40+ and Fabulous Moving Foward, Fierce, Focused and Full of Life by Sondra Wright

Moving forward fierce, focused and full of life!

40+ and Fabulous Moving Foward, Fierce, Focused and Full of Life by Sondra Wright - Moving forward fierce, focused and full of life!

Divas In Defense: Legit or Scam?

11-24Divas In Defense is a self-defense program offering personal safety and self-defense workshops for women and girls. The company also offers a Train The Trainer program; a licensing structure touted as a “Business In A Box,” allowing individuals with no prior self-defense expertise the opportunity to certify as trainers and build their own Divas In Defense business. But is the opportunity real, or just another business scam?

If you have landed on my site, chances are you were impressed with a self-defense class or perhaps something you heard on a Divas In Defense Trainer Opportunity Call. You’re probably considering joining the Divas In Defense team and just want to make sure you have the information you need before making your final decision, such as the viability of the organization, their reputation, the demand for the products and classes, and the strength of the brand in the marketplace. I want to congratulate you for doing some research.

Once you decide this is the business for you, you’ll be asked to sign a licensing agreement. Since this is a legally binding agreement, you’ll want to do everything in your power to protect your interest before signing on the dotted line.

As you ponder this business investment there are naturally a number of question you are asking yourself in determining if a Divas In Defense operation is right for you:

  • What am I really getting for the money
  • Will my investment and fees be worth the return
  • Will I receive all the benefits promised in my training and licensing package
  • Will they live up to the full agreement
  • Will they provide extensive training or just a sketchy marketing plan
  • Will they provide the level of support I need and expect
  • Is the system designed with MY success in mind
  • Are there any unexpected or hidden costs
  • How responsive will they be to me
  • Will I get everything that’s promised before, in, and after the agreement

The last thing you want is for your dream of business ownership to become a nightmare so no matter how friendly or professional the owners, management, or sales team may be, you should not rely solely on those conversations. After all, they’re not working for you. If your preliminary research has you really interested, engage a qualified attorney to help you do your due diligence, thoroughly analyze all documents and help you with further considerations like:

Default/termination. What happens if they breach the agreement? Will they make corrections within a reasonable time? What happens if it’s not corrected in a reasonable timeframe? What are the consequences?

Legal issues. What happens if there’s a dispute between the two of you? Will they work towards an amicable resolution? Will you end up in court?

Remember, your objective going in is to make money; not to get scammed or be made a fool of. Don’t jump in with your eye wide closed! This is a business decision you are making so protect yourself by doing your homework, gathering information and facts, and asking lots of questions. The next step; talk to someone, like myself, who is or has been a Divas In Defense trainer and licensee. Getting the honest feedback of someone who has invested their time and money should be a very important step in finding out if this company and opportunity is a legitimate and safe investment for you.

 

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Resolving to Save More in 2013? New Aging App May Help You Keep that Resolution

Every year, saving more money tops the list of New Year’s resolutions made by women, and year after year many women find themselves a little short of that goal. Well this year, a new application by Bank of America and Merrill Edge called “Face Retirement” lets you literally stare retirement dead in the face and may be the encouragement you need to keep that resolution.

Bank of America has taken some extreme measures to get you to build a larger, healthier nest egg. Using a webcam, you can now see a picture of what you will look like, 20, 40 or even 60 years from now, a shocker intended to help you think ahead to the future and motivate you to save.

A wage disparity between the sexes, combined with the fact that many women simply are not planning for their financial futures keeps women at greater financial risk. A handful of campaigns, like AARP’s Decide.Create.Share., have been launched in recent years with one goal in mind — to help women take steps to secure their financial futures.

The shock factor behind “Face Retirement” is one I believe will definitely resonate with women. At minimum it’s definitely something that will spark conversation and get you thinking. Not only does this app digitally age you but it also gives you an idea of how much things will cost you in the future, at that age.

So, if you haven’t already, go to Merrill Edge and meet yourself in retirement. Wishing you a healthy, happy and proserous new year!

 

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Your Finances the Second Time Around

Guest Blogger Sharon O’Day

The phenomenon even has a name: the Gray Divorce Revolution.

You see, the divorce rate among couples over 50 has doubled in the last 20 years. The causes? All the traditional ones, for sure: infidelity, boredom, growing apart and so forth.

But, more and more, it’s because of an eye-opening statistic. According to the Social Security Administration, anyone who is 65 years old today has a 25% chance of living past 85 and a 10% chance of living past 90.

So maybe the husband has reached retirement age or has had to take early retirement because of the economic downturn. He’s sitting at home thinking, “What am I going to do for the next few decades? I’m not sure I even know this woman who’s fixing lunch for me every day and asking me every five minutes what I’m up to. I’d better find something to do, maybe start a home business. But is this who I want to do it with and for?”

Or maybe the wife has reached her fifties after raising her kids and is thinking, “Is this all there is? What about me? I have another 30-plus years ahead of me, a whole second adulthood that needs to be filled.” (Following the first one that may have left her unfulfilled.)

Besides, after setting her own dreams aside while she made her family her first priority, she’s beginning to dream again. She’s having thoughts of discovering her life purpose and leaving some sort of legacy. And what was important in a partner when she married 30 years ago may not be what she’s looking for today.

