Learning How to Invest with Kaci Schmitt

Episode Cover Image Learning How to Invest with Kaci Schmitt
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Learning How to Invest with Kaci Schmitt

Episode Cover Image Learning How to Invest with Kaci Schmitt

“Having financial professionals on your team is incredibly important. And one thing that I always want to let people know is that it also really, really important to have the education around how do you know who you can actually trust? There are very trustworthy individuals in the financial expert space, but then there are people who are basically sales people.”

~Kaci Schmitt

Meet Kaci Schmitt

Kaci is a therapist in private practice who has also created her second business, Invested Therapist™, where she helps therapists go from feeling confused and overwhelmed by their finances to becoming confident, secure stewards of their money able to save and invest for retirement and other financial goals.

In this Episode...

How are you investing your money for retirement? In this practical financial episode, Linzy and Kaci dig into what it looks like to wisely invest our money as private practitioners so that our money can grow for us.

Kaci is passionate about helping therapists in private practice learn more about effective investing so that we can work our way toward financial independence. Listen in to hear her tips and find out how you can connect with her to get more help with financial planning and investments.

Connect with Kaci

Check out Kaci’s Facebook group “Financial Self-Care for Therapists”: facebook.com/groups/financialselfcare 

Learn more about Kaci’s membership: investedtherapist.co/membership

Or use her free calculator: investedtherapist.co/calculator 

Want more private practice finances support?

Free workshop: Setting Enough Aside for Taxes (in 5 Easy Steps) 

A FREE workshop that teaches private practice therapists how to teel totally calm about your private practice finances knowing you have more than enough in the bank to make tax time a breeze!

In this pre-recorded online workshop, I teach you:

  • the real steps to make sure your taxes are totally taken care of,
  • what mistakes to avoid when setting aside taxes for your private practice,
  • how to use a simple and pretty tool that will tell you exactly how much to put aside to cover your taxes each year!

Click here to register for the free workshop today.

Episode Transcript

Kaci [00:00:02] Having financial professionals on your team is incredibly important. And one thing that I always want to let people know is that, you know, it’s also really, really important to have the education around how do you know who you can actually trust? There are very trustworthy individuals in the financial expert space, but then there are people who are basically salespeople.  

Linzy [00:00:30] Welcome to the Money Skills For Therapists Podcast, where we answer this question How can therapists and health practitioners go from money shame and confusion, to feeling calm and confident about their finances and get money really working for them in both their private practice and their lives? I’m your host, Linzy Bonham, therapist turned money coach and creator of the Course Money Skills For Therapists. Hello and welcome back to the podcast. So today’s guest is Kaci Schmitt. Kaci is a therapist who has the unusual interest of being really interested in investing, so much so that she is creating an offering and has an online community called the Invested Therapist, which is all about helping therapists with investing. Today, Kaci and I get into the importance of investing. We get into the ethical murkiness of investing and how it can be troubling for those of us concerned about capitalism and companies that are not doing great things in the world. How do you reconcile that with your need to have your money growing? We get into ETFs, so if you’ve heard about ETFs and you’re like, What are ETFs? Everybody keeps talking about them. Kaci I get into that today as well as both of our preferred method of investment, and we talk about managing feelings when investing. Just like all areas of life, investing your money comes with feelings, triggers, stories that may want you to take certain actions or make you have certain behaviors. And we dig into that today talking about the importance of managing your feelings when you have money invested in the stock market. This is a fun conversation with Kaci today. It’s always nice to talk to a therapist who’s also really like geeky and interested in money. And we covered a lot of ground. Here is my conversation with Kaci Schmitt. So, Kaci, welcome to the podcast. 

Kaci [00:02:34] Thank you so much for having me. I really appreciate it, Linzy. Yeah. 

Linzy [00:02:37] I am excited to have you on because you and I occupy a very small space together of therapists who are very interested and enthusiastic about money and finances. 

Kaci [00:02:50] Yes. Yes. 

Linzy [00:02:51] There are not a lot of us. 

Kaci [00:02:53] We absolutely. Excited to be able to connect with you. I know, it’s interesting, like what brings people interested in finances? I think it can be really different. But, you know, I’m just so happy to be here. Yeah. 

Linzy [00:03:08] So for you, then, let’s dig a little bit into what got you to where you are now. And we’re going to talk to you about about what you offer in a sec. But what got you to the place where you are now, where you’re really passionate and interested in helping therapists with finances and specifically investing in your case? 

Kaci [00:03:26] Yeah. Yeah. You know, my personal finance journey has been really interesting because it’s not something that I was ever interested in going to school for. It’s not something I really thought too much about, other than making sure that I could take care of my finances, not get into credit card debt. Like that was kind of my mentality- and save some. That was my mentality probably until about five or six years ago because I just kind of thought that wealth building didn’t really apply to me as a person. I initially decided professionally I wanted to become a teacher, and so I did. I went to school for that and then I went to school to become a school counselor and I kind of thought to myself, Oh, I will like maybe do a very little bit of private practice on the side. Or maybe when I retire because I’ve got this retirement account set up with a school district that I’m in, maybe then I’ll do private practice full time. But what I realized, and this is kind of what like led me to become really passionate and curious about personal finance, is that I had always been placing my sense of financial security on whether I would be able to be employed in this school district. And I know that the public education is different in different parts of the country. And here in Canada it might be different, but in the parts of the country that I have lived in and in the time period. So I graduated right after the Great Recession in December 2009 from my undergrad degree. So I’ve kind of always had this like financial scarcity, this feeling of it looming over me professionally because there was the recession going on and I couldn’t find a job as a teacher. And then in pretty much every district I’ve ever worked in, there’s always been this threat of budget cuts and that, you know, if you’re a teacher or a school counselor or just employed in any way in public education, if you’re not in it for, you know, five, six, seven years at the point that they start talking about budget cuts, you’re probably going to be one of the ones to go because they just know based on however long you’ve been employed. Right. So I, I remember right around the time I started getting really interested in personal finance, I was driving home one day from a meeting that I had had as a school counselor at the district that I was employed in at the time. And it was yet again another talk about budget cuts. And it just kind of clicked for me that my sense of financial security was always based on whether I would be employed or not by like something I couldn’t control. I started learning about personal finance and specifically investing outside of just what was being taken out of my paycheck through my public education job. And I realized that I actually could create a sense of financial empowerment and autonomy from really building my financial literacy. And of course, in tandem with all this, I eventually decided to become full time in my private practice. So now I’m completely not dependent on any other employer, totally self-employed. And when I realized kind of how these pieces were clicking into place for me of building that financial literacy and learning about saving and investing for retirement and other financial goals, I realized that, like what that frees up in my mind to know that I don’t ever have to go back to a school if I don’t want to, you know, I don’t. Nothing is- how I’ll be in retirement has nothing to do with whether someone’s going to fire me right now or not because I got up for myself, you know? 

Linzy [00:07:05] Yeah. I mean, I hear so much in that about autonomy and, like, claiming our financial power, you know, that’s something that I thought about a lot. I especially I found myself thinking about it a lot around the time of, you know, the George Floyd protests. And as therapists, we often have so much fear about having too much power. Right, because we have power over our clients. We’re so aware of power. And like power’s got a bad rap because we’re so aware of, like, oppression and systemic oppression. Systemic discrimination. And I think we’re very much- we can end up being afraid of power or feel guilty if we have privilege or power. But also what I’m hearing and what you’re saying and what I’ve been thinking about a lot lately is all the positives of power and having your own financial power, it means control over your life, right? It means not being dependent on a system that doesn’t really care about you. Right. Where you’re going to get cut, even if you’re the best teacher in the school because you’ve only been there for two years. It really is kind of like claiming your autonomy. And I think private practice is such a powerful way that we do that as therapists where we’re like, This is mine, I’m going to build this. And I was just chatting with somebody the other day about the recession, the R-word that’s looming over us. That kind of, you know, remains to be seen what exactly it’s going to mean for all of us, how powerful it is to be self-employed in a recession. Right. Because we have the ability to create things and like pivot. And we have so much control and ability to make choices that you don’t have when you’re an employee and you’re working for somebody else. And really, it’s about their choices. You know, all these things are kind of coming up for me as you’re talking about your journey. So it’s kind of like you stepped into your own professional power working for yourself, no longer being dependent on employment from somebody else, but also stepped into your financial power, developing this skillset around like investing and personal finance. 

