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37 minutes | Sep 27, 2022
REPLAY: Talking To Kids About Money with Garrett & Randi
To round out this month's family-focused podcasts we want to repost this episode. On this episode of Financially Naked: Stories from The Financial Gym, our host is Garrett Faulconer, Financial Trainer, and he is joined by his colleague, Randi DeGraw, New Jersey-based trainer and mother of two, to discuss talking to kids about money. For further details check here!
27 minutes | Sep 20, 2022
Talking to Your Parents About Money
On this episode of Financially Naked: Stories from The Financial Gym, our host is Jazmin Higgins, a Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer and she is joined by Gym client Mary. It can be challenging to talk about money with your family, so today, they talk about how to start a conversation with your parents. After being a member of The Financial Gym for a while, Mary gifted her parents a membership, and it transformed the way they all think about and manage money. It’s better to try and have the conversation than keep ignoring it. If you feel like your parents would benefit from working with a Certified Financial Trainer, send them to FinancialGym.com to schedule a free warmup call or gift them a membership! Meet The Trainer Meet Jazmin Higgins, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer Resources Mentioned In the Episode: Mom and Dad, We Need to Talk - Book and Website For more details, check out our shownotes!
35 minutes | Sep 13, 2022
Are Your Finances Married?
On this episode of Financially Naked: Stories from The Financial Gym, two of our Certified Financial Trainers, Kylie and Jazmin are talking about blending finances with a partner. This topic is very common among Financial Gym clients. From couples reimagining the way they manage their finances to helping folks navigate combining them for the first time, our Trainers see it all. Today Jazmin and Kylie talk about how they both manage money in their relationships, and the advice they share with clients. For more info check out our show notes here! Tools & Resources for Blending Finances The Honeydue Finance App is great for couples and takes out some of the learning curves. 1-1 Accountability Coaching with a Certified Financial Trainer Trainer-on-Demand Meet The Trainers Meet Jazmin Higgins, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer Meet Kylie Lipinski, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer
32 minutes | Sep 6, 2022
Mike & Joy Gymsplain Investing for A Child's Future
When it comes to saving for your child’s future, there are a number of options available. On this episode of Financially Naked: Stories from The Financial Gym, our Certified Financial Trainers, Joy Liu and Mike Poulin, are discussing the different types of investment accounts you can use to save for your children’s future, considerations for each, and how to choose which is the best for you! Links Mentioned in the Show: Schedule a Free 20 Minute Consultation Refer The Gym to Your HR / Benefits Team Become a Certified Financial Trainer Meet The Trainers Joy Liu - Head of Trainer Academy Mike Poulin - Level 2, Certified Financial Trainer For more info, check out the full show notes here!
30 minutes | Aug 30, 2022
Giving Circles with Bevin & Maggie May
On this episode of Financially Naked: Stories from The Financial Gym, our host is Bevin Morgan, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer and she is joined by one of her clients, Maggie May. Today, they discuss a unique form of philanthropy: giving circles. Giving circles aim to make philanthropy accessible for people of all budgets! They are groups of like-minded people who pool together their time, energy, and money to make a difference. Maggie tells us about giving circles, how she and her friends founded The Undercard Collective, and how you can get involved in collective philanthropy. Connect with Maggie May & The Undercard Collective Website: TheUnderCardCollective.com Instagram: @undercardcollective Meet The Trainer Meet Bevin Morgan, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer For more details, check out the show notes here!
30 minutes | Aug 23, 2022
Mindset in Entrepreneurship with Genar and Sam Block
On this episode of Financially Naked: Stories from The Financial Gym, our host is Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer Genar Mendez. He is joined by Financial Gym client Sam Block who is recording from her tiny house in the Colorado mountains. Sam works as a Branding & Mindset Coach and today Genar asks her about some of the biggest challenges she sees her clients face and tips for working through them. Connect with Sam Website: https://samblockcoaching.com Instagram: @sam__block Meet The Trainer Meet Genar Mendez, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer Also mentioned: Beautiful You Coaching Academy. For full show notes click here!
44 minutes | Aug 16, 2022
Jazmin & Rachel Gymsplain Employee Benefits
On this episode of Financially Naked: Stories from The Financial Gym, Jazmin Higgins, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer is joined by Rachel Adaline. Rachel joined The Financial Gym in May of 2022 as the Human Resource Manager and this is her first appearance on the podcast! She’s here to chat with Jazmin about Employer Benefits. There are different benefits that may be offered by your employer and sorting through them can be confusing. They gymsplain the typical enrollment packages to help you make sense of it all! For more details click here.
37 minutes | Aug 9, 2022
Health Insurance Alternatives with Kadri & Melissa Blatt of Indipop
In America, health insurance is one of the most complicated systems to navigate. With The Great Resignation, more people than ever are looking for alternative options to traditional health insurance. Some folks are in between jobs or are taking the leap to try something on their own for the first time. Indipop is a healthshare platform aiming to fill the gaps for folks who might not be the best candidate for traditional insurance. Melissa Blatt joins Certified Financial Trainer Kadri Augustin for the second time on the podcast, to share an update about Indipop. Her first appearance was in February 2021 and because healthcare is constantly changing, there’s a lot to chat about today. Podcast Notes Everyone should have accessible and affordable healthcare. It shouldn’t be something you can just afford with nothing at all included. Indipop was born from Melissa’s personal struggle when she left the corporate world. The process of finding health insurance was incredibly frustrating. When most people think about insurance, it’s planning for the worst-case scenario, but what if insurance was for more than the ‘what if’ moments in life? Choosing an insurance policy isn’t fun, and can be a confusing process. In addition to the monthly payment, other important considerations include: What is the deductible? (the amount you have to pay before insurance kicks in) Which doctors are included in the network? Is virtual care included? Is preventative care included? How much are the copays? Are there annual or lifetime caps to the amount of coverage? How indipop is addressing the gaps for freelancers and those underinsured: Indipop plans are not the ‘unicorn’ or one-size-fits all plan, but it provides options. They are subscription plans, where you become a member of a community that shares the costs of medical needs, with an open network. There’s a care logistics team to help you navigate through your medical needs. You are able to keep your doctor, and receive care even if traveling. Whether it is care on demand, or a referral, you’re not alone figuring out what is best for you. How it works: Indipop brings plans to you. All of them are highly vetted and meet a strict criteria. They’re plans that Melissa uses herself and feels comfortable sharing with her friends and family. There are eligibility and considerations around pre-existing conditions, with a two year check in. Some of the changes in the healthcare industry since Melissa’s last appearance: It’s an exciting time to be in healthcare and see the industry changing. These types of memberships are more available, especially in mental health and pharmacy care. Virtual medicine has really expanded and evolved. People like being able to receive care at home; they feel less rushed and more comfortable. Virtual medicine cuts out time, traveling, waiting, and logistics. People are asking for virtual healthcare because it’s working, and they’re getting the help they need. Younger people want to take control of their health and are interested in preventative care. Traditional insurance has a place, but it’s refreshing there are different options out there, like indipop. Indipop replaces insurance with a new, different type of healthcare. It is available to clients in all 50 states, even when traveling. Customer service is a huge priority. When we aren’t feeling well, it can be hard to function and the team is there to make sure you’re taken care of. Healthshare companies are not new, but they are becoming more mainstream and accessible. Listen to Melissa’s previous appearance on Financially Naked: Healthcare for Freelancers Learn More About indipop Website: https://indipop.co/Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Instagram: @theindipop Meet The Trainer Meet Kadri Augustin, Level 3 Certified Financial Trainer
