your current doctor and who was the doctor before then. So, now you’re trying to gather information and do stuff when you have diminished resources.
And one of the things that was such a wonderful kind of opening for my mind of understanding debt was when I read Nassim Taleb’s book, he’s the fellow that did The Black Swan. But I thought his most brilliant book was Antifragile where he talks about the fact that if you are in debt you are fragile. And fragility is a difficult situation to find yourself in, what you want to be is at a minimum, robust. So, it’s one of the reasons to think about when you are in a partnership what is in place that you are going to be ready for in case there is a very sudden death.
Doug Hoyes: So this gets us into the practical stuff then and I want to pick up on one thing that you said there about the car. So, we both have a car, one of us is now disabled and, you know, is going to die. When do you get rid of the car? Like isn’t that – it’s not a financial question, it’s an emotional question because as soon as I sell my husband’s car we know he’s never coming back even though he’s still alive. I mean it would make sense not to be paying the insurance for a car we’re not driving. I would imagine that’s a pretty emotional charged decision as opposed to a financial decision.
Victoria Ryce: You’re absolutely correct and it’s low on the list of things to do. Some days you’re just getting up and saying oh, have I washed my face today or did I eat today or have I, you know, when was the last time I changed my underwear? You’re just not in this world, you’re in a very discombobulated state. And so money is not tending to be priority and – but at the same time the utilities company, the insurance companies, people who are giving you gas or electricity or whatever it may be, telephones, they’re very sorry for you, but they’re still sending you a bill.
Doug Hoyes: Yeah.
Victoria Ryce: And it still has to be paid.
Doug Hoyes: Yeah because that’s the way it is. Well and I’ll read a quote from the book here. “In many relationships one person manages the money while the other is simply happy being kept in the loop or ignoring the money completely”. So, that’s a quote from your book CEO of Everything.
So, what’s your general advice then for someone who is now the chief financial officer in addition to being the CEO of everything? And maybe you could split it into two parts as a planning point then. So, let’s assume that my spouse is still here, everything’s still going great, but things change in the future. What should I be thinking about now, particularly if I’m the person who doesn’t handle the money, where do I start?
Victoria Ryce: If you’re in a partnership, there’s a 99% chance one of you is going to go first, right?
Doug Hoyes: Yeah unless the plane crashes at the same time.
Victoria Ryce: Exactly the case, exactly the case Doug. So, one of you’s going to go first, how is the other one being taken care of? How do you help them continue on? So, it’s a very selfless act to do planning this way, buying insurance, making sure it’s in order, having a will. As you and I know so many people don’t have a will. And that, you know, on top of somebody being in grief, you now want to have them have to go through the court process for all of the elements that might come up. What if they have, you know, a blended family and there’s other people there? And there’s a lot to be done.
And if it was something where there was life insurance and you did get a big payout in the sense of big being whatever it may be, maybe it was $250,000 maybe it was more. Well, suddenly do you have people who know that you’ve got life insurance and now you’re dealing with people wanting to ask you for money? And that’s why one of the first things we say is first do nothing. Because if you are in that position where you just received this money, you might think oh well, that’s like more money than I ever thought was possible. But that’s going to go pretty quickly, it is surprising and if you don’t know where the money goes.
And as I said I was fortunate, we both handled the money. So, I knew where all the money was going while my husband was sick and I knew what was coming up. So, I could have some kind of preparation. But for someone who that wasn’t it, and be assured when you’re dealing with a crisis like this or someone is terminally ill, money is not really the first thing on your mind but it’s part of one of those things of being an adult where you get things in place so you don’t have to think about it.
Doug Hoyes: You mentioned a will and in your book you say don’t use a generic will kit to make a will. So, what are you talking about and why?
Victoria Ryce: It’s not that expensive really to get a will. And what you get is valuable advice from a lawyer.
Doug Hoyes: A real lawyer.