Kaci [00:08:46] I think you have said so much. There’s there’s so much rich content in there. And I absolutely agree that, you know, we can’t talk about money without being aware of all all types of systemic oppression, all types of inequity that have existed that continue to exist. Right. And it’s it’s a really interesting conversation because, you know, I really do. I look at it as we are a part of this system of capitalism, we are a part of there are certain structures in our lives. And, you know, I think there are some really amazing ways that we can affect systemic change, whether it’s voting, being very vocal with our beliefs. You know, there’s there’s so much that we can do. But also individually, we can’t say, I don’t want capitalism to exist if- I’m not saying necessarily right. But like, if said, I don’t want this thing to exist. We can’t just say, well, then it’s not going to happen for everybody. Right? Like we are still operating and and to know the rules of the game, I think can be- can allow for that personal empowerment. And when you have that personal empowerment, my intention, my hope with everything is that like just when people have access to information that- and opportunities that they’ve historically been denied, that they will then be able to make those choices in their individual lives that might free up, you know, now I have the energy to go and effect change in this other way. Right now I have the time, the resources, the money to be able to donate, if that’s something, you know, if you have a cause that you’re passionate about, like when we know how it works, we can affect change in a different way than if we just don’t have those financial literacy tools as kind of a nation. 

Linzy [00:10:41] Yeah, absolutely. It opens up this new kind of like realm of influence or ability to impact change both in like your own family’s life. Like I think about even in my own family, you know, family members who are like living basically in poverty, right. Who are very precarious. And it gives me the ability to functionally support them on a monthly basis and help them with certain things in their life. But also, as you say, like to support our community to make things happen that otherwise wouldn’t happen, like to empower causes. There’s so many ways because money is such a fluid thing and it can turn into so many different things. There’s so many ways that that power- we can use that power, right? That if we don’t have access to it, that we just don’t have the ability to to make any change or influence over without money. 

Kaci [00:11:27] Absolutely. Yeah. Whole-heartedly agree. And it’s just something that I think it’s still so new in a lot of ways for us to like even be able to have this type of conversation. You and I are having right now- not only because there’s like often taboos around talking about money really openly, but like here in the United States, it wasn’t even until the 1970s that women and I know I’m kind of talking about it from like a cis perspective like that women were able to get bank accounts and lines of credit on their own without a man as a cosigner. And to me, someone born in 1987, that blows my mind. That’s where we very recently have come from. 

Linzy [00:12:09] Yes. These are very new conversations and very new power that’s in the hands of more women and more just not white men than it has been before. Yeah, absolutely. So your area of passion and actually you and I kind of do adjacent work, but we don’t do the same work. So your area of passion is investment. So tell me about that world and why you’re so passionate specifically there when it comes to therapists and knowing how to invest and understanding the investing world. 

Kaci [00:12:40] Totally. Yeah. Yeah. So I remember it was probably maybe even ten years ago or so that I first heard about the fire movement. And if people are not familiar with that acronym, FIRE stands for Financial Independence Retire Early. And I was reading about it. So basically it’s these people, it’s this loose collective of people who just have decided that they’re going to take the traditional- traditional advice about investing for retirement is often to save sometimes 10 to 15% to a pretty low number, and for your gross income to be able to eventually support you in retirement. If you start at a young age, you need to increase if you get started at five compared to 20, right? But that’s kind of a very broad, you know, what financial advisors might tell people who are starting early and the fire movement, these are people who are investing more than that amount, and have to say, here’s how much I need to invest to be able to eventually become financially independent. And financially independent in this context means you have enough accumulated and assets to be able to support you. So that work is optional for you. Yeah. So that just kind of to like lay the groundwork of what all that is. When I first started reading about it, I was like, Wow, this is really interesting, but it doesn’t apply to me as someone who is like at the time I was making maybe $43,000 a year. Right? Doesn’t apply to me. 

Linzy [00:14:08] It’s hard. 

Kaci [00:14:08] Yeah, absolutely. So I just like it was in the back of my mind, but never something that I even really googled beyond. Just like hearing about it and kind of had a, you know, a non-linear path in terms of my career progression, trying different things, you know, I guess I became really interested in all of this when I first started learning about the process of buying a home. And I realized I have not a lot of information in my mind at all beyond like, I should save some money, I should stay away from credit card debt. And then when I started learning that actually starting- I, I think I was probably in my late twenties when I got really interested in this and I started playing around with some calculators online and I realized that if I got serious about it now, I could have a seven figure or more investment by the time I hit retirement age. And that to me was just never something I’d been told was possible for me. I never even knew. Like, What does it mean to be a millionaire? I just had no context for that. So once I realized what was possible, if I got really clear on how much I wanted to start investing, I started learning about, okay, I want to build this for myself, but I don’t know how to invest. I don’t know what this is. So I started consuming podcasts and books and just learning as much as I could, and I learned that actually investing is way simpler than we think it is, like the type of investing I teach therapists. Because you could make investing really, really complicated for people. 

Linzy [00:15:45] Yeah, you can make it your full time job if you want. 

Kaci [00:15:47] You could be full time job. And you know what’s fascinating, Linzy is like even people who – and this is I think it helped click something together for me – even people whose full time job is to be managing other people’s investment portfolios about 80 to 90% of the time. Those people who have way more access to information than I do, yeah, those people do not beat index funds, which are a passive type of investment that literally all you have to do is learn what an index fund is, purchase index funds on a regular basis. And if we have continued into the future, what we historically have seen with returns in the stock market, your index funds, it’s like set it and forget it. And so I was like this is so easy. But we think it’s so hard because it isn’t being talked about. 

Linzy [00:16:36] Totally. Yeah. I mean there’s that whole thing of like, you can’t really outsmart the market. As you say, people who try failed, you know, 80 to 90% of the time and the people who I’m sure do outsmart it more, you’re paying them a massive amount of money to, you know, have that that level of attention and expertize. And I think you’re you’re so right. I think I see this in terms of business finances and, you know, getting into kind of the foundational financial skills that I teach in terms of business finance skills, that the language can really throw us because it’s like learning new terms, it’s learning new concepts, and new kind of ways of thinking about something. But once you have those, you realize that it’s not as hard as you thought. Right? But there is like that bit of a learning curve to like learn what an ETF is. As you say, I’m also an ETF investor. That’s that’s what my spouse and I do as well. I feel like we had a similar journey to you. We read a lot of blogs, and I think one of the biggest things that I have learned with investing is like, don’t touch it, don’t freak out, like that’s one of the hardest parts is just like leaving it alone. And I’m just like, you know, trusting in time. Like, our investments have dropped significantly in the last couple of months, and that’s just how it goes, right? And so it’s like part of it is just being able to like put aside your anxiety and just ride it out. I had one one student say to me, she was told that the stock market is like a roller coaster. It’s just like a ride through the ups and downs and don’t jump off. That’s she’s going to stay on the ride. But I think that, you know, we- when we are outside of that world, it’s much easier. It’s easy to think that it’s way harder than that. 