35 minutes | Aug 2, 2022
Digital Nomad Life with Genar and Christian Prince
On this episode of Financially Naked: Stories from The Financial Gym, our host is Genar Mendez, a Certified Level 2 Financial Trainer, and he is joined by Gym client Christian Prince. Christian is a digital nomad, who has worked in tech recruitment for over seven years. In 2021, he decided to pursue his dreams of playing professional basketball and living overseas. He just finished playing his first season in Spain with a team in Valencia. Today, Genar interviews Christian about his journey from deciding to become a digital nomad, the lessons learned along the way, to what’s next on the horizon. Podcast Notes Genar opens by asking Christian to share what started his journey of becoming a digital nomad. In 2020, Christian felt like he was up against a wall emotionally, spiritually, and physically. He knew he needed to make a change, but didn’t know what was next. He took a leap of faith, quit his job, and stepped into the unknown. In the back of his mind, he dreamed of living abroad, and didn’t know it at the time, but was planting the seeds to make it happen. Many people can relate to Christian’s story about feeling stuck. It takes enormous courage and faith to leap into the unknown. Genar asks Christian what advice he’d give someone who might be feeling stuck but afraid to take that leap. Christian could feel physically in his body that a change needed to happen. The feeling was there, building and building. Your body and mind will tell you or you may feel trapped in a negative space. It’s important to have a plan in place. Quitting a job might not be a realistic option for some people. Christian talks about what the steps looked like for him. In 2020, he realized he wasn’t pursuing his dreams, he asked himself if he’d rather go for it all and fail or be the person who followed someone else’s path. He made the decision to pursue something he wanted. Around that time, he heard about a basketball summer league in Spain. He got tunnel vision on this goal and started working hard to get to this camp. He wanted to be in that environment and started taking on extra side jobs and saving as much as he could. In May of 2021 he was able to compete in the summer league. He was playing basketball twice a day. There were games, practices, and weight training. Going through this process finally felt like he was pursuing his dreams. He felt like things were going in the right direction and was exposed to a remote work opportunity. He started writing and sharing on Medium, which was a great platform for blogging and sharing his story. In January, he started a remote position as a recruiter. This job allows him to work from anywhere and continue to pursue his basketball and his writing. All of his dreams and passions came together in a unique way. Once the big picture came into focus, he was able to get clear on what he wanted and put in the work. Everything started falling into place. When we let go of what isn’t serving us anymore, we get more clear about what we want. Now Christian gets to live out his dreams working in the recruiter position and traveling as a digital nomad. Christian would have been more open with his friends and family and used his voice to be more transparent throughout the process. Christian shares about culture shocks he experienced: Living and being a resident in Spain was very different from his time studying abroad. Their pace and way of life are very different from America. It’s much slower and work isn’t the central focus of everyone’s lives. It seems like in America, we live to work, and over there, people work to live. He took some Spanish classes and really immersed himself in the language. He loved how people really bring you in and make you feel like part of the family. Christian talks through what this all looked like financially: He shouts out Gina, and says without her and Financial Gym, none of this would be possible for him. What helped Christian develop a budget and stick to it was getting very clear about what the goal was. He was connected to the dream of living in Spain. It’s about not being impulsive and making sacrifices in the short term to accomplish those big goals. Christian talks about how he takes everything one day, week, and month at a time. He met with Gina before Spain and planned the next few months. Being able to execute the plan made him feel like a financially responsible adult. Christian shares the greatest lesson he’s learned being a digital nomad and living abroad: Have faith in being rooted in your purpose. There are things that may not go as planned, mistakes, and failures, but they are helping you build resilience to take the bigger leaps in life. He has been able to let go of the fear and anxiety, and see life more clearly. He feels like he’s on the right path and continues to learn every day. Christian is a multidisciplinary creative, as a freelance writer and a DJ. An avid world traveler, he has been to 13 countries and counting. He looks forward to playing basketball in the UK this upcoming season while continuing to work as a digital nomad and creative. Connect with Christian Medium: Medium.com/@cprincejr Instagram: @christianprinc3 Meet The Trainer Meet Genar Mendez, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer
35 minutes | Jul 26, 2022
Student Loan Repayment with Danielle and Lindsay Clark from Savi
On this episode of Financially Naked: Stories from The Financial Gym, our host is Danielle Thomas, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer at The Financial Gym. She is joined by Lindsay Clark from Savi. Lindsay is a fierce champion for the student loan borrower - having accumulated enormous student debt over the course of her undergraduate and graduate studies at Yale and Columbia, respectively. Having worked in advocacy and financial technology for nearly a decade, Lindsay brings a deep understanding of the urgency behind providing solutions for student loan borrowers. As Director of External Affairs, Lindsay built and continues to lead our front-line efforts to assist America’s 46 million borrowers.It’s been over two years since the government first paused federal student loan payments and interest, and for so many borrowers it’s been out of sight and out of mind. With the possibility of cancellation and updates to policies passed with Covid relief, there’s a lot of news and support for borrowers out there. Savi helps America's 46 million student loan borrowers easily lower their payments and find forgiveness. Lindsay is here to share some of the highlights and things to watch out for if you’re a borrower. Podcast Notes Savi was founded in 2017 by student loan policy experts and advocates. Since repayment options and forgiveness programs are new, clunky, and can be challenging to comprehend, Savi is designed to help! They work with borrowers across the country to help them be more informed and empowered as borrowers and consumers. From understanding repayment options to navigating the application process, all the way to crossing the finish line. Where to get started if you have student loans: Understand the different repayment options. For federal student loan debt, there are programs and various payment plans (some income based) available. When considering which is the best fit for you, think about where you will be five and ten years in the future. Income Based Repayment: Excellent for people who may be struggling to make the