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I’ve pulled a few books off my library shelves to encourage you this month during the Great Pause to start having more open money conversations. Find an audiobook or borrow these great titles:

Smart Money Smart Kids by Dave Ramsey and Rachel Cruze. As a result of reading this book, I’m giving my four-year-old granddaughter 3 jam jars for her birthday in June. One is labeled SPEND, one is labeled SAVE, and the third is labeled GIVE. Ramsey is the well-known founder of Financial Peace University. His graduates were on a recent Susie Larsen Live Podcast raving about the tools they learned to get out of severe credit card debt. I can only imagine the stories you’ve heard this winter about folks really struggling with finances. Ramsey uses the word “commission” not allowance when teaching kids to manage money. Check out his videos and be prepared to be challenged on your current money scripts.

Advice that Sticks by Dr Moira Somers.  This book is a great one for advisors with the tagline “How to give financial advice that people will follow.” Dr. Somers is my financial psychologist and is helping our family navigate wealth transfer. Her work is also very helpful as I coach farm families struggling with maintaining family harmony and navigating the division of assets. She talks about being a “new immigrant” to wealth. Find her course at www.arlanacademy.com 

The Naked Opus…a novel approach to estate planning by Chris Delaney. Chris is a lawyer with a holistic approach to planning which aligns beautifully with my coaching process. The naked reference alludes to open, honest, communication, and the opus alludes to your greatest work, the work of transferring the wealth of all kinds to the next generation, not just money. Chris Delaney also has a podcast called “Inception Family Wealth Hour.” Wealth continuity planning in his eyes is a process of planting, growing, and harvesting. (Sounds a lot like farming!)

Moolala..why smart people do dumb things with their money by Bruce Sellery (www.moolala.ca) was such a great book, I bought a case to give to clients. Sellery asks “What does money mean to you? “ I attended one of his workshops and have great respect for his plain yet penetrating language. His podcast is “Moolala. Money made simple”. Podcasts are great company on walks or while cleaning, so get started today!

Wired for Wealth by Brad Klontz, Dr. Ted Klontz, and Rick Kahler helps you change your money mindsets that keep you trapped and unleash your wealth potential. You may not have been spending a lot during isolation and lockdown, but you might also be surprised that a scarcity mindset has kept you trapped. I agree with these authors that conflicts about money are really conflicting about money scripts. Get this book if you want to challenge your spouse and find some breakthrough tools to resolve family money issues, including financial infidelity and financially dependent children. February is a great time to face your money fears, understand your present reality, and make changes for your future.

Beyond Gold…true wealth for inheritors by Thayer Cheatham Willis. Willis is also the author of Navigating the Dark Side of Wealth…a life guide for inheritors.  I’m in the middle of these books and love the style of Willis’ writing. She specializes in helping people of all ages handle the psychological challenges of wealth. It’s become clear to me with these resources that we need to spend more time in agricultural families preparing the next generation to manage large amounts of wealth.

Dr. Somers calls this a “financial apprenticeship” of sorts. It is an intentional learning process to help the next generation manage small chunks of wealth to gain the skills to work with large sums.  Another great book on being intentional is Intentional Wealth by Courtney Pullen.

Most families that I work with are very realistic with the thought “they cannot take wealth with them when they die.” Their heart’s cry is for the family to get along now, and after the estate has been dispersed. I like to use the Twitter hashtag #healingstories4ag because the sad stories are not motivating folks to get things done!

Visit www.aninheritance.com or www.familyfight.com to find a book by two wills lawyers Les Kotzer and Barry M. Fish called Where there’s an inheritance..stories from inside the world of two wills lawyers. Be sure to read my post “Writing a will with Joy.” You did get your will updated this winter right?