Kaci [00:18:06] Oh, my gosh. I love everything that you said because you’re also really normalizing that like- so, you know that investing can be like a roller coaster ride, like we just don’t hop off yet, stay in. Yep. Stay in if you have decades to go. And you were not planning on taking that money out right now. There is no reason. In fact, it’s not advantageous whatsoever and statistically speaking, incredibly difficult to time the market both the right time to get out and to get back in. Yes, like the market does not announce. 

Linzy [00:18:38] It would be sheer luck if you did that. 

Kaci [00:18:39] You would be the luckiest person if you happened to time it just right. And you and I both, like when you said, you know, it emotionally brings up stuff for you watching your investments like have their like value on paper kind of drop this past year. Yeah, I feel that same way too. And so I think it’s just really important to normalize that. Like even, you know, if you know about this, even if you know that time is that key ingredient. Time and being able to like just, you know, don’t act on those impulses and we’re still human and we still have those emotional responses come up. And it’s working with those instead of, you know, trying to, like, pretend like we’re ever going to make that fear of loss go away. Right. It’s deep fear. It’s it’s valid. You have it for a reason. But based on the historical data that we have, based on what we know about the stock market, it’s working with our emotions, you know? 

Linzy [00:19:35] Yeah, it’s making sure that your emotion doesn’t drive you to an action that is not wise. Right. And I think this is where what you and I do occupies like a funny little corner. I’m making a little Venn diagram with my hands, which nobody can see because this is a podcast. But, you know, there’s kind of like those two circles. It’s like kind of like finance people who just, like, live and breathe finance. And then there’s like therapists who, like, live and breathe emotions and relationships. And you and I occupy this little slice in the middle where these two worlds overlap, which is a very small slice. As I say, there’s not a lot of folks who are really actively interested in both of these spaces. And something you and I have chatted about before is like, neither of us are trained financial professionals. Yeah, right. And there’s a big difference between what we do and what a trained financial professional does. So for folks who are listening right now, what do you see as as the value of of this space that you and I are occupying? And how does the work that we’re doing differ from a financial professional? 

Kaci [00:20:30] Yeah, that’s a really good question. You know, I definitely think having financial professionals on your team is incredibly important. And one thing that I always want to let people know is that, you know, it’s also really, really important to have the education around how do you know who you can actually trust? Because there are very trustworthy individuals in the financial expert space. But then there are people who are basically salespeople. Right. And actually they are the vast majority of financial advisors are essentially salespeople. So I think what you and I do, we provide education, we provide mentorship. And also this sense of, you know, really being able to determine each person for themselves, how do I want to make decisions about my money, about who I invite in to my financial team? And that’s something that can feel so either overwhelming or like you just have no information at all. And so you’re like, okay, well, I guess I should just trust this person because they’ve got this, like alphabet soup behind their name, which is what I did at first. Like, I just like, Oh, this person is in the break room at my school and I’m 23 years old at the time. This person is in the break room. They must be a financial professional I can trust. And knowing what I know now and what I teach therapists now, I think there’s this space where therapists and just people in general who work with us can cultivate that financial wellness and awareness for themselves. But part of that, too, is knowing how to determine who do you trust, you know. 

Linzy [00:22:03] Yeah, as you say, not everybody has your best interest at heart. And so just to spell that out a little bit more for people, how how can they discern kind of who’s a salesperson and who’s not, in the financial advisor world? 

Kaci [00:22:16] Yes. So what I always tell people is that you would think that every person, just like licensed therapists, you know, we go through we go through training. We have to get our licenses. We have codes of ethics. That we have to follow financial professionals. And I don’t know everything about what they have to do in order to have certain designations behind their name, because I’m not one. But for example, the term financial advisor, I could call myself a financial advisor because it’s not a protected term. But I’m very clear that that’s not the role that I occupy in a person education and mentorship. You know, that’s more the role that I occupy. But a person can call themselves a financial advisor, but unless they are fee only – so that means that they are not putting you in investments that they receive any type of a kickback from in any way – and a fiduciary. I always tell people, look for a fee only – not even fee based, because fee based means they can charge you a fee upfront, but they can also put you in products through insurance products and different investment products where they receive some type of a commission or some type of they have an agreement to be able to get some type of payment that way – and a fiduciary. So fiduciary means in this capacity that someone is legally obligated to work in your best interest. And I think that that’s something every financial professional should be, but they’re absolutely not. And they will tell you if they are one. So their websites all over their website should say fee only and fiduciary. Those are terms to look for. And if you don’t see those terms, you can always ask the person, are you a fee only fiduciary at all times to me. So 100% of the time, because oddly enough, they can switch from a fiduciary role and into a non fiduciary role even in the same business meeting, like in the same meeting with you. So that’s what I would tell people to look for. 

Linzy [00:24:14] Yeah, and it is good to be clear. Like I’ve certainly chatted with people before where it looks like they’re a fiduciary on their website and then I asked them the question directly and suddenly they can’t answer me directly that they don’t sell anything or receive any kickbacks. And this is my very biased perspective, but I think you will share it. And my perspective is that I don’t know if there’s really any financial products that are better than just ETFs, just investing directly in the market. So in that case, you know, the role of a financial adviser, again, unprotected term, is to help you understand your big picture and really set a financial strategy for how you’re going to be using your different investment vehicles that are available to you. Like, what do you keep tax protected? You know, how much do you set aside each month? What do you keep kind of like unprotected so that you can take it out for shorter term stuff? They help you do that big picture strategy. But at this point, I don’t know if there’s really anything better than just directly investing in ETFs, which we should define them for folks: exchange trade funds, which are pegged to a whole bunch of stocks. So it’s kind of like you’re buying a basket of stocks all in like for whatever the cost of that one ETF. As you say, you pay $35 and you have, if it’s the S&P 500, you have the top 500 stocks are in your little basket. So you’re really spreading out your risk. And that’s what ETFs are. And I think that things have really changed. That used to be mutual funds. I remember even probably maybe like 18, 20 years ago when I first started investing, mutual funds were more the way to go. But it’s really changed in the last five or ten years. 

Kaci [00:25:44] Yeah, absolutely. You know, index funds and ETFs, they operate fairly similarly. But like you’re saying, ETFs and index funds, which are you know, there’s an S&P 500 index fund is like these are very low fee, like super low. And the thing that I always like that really surprised me that I always want to mention to people when we’re talking about the importance of these low fee ETF and index funds, is that 0.5% or 1% doesn’t sound like a lot, but it actually- if you solely invested in these actively managed mutual funds that had, you know, a 0.5% to a 1% expense ratio, which means they would take that much off of your money. It would over time end up being hundreds of thousands. It could be even more than that, just from tiny little percent, right? Yeah. So low fee. I think there’s been a lot more dialog and conversation about these really passive strategies like you’re talking about where they they are, they’re like baskets of, you know, if you have the S&P 500, it’s the 500 of the largest companies that you have little slices of every single one. And then if you get total stock market index funds or ETFs, they are thousands of companies. Right? They’re super fortified. And as companies perform poorly, like when they no longer are in that top 500 in the S&P 500, for example, then they get kicked off. Automatic. And then another one that’s performing better, it’s added

Linzy [00:27:34] So in a way, they’re kind of automatically managed because there’s a certain criteria for that particular, you know, stock the representation of a stock to be in in your basket. I love that using little metaphors because it makes it easier to visualize, it automatically will be taken out of your basket. And something else – the company that is now doing better – will get in instead. So it’s like that’s that’s where it’s, you know, once you find your original or your once you commit to your strategy of how you want to distribute things. That’s where you just like, leave it alone. Once you’ve got it set in place. 