monthly payment for folks newly out of school, looking for their first job. The required payment is based on your income and considers tax filing, rather than basing it on the amount of debt. Some borrowers do not take advantage of these plans, including Lindsay when she was first paying back her loans. These income-based plans are a much better option than forbearance. At the end of these plans, loan forgiveness is an option if you’re eligible. While the programs aren’t perfect, there are planned improvements in the coming years. In general, any debt forgiven under an income-based repayment plan is considered taxable income on your taxes that year. There was recently a law passed that grants tax-free forgiveness for these repayment plans through 2025. It may be extended past that, but we don’t know yet. Public Student Loan Forgiveness Program (PSLF): This program started in October of 2007. Unfortunately, there are a bunch of technicalities required for forgiveness to be granted that a lot of borrowers were not aware of. Out of the 100,000 applications, less than 1% were accepted. Requirements: Be employed by an eligible institution 120 qualifying payments Be on an income-based repayment plan and have a qualifying loan type In general, people met the employer requirement, but did not have the correct type of loans and weren’t on the right type of payment plan. Right now, there is a limited waiver for the PSLF program where they’ve expanded the requirements around loan type and payment plan. This will only be available until October 31, 2022, but expands the number of eligible borrowers. If you applied and were rejected in the past, you may now be eligible and should take action before October. Since the expansion, over 100,000 borrowers have been granted forgiveness. If your loans are forgiven through the PSLF program, the forgiveness is tax-free. One of the biggest issues surrounding the student loan crisis is that there is hardly any communication from the institutions supporting borrowers and there is a barrier to entry. You can read studentaid.gov all day long, and still not be clear on all of the information. This waiver did not get a lot of attention, and a majority of people don’t know they might qualify for forgiveness. Any news on another extension on payment pauses or possible cancellation? As of now, payments are set to resume on September 1, 2022. This has become such a political issue, Lindsay predicts it is unlikely they’ll turn payments back on right before the midterm election, and she would not be surprised if it was extended further. As of now, payments will resume. To prepare, be aware of your federal provider and the current payment due. Three of the largest loan servicers announced they are ending their contracts, so many people will be transitioned to other servicers. If you’re not sure where your loans are currently, make sure to find out that info. If you’re unsure where your loans are held, you can check studentaid.gov. The username and password will be from when you took out the debt but can be easily reset if you don’t remember. All of the loan and grant information should be available there, along with who is holding the loans now. Loan cancellation was a huge campaign promise and there is pressure on lawmakers to make it happen. It might look like $10,000 may be forgiven and have income limits. The rising cost of higher education is what is fueling the debt crisis and while forgiveness will provide relief to some borrowers, it does not fix the problem. This is not a matter of either or, it’s a matter of addressing both sides of the crisis. If someone has debt out there and has never logged in or made a payment, what should they do? The government recently announced Fresh Start, which will bring any borrowers out of default once payments resume. It would be a mass reset for roughly 8 million borrowers who are in default, many of whom have balances less than $10,000. This is separate from loan rehabilitation, which is a process that can take up to nine months. Lindsay assures us the momentum and direction of the policy are positive and we’re going to see good changes come through. She’s more optimistic than she’s ever been and hopes these will help improve the system. Read more about student loans: FAQs About Student Loans 6 Questions to Ask Before Refinancing Student Loans5 Things to do Before the Student Loan Pause is OverMythbusting Student Loans Connect with Savi BySavi.com Meet The TrainerMeet Danielle Thomas, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer
28 minutes | Jul 19, 2022
Jazmin & Syndey Gymsplain Investing
Investing is one of the most common goals clients have at The Financial Gym and is a popular topic in financial media, especially as of late. There have been more questions than ever about investing, so on this episode of Financially Naked: Stories from The Financial Gym, two of our Certified Financial Trainers, Jazmin and Sydney sit down today to talk about it. They discuss the order of operations for creating a strong financial foundation and how to start your investing journey from there. Podcast Notes When it comes to investing, the best time to start is as early as you can, but there are a few other financial priorities to check off the list before diving in. At The Financial Gym, there is a specific order of operations Trainers typically recommend for clients. The first priority is an emergency fund. It is important to be prepared for the short term before investing in long-term goals. Learn more about emergency funds: Using Your Emergency Fund The next step is to address high-interest debt: usually credit cards or personal loans. Lower interest debt (like student loans) is a separate part of the conversation and is not as pressing as higher interest debt. Learn more about managing debt: Debt & Credit Management Gymsplained Once those first items on the checklist are taken care of, it is time to start investing! Often when people hear or think about investing, it is in regards to purchasing individual stocks or cryptocurrency. Before diving into those, start with retirement investing. Setting yourself up for the future should ideally come before other investment goals. If offered through the workplace, employer-sponsored 401k’s (or 403b’s, etc) are a great place to start. If you’re contributing to a retirement plan, you are already an investor! If they offer a match, and it’s within your budget to contribute up to that match, that is ideal. If a 401k isn’t available through the workplace, or you’re already maxing that out, the next account to consider, if you’re eligible, is a Roth IRA. The next consideration would be other tax-advantaged accounts, such as 529 plans or Health Savings Accounts. Investing outside of retirement: The first step is to ask yourself the question: what am I investing for? It is important to figure out what you are investing for and the timeline for that goal. Asset allocation is a key part of investing, and the timeline is a huge part of deciding that. Bonds carry less risk than stocks, but stocks have a greater rate of return, so you want to have a little bit of both. For example, a shorter-term goal could be 75% stocks and 25% bonds. If the goal is 10+ years away, long-term asset allocation would look more like 90% stocks and 10% bonds. This is broad advice and it truly depends on a few variables including your personal risk level. Once you have the goal, put a system in place! It’s about figuring out what works best for you and following those systems. Trainers typically recommend: Setting up recurring contributions and making them automatic. Automating is one of the best ways to stay on track. It’s how most 401k plans are set up, and you can set that up for your other investment accounts too! If you are looking for an easy way to get started robo-advisors can be a great option. These are digital platforms that will help you invest money based on your goals and timeline. You answer some questions, and the algorithm does the work for you. Because they are doing the work for you, these robo-advisors generally have fees, but they are less intimidating, especially if you are just getting started. Investing is one of the most common goals among clients at The Financial Gym, and we know a lot of people want to dive in, but it can feel overwhelming. If you want a Financial Trainer to hold your hand through the journey and provide a custom plan so you can reach your goals faster, chat with our warm-up call team about the Accountability Program! If you want to work with a Certified Financial Trainer on your investing-specific goals, check out Trainer on Demand where you can meet with us once a month to talk through your questions. Read More About Investing: Investing 101: What are Investment MarketsThe Other Gender Wealth Gap, The Investing GapHow to Invest For Your Child’s Future Why Should I Invest In a Socially or Environmentally Responsible Way? Tools to Invest in the World You Want Meet The Trainers Meet Jazmin Higgins, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer Meet Sydney Kobell, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer
