How to be the financial architect of your lifestyle

Smiling young African American businesswoman working on a laptop at her desk in a bright modern office with colleagues in the background

Article by Susan Ritter, Founder of Wealthy Wise Woman

When was the last time you made a 10-year plan? Have you ever made a 10-year plan? 

This is not the way we have been taught to think in the west – at least not in the past 50 years. This became apparent when I joined GeniusU and planning became a key to success.

Thinking about the future would imply making decisions that required planning, saving and delaying gratification.  In a financialized world, that isn’t good for business.  But it is good for us – we just didn’t know it.

Today, the world is in disruption. Technology has gotten ahead of us again, just like it did 150 years ago. The technology takes off and those with vision and imagination catch a ride.  Those who are vested in the old ways ignore it, fight it, and eventually succumb to it as wealth and power moves from the old to the new.

Being a participant in corporate America, it is easy to miss the moves.  Trapped in a big, centralized industrial complex that has worked the same way for 150 years – with its hierarchies, structures, and age-old processes that create angst for everyone every time a slight modification is made to the procedures.

The comfort of a steady income, a retirement savings plan, and health care.  The golden trap for millions in jobs they hate for a lifetime, just so they don’t have to make a plan of their own, take responsibility for their own decisions, or accept that life involves risk.

But when the unthinkable happens, like the 2008 financial crisis – the first real crack in the 20th Century model, what was the result?  Many stayed right where they were, many fell into the abyss, and the young started blaming the generations before them for leaving them only the table scraps.

The stage is set for the shift.  The old and comfortable are disconnected from reality, trusting that what has worked for the last 100 years will continue to work.  Students are still going to traditional schools to get useless degrees for jobs they don’t want and putting themselves into a lifetime of debt.  Retirees are shrinking their lives to fit into a retirement savings plan that is unlikely to survive them as life expectancies extend and inflation degrades their savings to nothing.

What will happen when this all comes to a crisis again?  A real crisis where there is nowhere to hide – where livelihoods are lost, money has been crushed, and food cannot be found?  Will everyone look to someone else to blame? Someone else to save them?  Who will look to themselves?  Who will recognize that the result was of their own making – their lack of ownership for their own future survival and success?

Not everyone, there are always those who have separated themselves from the norm.  The dreamers…. the visionaries…. the people who are riding the wave.  In the past, these people were the doers – the Edison’s, Ford’s, and Tesla’s of the 20th Century.  Today, because we have a financialized world, we all get to participate in building the future…if we choose, and Edtech companies like Genius Group, the parent company of GeniusU, are paving the way for those that choose.

It was my ‘aha moment’ in 2008, when I realized that the only person who could architect the life I wanted to live was myself.  In a world ruled by money and people with the power to move the money, I needed to understand it.  I needed to understand how money works and how to be where it will be when it starts to move.  A real crisis was coming, and it was important to be on the right side of the chasm when it arrived.  There was nothing altruistic about what I had in mind.  It was a matter of survival.  A single parent with a dream to create a global lifestyle for my son and never let money be the deciding factor for anything that I did.

The journey into learning about money, first opened my eyes to the wide opportunities to create personal security and financial stability.  It only required thinking long term and staying focused on the prize.  But in time the journey led to amazing changes going on in the world.  Opportunities being created by the technology.  Technologies that could raise humans up to the next level or crush us if we didn’t know what we were doing.  It was fascinating, exciting, and I wanted to participate, but I was alone in the journey.

While surfing the web one rainy afternoon, I came across a documentary series called ‘Money Revealed’ and was introduced to a man that would change the trajectory of my life.  Roger James Hamilton, futurist and founder of Genius Group was one of the individuals being interviewed in the documentary and everything he said aligned with my vision of the world as it was and as it could be.

Roger was articulating the same vision of the demise of life as we knew it, but with a completely different outlook.  Not one of fear and self-protection, but rather, one of opportunity, growth and advancement for everyone and anyone who was willing to step into their own self-determination.  I found my tribe.  GeniusU had created a community of like-minded entrepreneurs with a desire to create the world they want, rather than wait around and complain about the world that they found themselves in.

Consolidating a lifetime of organizational skills, with new -found financial skills and knowledge, and with a new set of entrepreneurial skills acquired through GeniusU, Wealthy Wise Woman was born in 2020.

Its mission is to help women wake up to the changes going on in the world, embrace their own financial well-being and craft the life they want for themselves and their loved ones.

As with all things, it starts with mindset.  Letting go of the old – old beliefs, old myths, old patterns.  Then embracing the new – that it is okay to be a woman of wealth, that the value a woman provides is worth large sums of money in return, and that a woman who can earn is fully capable of managing and investing the assets she receives.

With a little knowledge comes confidence.  The financial world is not rocket science – it is common sense and control of emotions.  Understanding some tricks of the trade and where to find the best intelligence about what is happening in the world and where the opportunities lie, is all that is needed to start to architect a financial portfolio that will create a unique lifestyle to match the unique individual.

Wealthy Wise Woman is a community of like-minded, intelligent, self-determined women who have made this journey and continue to share their celebratory wins, tearful losses, fears during volatility, and support when needed.  We laugh and we learn and together we each become the financial architects of our own lifestyle.

About the author

Susan is a global entrepreneur, world traveler and homeschool mum (world-schooler) to a wonderful teenager. Following a 20+ year career in the nuclear industry and building a secure financial future through personal wealth creation, she is bringing her talents and experience as mentor to professional and entrepreneurial women around the world.

Living her values of personal responsibility and accountability for financial well-being as well as the freedom to make choices and have an impact on the world, Susan is demonstrating that anyone can choose to live the life they desire and make the world a better place for themselves and those around them.

susan ritter

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