a. What one believes about money, investing and related matters.
b. A set of principles or guidelines for managing one's financial affairs.

    Theodore believes that the only money that is really yours is the money you spend.

Debra believes that every person, no matter how good, is susceptible to a personal demon of greed.

Richard believes that you can never be sure enough.

Let's assume for a moment that these three people are your clients and that your goal is to establish and maintain a full-scale and long-term advisory relationship with all of them. Chances are that you already have clients like these, whether or not you have heard these sentiments. And you might have likely witnessed behaviors that reveal their underlying beliefs.

Theodore spends large sums of cash to go on trips and have experiences.

Debra shows a hesitance and reluctance to act on your advice.

In Richard you find financial anxiety and hyper-scrutiny that seem inappropriate given his net worth.
Why do Theodore, Debra and Richard believe and feel the way they do in critical areas of financial management? We learn the following things from them in an interview:

Theodore believes that the only money that is really yours is that which you spend, because his father, a man who worked extremely hard (seven days a week), never took time to really enjoy what he had earned.

Debra believes that even the best people must fight with the demons of greed. When her first husband died, he had forgotten to switch the assignment of the life insurance benefit from his parents to his new bride, and the parents kept the money.

Richard believes that you can never be sure enough, even though he is a multimillionaire. He grew up in a large family with 11 children that his father struggled to support working 14 hours a day. The family was evicted from three different homes.

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