Victoria Ryce: A real lawyer who handles wills, who understands estates and is going to ask you questions that will help you. It’s a small price to pay, to have things in order to make your life easier. Because once you become CEO of everything and you’re on your own, you want to know that there is some backup for you, that there is an infrastructure you’ve put in place and one of them is a will that’s been properly set out.
It’s that whole idea of courtroom drama, isn’t that exciting when you watch it on TV. The families are fighting because one person got the money, it’s the first wife, the second wife, it’s the first husband, it’s the second husband. But at the same time you’re thinking if you’re really, really sad, if you’re mourning the loss of your beloved, is that what you want to be dealing with?
Doug Hoyes: Yeah a big fight, and I guess it depends on your situation, if we have no assets, if we rent an apartment and don’t have a car and don’t have any money, then okay I guess a will is less important because there’s nothing to split up. But you’ve kind of painted the picture where it would be critically important if like you say it’s a blended family. I’ve got kids from my first marriage, kids from my second marriage, an ex wife, a current wife or this or that. I’ve got a –
Victoria Ryce: Cottage.
Doug Hoyes: A cottage, a business, a house, whatever. If you die without a will –
Victoria Ryce: Just Google that and get scared.
Doug Hoyes: Yeah, it’s just a mess because there is no obvious process for distributing your assets other than going to court and fighting about it.
Victoria Ryce: And isn’t that a pleasant way to spend your time?
Doug Hoyes: Yeah, I’ve just gone through a death and now we get to go through court. So, if you have any assets at all or expect to have any assets, and it’s not just the financial will, obviously it’s the concept of I guess generically what’s called a living will but a power of attorney, a healthcare thing if I’m disabled and unable to make decisions but I’m not dead, who’s going to make the medical decisions for me. So, these are all things you should think about in advance and pay the money and get it done right is what you’re saying.
Victoria Ryce: Absolutely because it will be the best investment you ever make. Because what happens whenever one of you goes, you have helped the other person get on with their life. because as I say, their life is still going to continue and have you made it an easy road, is it a bed or roses to keep going or is it a rocky road where it’s going to take them so much time and if anyone has dealt with the estate for anyone it is a lot of work. Even for someone who’s very organized, it’s a lot of work. You need a lot of death certificates. You have to send them to every party who’s involved.
Doug Hoyes: Yeah and so the more planning you can do the better. And you go into this in detail in your book, so I encourage everyone to get a copy and see what’s there. But why don’t you give me sort of two or three practical pieces of advice then? So, let’s say that I’m currently married and let’s say that my spouse is the one who handles all the money. I don’t pay the bills, that’s not my thing, I do something else that’s not it. And like you eluded to, and it’s certainly been in my experience, in pretty much every relationship, person A does one thing and person B does the other, that’s just the way it works. So, if I’m the person who doesn’t handle the money, what are some things that I should at least be aware of now? What do I not know?
Victoria Ryce: This questions always fascinates me. When someone says I don’t know anything about the money, really? Okay, you work hard for it, you talk about it a lot, you want to have things in your life but you don’t know about the money. You know more about going to Costa Rica than you do about what’s in your banking account or your investment account or TFSA?
I’m just fascinated that people have this disconnect between realizing that money gives you options. And that because you have money and you have options you can make choices. If you want to find yourself without choices and without any knowledge and at the bottom of a very, very steep learning curve, don’t pay any attention to money. If you think it’s always going to come in and it’ll all be fine, okay that’s your dream world. But it’s a huge part of your life and why people have, you know, can tell you every episode that ever went on on Friends or Seinfeld or Six Feet Under or whatever but they don’t know some of the basics about what is driving their life.
Doug Hoyes: So what are the things I need to know then, like the basic things?
Victoria Ryce: So think about it from this point of view, do you love your future self? You love your today self, you’re doing all sorts of things for your today self, here I got this or I bought this or I did this, but what about your future self, do you love your future self? It’s one reason why I’ve talked about this, when you are borrowing you are taking from your future self.