We are not over-run this winter with meetings, bonspiels, tournaments, bingo, hockey, etc. There is time to ponder what you truly want from your life. I am saddened when meeting peers who are living on meager incomes, facing a future of tight cash flow. Bank on Yourself…why every woman should plan financially to be single, even if she is not” by Ardelle Harrison and Leslie McCormick, shows how to build confidence and protect yourself financially.

Money is a form of energy. It is also laden with tons of emotion in farm families. In my view, money does not equal love, but I don’t know what money means to you.

Use this blog to order audiobooks, buy books, or borrow e-books from your library. Every day is a great day to learn new skills to manage the resources that are at our disposal.

Be thankful for what you have. Be content. Be willing to find new ways to generate revenue and decrease spending.

Keep putting deposits in the emotional bank account of your farm family and be rich in relationship.

Send me your book recommendations!


Elaine Froese, CSP, CAFA coaches farm families across Canada and the US to find harmony through understanding in their transition process. She was recently awarded the Manitoba 150 Women Trailblazer award, along with her mom, the late Lois Edie. Buy her books here.

Did you enjoy Intentional Wealth…books to spark money conversations? You might want to check these articles out too:

Being Smart with Your Personal Wealth Bubble
Farm Women: Say Goodbye to Money Issues by Identifying Your Money Scripts
What does money mean to you?

