We are all experiencing the aftershock and impact of the rapid news these past days.
In the wake of decisions both large and small, financial vulnerabilities are clear - if not our own, then certainly for our friends. Our loved ones. Our neighbors. Our clients and customers.
How we RESPOND - rather than react - will have a profound impact on our own financial wellbeing, and ultimately, the wellbeing of an evolving economy.
Yes. I believe this is a profound moment. One that has the potential to transform our consciousness - towards something more powerful if we have the courage to invite it in with curiosity.
I too know the fear, anxiety, and uncertainty. It is overwhelming - particularly with the dual fear of financial health and physical health. It is destabilizing, making it harder to find solid ground.
I am an optimist. I am also a realist. It is critical that we all downshift into a ‘lean’ spending plan. Identifying the essentials,...
It seems like there are two forces in our midst -
The Spring blossoms are bursting out...visually - and sensually - filling our hearts with hope and the delicious optimism of what is soon to be... picnics! outdoor dinners with friends! and all the goodness the sunny warmth brings!
At the same time, the news cycle is full of escalating fear - though not yet in full throttle panic. Currently it is the scare of the Coronavirus & the stock market's reaction to the interdependence of our global economy causing our own checking accounts to feel the impact of work being missed - for weeks, or months - halfway across the world.
There are the BIG implications this has on the balance of your investment portfolio (...though, ideally yours is diversified, and isn't needed in the short term... so best to just take a breath and trust it will rebound).
And then there are the day-to-day implications. The potential of missing work. Paychecks. Customers. School Days!
Do you feel a mix of emotions this time of year? Joy, happiness, connection - as well as grief, sadness, and loneliness?
We see commercials, Instagram & Facebook feeds full of everyone celebrating, being 'joyful'. Yet if this isn't our current reality, it can intensify the grief that is either prominent - or was laying dormant, unexpressed.
Grief illuminates the divide between our current reality to what once was, or what never was. It can be hard to talk about, because it doesn't feel very welcome in a time of 'good cheer' and 'holiday spirit'.
Yet death, divorce, heartache, illness, absence, and the wounds of abandonment (both emotional and physical) can bubble to the surface for nearly every single one of us this time of year.
Aging is its own form of grief - one that we all wrestle with (including the grief of babies becoming children, becoming teenagers, becoming adults... there is always grief with change, as welcome as it also is).
When there isn't space to allow these...
Some crackers, carrots, hummus, and pears was our very un-fancy picnic overlooking the Strait of Georgia. My face was warm in the October sun - making it extremely pleasant to luxuriate in simply BEING. Together. Without plans, or urgency. We were simply present. Utter bliss.
We had heard the LOUD, breathy sound of whales on our hike - and squinted to see them off in the distance. We saw them spout - their backs rising just before sinking deeply back in, covering yards before re-surfacing.
And then a pair magically came up through the water about 30 feet from us - rising in the water, showing the whites of their humpback fins and the bumps along their mouths. What magnificent, powerful creatures... It was a perfect highlight to an incredibly perfect trip.
A trip where I got to have 5 whole days with my husband - celebrating the 20 years we have been married. It was the first time we have been away for more than 3 nights together since we became parents 19 years ago. It was...
...to be a rags to riches story, a succinct success story, a bright and shiny ‘before and after’ story.
[...a story is usually used to sell, to motivate, to inspire… they delight our imagination, AND they can have unintended consequences. Hopes are heightened, the let-down hard. Inducing shame, self-doubt, and despair. Because what we don’t see clearly is the messy BETWEEN]
The external is always a reflection of the internal. And the internal is messy. Overlapping. Unclear. And complex.
The real story moves forward, then back a bit, then around in a circle, or spiral of repetition - trying to gain clarity, understanding and solid ground.
It will move forward again - often with wind in its sails, relief for the full-bellied breath. The slow and steady exhale.
Inevitably, however, there will be more circling, seemingly backward steps, but this time seeing a...
Maybe you have heard this ‘under-earning’ term thrown around. Maybe you identify as an ‘under-earner*’ (see some signs below). Or maybe you have never heard it before now?!
When I heard it I winced to see myself so clearly defined - then I felt a wave of relief (I am not alone!) only to crash into an unknown landscape - what do I do with it now? It felt like a mark on my forehead (which it is NOT). I wanted to hide from that label - deny that there was this giant piece to earning that I would need to address.
It is a journey of many steps from that definition to the profound healing on the other side.
In college I cleaned houses as an efficient and flexible way to earn money. My name spread around, and I was hired for 2-3hrs to deep clean a new woman’s kitchen. My rate at the time was $12/hour, and I had already discussed it with her.
I cleaned her kitchen from top to bottom - including the fridge: the inside + the greasy top, the floors, the cabinets....
I am curious...when the topic of money comes up, do you 'space out', feel defensive, get distracted, suddenly need to take a nap, take 'flight' or some other interesting response?
Or maybe it isn't the 'everyday' topic of money... but it comes up when you think about asking for a raise, increasing your rates, finalizing your will. Doing taxes. Getting life insurance.
Each and every one of these 'topics' can be an alarm to our nervous system - triggering a fight response (defensiveness...). Or a flight response (actually "taking flight" or through distraction - suddenly needing to respond to your aunt's email about the family reunion happening....next year). And for some, it looks like a shut down response (yawning, wanting to lay down for a nap, 'spacing out'). AND they are all normal physiological, unconscious responses to something 'threatening'... normal, but not necessarily helpful.
The nervous system fascinates me - personally, and professionally.
Tanya and I created the Yoga +...
There are many practical, logistical, strategic, action-oriented steps that we need to take in our own financial lives: getting paid, saving/investing, paying the bills, paying down debt, creating spending plans...
Each of these is important.
The recipe for building wealth is, quite honestly, pretty simple: earn more, save/invest more, spend less spend consciously (more on that distinction another day…).
This is the simplest recipe I know for attaining - and maintaining - financial wealth.
Simple - but by no means easy. Each one of the three has its own layers… its own complexity… its own hurdles to cross: both visible and invisible; personal and institutional.
The statistics are bleak when you examine race, gender, class, and ability. We don’t arrive at the ‘wealth...
Are you caught up in the wild and productive inspiration of the Tidying Up show? Marie Kondo is sweeping the nation - and inspiring a wave of Spring Cleaning well before the Spring is even here.
I read her book years ago - and got as far as my clothing. But I will say, its 4 years later and my socks are still neatly folded and separated in lovely lined boxes. It will soon be cliche, but it most certainly sparks Joy each time I get dressed.
Having order, calm, and yes - even reverence - for my clothing is a revelation. I recently did my sewing room (if you are on Instagram, perhaps you followed along in my stories... @tendedwealth). And I have kept it very neat ever since, even after multiple sewing projects have littered the floor.
What I appreciate the most about her style is this: she wants the discerning / discarding to be the individual's own process. She encourages each person to determine what is relevant, and meaningful, and...
It is so much fun to give - particularly when we find just the right gift for someone we love.
One of the best strategies to stay financially grounded during the holidays is to create a holiday spending plan… aka, a spending roadmap.
It isn’t as fancy as it sounds - if you have never made one before. It is simply a list of categories you are likely to spend on. With the amount you plan to spend beside it.
Total it up to ensure you will have the funds to cover all that you are planning. Don’t panic if it is more than you realized… you haven’t spent the money yet, and there is time to course-correct. If debt has been an issue in past years,...