33 minutes | Jul 12, 2022
Family Influence and Money Expectations With Victoria & Yenny
On this episode of Financially Naked: Stories from The Financial Gym, two of our Certified Financial Trainers, Victoria and Yenny discuss familial expectations around financial support and how to plan for it in your budget! Depending on your family dynamic, this may apply to you in different ways. We love our families and want to help them as much as we can, which is why it is important to fold it into the budget to ensure our own finances are taken care of. Yenny takes us through her personal experience supporting her family financially and how that has evolved over time. Podcast Notes In the 1980s, Yenny’s parents immigrated from El Salvador and she is deeply passionate about helping other first-generation Americans starting out on their personal finance journeys. She aims to help her community build knowledge and wealth. Because she has first-hand experience growing up in an immigrant family, this work is personal for her. Yenny’s parents' main focus was the day-to-day, so they didn’t have much experience planning for retirement. It’s hard to plan for the future when you’re in a cycle of making ends meet. She has heard similar stories from her clients. She wanted to learn everything she could and get a bigger picture. She started researching and reading blogs and loved seeing all the different personal finance perspectives. She reflected on her own situation and got clear on the financial goals she wanted to achieve. She wanted to ensure she was carving her own path. In 2015, Yenny purchased a home, which was one of her goals. She shared that experience with her family, and other members purchased their own homes within the next couple of years. Sometimes seeing someone close to you accomplish a goal shows you it’s more attainable than you may have thought. Victoria asks Yenny to share more about the expectations there were in regards to supporting her family financially when she was growing up. There are a lot of feelings that come with supporting your family. They have sacrificed so much, there’s a sense of obligation to pay it back to them, even though you truly never can. There’s also an excitement in being able to share wealth and knowledge with them. When she was in college, she would try to do small things for her parents. As she made more money, the expectation became greater. There was a point in time when Yenny was living paycheck to paycheck even though she was making more money than ever before. It made her pause and reflect on what she was spending and how much financial support she was providing to her parents. She had to sit down and do the math before it really clicked for her. She’d been giving without a budget, and a lot of their bills had become intertwined; like the insurance and cell phone plan. She had to reframe these expenses in her mind and remember this was part of the overall contribution. She also helps them find support and discounts in other ways that are available to them now that they are retired and on a fixed income. She is transparent with her family about her goals, and they are very understanding. Her family has a sense of collaboration, like a shared Costo card and strategic bulk buying. It is lovely to see everyone take care of each other and grow financially. If you want a Certified Financial Trainer to help plan a budget so you can support your family financially, schedule a free warm-up call today! Meet The Trainers Meet Victoria Sechrist, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer Meet Yenny Urquilla, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer
31 minutes | Jul 5, 2022
Meet The New Trainers: Erika & Juan
On this episode of Financially Naked: Stories from The Financial Gym, our host is Joy Liu, Head of Trainer Academy. Joining her today are two new team members of The Financial Gym, Erika Moromisato and Juan Valeriano. Erika and Juan are both Level 2 Certified Financial Trainers and Joy is interviewing them today so we can hear their stories and get to know them better. Podcast Notes Joy starts by asking Juan and Erika how they found The Financial Gym and what led them to apply for this job? Erika’s parents immigrated from Peru and her mom taught her to save her money, but there wasn’t much guidance beyond that. When she got to college, she realized she had to support herself completely. She had a part-time job and her boss gave her some advice and tips, which was the start of her interest in personal finance. She applied for the position over a year ago and learned about the CFT school. She was part of the first cohort, but was then hired to be an employee of The Gym. Juan was also raised in an immigrant household. Growing up, he witnessed his family make fear-based decisions with money. As he got older, Juan liked seeing money go into his account, but struggled to spend it. He never developed debt, but didn’t feel confident about what to do with the money he’d saved. He graduated in 2020 with a BFA in acting, but the industry was dormant at the time because of the Covid. He used this time to learn something that scared him, personal finance. Within five months, he’d read seven different personal finance books and wanted to share this knowledge with other artists who are scared of money. When he searched to see if someone was doing this work, he found The Financial Gym. Joy asks Juan and Erika to tell us about what hobbies, skills, and interests make them unique as people and Financial Trainers. Erika got married in the middle of a pandemic, and she owns a condo with her wife that they are renting to friends while living in Queens with her in-laws. Personal finance is interesting to her because she loves all types of self-improvement. One of her dream goals one day is to build a tiny home. Juan lives with his long-term girlfriend, and Thickems, their cat. They’ve been living in LA since March, but before that, he lived in New York, Florida, and went to school in Dallas. Juan loves gaming, sports, and art in all of its forms. Joy asks Juan and Erika to share their best financial decisions and a learning opportunity they’ve experienced. Erika shares that her biggest learning opportunity is when a ten-year relationship ended overnight. She did not have an emergency fund and had been depending on this partner for certain financial needs. Since then, she’s been great at risk management and planning for emergencies. Last year, there was a family emergency and she needed to take a same-day flight home. Having the emergency fund allowed her to book the ticket without feeling financially stressed. Juan talks about how investing in himself through books transformed his mentality toward money. The two most impactful books he read were, The Psychology of Money by Morgan Housel and I Will Teach You to Be Rich by Ramit Sethi. Juan’s biggest hindrance is that he considers himself a perfectionist which can lead to inaction. He now focuses on progress over perfection. The Financial Gym meets clients where they are, and serves anyone who comes through the door. Joy asks the new Trainers who they’re most excited to serve in this role. Erika wants to be a financial hype woman for anyone who needs it. She loves to encourage people to follow their potential and loves working with people who are early on in their careers. Juan is excited to serve artists who are just starting out, fresh out of college, or those coming from a fear-based mentality. He also wants to work with first-generation Americans and folks from immigrant families. If you want to work with Juan or Erika, schedule a free warm-up call today. Let the associate know you heard the podcast episode and would like to request one of these folks! Meet The Trainer Meet Joy Liu, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer & Head of Trainer Academy Meet Erika Moromisato, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer Meet Juan Valeriano, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer
