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Friday, December 17, 2010

The Power of the Purse

How to wield a bag for financial, personal defense

By Hollis Colquhoun

Your purse has power squared for your personal & financial self-defense.

First, it holds the resources to make you a powerful consumer. Studies have shown that women and their wallets control over 80 percent of consumer spending. In general, women buy most of the household and family items, including major appliances, vacations and automobiles, so they carry a hefty financial weight in the operation of the economy.

The best method for using your spending power, particularly for larger ticket items, is to take your time and not make impulsive decisions. Comparison shop, gather information, work within your budget and after a lot of thought and number crunching, make a purchase.

Your purse is also an effective weapon if you are alone, on the street or in a parking lot, and the victim of an attack by a thief or mugger. Most women have large bags that hold a multitude of essential items: wallet, journal, cell phone, cosmetic bag, keys, snacks, water bottle, etc. Consequently, your purse wields a decent amount of real weight.

Contrary to some opinions, the best defense against an attacker is not a can of mace or keys in between your fingers. Both of these defenses take time to set up and bad guys won't wait while you dig in your purse for the can or stick the keys through your fingers.

Rather, the best way to use the defensive power of your purse is to move with speed and the element of surprise. Swing your purse like a chain with an iron ball attached and aim for the head. Wing it, let go, and then run in the opposite direction.

About the Author: Financial survival counselor Hollis Colquhoun is an expert in "financial self-defense" for women and author of the new book, Women Empowering Themselves: A Financial Survival Guide. Hollis wrote the concise, pocket-book manual to help women take charge of their finances and overcome money anxiety disorder (M.A.D.). Hollis, who holds black belts in Karate and Taekwondo, combines martial arts principles with over 20 years experience on Wall Street and with her work as a financial counselor to help women of all ages and situations achieve financial security and independence. Contact Hollis at

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