Kaci [00:28:07] And that’s the beautiful thing, too, is that you don’t have to spend hours learning about how to analyze a single stock. You also are not putting all of your money into a single stock, and then it’s not really you don’t even have to really watch the financial news at all because let’s say Tesla is in the S&P 500. If you solely have Tesla stock, you’re going to want to be watching the news like glued to the screens. Sure. That you’re like you’re doing well. 

Linzy [00:28:36] Every time Elon Musk blinks, you’re going to be watching. 

Kaci [00:28:38] Oh, my gosh. Or tweets. It’s true. But having this more passive strategy, if Tesla falls off and it’s not on the S&P 500 anymore or what, fill in the blank for company. You’re you’re benefiting from this really passive strategy and you get to live your life. And I think what just surprised me so much and made this such a key factor for me was learning that it is the easiest way to do it and it is by far the most successful way to start. So to answer your original question, I totally agree with you that like, is there anything better than an ETF or S&P 500 strategy- or sorry or index fund – like this? Yeah, statistically, the answer is no, it’s absolutely not. 

Linzy [00:29:19] Yeah, yeah. Especially for people like us, where we’re not going to be watching it full time. We don’t have the, you know, an extra 100 K a year to pay somebody to like really watch our stuff and be on top of everything. It is the, the accessible, easy, reliable way to have your money growing for you because that’s the other piece. Like if folks are listening right now – and I know I felt this way before we started investing and my partner, especially when we got together, he was like very kind of like ethically tied in knots about the world and how terrible things are and you name it, right? The evils of capitalism and companies that exploit people and all of that is real. I’m just thinking about- I feel like part of what I have noticed in myself, as I’ve had to start investing, is also kind of like accepting that there are little slices of this in your money. But if you don’t put your money into the stock market, there’s no way to actually keep up with inflation. I’m curious about your thoughts about that kind of ethical practical conundrum. 

Kaci [00:30:17] You are asking, I think, such – again – such a really rich question, because I really think about this, too, from an existential perspective like, oh, gosh, I mean, if we’re thinking about like if we could just be completely creative and just create a system that works for us, I mean, I don’t even I don’t even know what exactly I think that either should look like or but but I really want to speak to the fact that I feel that same sense of, you know, knowing that there are evils, there are things about capitalism that are not good that I – like from a personal, ethical perspective – I don’t support. And so it’s like that both/and that I think you often really want to work with our clients on. And I think I live my life from that perspective too of like, okay, I could decide I’m going to sit this out completely, but then, you know, what might that mean? If I do that, that might mean that I have to work with such a high number of clients that I then become burned out and I (indiscernible) options and I’ve built resentment, not necessarily towards my client specifically, but like toward the way that I’m working. And that wouldn’t make me a good therapist. It would give me fewer options to put money in places that I actually want that money to go to. Whether it – like you’re talking about – it’s on a very personal level with your family or creating generational wealth or it’s, you know, donating to causes that you really care about. I do think that we we operate within this system. And I look at it from this perspective of I might want to change the rules completely, but I as an individual person, I don’t have the power to do that. What do I have the power to do? Right. Yeah, I learned these, these practices that, you know, allow me to then make more decisions in my life, like as a cis-gendered woman, you know who that has not been something that we’ve been allowed to do historically. Thinking about like from a western perspective. Right. 

Linzy [00:32:21] It’s pretty brand new. Yeah. Yeah. 

Kaci [00:32:24] Yeah. It is. And I just want to really speak to the fact that like, I agree with you, it’s very much and. And I mean, in a quote unquote like normal year, inflation is typically like 2 to 3%. And we’re seeing that this year. I mean, we know it’s been in the 9%, right. And so it’s sort of like winning the lottery or having some type of windfall or like something else, you know, really having some lucky streak of something happening. I don’t see another way other than being able to understand the rules and be able to bend the rules. And that frees me up to try to give the way that I absolutely like. 

Linzy [00:33:04] I love what you said about how it’s, you know, controlling what you can. Because we can’t just rewrite the system. And and I think there’s a real parallel here that I see with therapists when we struggle with, like, fees and accessibility and we take on these huge things that are systemic issues, but we take them onto our individual shoulders and we like, you know, try to create accessibility off of our family’s income. And we’re basically like subsidizing 50 other people’s lives, you know, off of our one life. And the individual cost of that ends up being so great. And the cost to like our kids and our their future and like, you know, the ripple effects that comes up from there. And so, yeah, it is. I appreciate you kind of, you know, being up for naming the fact that it is ethically troubling, but also that it’s not it’s not an all or nothing. It’s a both/and, right. Like you can have your money in a system that you don’t really believe in, but and let’s be real that we’re all participating in by like buying clothes and going to the grocery store and getting in our cars, driving gas vehicles. Right. Like we’re all- it makes me think about an acquaintance of mine years ago had this this phrase of like we’re all ethically fucked. It’s just a matter of degrees. 

Kaci [00:34:08] I love that. 

Linzy [00:34:09] So it’s like, you know, there’s this fantasy that we could somehow be just, like, totally extricated from these systems, but that’s not actually possible. But it’s like, right, so what can you do? And what I’m hearing from you is, you know, it’s it’s about these individual choices that we make, the way that we use money to, like, impact our communities, to to lift up our family members. That is where we have control and power. We don’t have control over the way that our economy works or over the stock market and who’s in it and who’s not. 

Kaci [00:34:37] I completely agree with you. And I do. I feel like that’s the place that I – you know, I think it’s always worth continuing to explore. I mean, to operate intentionally within this system that we have, there’s a conundrum, right? We have problems with. And and also, like, you know, one thing that I heard a colleague say one time about education that I think can also maybe be applicable here is like it’s okay to be passionate about something, but also equally critical of it. Right. And can be passionate about financial independence, for example, or autonomy and choice and equitable access to opportunities for for people who are not just white men. Like we can be passionate about that, but also critique. Like, there’s a lot of squishiness here. There’s a lot of gray area here, right? 

Linzy [00:35:26] Yeah, absolutely. And it doesn’t have to be kind of like pure in order for us to engage with it. Right. And do kind of the best that we can for ourselves and our families and our communities. So I feel like, you know, we could talk for another 4 hours, but we should start wrapping up. So for folks who are listening, maybe this is like, you know, the first time they thought about investments in a little while and where can they find you? Tell us about your offer. Tell us more about what you’re doing. 

Kaci [00:35:55] Absolutely. So I would say first and foremost, because I know a lot of therapists are on Facebook, I have started a Facebook group and it’s called Financial Self-care for Therapists. If you just Google that, you’ll find it. And I would love for people to join the group. We talk a lot about debt, saving, and investing, money mindset stuff, living really intentionally with money, so that’s a free offer. I just would love people to join if they feel so inclined. And I am also launching right now, I have my founding members launch of this membership that I have created just for therapists and of course, people who are not therapists, you know, teachers and all the adjacent fields are welcome to join as well. There will just be more therapists in the group than not. I’m launching a membership that will start in November and we will talk about, you know, there will be lessons regarding all the areas I just covered: debt, saving, and investing, really specifically focused on financial independence like we talked about, and living really intentionally with money. There will be lessons, there will be money accountability dates where we can work on goals together, and also office hours to ask questions about saving and investing. That membership starts soon so they can hop over to investedtherapist.co/membership and learn about it. And by the time this goes live, they’re welcome to join. And I’d love to meet anybody who’s interested. Join us. 

Linzy [00:37:25] That’s November 2022. So if you’re listening and that date is in the past. You can go to see that website again, Kaci. 

Kaci [00:37:33] Yeah it’s investedtherapist.co/membership and they can also go to investedtherapist.co/calculator. I’ve created a free investing calculator that will show you just like those calculators I talked about earlier that really got me so interested in this. You can plug in your information and it will show you based on the percentage returns that you you plug into the calculator, what you can expect to have in retirement. So they’re welcome to check that out. Check out the membership. 

