As human beings, we naturally want to improve our circumstances and enjoy the best life has to offer. Yet, the lure of consumerism can often have us living big, spending big and owing big, leaving us feeling personally and financially trapped. A feeling I’ve known all too well!
I've always known how to work hard for my money, but I haven't always known how to actually keep my money. Now, as a reformed shop-a-holic and work-a-holic, I realized that if I kept spending my money as fast as I could earn it, I would have to keep working like I had been working for…the…rest…of…my…life. Constantly working just to make the money back that I had spent meant I was missing out on all of the things that money couldn’t buy like actually living and loving my life.
In the moments when you’re feeling sick and tired physically, spiritually, emotionally or psychologically, getting back on the grind can feel like one of the hardest things you’ll ever have to do.
Money can buy a lot of things, but none more valuable than the freedom to choose how you want to live.
When I was a fifteen year old kid who couldn’t wait to get her high school work permit signed, working was mostly about getting a paycheck so I could splurge my money. As an adult, working is still about getting that paycheck, but now, that paycheck (or the absence of it) dictates whether or not (and for how long) I will need to sacrifice my own or my family’s time, health, or sanity in exchange for money. When a paycheck has that type of power, real conversations need to be had. Real questions need to be asked and perhaps one of the most real and profound questions we can ask ourselves is:
"What the f*ck am I doing with my money?!”
Using your money to build a solid personal and financial foundation can afford you the freedom to choose what you are willing to trade in exchange for money, not what you will be forced to trade in exchange for it because you don't have any other option. You owe it to yourself and the people you love to not only get it financially the f$%k together but to also free yourself from the emotional, physical, spiritual, and psychological burdens that keep you from feeling free to live, learn, and love wholeheartedly. You have everything to lose or everything to gain. Check out some of my tips that can support you along your own journey to freedom:
3 Tips For Going Towards Personal + Financial Freedom
01. // Heal Your Inner Child.
Inside every adult there is an inner child longing to feel seen and cared for. If you experienced any type of neglect, trauma, or other emotional pain growing up, your inner child could still be in a lot of pain. You may have buried this pain deep inside to hide it, to protect yourself or to keep up with the demands of the outside world. Yet, hiding pain doesn’t heal it. Instead, it often ends up creeping back into your adult life, showing itself as a messy personal life or deteriorating health from neglecting your own needs for so long. Healing your inner child can take time, but this is a great article to check out. It dives deeper into the process of healing your inner child:
When you start to heal your inner child, not only do you begin to heal from the trauma that you might have experienced in the past, but you also stop allowing that wounded part of yourself to make your life and financial decisions. The type of life decisions that keep you choosing romantic partners that abuse you emotionally, financially, physically or psychologically. And the type of life decisions that keep you spending money to buy the things that you think will make other people love and accept you.
This is a picture of my 3 older sisters and I. Don't y'all dare tell them I published this pic because it will be off with my head lol Can you guess which one little Janet is? (Hint: the youngest one!)
Find a picture of your younger self and put it up somewhere where you can see it often. Most of us would never intentionally let anyone inflict pain on a child and if you can start thinking of your younger self as an innocent child that depends on you for their life and wellbeing- it will change and heal a lot of things. I keep a picture of my younger self in my wallet and consult with her often. I ask her questions like:
"Is what I'm about to do going to cause you pain or make you feel ashamed of me?"
"Are they honoring and respecting you when they do this?"
Imagine that your inner child is watching everything that you say and do because she does. Reflecting back to the way in which I've treated myself in the past and the way that I've allowed others to treat me in the past can be a little embarrassing. But we can start to undo a lot of the past damage by now committing to honor and protect that younger version of ourselves that still depends on us for wellness and survival.
If you need some additional support and motivation, you can follow me and my fam as we go on our own healing journeys and support other women along the way. As girls from "broken" homes, we are consciously healing in mind, body + spirit and supporting women as they become change makers in their own lives too. Not all of us are dealt the right cards, but that doesn't mean we can't reshuffle our deck for a better outcome. We're doing just that! Click the image below to learn more about Flaquita Tea, the detox tea for social good:
You can also check us out on Instagram @flaquitatea
02. // Use What You’ve Got.
The phenomenal thing about the times that we currently live in is that the technology that we carry in our back pockets like our smart phones can afford us the opportunity to access information that can change the way we live, think, and act. With an iPhone, the Apple Podcasts app has been top of my list. It's built in, it's free, and it will connect you to some of the most critical conversations that we all need to be a part of. Here are two of my most recent favorite podcasts as well as a free app to tackle student loan debt that I think you might enjoy as well:
Another great podcast that I've recently discovered is LatinXellence Podcast.
You can also catch them on Instagram @latinxellence_podcast
You can click the image below to learn more about income-repayment and loan forgiveness programs that might be available for you. Best of all, it's free!
When I set off on my journey to learn money, I was taught by some brilliant and successful individuals that served as my mentors. They gave me million dollar advice often while just going for a walk or over a cup of coffee. With so many demands on our time these days, it can be tough to find the time to personally meet up with the people that could give us the million dollar advice that can change our lives but the beauty of technology is that we can still “pick the brain” of some of the most brilliant minds all in just a few scrolls. If you haven’t checked out Latina Money’s Dinero School™, you should. Dinero School™ by Latina Money was created to meet the profound need for accessible, affordable, and cultural relevant financial education. Especially within communities of color. Click the picture below to learn more about our masterclasses:
You can also check out my online course, Financialista starting November 2020. Financialista is a signature curriculum taught by the founder of Latina Money (me!) packed with video training modules designed to help you clean up your financial act and jump start your journey towards cultivating a foundation for your finances that can support you in living a life you get to choose, not a life that you just have to settle for. Through this course, Latina Money is also supporting Latinx in creating additional streams of income by opening up an affiliate program. Once you enroll, you’ll be able to receive 50% of each enrollment made through your unique link. You get to earn money while supporting your homegirls in getting right with their money? It’s about time!
03. // Make An Agreement.
Everything we do is based on agreements we have made - agreements with ourselves, with other people, with God, with life. But the most important agreements are the ones we make with ourselves. One of the books that truly transformed my life is Don Miguel Ruiz’s The Four Agreements.
The Four Agreements are:
Be Impeccable With Your Word.
Don't Take Anything Personally.
Don't Make Assumptions.
Always Do Your Best.
In The Four Agreements, Don Miguel Ruiz reveals the source of self-limiting beliefs that rob us of joy and create needless suffering. Based on ancient Toltec wisdom, The Four Agreements offer a powerful code of conduct that can rapidly transform our lives to a new experience of freedom, true happiness, and love. You can snag the book through Latina Money’s Amazon Affiliates link here:
Here is to your personal and financial freedom! Stay fabulous, fierce, and financially savvy bellas.