About 17 years ago, I picked up a book called Gail Vaz-Oxlade’s Retirement Answer Book. I was a financial advisor helping clients retire happy and this National Best Seller was one of my key learning tools.
Gail was a bit of a celebrity then but soon after she became the host of the TV show “Till Debt do you part” which really catapulted her stardom.
I recently became witness to what I call the “Gail Movement” when she filled a University Lecture hall with over 500 people in Edmonton and the event organizer “Bridget Casey” of Money After Graduation had to turn lots of people away. Everywhere she goes to sign books and give seminars, she has an amazing following. It’s really something to see.
At the event
Gail is confident, passionate, opinionated (in a good way) and tells it as it is. Just like on her TV show, she is not afraid to offend people to get them to do the right thing. Here’s a video of her presentation at Red Rive College.
Meeting Gail in person
There is no question, my highlight of her trip to Edmonton was getting to spend a little one on one time with the debt diva! It was great to learn more about her career as well as her commitment to being a mom of 2 kids. True to her character, in addition to comparing professional notes, she gave me some no-nonsense advice on parenting and I’ll never forget our conversation on how to talk to kids about the birds and the bees.
Gail’s new book – Money Rules
I’ve got so many books on my “To Read Shelf”, it’s ridiculous. One of those books was Money Rules but after meeting Gail, I had to make it a priority. Needless to say, I was not disappointed.
In Gail’s words, Money Rules is not a How to Book. She’s written other books for that like “Debt-Free Forever” and “Never Too Late” Money Rules is a common sense book with some really great rules. It’s not a book you have to read in sequence. It’s a book that you can pick up, go to a page and read that rule.
With 261 rules in this book, it’s impossible to talk about too many in this post but I thought I would share my top 10 rules, which was not easy to do because there were so many good rules.
Rule #10: Your financial education is your responsibility
Rule #49: Your kids’ financial education is your responsibility
Rule #38: More will not make you happier
Rule #48: It’s not your money until it’s in the bank
Rule #107: Saving is easy – Investing is complicated
Rules #125 and #126: Busy people spend less money and Lazy people spend more money.
Rule #174: Life isn’t fair
Rule #39: You are in charge (Great story!)
Rule #21: It’s not how much you make – It’s how much you keep
Rule #53: Don’t buy the minimum payments Bullsh*t
Rule #73: Track your Net Worth
Rule #85: Patience is a virtue
No matter how old you are, how much debt you have, your income, your marital status, your state of financial affairs, Money Rules has something for you. Don’t expect all 261 rules to apply to you. Focus your time and energy on your top rules and make them personal. Gail says it best, “The finance part is straight forward: Numbers are both concrete and absolute. But people aren’t. In fact, folks have become so obsessed with finance that some of them don’t even acknowledge the personal part.”
Do you have any favourite rules from Gail’s book to share?