I grew up in a family where money was an open and frequent topic, especially at the dinner table. My parents were always teaching me about the importance of saving for a “rainy day”, not spending money on unnecessary expenses, not having any credit card debt, and investing for the future. Eating out was a treat and was done maybe once a month. I learned how to balance a checkbook while under the monitoring of my mom’s review, so that when I graduated college, I didn’t have any student loans, credit card debt, or a car loan. I was very fortunate that my parents had saved and worked hard to provide me a great financial starting point to build my future.
I met my husband while working in San Francisco. We quickly learned that we came from families that approached money very differently. While I was very comfortable about discussing personal finances, my husband grew up in a family that treated it as a taboo subject. It caused my husband a lot of anxiety to hear about money, let alone discuss his own personal expenses and debt. Furthermore, he would get upset and lose his appetite when I would discuss money at the dinner table…and I had no idea what the problem was!
It took time, but we learned how to work together to find a system that worked for us. There were still challenges, but we were able have financial discussions without a fight or someone storming off.
Over the last fifteen years, I have witnessed friends and families make both good and horrible financial decisions. Some of the bad financial mistakes have had both direct and indirect consequences on me and my family. I have seen financial loans or money jealousy between family members or friends destroy relationships. I have watched people retire early without enough savings, then worry about how to pay for monthly medications required to live. I’ve also witnessed people who made over $100,000 a year, had no savings to show for it, then lose their job and home. I also know of working mothers who have extreme guilt and envy others who can afford to have a stay-at-home parent. It pains me to watch and hear about people experiencing financial and life challenges with little to no choices.
My personal experiences sparked the passion to coach others on working together despite different money backgrounds, on creating mutual goals and a financial plan, and to choosing a life with financial stability and freedom. I am dedicated to using the knowledge I’ve gained to help individuals, families, and small businesses to take the necessary steps to build a solid foundation and prosperous financial future.