Linzy [00:38:04] Nice. I’m very excited for what you’re doing. And I hope folks check out your Facebook group and check out your membership site and something that I see that you offer that I resonate with because I think it’s so valuable and it’s the space that I also occupy is just emotionally intelligent conversations about money. I think that so often there’s like folks who are really good at money, often like lack the emotional intelligence or relational intelligence or the ability to talk about money in a way that makes sense to people who are not super into money and geeky about money all the time. And I love that you’re like occupying this this space in this emotionally intelligent kind of teaching kind of way, which is also how I like to be in this space. I’m just so excited for the therapists who are going to have access to you. 

Kaci [00:38:46] Thank you so much. I really appreciate you saying that Linzy and I just am so- I love that you are in this space as well because I know what you have to offer people is so incredibly valuable and just so appreciate your time here today and collaborating with you. 

Linzy [00:38:59] Yeah. Thank you so much for being on the podcast. 

Kaci [00:39:01] Absolutely. Thank you. 

Linzy [00:39:15] In my conversation with Kaci, something that stuck out to me was how she started out as a teacher, which is also where I started out my aspirations. When I went to university, my plan was to be a teacher and I was talked out of it. But I’ve often reflected about how I’ve kind of ended up being a teacher anyways via therapy. And you can really feel that Kaci has the heart of a teacher wanting to teach therapists and help them understand the world of investing. That can be difficult and daunting and hard to understand when you’re outside of it and don’t understand the language. So definitely check out Kaci’s offer or The Invested Therapist. We’ve got the links for her in the show notes. So if you’re at all interested, you can join her free Facebook group or join her membership site and start getting support if you feel like you’ve been stuck with investments, I think having somebody who actually understands feelings and knows how to talk about the world of investing with emotional intelligence and relational intelligence is so valuable. So check her out. If you’ve enjoyed the podcast, you can follow me on Instagram. We’re posting free, practical and emotional money content on there all the time, and please head over to Apple Podcasts to leave me a review. It is the best way for folks to find out about the podcast, to listen to the podcast, and just your feedback also means so much to me. Thanks for listening today. 

Hi, I'm Linzy

Hi, I'm Linzy

I’m a therapist in private practice, and a the creator of Money Skills for Therapists. I help therapists and health practitioners in private practice feel calm and in control of their finances.

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Overcoming Our Money Stories with Catherine Quiring

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“Getting through your program helped me get through money feeling overwhelming to ‘I can do this.’ That enabled me to get through the battle with insurance companies, and changing my EIN, and getting off of some insurance companies and dropping clients out of the blue. I was able to feel like, ‘I don’t have to feel overwhelmed by this. I can do this. That experience [gained] through your program is what enabled me to do that in other settings, too, which has been really huge.”

~Catherine Quiring

Meet Catherine Quiring

Catherine is a Mental Health Counselor with a private practice in Pensacola, FL. She specializes in helping people come home to themselves, trust themselves, and live fulfilling lives. Catherine has 2 little kids and a wonderful husband. She loves paddleboarding, kayaking, and doing Zumba in her spare time.

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For more from Catherine, or to learn about her new coaching program “Helping Exvangelicals Learn to Trust Their Desires and Reconnect to their Inner Wisdom,” check out her website: cqcounseling.com

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Free workshop: Setting Enough Aside for Taxes (in 5 Easy Steps) 

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Episode Transcript

Catherine [00:00:01] Getting through your program helped me get through money feeling overwhelming to like I can do this. That enabled me to get through the battle with insurance companies and changing my EIN and getting off some external companies. And I’m just like dropping clients out of the blue. And I was able to feel like I don’t have to feel overwhelmed by this. I can do this. That experience, and experiencing that through your program, is what helped me be able to do that in other settings too, which has been really, really huge. 


Linzy [00:00:28] Welcome to the Money Skills For Therapists podcast, where we answer this question How can therapists and health practitioners go from money shame and confusion, to feeling calm and confident about their finances and get money really working for them in both their private practice and their lives? I’m your host, Linzy Bonham, therapist turned money coach and creator of the Course Money Skills For Therapists. Hello and welcome back to the Money Skills For Therapists podcast. So today’s podcast episode in all transparency was supposed to be a coaching episode, but when graduate Catherine Quiring came on and we started talking about where she’s at and kind of her next steps and the things that she wants to dig into, it quickly shifted it into a conversation about her transformation and what has happened with her about money that has enabled her to get to where she is now. So today’s podcast is actually a Money Stories interview with therapist Catherine Quiring. Catherine is a mental health counselor in Pensacola, Florida. She specializes in helping people come home to themselves, trust themselves, and live fulfilling lives. And that is very much what we start to talk about today and what I got from Catherine as we were interviewing her about her experience with going from feeling really tight and guilty and scarce around money to where she is now of feeling grounded and starting to expand. She talks about how doing her money work allowed her to make more in her practice, expand the time that she has with her kids and the time that she has for herself, and now has actually created the grounding for her to expand beyond therapy into coaching exvangelical to come home to themselves, as she has. It’s a very rich conversation exploring what money means for us emotionally as therapists and the way that we show up in the room, but also as people in our lives and what doing our work around money starts to open up in terms of possibilities about who we are and what is possible for us. Here is my interview with Catherine Quiring. Catherine, welcome to the podcast. 


Catherine [00:02:53] Hi, Linzy. Nice to be here. 


Linzy [00:02:55] So, Catherine, you are a grad of Money Skills For Therapists and you did the program. How long ago now did we work together. 


Catherine [00:03:02] I don’t even remember. The days roll together. I have little kids.


Linzy [00:03:06] I get it. I get it. 


Catherine [00:03:07] Two years ago? A year and a half ago? 


Linzy [00:03:08] I’d say two years ago, I think it was like January. It’s like a year and a half. 


Catherine [00:03:11] It was ’21, right? January 2021. 


Linzy [00:03:14] I remember. Yeah. Okay. So we worked together back at that time and I’m curious, before we did that work together, what were kind of the stories that you were carrying about money? What did you believe about money going back to January 2021? 


Catherine [00:03:28] I definitely thought it was something you shouldn’t talk about. The whole weird place to feel guilty if you have too much. But also don’t be in a place of scarcity because that’s really painful and hard. So you’re kind of bouncing back in like in the middle. And how do you achieve that and how do you find enough space for yourself to exist? So, I mean, in my career I was in social service, right? I was in like really low paying jobs, extremely low paying jobs, really high pressure, lots of hours. And I loved it. And I was able to do a lot at that point but I was able to do that right out of college because my parents had saved money for my college education. So I didn’t have to have the loan, right? So I was able to be like, It’s okay if I only make a little bit of money in a year and I’m going to be okay. So that helped me. My parents have done a good job of saving money and prioritized education. I don’t know that we talked about money a whole lot growing up other than getting an allowance and saving money and that kind of thing. And I tended to be a hoarder. So as far as like I like I remember I would save all my stickers or save all my Halloween candy and I wouldn’t eat it because then it was going to be gone. So yes, but all of my like everything else was provided for. And it was so hard when I went when I was out of college. And I think mostly when I went back to grad school because I didn’t have like an even well-paying job. Right. You’re like it was not much at all during grad school and like working at Starbucks for like a few hours a week. And I had all sorts of health complications at that point, like 15 years of like trying to figure out what was going on. And so there was just a lot of desperation and scarcity feeling then. Like I knew I had a safety net. Like my parents were like, you know, if something bad happened, I had a safety net. And I’ve always felt that way. And honestly, I think that’s part of what’s enabled me to like launch into new things because I’ve always felt like it’s okay, I have a safety net. 