33 minutes | Jun 28, 2022
Following Your Career Path Using Your Superpower With Joy & Belma McCaffrey
On this episode of Financially Naked: Stories from The Financial Gym, Joy, Head of Trainer Academy, is joined by one of her long time friends, Belma McCaffrey, Founder of Work Bigger. Belma’s story resonates with Joy and a lot of the clients that come through The Financial Gym. Today, they’re talking about finding your ‘superpower’ and how you can use that to connect to your life’s purpose. For anyone who is looking to make a change or is asking the question, ‘what do I want to do with my life?’ this conversation is not one you’ll want to miss. Podcast Notes Work Bigger is for dissatisfied big achievers, asking the question, ‘What do I want to do with my life?’ It is the resource Belma needed in her 20’s. At the time, she struggled to know what she wanted to do with her career but knew she wanted to make an impact. When she went back to business school, Belma quickly realized she was not the only person with this problem. Work Bigger was born to be the solution and is helpful for people who feel a little lost. Joy works with a number of clients who go through this struggle. A huge aspect of building a financial plan is setting goals that are meaningful to you. Once it’s clear what those goals are, it’s easier to set action steps and make them happen. Changing your mindset without knowing the bigger purpose can be challenging. Joy asks Belma to define ‘superpower’ and why it’s important to know what yours is. It’s ‘what do I care about, and why?’ Your thumbprint, or what really makes you unique. It’s about identifying what is the special value that you can add to this world. Once we know and understand our superpowers, they can be activated. How do you start the process of finding your superpower? Belma has a class that goes into more detail: linked here, but shares the highlights. There are four clues: emotions, actions, feedback, & understanding your WHY. Emotions: What are you doing when you’re feeling in the flow? We have positive and negative responses, identify what you’re doing when you are feeling positive. Actions: What do you find yourself doing when you’re in a place of flow? Understand that behavior. Feedback: What are other people reflecting back to you your superpower is? Your WHY: Understanding who you are and what drives you. Once you’re clear on that, you can get more clear on the work you do every day. It’s a journey of self-discovery and is totally normal to not have all the answers without going through the process. Joy asks, ‘How did you get to the clues and what are your superpowers that lead you to Work Bigger?’ It took Belma a lot of work to figure out the four clues and did so by tapping into her own journey. She thought her dissatisfaction with the workplace was the workplace’s fault. But she pivoted and started having conversations with people in similar situations, connecting with them mentally and emotionally. She started by reading a lot of books including What Color is my Parachute? and Big Book of Jobs. She thought if she could see the job, something would click for her. She spent time researching and speaking with therapists and coaches. She put together a beta and it was a culmination of worksheets and questions that she was working on with other people. Understanding your emotional landscape is foundational. Before the resume, the cover letter, or any of that, the foundation must be built. Navigating the external world is easier once the internal compass is set. Joy asks, ‘What are some emotional or behavioral cues that led you to this work and guiding others?’ Belma has always gravitated towards the big picture, strategic thinking, which comes into play when she is coaching clients. She feels energized and connected when she is teaching, speaking, and supporting clients. Joy talks about how guiding people through a transformation or action that they wanted to do, but couldn’t quite make happen themselves. She gets to meet people where they are, ask questions, and present solutions. It’s about finding pathways to accomplish the things they want with more ease. She previously worked in advertising and uses the skills from that job in this role, which is more fulfilling for Joy. Belma talks about how they encounter this a lot at Work Bigger. Working a job that is unfulfilling or one that isn’t helping with your financial goals can be a real barrier in the process. Using what you’re naturally good at can help propel you to your goals. Joy asks Belma what are some common struggles people are facing when they join Work Bigger? What inspires them to join? Money and career are so connected. Belma talks about how they see a mindset and fear around money at Work Bigger. There’s a fear of pivoting because making a change has financial impacts. It’s important to have a healthy mindset around money and leverage a career that will serve your life and your well-being. With clarity comes the ability to make more intentional decisions. You don’t have to stay at a job that isn’t paying you enough or is unfulfilling. Joy asks Belma to share some of the pivots and transitions she’s witnessed. They see people launching their own businesses and projects. Sometimes what they thought was going to take years, they’re able to accomplish in a few months. Others make smaller pivots because they realize they don’t need a huge change. They see it all at Work Bigger. What really matters is that each individual is clear on what they want. The best thing that can happen through this process is discovering what’s best for you. There are stories out there where people make it happen really quickly, but that’s not most people’s reality. At Work Bigger, the focus is on following the path in a healthy and sustainable way. Belma didn’t jump into Work Bigger full-time, she was able to do it by cutting back from her full-time job. Through the process of discovery, you may find what lights you up isn’t necessarily related to your work. The corporate job can be more bearable when you know it’s a tool to help you do what really lights you up. It doesn’t have to check every box. The superpower can take different forms. Knowing your superpower is wonderful and it can come up in other areas of your life, like a side hustle or hobby. Work Bigger has a free class about how to find your superpower. It goes through the internal process but also how to manifest that into the world. What does that look like, is it your next job, a new business, or something out. It helps you let go of the pressure and to help you find a way to feel connected every day as much as possible. If you’re looking to dig in and find your superpower, check out workbigger.co and register for the FREE class. Connect with Work Bigger Website: Work Bigger Instagram: @workbiggerLinkedIn: Belma McCaffrey Meet The Trainer Joy Liu, Certified Level 2 Financial Trainer & Head of Trainer Academy
35 minutes | Jun 21, 2022
Chandra & Hector Gymsplain Savings
This episode of Financially Naked: Stories from The Financial Gym, is all about saving money! It is an important aspect of personal finance and one people struggle with the most. Saving money is like a muscle. If you haven’t saved before, that money muscle is going to need some work. There are so many things to save for, emergencies, retirement, pets, travel, the list goes on; how do you even get started? Chandra and Hector, two of our Certified Financial Trainers talk through their personal savings journeys and how to start building and flexing that money saving muscle. Podcast Notes Hector and Chandra talk about their relationships with saving money and how they relate to their clients. Chandra has an on-again-off-again relationship with savings. When she was young, her grandma told her to save half of her money. This was easy for her to do as a kid when she was getting ‘free’ money, but as she became a teen and young adult, saving didn’t come naturally. She would always save, but then use the money before allowing it to grow into anything significant. Hector always heard the generic advice, ‘save your money,’ but there wasn’t specific guidance beyond that. Now that he has more control of his finances, saving money is not reactionary, but rather proactive and part