Now Gail actually calls it stealing, but when you are borrowing money you are borrowing income from your future self. And if you don’t love your future self then you get yourself into debt, not a good scenario. Love your future self.
So, consequently how much money is it that you are spending right now? There’s loads of people that don’t know how much they spend each year. Do they have any idea? And even if you just do it for a month, just write down every penny you spend, honestly I’m so old school. I do it every month and just used one of those pieces of paper, it’s just three rings in it, it’s in a binder and I just put it in, this is how much I spent on food, this is how much I spent on car and gifts and utilities and travel and taxes and so on. Just to give yourself an idea, because if you have no idea where the money goes, how will you know if you have enough?
Doug Hoyes: So very, very basic things. And obviously Gail is famous for her jar method, which is more of a proactive budgeting method as opposed to a retroactive where did the money go? But it’s really the same thing, okay well if I put, you know, X number of dollars in the jar and at the end of the month I’ve run out of money, then I guess I didn’t know where it was going. So, number one thing if you’re clueless about money if your partner is the one who does all the finances is where does the money go, what does it cost to live and what are the other traps I can fall into then when my partner dies? I mean I guess there’s some basic stuff like how do I access the bank account? I mean everything’s online right?
Victoria Ryce: Where are the passwords?
Doug Hoyes: Where are the passwords? And so, I should know where the passwords are.
Victoria Ryce: Absolutely. Where’s the insurance policy, is there an insurance policy? Where’s the booklet that they give you that everybody gets on day one of starting, if they work for a company, where’s the booklet and what does it mean and what’s coming and what isn’t coming?
Doug Hoyes: So would it be a good idea, and again it makes sense that one partner pays all the bills because having two people writing cheques, I guess people don’t actually write cheques anymore, but if we actually still were an era where people wrote cheques, having two people write cheques doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. But would it make sense one month of the year for person B to pay all the bills?
Victoria Ryce: That could be one option. I know a couple and what they do is every Sunday they sit down for an hour and they go over, where did the money go this week, what are we planning for, what do we want for our future? And so they’re being proactive about it.
I’m always astounded Doug when people say well, I’m just an airhead about money, and it can be men or women. It’s like really? Here’s this thing that you talk about a lot, you want a lot, you buy things, you spend it but you actually haven’t thought about it, you haven’t planned out. One of the things in part of the planning that I remember being so lucky to read this book by Daryl Diamond talking about your RRSP blueprint. Where he said how much money do you want there, how much money are you going to need, what are you going to put in?
And people say well, I’ll just take CPP and OAS and these people thinking they’re going to get maximum of CPP, it’s not the case. I even had a conversation last night with a friend and we were talking about CPP and she has worked her whole life. She is just about to turn 65; she has worked since she graduated from university, so full-time, that entire time. And she even said she gets $8 short of the maximum. And so here’s someone who’s worked their whole life and they’re not even going to get the maximum so why people keep thinking they’re going to get maximum CPP, it’s not the case. Most people get, I think the average is two thirds.
Doug Hoyes: Yeah because if there was any period of time you were out of the workforce or were not earning the maximum dollars, so if you took time off to have kids, or if you were unemployed for a period of time or self-employed for a period of time and weren’t making the contributions that were required, you’re not going to get the full, a full whack.
Victoria Ryce: Yeah if you’re getting the average CPP that people are getting, you’re getting $666 a month. What exactly is that going to cover for you?
Doug Hoyes: Wow, which is probably less than you’re earning now.
Victoria Ryce: Substantially less and maybe you saw recently that there was some documentation that said that Canadians who are I think it was 55 to 64, only 18% of them, so 18 people out of 100 have enough money to last five years. So, what are those other 82 people going to do?