Linzy [00:05:27] Totally. I mean, that that privilege is huge. 


Catherine [00:05:30] Yes. Yes, it is huge. Yes. Right. Because I’ve always felt like I have a sense I have a safety net. If something doesn’t work, it’s okay, even though there’s a lot of stress around it. But yeah, I was definitely in this place of I don’t want to make too much, like you can’t be those people, right? And but like, I can’t just keep scraping by. I mean, things changed for me as careerwise when I had kids because I had just come out of an agency that I didn’t like working with and we were moving and it was just like, okay, it’s time for a change. And I was so like, I was on board, like I’m doing private practice. This is great. My husband was like concerned because he was the primary breadwinner and it took a while to build it up. Right? So that was a lot to ask of him. And he’s been really grateful now because my private practice is doing really, really well. But yeah, I because I’m a therapist, I love working through money stories. That’s a lot easier than working through the actual, like, nitty gritty of finances. That’s a lot more fun. 


Linzy [00:06:26] Yeah, right. 


Catherine [00:06:29] You know, I’m like Ben Stein on Tiffany McLain’s podcast. Right? So like all of the the money stories, the money mindset kind of stuff and just eat that up. And that’s the first thing that got me thinking about my rates. Because I started out just doing the thing most people do and like what is everybody here charging? 


Linzy [00:06:46] Yeah, look around. 


Catherine [00:06:47] Okay, that’s going to charge. And so I set it at 100 to start and then everybody tried to talk me down like would always want sliding scale. And when I changed it, from listening to Tiffany’s podcast, to 125, nobody tried to talk me down anymore. 


Linzy [00:07:00] Interesting. 


Catherine [00:07:01] That’s good! Great. 


Linzy [00:07:03] So you crossed a line out of, like the bargain hunters kind of like. 


Catherine [00:07:07] I did. Right? Exactly. 


Linzy [00:07:08] Yeah, that’s interesting. 


Catherine [00:07:09] Part of that may have also been because I was renting space from a nonprofit, right. So that the people who were already like around that space that I was renting would have needed lower income support. So I mean that complicated that. But yes, it made a big difference. There was something about that 125. And so like I think psychologically the way that money comes across to people is really important, right? And like, it just felt like that was such a big difference, even though it was only a minor difference for me pay wise at that point because I was still building. Yeah, it was such a huge difference. Me being an expert, that’s worth that money, right? 


Linzy [00:07:45] So I’m hearing like with that mindset, like you binged Tiffany McLain’s The Money Sessions, which – recommend we we love – so I’m hearing that helped with mindset shift but there was still this like actual you mentioned like the actual financial, right. Gritty financial. 


Catherine [00:08:02] Yes. 


Linzy [00:08:03] What was happening with those at that time when you had like already raised your fee? What was happening with your actual financial systems or management? 


Catherine [00:08:10] So I feel like across the board in my life, that was not as great as I had been in the past, once I had a child. 


Linzy [00:08:17] Oh, yes. 


Catherine [00:08:18] Yeah. So I started my practice four or five months before my first child because we just moved. So like, I mean, there was really nothing else I could do about that, but it gave me time to like really be able to research and start my practice even though I wasn’t making much that year. And so where I used to record everything I would buy personally as well, that kind of went out the window because there wasn’t time. You just, you’re in and out. It isn’t like put a note on your phone about what you paid. And because our finances were different with my husband, he is a money guru and- or like he just loves accounting and planning and spreadsheets and like figuring out like the best combination of things with accounts and and so it gets really overwhelming to me. So I had this kind of combination of those things happening where before, like I knew how to keep track of it for me, just for myself and without like the complication of like pressure on my time with a child or a baby at that point. So I didn’t have enough knowledge of that. I started out with a ledger, right? I started with a spreadsheet, just a ledger, of my clients. And then I ended up going to like an EHR and using simple practice and that helped me and that was like a learning curve. I don’t understand how you’re putting the numbers in here. You know, I figured that out. So it’s all been a huge learning curve. And then once it was like, okay, I’m full, but this is still not working for me at my current rate or with how much I’m working. You know, I had some miscarriages in there, that was COVID and quarantine, and then also being exhausted being pregnant. And so like there were just so many things. It was like lifestyle just kept having to change. Like, I just kept having to update things based on what I needed so that I could have a pretty good life, so that I could be present for my kids. I could have some energy. I can be present for my clients. That was one of the biggest things I got out of Tiffany’s mindset stuff was that I’m going to be a better therapist if I’m paid well and if I am present and if I really want to be there and my time is valued. And I felt like really valued in my first job working at a residential center, even though I didn’t make very much, I felt very valued. And then I was at an agency for not very long before we moved, and I didn’t feel valued. I just felt like this is all about like how much money you can make. And I was doing like 38 clients a week and it was awful. I hated it. 


Linzy [00:10:42] Inconceivable. I don’t understand how that works. 


Catherine [00:10:45] It was awful. So I was just in a daze. Like, there are a few clients I really felt like I connected with. I’m sure I help people, but, like, I just was, like, constantly in a daze, like, just trying to survive. I do not want that anymore. And so that’s why I decided to do private practice. And any time I start feeling like it’s too much, like I know what that feels like inside. And then I’m like, okay, something has to shift. Schedule, how much I’m charging, what insurances I’m taking, and how much they pay. So I’ve been like progressively just like shedding insurances and raising my rate, working fewer hours. Like I worked a lot more when I had my first child than I do now with two kids. Like, I take Mondays off because I know the weekends are really busy. And so like Mondays are my day to just- I need to rest and it cannot be appointment days, it cannot be take care of all the little things, it has to be Catherine rest time and like that is so huge and really protecting that or fun time. It really seems to be more fun time. So I go paddleboarding and kayaking and go to Zumba and stuff like that. And then Tuesday through Friday, at this point, I work 10 to 4/4:30. So I have time with my kids in the morning and then I can hopefully exercise or cook dinner or something in the evening. That’s shifting because my daughter is going to have to go to school earlier pretty soon. So we’re moving things around for that and I’m taking a day off to work on uplevelling now because I’m doing Maegan Megginson’s Spotlight program starting next week. So that’s shifting things too. But that’s been made possible because of these changes. Like I made the biggest change in your program when I went from charging 125 to 175, because I did the Salary Play Sheet and I was like, 150 doesn’t cut it. Like there is no dent in any of the numbers if I do 150. Like the numbers are so important and having a way to look at them that wasn’t just overwhelming of like, I’m just trying to plug in this and that and like I was trying to do that all the time with spreadsheets before that and just overwhelming because I didn’t have the right tools to do it. So like you gave me the tools and the confidence and like the way to work through that. So I have good systems. 


Linzy [00:12:50] And what I love with that is, is hearing, Catherine, how like you I mean, it sounds like intuitively you were already shifting things probably before you took Money Skills. Is that fair to say? 


Catherine [00:12:59] Yes, right. 


Linzy [00:13:00] But now you also have like this clarity and information to make like really informed shifts. 


Catherine [00:13:05] I had the numbers then, right? Like before it was just mindset shift. Just what feels right. Not like I also then had the numbers. Yeah. 