So the ground is fertile for separations and divorces. And whether her separation is amicable or not, whether the financial implications are good or grim, a whole new financial life is about to start.

Suddenly she is part of a very large statistic: she’s a “divorced female.” Either by choice or by circumstances.

Now is when she’ll find out how well she learned the lessons of adeptness and comfort with money as she was growing up. How far she developed her concept of personal responsibility. Whether enough of her self-identity has survived the years.

Now is when she has to hold the financial reins firmly in her hands.

So, besides having to ensure enough income to support herself, she has to put five things in place, whether she stays on her own or eventually finds someone else to share her life. She needs to:

  1. Identify her lifestyle going forward based on a long-term vision, deciding how simply or extravagantly her resources and her dreams permit her to live. (And then, what will make her happiest.) Life after divorce is not a continuum of how it was before. The blackboard has been erased and now it’s time to redesign what she wants her future to look like.
  2. Open an online savings account with a minimum of $1,000 in cash, readily accessible, just as an emergency fund. Whatever her financial situation, this is the most important “peace of mind” gift she can give herself. It’s not meant to help close out months if she comes up short; it’s there for when a true little emergency rears its head. It will. And she’ll be ready. (Think about the control that represents …)
  3. Build a fund equal to 6-8 months of expenses as fast as possible. Regardless how financially prepared she thought she was as she got out of her marriage, it’s now doubly important to stay on top of her finances. With this fund she knows that she can bridge any structural challenges, like job loss, late alimony payments or whatever.
  4. Find a financial course or mentor to bring her up to speed if she has any doubts at all about how to handle her money. There’s no room in the new economy for financial ignorance. She doesn’t need to become a financial wizard, but she does need to be comfortable with her numbers, for today and for the future.
  5. Revisit all the important documents that will have become obsolete as a result of the divorce. This includes her will, living will and any advanced directives. It’s time to be sure to change beneficiaries, next of kin for notification and authorized decision makers.

The (divorced) Boomer woman. She was a rule-breaker as she was growing up, from shattering social mores to rejecting any limitations on what she could do with her life.

Now it’s time for her to break the rules again: it’s time for a generation of women to finally enter its later years empowered around money. Not dependent. Not scared. Empowered.

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Bio: Sharon O’Day is a speaker and writer who today focuses on the relationship women have with money. She’s a global finance and marketing expert with an MBA from The Wharton School. Sharon has dedicated the last 10 years to understanding the specific money issues that hold women back from reaching that much sought-after goal: financial peace of mind.

Contact info: 

Website: http://SharonODay.com

Twitter: www.twitter.com/SharonODay

Facebook: www.facebook.com/SharonODayFB

 

 

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Marketing to Boomer Women? Ladies Understand Your Value Before Opening Your Purse

It seems these days wherever I turn someone is offering advice on strategic marketing and advertising to baby boomer women. But my BS detector is going “ding”, “ding,” “ding” and the hairs on the back of my neck are standing at full attention. Why? Well it’s the same question ladies of, “Is he marrying me for love or is he marrying me for my money?” Think about it! Just a few short years ago ours was a demographic completely ignored or stereotyped in the industry. In fact, let me just put it out there… television and print media, known for its emphasis on youth and beauty, didn’t give a damn about us boomer women, doing more damage than good by continually exasperating negative or non-existent images of “older” (I prefer “mature”) women on television. Now that the economic tide has shifted, and companies are grappling to get their hands on consumer dollars, the boomer woman is suddenly a HOT commodity; the new “It” girl! But let me share with you something my dad always cautioned against, “Don’t fall for the okey-doke!” And we should all be asking ourselves, is it the value of our person of the value of our purse that has them looking at us with love in their eyes?

Now back to mom’s wisdom, “Why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free?” It is absolutely imperative that we understand our value as the most influential group of women in society, worthy of respect and recognition. Don’t hand over your assets to just any “Joe” (no pun intended to my first husband) whispering sweet nothings in your ear. If they want something of value from us, they should happily commit something of value to us. If advertisers and marketers want to harness our spending dollars then there are a few things we have the collective power, the right, and the duty to ask, expect, and receive in return. First and foremost, we deserve advertisers and marketers who will depict us in a realistic and positive light; not the way society has historically seen us; as old-fashioned, confused of thought, arthritic, denture wearers, but as we see ourselves; vibrant, clever, passionate and fun. Next, let’s close the inequality between the sexes. Older men outnumber women on TV but not in real life. In the real world, women live longer and therefore outnumber our aging male counterparts, and we should see those numbers represented in advertising and television. Finally ladies, advertisers have had plenty of laughs at our expense; amusing their audiences with the depiction of older women as nagging, out of touch, incompetent, or even fallen and unable to get up. And the media’s negative influence has had far reaching implications. Since they can’t afford to ignore us, or the power of our purses, the real win-win would be to partner with us. Let’s commit to spend our dollars only with those who commit to invest in us; in our movement to change the way society sees and treats older adults, to improve the overall perception, status, and opportunities for maturing women, and help create post-retirement programs that would assist women in the use of our experience, leadership, skills and talents in ways that would allow us to remain vibrant, productive members of society while still enjoying the leisure of retirement.

Don’t give them an ounce of milk girls, until they commit to preserving the cow!

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