Doug Hoyes: Yeah, I sure hope CPP and OAS covers it. You know, like you say the 600 or 700 bucks I get, I hope that’s enough to live off of.
So, from a practical point of view here, if I’m the airhead that you’ve described, and you said it in a nice way when you called me an airhead. The first question I should ask is what do I want, what do we want, what’s the plan here? And if the plan is I would like to retire at 65 and have enough money to pay the rent, then relying on CPP of $600 a month maybe isn’t going to do it. So, that’s I guess the starting point.
And then number two knowing how much you’re spending, that’s kind of a basic thing as well. And I agree with you, I’m not a big fan of budgeting because most people just get diverted from it and don’t do it. But I do agree with the strategy of so for one week or one month write everything down. And if you can’t write everything down, pay for everything on your debit card, then at least it’ll all be on your bank statement. You can download if all from the internet, you can see it all there and that at least gives you a picture of where it’s all going. And knowing where it goes allows you then to make changes.
Victoria Ryce: Exactly because CFOs have to manage the money. You are now the chief financial officer. So, what is it that you are going to do? You have this amount of money, it’s going to be allocated somewhere, how are you going allocate it? What is part for your future, what is part for today? Do you find yourself, and this is something that is amazing to me, when people find themselves single, sometimes they realize wait a minute, I can’t afford to stay living where I am, I can’t afford to keep living on these vacations. I can’t afford to put a trip on my credit card.
Because, as I’m sure you see people in your scenario, you cannot keep on with the same life you were having in most cases. You’re going to have to make some alterations. So, do you want to be prepared for them and at least know where the money is going so that you can then say how do I cut, how do I add?
It’s back to that wonderful numerator and denominator thinking, those fractions. The numerator, the number on the top is how much you’re bringing in, denominator on the bottom, how much is going out. So, you can change either of those and suddenly find yourself geez, am I numerator thinking, I’ve got to earn more money or am I denominator thinking I’ve got to cut more so I’m not spending as much. That kind of thinking again gets your brain working and saying okay really this is my life and I earned this money, now how am I going to spend it?
Doug Hoyes: Well and ultimately you hit the key word which is thinking. That’s the answer, that’s the answer to everything that we’ve talked about, that you have to do thinking in order to, you know, where do I want to get to, do the math, can I get there? And if I can’t then now’s the time to make changes.
So, I want to ask you a couple of sort of quick hit questions just as we close here because I think that’s some fantastic advice. And again the book CEO of Everything has all this in a lot more detail. So, I want you to tell me about why you think it’s important to de-clutter? And specifically you’ve got a quote in the book would I be willing to physically carry it? So, tell me what you’re talking about there?
Victoria Ryce: When I was looking around my house I thought I have a lot of stuff, how did I end up with all this stuff? I bought it or someone gave it to me and is it now part of my today life? So, I started using that picture in my mind okay I have to actually physically carry this around in my life and that’s what part of being CEO of everything is, is you’re responsible for every thing. So, I looked at that and it helped me Doug to say, you know what, this is not being helpful, I would not carry that to my new home if I was moving somewhere.
And the de-cluttering part of it is, and there’s so many studies that are out now on this, is that you actually have more time in your life if you have a more organized life. You actually are a person who you can put your hand on something as opposed to going, and part of it becomes self talk, oh I can never find anything or where is everything? And that difficulty of, you know, especially when you’re newly widowed or find yourself newly single you’re having a bit of low self-esteem in all probability and so you don’t want to be self talking and saying oh I can never find anything or this is really hard. Instead you want to be saying to yourself no, I know where things are.
And a big piece for me was I just wanted to stop cleaning. I wanted to spent less of my life cleaning. Everything you own, you have to store it, you have to clean it, you have to have it somewhere, you have to wear it, you have to think about it, you have to move it around if you want to do something. And I just thought I wanted to say instead actually I want to do more living.