of the plan. There are different money personalities. Some people are better savers naturally, where others lean towards spending. It’s important to find the balance: save what you need to accomplish your goals, but also budget for what you enjoy. It can feel discouraging when you need to use the money saved, but that’s what it is for. Having the emergency fund when it is needed is a win. If you saved the money before, you’ll be able to save it again. It’s all part of the journey. Chandra reminds everyone that emergency funds are for emergencies only. Going to Tulum or Coachella is not an emergency. Clients are hardest on themselves and Trainers are there to extend grace and remind them of all of the progress they’ve made. Some goals can be intimidating for folks to think about saving that much money. If the end goal number feels intimidating, take it one step at a time. Hector and Chandra share how reaching a savings goal makes them feel. Chandra feels a sense of accomplishment and Hector gains comfort having money saved. Tips & Tricks If you don’t have a lot of wiggle room in your budget, start small. Open a High Yield Savings Account - it should be an institution separate from your regular checking account. Set up automatic transfers from your paycheck. You can set these up through your payroll with some employers, or through your bank on payday. The important part is ‘set it and forget it’. Make it fun! Think of it like a game or ‘savings challenge’. These games are a great way to stay motivated and enjoy the process of saving. If you want to work with a Financial Trainer to help you reach your savings goals, learn more here. Meet The Trainers Meet Chandra Savage, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer Meet Hector Lopez, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer
36 minutes | Jun 14, 2022
It's Expensive Outside with Sara W & Yenny
This episode of Financially Naked: Stories from The Financial Gym is about how to get the most from summer without blowing your budget. After two years of covid life, there is a lot of travel, weddings, and other events to plan for. We all want to go out (safely) when we can, but with inflation, it’s expensive outside! Sara W and Yenny, two of our Certified Financial Trainers are here to talk about how we can plan to live our best lives this summer while staying financially healthy. Podcast Notes Start with the basics: The first step of knowing how much money you’re able to spend this summer is knowing where you are financially right now. From there you can make a plan to budget for the things you want to do! It’s not easy to make a plan if you’re not sure how much money you’re working with. Sara tells us that we can have anything we want, but not everything. Depending on what you want to do this summer, trade offs might have to be made. What things are you excited to do and spend money on? Once you know that, you can really focus and start planning for those things. When making your budget, ensure there is a reasonable allowance for variable expenses and the fun things you want to do! Think about where you can adjust spending, or how to increase your income. How to prepare for big-ticket items this summer: With things opening up, travel is top of mind for people this summer and many of the weddings planned for the last few years are happening now. The best way to start saving for these expenses is by setting up a sinking fund. This is a savings account, separate from your emergency fund, where you set aside money for your goals or fun plans. Check on any travel credits from 2020 and make sure to redeem those before they expire. If you want more specific tips about traveling on a budget, check out these two episodes of Financially Naked: Travel Hacking & Traveling on a Budget When thinking about weddings, in addition to travel and accommodations, make sure to plan for the other expenses such as the gift or going out with friends when you’re all together. If you’re attending a few weddings this summer, use the same outfit styled different ways instead of purchasing a whole new outfit for each one. People are more understanding now than ever, if you can’t afford a big gift, that’s okay! Your friends and family are happy to see you and your presence is a great present. Tips for managing everyday expenses while enjoying the summer: This is where the trade-offs start to come in. Go through the list of fixed expenses and scrutinize every charge. Are there things you can pause like gym memberships or streaming subscriptions that will get less use while you spend time outside? Can you call and negotiate any insurance or interest rates? It’s good to shop around and see what options are out there. Eliminate unnecessary fees where possible, such as late fees or overdraft charges. Are there convenience fees that can be cut? Think about picking up your dinner instead of ordering delivery. This is a great option when the weather is nice, will save you on delivery charges, and directly supports the restaurant. Use coupon codes and rewards as much as you can. Some common examples are browser extensions like Honey or a rewards system like Rakuten. When it feels like the spending is “out of control” Focus on a few categories. The first step is being aware of which ones impact your budget the most. Drill down on that category and see where the opportunities are. Pay yourself first by making savings automatic. This ensures your savings goals are being met, and you can feel great about the money left over to spend on the variables. Be intentional with your money. We work hard to make money, so it’s important to think about that when we’re spending it. Get creative with your plans: Make a summer bucket list of events and places you want to go. Think about all of the great ways there are to have fun for cheap or free. There are so many options out there in the summer. Check out your city’s calendar of events and see what is being offered. There are always events like parades, fairs, or fireworks shows. Going to the library is always free, and there are usually special events throughout the summer. Spend time outdoors while the weather is nice. Take walks around the neighborhood and find parks in your neighborhood. Picnics are a great, affordable, cheap outdoor option. FOMO is real! How do you plan for everything you want to do and see everyone you want to see while managing the budget? Practice boundaries and communication skills with yourself and others. If you’re unable to afford certain activities with your group, suggest something else. If you’ve already assessed the budget and cut in all of the areas you can, what are the other options? Is it time to talk to management about a raise, or if you’re a business owner, raising your prices? Take a look at your own life, and seek out the positive changes that can be made. Random Three Questions What is your favorite summer activity? What is your favorite thing to do for free? What is your favorite summer treat? Meet The Trainers Meet Sara W, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer Meet Yenny , Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer
37 minutes | Jun 7, 2022
Traveling on a Budget with Kylie & Sara W
