Identifying an Elephant

by Patrick Carroll

Elephants are a favorite topic of The Pachyderm Press, specifically, the types of elephants, or
emotions, that can control our financial decisions. In my book, Tame Your Money Elephants:
Manage Your Emotions and Build The Financial Future You Want and Deserve, I highlighted six of them:

  • Fear
  • Greed
  • Confusion
  • False Sense of Security
  • Powerlessness
  • Isolation

These are the most common ones I see in my practice so we’ll discuss all in more detail in
future posts. Today, using a few simple questions, let’s see if there’s an elephant hiding in your
emotional closet.

  • Are you putting off something (such as taking a vacation, putting an addition on a
    house, buying a new car) that you know you can afford and would improve your life?
  • Does your portfolio contain an investment that was your “home run” months or years
  • Do your accountant, financial planner and attorney give you conflicting advice?
  • Have you decided that your children will take over your business?
  • Have you identified your most important life goals or do day-to-day financial decisions
    take up all your time?
  • In your business, do you make all of the difficult and important financial decisions

These aren’t the only “elephant detection” questions, but they do give you an indication of
which elephant might be affecting your decisions. For more questions, complete the Tame Your Money Elephants Scorecard™ on the Tame Your Money Elephants website.

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