Doug Hoyes: Yeah and the less stuff you’ve got the easier it is to do that. Let’s talk about debt. And you already touched on it with your Antifragile I think was what you had said. So, clearly you’re of the mind that the less debt you’ve got the better because that’s the ultimate protection obviously. I mean if you don’t have money in the bank that’s a problem but if you’ve got massive debt but if you’ve got massive debt when your partner departs then you’ve really got a problem, it’s as simple as that, right?
Victoria Ryce: It is a problem and I feel for people on this one. Gail and I were talking about this one day because we were saying right now the average Canadian for every dollar of income has a $1.68 of debt. So, you’ve got a dollar of income and $1.68 of debt, that’s a lot of debt. And I said Gail, you don’t have any debt and I don’t have any so some else has our debt as well. So, there’s other people with more than a $1.68.
But that makes you so precarious. What happens if you’ve got a HELOC, a Home Equity Line of Credit and they call it. People don’t realize it’s a callable loan. And where are you going to get the money? You’re not. What are you going to have as an option? Nothing except for trying to find the money from somebody else or selling your home. What if you’re like a whole bunch of people that they’re doing that too? Well, we live economically, supply and demand. If there’s more supply, less demand, prices will change.
And what we were very interested in in highlighting to people is the stock market, which is where I spent a lot of my life, and also the housing market. They are both up and down, up and down. So, consequently if you say oh my house has only gone up since I got it, that can change and it can change quickly. Same with the stock market, these are two variable resources, they are not fixed. And so what we wanted to say was if you have debt, you have fewer options.
Doug Hoyes: It’s as simple as that. Yeah and you’re over 30 years old, that’s how you know that real estate goes up and down and the stock market goes up and down. And I mean we’re recording this in early 2017 here in our Toronto office where the real estate market has been great for years and years and years. If we were sitting in Fort McMurray today or even in Vancouver where things have leveled off, it would be a totally different story. But when you had that perception that it always goes up and now of course the stock market, you don’t have to be that old to remember when things have gone down because it has corrections all year long. But you’re right, over the long-term, certainly over the last few years, it’s been strong.
So, understanding that things can change is one of the impetuses for having as little debt as possible then. And that’s what gives you the flexibility to do what you want. I guess if you have a house with a big mortgage and your partner dies or you get separated and you have to move, that’s a lot more difficult than if you have a house with no mortgage.
Victoria Ryce: It is. And I think if people spent a bit more time realizing that debt makes you weaker, they would be less inclined to take on more debt. Because a lot of consumer debt, I have a friend who works at one of the big banks and she just talked to me recently and she said I’m dealing with a difficult consumer proposal right now. This fellow he has $168,000 of consumer debt. And I said what, like how do you run up $168,000 of consumer debt?
So, they – massive amounts, like how did you get to that point, how did you think, when did you ever stop and say oh 50 is too much? Oh, 75 is too much, okay 100 that’s it, I’m done. No, you just keep going and going and going. And so there’s a mentality there, I don’t know what it is about just keeping taking on more debt and that that will be okay. And at some point when there’s too many people who have done this, as you’ve seen, collapse.
Doug Hoyes: Yep. And the flip side of the question is what was the bank thinking when they loaned that person $168,000?
Victoria Ryce: Absolutely.
Doug Hoyes: So, it’s a two-way street, we aren’t thinking to the future but obviously the banks aren’t either. They’re looking at well, the loan is performing today, the money is still coming in so let’s raise the credit limit. And I guess it comes back to the same point you made earlier with respect to budgeting, you’ve got to look to the future. So, in the future will I be able to pay this back?
So, one final question related to debt and mortgages and real estate. And you can tell me if I’m misquoting this here but I believe you had a section in the book where you do not necessarily recommend that a newly single person use life insurance proceeds or a divorce settlement to immediately pay off a mortgage. Am I saying that correctly and if so, why?