With inflation touching every aspect of the economy, everything feels more expensive lately, and travel is no exception. This episode of Financially Naked: Stories from The Financial Gym is all about traveling and how to save money while living your richest life. Kylie and Sara, two of our Certified Financial Trainers at The Gym both have experience with various types of travel and are here to share some tips they’ve learned along the way. Podcast Notes BEFORE THE TRIP Saving for travel: If travel is something you really care about, plan ahead of time and save up for it! The key is always keeping what is important to you in mind. From the planning stages all the way through. You can have anything you want, but not everything. To save money to travel or take a vacation, budget cuts might have to be made in areas that aren’t so meaningful to you in order to make real progress. If you can get gifts from your loved ones for a wedding or event, put travel on the registry. This is a great thing to think about if you don’t need things. Ask for support. If you’re flying home for the holidays, can that be part of the gift so you can make the trip? It can take time to build up to taking a year off or saving for a dream trip. While saving, there’s a lot to explore in your state and local areas. Staycations can be fun and a chance to explore new things in your own city. Scheduling Ahead: When you are able to travel will depend on your life and various obligations. Kylie does not have kids and her schedule is incredibly flexible. She usually will block off time 3 months in advance, and finalize details as it gets closer. Sarah’s travel schedule is dependent on the kid’s school schedule, which means they usually visit their families in the summer and alternate every other holiday. They also keep a running list of places they would like to travel to and take one big trip each year. Don’t feel pressure to try something or pay for an experience that is not of value to you, even if it is a popular thing everyone does. Booking Flights Start looking at flights in advance, especially if you plan to travel around major holidays. Set your browser to incognito mode when you’re searching to help minimize tracking and price fluctuation Look at different iterations of the flights to see if there are more affordable options. If your arrival and departure days are flexible, check the price on various days to compare rates. If you live around a few different airports, check the flights at all of them. Consider the time and cost of commuting to those different airports when considering the price. If traveling with a child, those who are under 2 do not require an additional ticket purchase. Consider other options for travel, like trains! You can travel the east coast of the United States via train. Booking Accommodations: This is dependent on the standards of how you like to travel and the places you like to stay. Travel with friends, so you can split the cost of the hotel or Airbnb. If you have family, friends, or acquaintances in a city, reach out to see if you can stay with them. Kylie does a lot of backpacking and camping and she learned there is a lot of free camping out there. These free National Forest Lands might not have a lot of amenities, but totally great if you like that style of camping. If you’re visiting a National Park, there is usually National Forest Land within an hour or so, sometimes even closer! If you want to get into camping but don’t have the equipment, you can borrow it or rent it before investing in a purchase. There are hostels and some even have private rooms. They’re cheaper than hotels and it’s a great way to meet people. Other travel-related expenses that come up: Trip insurance or international health insurance. There's always a balance between getting enough insurance but not paying for too much which isn’t necessary. See what your credit cards and current insurances cover and go from there. How will you communicate? Do you need a pocket wifi device or does your phone provider cover where you’re traveling? Be prepared, know what you’ve got, and top up on what you need. Be mindful when packing for the trip. There can be a tendency to buy a lot, but be mindful and only purchase what is needed and borrow what you can! How will you be paying for things? Is it best to use cash or a credit card? Using a travel credit card can help you avoid international fees. WHEN YOU ARE THERE: Depending on where you’re going and how you like to travel, one of the biggest expenses is food. If eating out is an important aspect of traveling for you, budget for it. You don’t have to eat every meal out. Take advantage of continental breakfasts offered by hotels. Buy groceries and cook meals or make sandwiches when you need something quick. You can still enjoy the food the country has to offer, even if it’s not coming from a restaurant. Consider taking public transit rather than renting a car or paying for taxis. If you want to learn about using credit card points for travel, check out episode 123: Travel Hacking with Bevin & Garrett If you’re ready for a change or want to learn more about working with a Certified Financial Trainer, schedule a free warm-up call to learn more! Random Three Questions What is a place you’ve been that you recommend others travel to? Where are you traveling next? What do you like to do en route? On the plane or in the car. Meet The Trainers Meet Kylie Lipinski, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer Meet Sara Willi, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer
29 minutes | May 31, 2022
The Journey to Financial Confidence with Mike & Liz
On this episode of Financially Naked: Stories from The Financial Gym, our host is Mike Poulin, a DC-based, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer. Today’s guest, Liz, is a West Coast-based client in her early 30’s, who works in Blockchain. She first learned about The Gym through an Instagram ad, and has been a member for three years! She’s come such a long way from when she first started and is here to share her experience as a member and celebrate the wins that have happened along the way! Podcast Notes When Liz first started with The Financial Gym: Total net worth: $ - 28,938 Credit Score: 670 1-3 year goals: Pay down debt, save for a house, & travel through Europe. 3-5 year goals: Get married, Liz’s numbers now, three years later: Total net worth: $179,752 (a positive change of almost $200,000) Credit Score: in the 700’s Mike asks Liz how it feels to hear the numbers from three years ago. Hearing those numbers reminds Liz of all of the guilt and shame she was feeling years ago before she started her financial journey. Now she feels empowered and understands how to set meaningful goals and manage her money. She learned financial health is about figuring out what is important to you and setting financial boundaries with yourself and the outside world. Other than traveling through Europe (circumstances outside of all of our control), Liz has accomplished all of the goals she set. She paid down the debt, purchased a home, and is getting married in a few weeks. She feels proud of all of the work she’s done and talks about how this has been a life-changing experience. If your financial journey is a road trip, A Financial Trainer is the GPS. Ultimately, you are in the driver's seat, and your Trainer is there to guide you along the way. The Financial Gym gives you the tools needed to drive the car and help get you where you want to go. A huge part of a financial journey is working on mindset. Have compassion for yourself. Everyone is coming from a different background, and we can learn and make positive changes. If you’ve been in debt for a long time, working through a scarcity mindset to focus on abundance can be a challenge. There are small changes and shifts that make a huge difference. For example, reframing ‘bad habits’ as ‘old habits’ is a small, but compassionate language shift. Those first few milestones feel the most exciting when you’re starting out. She remembers saving the first $1,000 into her emergency fund, and how that was the first time there was a comma in her bank account for longer than a few hours. It felt empowering to save money for the first time. Liz recently had a significant financial win/windfall/circumstance She works at a startup, which is doing really well financially. The company was recently purchased, and Liz received a significant payout from Stocks she owned in the company. Even if you never expect or plan for a financial windfall, they do happen, and it opens up a lot of possibilities. Being clear on your values and your goals beforehand will help you be prepared if something like this happens. What are YOUR goals, not the ones society tells you are important? Mike asks what Liz wants everyone to know about working with The Financial Gym It is a judgment-free zone. Before her first session, Liz hadn’t sat down to face the numbers. When it came time to meet for the first session, she was nervous and almost canceled the meeting. When she went through the numbers, Lindsay, her Trainer at the time, did not flinch or make a face as she revealed her debt. Your financial plan will not be all about cutting everything you enjoy. Your Trainer will help you figure out what is most important, and tell you how to reach all of your goals. Ultimately, you are in the driver’s seat. There is no one-size-fits-all for goals and financial planning. Success looks different for everyone, and it’s about focusing on what is important to you. If you are feeling shame about your current financial circumstance, you are not alone. Many Americans are living paycheck to paycheck or in debt. There are people out there to help you. There is a light at the end of the tunnel. A financial journey takes time, and it can feel like you’ll never get ahead. You can make a change! If you’re ready for a change or want to learn more about working with a Certified Financial Trainer, schedule a free warm-up call to learn more! Meet The Trainer Meet Mike Poulin, Certified Level 2 Financial Trainer