Linzy [00:13:14] And what I love about that is I think so often – I see some of this in myself sometimes and I certainly see it in folks around me too – is sometimes I think we feel like we have to do it now, you know, like it has to happen now. Like I have to make my money now. But when you have like little kids at home, that’s like such a specific chapter of life. And I’m really starting to come to think about money and work and our time in terms of chapters, right? Like different things will make sense in different chapters. When you have a newborn at home, different things make sense that when that kid needs to be at school at a certain time, that’s a shift that happens, which is going to be different when they’re actually all in like public school, and then maybe they actually get out earlier than they did before. Like our schedules need to shift, you know, depending on kind of the roles that we want to play as parents. Right. But also our fees might need to shift to keep the money working within those schedule changes. Or as things become more expensive because our kids are doing X, Y, Z, that suddenly adds like, you know, in my family, my son’s preschool is 1300 dollars a month. Like, that’s significant. That’s real. I used to live on, 1300 dollars a month when I was in my twenties. Right. So, like, that’s that’s very real and that’s like a certain chapter. And at some point that chapter ends and then maybe the 1300 will be called somewhere else, or maybe that will go back into our retirement fund. But really like being attuned and something that I think is so powerful. And what you’re saying is it sounds like you’re you’ve been attuned and true to yourself in actually like building your practice and your schedule to suit your needs rather than trying to wrap your life around a practice with a rigid schedule. 


Catherine [00:14:43] Right. And you’re asking me some of the ways that the mindset shifts have impacted me. So I was just thinking about even like, I’m able to listen to my desires, not just my overwhelm, right? Not just like, Oh, no, I’m overwhelmed, I need to change something, but I can listen to my desires about my business, right? Just like I’m teaching my clients to be able to like they can listen to their desires.  


Linzy [00:15:06] Isn’t it nice to practice what we preach? 


Catherine [00:15:08] So great. Feels good. And then you’re like, I just want to share it. I want to share it with everybody. 


Linzy [00:15:14] So, Catherine, what do you want to get more clarity on in our conversation today? 


Catherine [00:15:18] Well, I feel like I got so much out of the Money Skills For Therapists program and now I’m kind of- that’s enabled me to move to the next level of my business. So I’m starting a coaching program next week and will be upleveling my business and adding coaching and programs and stuff. So that will be a whole new thing to do. Yeah. Lots more to consider there. 


Linzy [00:15:41] So it sounds like you’ve built out kind of your foundation and now you’re able to, like, expand from it. 


Catherine [00:15:46] Right. 


Linzy [00:15:47] Okay. So tell me about what’s coming. What are some of the things you anticipate that’ll be helpful for us to think about together? 


Catherine [00:15:52] So one thing is I just incorporated to be an SCorp by the end of last year, and it was a nightmare updating EINs and everything. So I’m like, Well, at least I won’t have to do that for insurance panels now. So it should be easier for a coach. Like it should be way easier. That’s something else. We don’t know – this is the first year that we’ve had the taxes from that – like how much of a tax advantage that is or how much I need to be making there for that to be a tax advantage. And I’m not sure if I end up scaling that back a little bit, how that might affect that decision or if there’s a way to change that designation or if there’s any point that I need to think about that or kind of how to keep tabs on that is something I’ll need to be. 


Linzy [00:16:37] Yes. Because you’re therapy practice is now an SCorp, but you maybe you’ll be scaling back that work in order to start the coaching work. 


Catherine [00:16:44] Right. And right now it’s only by a few clients, but, yeah, I don’t know if that will change more in the future. 


Linzy [00:16:52] Yeah. And do you know, kind of what container like what kind of corporate structure you’re thinking of for your coaching business?


Catherine [00:16:58] I was assuming I would need to start with just LLC sole prop and then move into S Corp if it’s- when and if it’s taking enough to do that. 


Linzy [00:17:06] So you’ll be running that one as a sole prop with an LLC. Okay. So- and for Canadians listening, I should say that means that there’s like some legal protection as an entity, but you still get taxed as an individual person. It sounds like there there is like some math there that could be interesting. As you’re anticipating, what is your ultimate vision with the coaching? Like, do you envision yourself being a therapist and a coach at the same time? 


Catherine [00:17:27] At this point? Yes. I don’t know if at some point I will decide I like that so much more and it’s hard to do both. But at this point I love my one on one clients and doing that work. So I’m going to try to hang on to that if I can. And at this point I’m just going to try to split it and then we’ll see kind of once I get into coaching stuff, how that goes.  


Linzy [00:17:46] Okay. Yeah. So right now, for the foreseeable future, you’re going to keep being a therapist. 


Catherine [00:17:49] Right. And like we had talked about in Money Skills For Therapists, my goal is to be the main breadwinner for our house. So this is part- I mean, I wanted to do this anyway just because I want to do it, you know, I’m ready for the next thing. I want to reach more people. But it will also I’m keeping that in mind that I do need to be mindful of that. 


Linzy [00:18:10] Yeah. 


Catherine [00:18:10] You know, how much money I’m making there. 


Linzy [00:18:12] This is not just like a fun little side thing for you, like, this is the money that supports your family. Okay. So thinking about your next steps with the coaching then, in terms of finances, like I’m hearing there’s this question about like the S corp and will that be an issue? So that’s one where I’m actually going to suggest that you keep in communication with your accountant about that, right. To say like there are certain lines where if I cross them – like in this way you might be crossing them going down instead of up – is there a certain point where I need to think about changing anything? Can I even change anything? Because S Corp gives you a tax advantage. S Corp is a certain type of incorporation, for Canadians. It’s like us incorporating in Canada and it gives you a tax advantage. But it also like does it cost money to maintain? I’m actually not even sure about that. Or does it just cost money to set up? 


Catherine [00:18:53] It does. 


Linzy [00:18:54] Okay. 


Catherine [00:18:55] Yes. 


Linzy [00:18:56] So it’ll be weighing out. 


Catherine [00:18:57] Just a little bit. And it’s more just because it’s more work to send in your paperwork for. 


Linzy [00:19:01] Yes, and I know, for me, too. Like being a corporation now, I pay more to my accountant for taxes. It’s like everything’s a little more when you have a certain structure. Okay, so that’s something to just, like, keep an eye on. But it also sounds like that’s a future problem. Like it’s not like you’re planning to halve your therapy income next week, so you’re kind of scaling one down a little so you can scale the other one up. 


Catherine [00:19:20] Right. 


Linzy [00:19:20] What about on the coaching side of the building up? What are you noticing are some like financial questions or challenges systems pieces with that? 


Catherine [00:19:27] Oh, I have not even gotten there enough. I mean, they’ll be there. How much do I charge and how much time am I putting into it for value. You’re right. Like, how much time- my time do I have to put into how frequently I’m touching base with everyone in the program. And what that looks like and everything. So that’ll be partly a financial and time calculation. 


Linzy [00:19:49] Yeah. And that’s always an interesting thing when you’re building something new. Right. And especially in your case, do you have clarity on like how much you do need to be earning per month for supporting your family? 


Catherine [00:20:00] Not enough. And that’s something that is better partially from going through Money Skills For Therapists is that I have less shame and I have more clarity about money so that I’m able to collaborate with my husband better, but he enjoys the money. So it’s so much more that he is the keeper of our finances and he loves it so much that he makes it unnecessarily complicated. And in my view, it’s too complicated for me. And so that’s where the collaboration comes up. Like if I have enough understanding of what I’m doing. So, like I ended up going to use the spreadsheet or I tried using YNAB at the beginning and then I was like, the spreadsheet is going to work much better for me and that is so much better. And then I can just keep track of what’s in front of me for my business, and he can keep track of where that goes for our family after.  


Linzy [00:20:43] Okay. So that’s kind of how you’ve divided. 


Catherine [00:20:45] And then he tells me about it. We have meetings about it, but. 


Linzy [00:20:47] Yeah, yeah. Okay. You do have meetings. 


Catherine [00:20:49] Exactly. 


Linzy [00:20:50] You’ve divided that financial labor, because that’s, I think something to think about as you start to step into coaching. And this is like that transitional piece of what is kind of your safe number that you need to be earning for home. 