Victoria Ryce: It’s back to the statement that I made earlier, first do nothing. You are not in your complete right mind as all of this change is going on. You’ve got just too much information. What you need is to have a settling in order to see okay what is it that I want? Because if you use that money and paid the mortgage but now you don’t have anything to live on, what are you going to do? Then you’re going to put on a home equity line of credit. Okay, well is that a good idea or not because you think oh well it’s there I can use it?
Instead if you thought about it and thought more deeply about okay, let me just keep running this ship right now along this path and see what happens and then I can make decisions when I’m a bit more certain about what I want my life to look like. At the beginning you don’t know what your life is going to look like because all you know is right now you’re in a fog and until that clears, too difficult to make a big decision. That’s a big financial decision, too difficult to make that big financial decision, which is why we also say when people know you’ve got a settlement and they come saying oh, can you loan me some money because I’ve got this debt or I want to do this thing, don’t do that either. First do nothing.
Doug Hoyes: Yeah, get your feet on the ground first. So, you’re not saying it’s a bad idea to pay off a mortgage, you’re saying it’s a good idea to make sure you’ve considered all the options. If you have a mortgage that’s at a low rate and matures in six months anyways, well fine pay it off in six months then, why be paying the penalty to pay it off. If you’re planning to move than it’s less of an issue. On the other hand if you are planning to move really quickly, okay well then maybe it does make sense to deal with or maybe again it doesn’t matter. I’m selling the house anyways, I’ve got this cash, I can use that to be buying the new place. So, it really is thinking it all through is what it comes down to.
So, well that’s great. I’ve got 57 more questions but we are out of time so people are going to have to read the book and get the rest of it. What final advice would you have for people then? Specifically in the financial realm if they are either going through sudden singleness now or if they want to plan for it in the future. What should I be thinking in my brain right now?
Victoria Ryce: This is really important and this is what people need to say to themselves, that they are their most important asset. So, everybody say this to yourself, I am my most important asset. Because people will often say oh, I’ve got a stock portfolio or I’ve got a house and it’s my biggest asset, wrong. Their biggest asset is themselves. You are your capacity to have the amazing life that you want to create. You have the capacity to make money, you have the capacity to make decisions, you have the capacity to bring joy and creativity into this world. So, keep remembering that you are your most important asset and treat that asset with good care.
Doug Hoyes: That’s the key. Well, I think that’s a fantastic way to end it. And you’re putting the power in your own hands. Obviously life has dealt you some blows that you had hoped wouldn’t happen, but it’s happened, nothing you can do about it now, focus on the future is really what you’re saying.
Victoria Ryce: You are still alive and you have a lot to give and a lot of people will be so appreciative of you being in their lives. So, in those terms be a giver and be a person who is saying I am CEO of everything and it’s a great job.
Doug Hoyes: Fantastic. Well, that’s a great way to end it. The book is CEO of Everything, Flying Solo and Soaring by Gail Vaz-Oxlade and Victoria Ryce who was my guest today. Victoria, thanks for being here.
Victoria Ryce: Thank you Doug.
Doug Hoyes: Thanks Victoria. Once again the book is CEO of Everything, Flying Solo and Soaring, that deals with how to cope with becoming suddenly single.
This was part two of my conversation with Victoria Ryce, who co-authored the book with Gail Vaz-Oxlade.
On part one, which aired two weeks ago, show #131, we talked about the emotional aspects of being suddenly single, and today we focused on the financial aspects.
Victoria shared a lot of practical advice, and I agree with what she had to say about debt. When you have cash in the bank you have options, but when you are borrowing you are, as she puts it, stealing from your future self, so the most basic protection against financial problems caused by becoming suddenly single is to get out of debt.
That’s our show for today.
Full show notes are available at hoyes.com that’s hoyes.com, including a link to how you can get a copy of Victoria’s book, which is also available now at bookstores everywhere.
Thanks for listening.
Until next week, I’m Doug Hoyes. That was Debt Free in 30.