25 minutes | May 24, 2022
Kadri and Mike Gymsplain Balance Transfer Cards
On this episode of Financially Naked: Stories from The Financial Gym, two of our Certified Financial Trainers, Kadri and Mike, sit down to talk about balance transfer cards. These can be a great tool for debt repayment or planning large purchases. Kadri and Mike go through how these cards work, the benefits of balance transfer cards, and things to keep in mind when considering if they’re a good fit for you. Podcast Notes There are different forms of debt consolidation, including personal loans. Which one is the best choice for you depends on a few different variables. Mike has used balance transfer cards on his own personal financial journey and he and Kadri recommend them to their clients. They are a great tool and can be used for a few different things. What is a balance transfer card, and why consider applying for one? Balance transfer cards offer 0% APR for a one-time fee (or low low fixed rate) for a certain amount of time, usually between 12-18 months. They can be used to: Consolidate multiple smaller debts together for one monthly payment Transfer one high interest debt to a new card to allow more time and flexibility To strategically finance a large purchase. They can be used to lower monthly payments and provide flexibility in your budget. If you need more time by the end of the promo offer, you can apply for another balance transfer card. It’s important to be strategic when opening any new credit card. There are a few factors to consider, such as your credit score, current income, monthly expenses, debt to income ratio, and already existing debt payments. What to consider before applying for a balance transfer card? The first step is to understand where you stand financially. Start by making a list of all of your debts: include the total owed, APR, and minimum monthly payment. It’s important to understand the whole picture in order to make the best choices. Take some time to reflect on your debt. There’s no need to feel shame or fixate during this process. It’s about addressing the cause to be able to break through old patterns and cycles. Read and understand the terms, agreements, and options for each card. Does the fee make sense for your current scenario, or is this debt better suited for a personal loan? Be proactive and make a plan for paying off the debt. Use this time of 0% interest to make progress on those goals. Make saving a priority, even while paying down debt. Having an emergency fund is the number one step for breaking out of the debt cycle. Where do you find a balance transfer card? Check existing offers with cards you already have. For example, you may be able to transfer your American Express Balance to one of your Discover cards. You can’t transfer balances between two cards from the same provider. One Discover card can’t be transferred to another Discover card. If you have a credit score of 700+, you’ll likely be approved for a balance transfer card pretty easily. Depending on your overall financial picture, you may qualify even with a lower credit score. To find a balance transfer card that is a great fit for you, check out the BFF Approved Products Page. If you want a Certified Financial Trainer to walk you through the process, schedule a free warm-up call to learn more! Listen to Kadri and Mike talk about consolidation loans on Financially Naked: Kadri & Mike Gymsplain Consolidation Loans Read about balance transfer cards on The Financial Gym Blog: What to Know About Credit Card Balance Transfers 4 Signs That a Balance Transfer Card Might be Right For You How to Pay Your Credit Card Balance Down Faster Meet The Trainers Meet Kadri Augustin, Level 3 Certified Financial Trainer Meet Mike Poulin, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer
28 minutes | May 17, 2022
Gina & Mike Gymsplain Budgeting
While a budget can seem intimidating, it is simply a tool to help you become financially successful. When it comes to budgeting, the key is finding a system that works and is enjoyable for you because sticking to any new habit is challenging if you dread the process! On this episode of Financially Naked: Stories from The Financial Gym, two of our Certified Financial Trainers, Gina Funaro and Mike Poulin are here to Gymsplain budgeting. They talk through their favorite budgeting methods/tools and tips for long-term success based on their personal experience and work with clients. Podcast Notes Gina was a client at The Gym before she was hired as an employee. Joy is her trainer, and has been since she first started at The Gym. Gina loves budgeting. The piece of advice she gives to her clients when it comes to budgeting is to find a routine that is exciting to you and fits your lifestyle. It can take some time and experimenting to figure it out; it’s just part of the process. You can try out a system for a month or quarter to learn what works and what doesn’t. Budgeting Basics: Start with multiple checking accounts. If everything is going in and out of one account, it can be hard to keep track of separate goals. Having different accounts makes saving for specific goals much more clear. It also allows separate accounts for fixed expenses (rent, utilities, insurance, etc) and variable expenses (daily spending) Budget Styles Zero-Based Budgeting This style of budgeting works well for folks with consistent income, and who have a good idea of their fixed expenses and spending habits. This is where every dollar has a job, and certain accounts are designed to reach $0. Each dollar has a very specific duty and requires pre-planning. It can take some time to get into the groove of a ‘zero-based budget’ because it doesn’t leave much room for error. It takes some time to get used to your account going down to zero, especially if you come from a scarcity mindset. Anti-Budget/No Budget Budget Great for folks who don’t like to track every transaction or deal with complex money management systems. If the apps or spreadsheets stress you out, this is a good system to try. Start with your paycheck and determine your fixed expenses and savings goals. Once you know those numbers, subtract the total fixed expenses and savings from each paycheck, and everything left over is what’s left to spend on variable expenses/whatever you want! 50/30/20 style budgeting A mix of the ‘anti-budget’ and ‘0-based budget.’ This balanced approach uses your take-home pay from each paycheck. 50% goes towards ‘needs’ - fixed expenses, transportation, groceries. 30% goes towards ‘wants’ - travel, home purchases, variable spending 20% goes towards ‘building wealth’ - long term savings / other investments All cash/cash envelope system Great for folks who like a hands-on approach or like to see the physical cash to visualize their budget. Each time you’re paid, withdraw the cash budgeted for that period and use it for your variable spend. Once the money is gone in each category, it’s gone, or you can roll the leftover cash into various sinking funds. Different tools for budgeting: Pen & Paper is always a classic choice Mint Personal Capital You Need a Budget (YNAB) Check the app store for FREE apps Final thoughts and tips When it comes time to plan your budget, pour a glass of wine or whatever makes the process enjoyable for you. Make it a fun money date. Find what works for you and stick with it. Once you find a system that works and start to see the savings grow, following a budget becomes easier. There is no right or wrong answer, personal finance is personal, and it’s a learning experience. You can use a mix of styles, or create a system that works for your goals. Read more about budgeting on The Financial Gym Blog: Budgeting for Success 6 Tips for Budgeting as a Freelancer Introduction to Budgeting If you want a Certified Financial Trainer to help you figure out the best budgeting system that works for you, book a complimentary consult call to learn more! Meet The Trainers Meet Gina Funaro, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer Meet Mike Poulin, Level 2 Certified Financial Trainer
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