Meet the Flipsters

Conversations on the Bridge

A Conversation with Stu Zimmerman
(The complete Flip interview, with only minor edits, not found in the book)

Stu Zimmerman ( founded his own investment firm, Zimco Advisors, a registered investment advisor firm through which he managed more than $30 million in the stock market for high-net-worth individuals and small institutions. At the height of his personal and professional success, Stu realized that true security and wealth are not measured in dollars. Moved by new priorities for his life, he liquidated his business to pursue a purpose beyond financial wealth.

In fall 2002, Stu founded Inner Securities, Inc., based on the principles outlined in the landmark book he coauthored. He is the host of a weekly radio program called “Inside Wealth,” aired in the San Francisco Bay area, addressing issues of wealth creation and personal transformation. Stu reveals that his economic flip was initiated by a health crisis in his family. “My wife was diagnosed with cancer at the peak of my financial success. I was living a dream that I had had ever since I was a teen, of owning my own firm and managing money for wealthy individuals. After twenty years of being in the game, I was achieving my professional goals. All of a sudden, my wife was diagnosed with cancer and I felt like I was getting all the toys but couldn’t play with any of them. I truly wasn’t able to enjoy any of it because my beloved was so ill. And so that led me into an inquiry about what the true nature of security and wealth is – because it wasn’t what I had bought into. The first thing I did was start reallocating my time and energy into getting the answers to these questions. For me, that meant taking more walks in nature and just asking the questions over and over again, ‘Why am I here? What is the meaning of all this, including the meaning of my own life? What role does money play in all of it?’

“I had largely defined myself in financial terms. I had allowed myself to view money as a scorecard, and allowed a rather harsh self-critic to convince me, ‘You have to prove to yourself and to everybody else that you have value. And value is measured in monetary terms. That’s how you get respect from others – by making money.’ I had bought into the American dream of playing by the rules of the game – you work hard to outperform others and make money, which buys you things, and freedom, and a supposedly wonderful life. But underlying it all was a deep fear of failure. Even when I had financial successes, the self-critic always told me, ‘You can’t rest on your laurels. You can’t stop to smell the roses or really enjoy anything.’”

Stu’s predicament afforded him a new vision of what security really means. “There is wealth within you – a wealth of love, appreciation, joy for living, happiness, freedom, and peace. These are the things that nobody can take away from you. If you get right down to it, any security outside of yourself is an illusion. The only real security comes from within.

“Having enough money to pay for food, clothing, and shelter: that’s necessary. There is a certain amount of money that we all need to subsist and get by. If you buy into the rest of the materialistic culture, it’s only as real as you allow it to be. But if we stopped misusing money as individuals, trying to make it deliver what it cannot, then we could begin to transform the world’s relationship to money. That internal shift is really the only shift that’s sustainable. Who we are on the inside completely determines how much money we have and how much financial wherewithal we have. There’s a direct correlation. As long as we are dominated by scarcity, that truly limits our ability to grow.

“Flipping from a scarcity model to an abundance model is really going to help our species evolve. There’s enough money out there in the world right now for a huge shift to occur. If the power brokers and the financial moguls are able to ‘get it,’ and come from a place of abundance by offering people opportunities and making investments, a global transformation will occur. There’s huge global demand for peace, better health, greater education, easing poverty – all of that. There are a lot of investments that can be made by people of very high net worth, who can invest in a world that is more whole, more value-based and filled with virtue.”

We asked Stu for an example of such a flipped investment. “A good start would be to get people of affluence to make an investment in media projects that open hearts and minds. People love to be entertained. A lot of the stuff that’s being produced for television, radio, and in the movies doesn’t fill the real need that’s there. The demand is there, so money can flow into that so people’s values get reinforced. Companies can make significant money by finding and filling that demand.

“The imbalance of financial wealth in this world is unsustainable. Something’s gotta give. Either the imbalance will be corrected, or the whole capitalist system as we know it will just collapse upon itself. Adjustments need to be made sooner rather than later to allow for greater opportunity for all the have-nots to bring their standards of living up, beyond survival levels, so that people don’t feel like they need to strap bombs to their backs to enforce justice. I’m hopeful and optimistic that we’ll go into this transformation, this flip, most gracefully. My guess is there’s going to be a couple of contractions and some painful moments along the way.”



The Flip, by Jared Rosen and David Rippe, illuminates a clear path to a vibrant enlightened world where millions of people already live and thrive. It describes in vivid detail and real examples evidence of an upside down world in decay and a Right Side Up world of authentic beings bright with possibility.
The Flip is an owner’s manual for the twenty-first century full of insights, conversations with recognized experts, thought leaders, and visionaries, and actionable exercises and tips you can use to begin your own personal flip.

To read more about The Flip and additional interviews from other luminaries, experts and bestselling authors, please visit

The Flip is available at your local bookstore or online at, Barnes & Noble, Joseph-Beth, and Borders.


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