Rave reviews

“A joy to work with, heard loud and clear. When the farmers laughed or asked a great question, I knew they were listening and really wanted to learn from her. Her tips were easy to understand. It was just about understanding that conflict happens, and to have the confidence in yourself to ask for what you want. In the glowing review from farmers after her presentation, I knew they had heard that loud and clear.”
Maddy Berner, Event Planner & Communications Coordinator, National Milk Producers Federation National Milk Producers Federation
“I wanted to say a HUGE thank you for your virtual kitchen table chat with Arlan Academy. My wife and I signed up as it was exceptionally relevant to our current journey with potentially transitioning to her parents’ farm. The session was able to cover so many aspects of these crucial conversations and hearing you speak to both sides of the conversation was eye opening for my own perspective on this topic. It seemed to be very well attended and sounded like there were many other people who would echo my thoughts and feelings on it.”
N. Oakley, Farmer, Ontario
“Elaine helped me allocate $1 Million of assets the night I listened to her. Elaine’s presentation brings value to the use of my services in my office.”
Don Forbes, Forbes Wealth Management
“I recently joined in and listened to your Healthy Farmer Agriwebinar for FMC. I truly enjoyed hearing your perspective and even went and grabbed my Mom, away from her work, to come and listen in on some of your main points as well! One area that really stood out for me, both personally with our own succession plans and with our clients, was your discussion involving "Instant Influence" and how ready are you to change? I loved this concept!”
Annessa Good, FCC Transition Specialist, Alberta
“Elaine Froese truly is the Farm Whisperer. With her big heart and stern resolve, she guides families through uncharted waters and helps them arrive safely at their desired destination. She has been there, done that, and has helped hundreds of families come out on the other side. With your family and your farm legacy on the line, you owe it to yourself to start this conversation. You do not need to do it alone. Let Elaine Froese guide you through. Your legacy is being written day by day. How will you be remembered?”
Tracy Brunet, Host of The Impact Farming Show & CEO of Farm Marketer
“You speak like you’ve been sitting at our kitchen table! You know our family issues well. I am feeling more comfortable understanding what we now need to do. Elaine Froese is real.”
Audience Member,
“I attended the meeting you spoke at in Stratford Ontario recently. We held an emergency family/farm meeting today because of issues that I had enough of. We used a 'talking stick' like you recommended and wrote a chart of rules. The rest of the family thought the idea that we needed a meeting was worth rolling their eyes over, until we got started. The younger ones were quick to clue in that they now have an opportunity to be bluntly honest. The older ones took a bit longer to believe they could truly say what they think. In the end, the meeting needed two sessions because there was so much to talk about… and so many things people didn't realize were a big deal to the others. Your lessons and encouragement have given us the tools we need to get to a better place in our relationships and our business. Truly thankful.”
Kim Martin, Dairy Farmer, Ontario
“Helped me develop my framework to start having constructive and meaningful conversations around the farm.”
Tennille Wakefield, Farm Partner
“Some great lessons, Elaine! You continue to do some remarkable and potentially life-changing work.”
James Mitchell, Principal, Conversations Consulting
“Our family had a good farm meeting yesterday afternoon. Your Fairness video was a great topic of discussion. One of the action items after the meeting was to have my two non-farming siblings watch the video before the next big meeting they are involved with on the farm. It will be a great conversation starter as we catch them up on our current plan. As they are younger, we also hope it will help them to ask new questions that may not have been on their mind.”
G.G., Farm Family Legacy Coach, Alberta
“Elaine gives me excellent tools that help me work with my clients!”
Laurianne Osmack, Financial Planner / Partner, Doell Osmak Wealth Management
“She has a sense of “knowing” quickly what is happening in the family dynamic. Her messages to her audiences drive home what needs to be done next to solve the complex issues of farm transition and conflict resolution.”
Audience Member,
“Eye-opening. Excited to open the door of communication with my spouse and farm family.”
Ashley Hoppe, Farm Partner
“The Strong Farms, Strong Families session gave farm families an opportunity to meet face to face with Elaine Froese... hear her own story, experiences and skill set. From this information packed session and related materials, families could identify areas of success in their journey and other places they need assistance. The greatest take away was that participants could see that Elaine Froese is someone they can trust with the things that they hold most precious.... their family and their farm.”
Nancy Atkinson, Nobleford Ag Society, Alberta
“Elaine’s real-life scenarios help her audiences know they are not alone, knowing there are creative solutions to help them get the life on the farm they have always wanted.”
Audience Member,
“A long time female client who had refined the art of procrastination was so moved by the end of your presentation that she accepted your permission to “drop the bananas.” She contacted me soon after for an appointment to do some planning which included the selling of the family “Century Farm.” A very, very emotional decision on her part that was not likely to have occurred without your presentation.”
Don Forbes, Forbes Wealthy Management
“I just have to say… that your work is amazing and I have never forgotten your teachings from our session in Williams Lake at TRU. It is super important work. I know so many people going through the trauma of succession. I hate to use that word, but I was an “out-law” and know it can get terrible. I continue to forward your emails on to others. Keep doing what you do! You are amazing. You kind of walk into the fire regularly… and with a smile. Proud to have met you.”
Megan, BC Rancher
“As my husband and I eagerly started the course we were optimistic and excited to be taking this next step in our Farm Transition. We were starting to question ourselves and whether or not we were just being selfish and greedy, and if this Farm Transition was still an option for us. We barely got through the first Module and were already having such a huge relief. As we moved through the modulus there were so many times that we just sat back with our hands in the air and thought YES. My husband and I would smile with relief because all of the concerns that we have been struggling with were relevant and came up in the modules. We really enjoyed the course and are excited to move on to the next stages to find our farm resolution.”
Shannon Gilchrist, “Get Farm Transition Unstuck” online course participant
“My hubby farms with 2 brothers and parents, and it’s become a really toxic place. No communication, no respect, etc. Twelve months ago, my husband’s brothers told him they don’t want to work with him anymore and offered him a pay out. His parents did nothing to stop it! He had no choice but to leave. Three months later, we moved off the farm and into town. He has been offered heaps of jobs and is now truck driving and carting hay and grain. We have tried communicating with his parents about what happened but they are not interested. So basically my hubby has lost his family. Very sad but we as husband and wife are overall in a good place and moving on to create our own life. Please continue on with all your wonderful work in helping families on the farm. I continue to tell any farmers I know about you, that they must ‘google’ you, and read your books.”
Donna, Farmer, Australia

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+1-204-534-7466 | elaine(at)elainefroese.com

Contact Elaine