Do You Have A Money Problem And Don’t Know It?

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[The following is a partial transcript of this episode of The Scott Alan Turner Show. Listen to the full episode to hear this story, listener questions, money hacks, and inspiring stories of people that are changing their financial lives. Subscribe to the free podcast on iTunes or Google Play]

I was giving some advice to an 18-year-old this past week about money. The babysitter.

She had the basic ones down – I need to save, I need a good credit score, right? She’s going into the Air Force instead of college, has a boyfriend who’s going to college, they have plans.

But they don’t know what they don’t know.

I’m trying not to give her the fire hose of information and put her in overwhelm, just a few basic things. I mentioned Private Mortgage Insurance and saving for a house, but I got the dear in headlights look so I know I went too far.

But it makes you think –

  • What do we learn?
  • What advice do we follow?
  • And what do some people ignore?

One of my businesses – I was looking at the paperwork the other day – we had something like $120,000 in a bank loan, personally guaranteed. That means, hey Scott, you don’t pay this, the bank can sue you for it. $30,000 in credit card debt. And this was about ten years ago when the economy was terrible, business revenue was down, profits down, and salaries ended up getting cut.

When I signed that paperwork it never occurred to me we wouldn’t make money. With all the successes I had in my corporate life, and with the business, I just thought I had the golden touch. I’m winning over here, losing didn’t seem possible. The economy and housing market collapsing as it did, never occurred to anyone.

You know this already, common sense is not always common practice, and isn’t it true common sense isn’t always common?

Maybe you’re thinking

  • Nobody told me about student loans. I was told to get a college education.
  • Maybe you had a medical issue and couldn’t work. Did you even know about disability insurance?
  • You inherited bad spending habits from parents or siblings that had bad spending habits.

See, an adult has the common sense not to touch a hot stove, right? A child doesn’t. They do it once, burn a finger, that’s all it takes. What was unknown or uncommon to you before you burned your hand, now it’s common sense. But unless someone said “get away from the stove,” you’ll hurt yourself, you didn’t know.

And even then, kids wonder, is it really that hot?

I still do this today when we pull pans out of the oven. I’m thinking after 15 minutes, can I touch the pan with my hands or do I need an oven mitt. So I do that quick tap to see how hot it is.

Realize for some people,

  • they hear good advice but ignore it
  • they start making progress, fall off the wagon, and then quit
  • they get on a plan, and think they are smarter than the guide and go off in a different direction
  • they get on a plan, and start adding on or taking away from the plan with unproven, get rich quick, get out of debt quick, sales pitches. These are easy to spot, because they always cost money, sometimes a lot, or come with too-good-to-be-true promises

They know it could be a hot pan, but they are going to grab it anyway without an oven mitt on.

One of my values is Hope & Non JudgynessI made up that word – which makes us different. We’re not here to judge, we’re here to inspire. We’ve had our money moron moments. When the listener says they went out over the weekend and financed a brand new model car for $25,000 and now they regret it, well, we have a teachable moment here, let’s figure out how to work it out.

It’s like, I eat cake. It has no nutritional value. I know this. It’s not going to stop me from eating cake. That’s not a disaster.

Think of it this way –

You have to know about a problem before you realize you have a problem.

There is a choice to ignore the problem and hope it will go away or to fix the problem and change your life.

More than 50% of the population is

  • living paycheck-to-paycheck,
  • carrying a credit card balance,
  • has no retirement savings,
  • and doesn’t have $400 cash for an emergency

When you hear that, do you believe that sounds like someone else’s life? Or is there some unease when you start thinking that some of those things are part of your own life, and it’s time for a change.

There are people who believe nothing bad will ever happen because nothing bad has happened yet.

99% of people are just one medical emergency away from a financial disaster. But they see everything as fine right now because they are healthy.

It shouldn’t be a beat down if you’ve made some poor choices in the past. We all have. It’s depressing to me though when I see people making the same poor choices over and over and what it costs them.

And it’s inspiring when I see people who see what it cost them and make new, better, and wiser choices.

Because when you do that, you are going to feel great.

You’re going to improve your relationships

You’ll move from

  • being ok with the problem,
  • to crushing the problem,
  • to the problem going away forever.

When you think about your financial journey

  • Do you have some guilt you need to let go because you didn’t know what you didn’t know?
  • Or was there a situation beyond your control?
  • Maybe what’s common sense now wasn’t common sense then?
  • Or was this a wake-up-call and you just heard this for the first time

If it is, welcome to the family! You’re one of us now. Let’s get to knowing more.


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