Catherine [00:20:58] Right. 


Linzy [00:20:58] That’s also going to give you the foundation to not have financial stress. So you can like be creative over here. It sounds like right now your husband probably has those numbers in his head and in his beautiful, complicated spreadsheets. Maybe they’re not beautiful. Complicated? 


Catherine [00:21:11] No, they’re beautiful. Color coded and like like lovely and big and. Yes, they’re beautiful spreadsheets. 


Linzy [00:21:20] Yeah. Okay. Okay. Because that that piece, there’s a number there and there’s also an emotional piece of like what that needs to be for you to be okay. And I guess that’s a question kind of thinking about making this step. Do you feel like there’s enough money at home? Is there wiggle like emotionally? Do you have a sense of what’s happening with your money at home? 


Catherine [00:21:39] There is enough money at home. It’s been a little bit deflating that inflation has happened at the same time. I’m making more so like it’s nice because I don’t feel as pressured because I am making more. But I don’t feel like I have as much wiggle room as I was hoping because of that. Right? Because everything’s just more expensive. 


Linzy [00:21:57] Totally. So you’re earning more, but everything costs more, right? 


Catherine [00:21:59] Exactly. But I am still making 2 to $3000 more a month than I was before. 


Linzy [00:22:04] Wow. 


Catherine [00:22:05] So, yeah,. 


Linzy [00:22:06] That’s a big difference. 


Catherine [00:22:06] It is a big difference. 


Linzy [00:22:07] It is a big difference. Okay. So thinking about then maybe the financial piece of coaching and expanding, do you have a sense of what you want to be regaining by starting to move in, into coaching, away from therapy? Are you trying to earn back time? Is it about expanding your impact? Like, tell me what’s making you drawn to to expanding beyond therapy. 


Catherine [00:22:28] Mostly expanding my impact. There are, I don’t know, messages or things that I want to get out there very close to my heart that I really feel so limited sometimes that like, with that part of it, it being just one by one hour by one person, you know, and that there’s more that I would like to be able to share and impact. So that is most of the impetus for that. 


Linzy [00:22:49] Okay. Yeah, it’s about your reach, which I love, because I feel like that is a very creative place to come into expansion. Right. Rather than like I need to make more, which can be- I need to make more can be very motivating, but it can also be stressful. Right. This seems more like an opening for you. 


Catherine [00:23:04] Yes. And I think I will appreciate the extra time that I have in my day to put into that, because that does give me more space to just be and have creative space that not just interactive all the time. So there will be more space, which is nice.  


Linzy [00:23:18] Okay, so, that sounds like that’s part of the equation too, which, which you already kind of outlined before, but it’s like I’m starting to like work with groups or have a program so that it’s not just- it’s less of your individual time, more like a group impact. 


Catherine [00:23:30] Right. 


Linzy [00:23:30] Yeah. And I am curious, since we’re on the topic, what is your topic that’s close to your heart? Because I feel like for therapist listening, I’m sure lots of people have their topic that they love. What is yours that you’re going to be expanding into coaching? 


Catherine [00:23:40] So the big picture is just coming home to yourself. My- when I’m planning for my coaching program is specifically for exvangelicals to be able to trust their desires. 


Linzy [00:23:50] Oh that’s cool. 


Catherine [00:23:54] Yeah. Yeah. But my overall counseling practice has been like helping people pleasers and victims of relational abuse to be able to come home to themselves. And then this is my like, for now, specific niche for my coaching program. 


Linzy [00:24:08] So I’m curious like what has lined up to allow you to now step into making this program, doing this work? 


Catherine [00:24:15] So your program is one of the big things, the Salary Play Sheet that you have for understanding, like what happens with how much you want to make and what your current rates are, what your rates need to be, and how many. You need to work on what your expenses are, all of that kind of figured in together. That’s what led me to raise my rate by $50. So I went from 125 to 175 and that was a big deal and it took some processing. And I have also recently just started only taking new self-pay clients. So I’m working my way- I got off of most insurance panels. I still have some through headway, but just to keep current clients that I really wanted to be able to keep. But any new clients have been self-pay. Only doing that then has allowed me to make more than I was even anticipating when I was going through the program and how much I wanted to make so that I can have space and be making enough to be able to start something new and have enough time for that. 


Linzy [00:25:08] Right? So it’s given you like the spaciousness to build something different, right? I like that so much. 


Catherine [00:25:15] Yeah, yeah, yeah. I have two kids. They’re young, they’re toddlers. And so, yes, I feel like my work environment needs to be restful and it needs to be really manageable so that I can be really present with them too. There isn’t go home and relax and just process stuff that’s going to come during work time. So that’s been a lot of the motivation too, of like how to make this work for me and my family. Yeah. 


Linzy [00:25:39] Yeah. Because that time is very precious, right? That’s something that I think about a lot lately because I have a son just a little older than yours I think. My son is three. These are very precious years that you don’t get back. I mean, we never get any time back, of course, but especially like your children’s. 


Catherine [00:25:53] When they really really want to be around you. 


Linzy [00:25:55] Yeah, like childhood is short. Right? Right. And something that I heard recently that really struck a chord with me is you might be living your normal adult life, but for your children, this is their only childhood, this is the only one they get. And that really, really struck home with me, just like thinking about that, like, childhood is short and it’s so it shapes us so profoundly, right? And so as parents, we have this opportunity to really make space for that. Yeah. 


Catherine [00:26:21] Yeah. I mostly just wanted to say, like, how impactful your program was to make all these changes and get me to the next place. Like even just getting through your program helped me get through money feeling overwhelming, to like, I can do this. And that enabled me to get through the battle with insurance companies and changing my EIN and getting off some insurance companies and then just like dropping clients out of the blue. And I was just a whole big nightmare. I was able to feel like I don’t have to feel overwhelmed by this. I can do this. That experience of experiencing that through your program is what helped me be able to do that in other settings too, which has been really, really huge.  


Linzy [00:26:59] To reflect kind of what I’ve seen of your growth from, you know, the outside, is like I remember you thought for a long time before joining Money Skill, like we were in touch like a couple of times. 


Catherine [00:27:10] Right. Like a whole year! 


Linzy [00:27:13] Yeah 


Catherine [00:27:13] Covid had just hit when I wanted to join. It I was like, I have a little one, I’m pregnant, and it’s covid. There’s no way I can do this right now. But I wanted support. 


Linzy [00:27:24] Yeah. And so you kind of touched base a couple times and then you, you joined the program and I’m curious like, having done this work, like I’m hearing it’s opened up the space for you to expand. It’s sounds like it’s increased confidence, your ability, and like maybe resilience. Stick-with-it-ness. To get through these really hard things like insurance that can be so such a headache and so discouraging. 


Catherine [00:27:45] Yes, right. I got to the point of doing my finances is just like putting in my notes. It just feels like a regular part of my day. And there’s still parts of that that I want to add into, like those key indicators that you talked about with another guest, you know, some other things that I’d like to expand and more collaborative meetings with my husband so like we’re really on the same page, but there’s so much more space there and there’s the opportunity to add those things in. Yeah. Like, I feel like I have a good foundation. 


Linzy [00:28:09] Absolutely. But I’m curious, like having done this work and having built these skills, how do you see yourself differently as a business owner and and as a person. 


Catherine [00:28:18] I feel much more capable instead of before, I think I was leading with a part of me that just thought like, this is the only way to do it. And feeling really overwhelmed and stuck to like, No, I can be calm and capable and just think through this. I don’t have to be overwhelmed by it. I can figure this out, even if it’s really hard and it takes a long time and these people are obstructionist and like, I can still do this. Yes. 


Linzy [00:28:43] That capability, like the image that I’m getting, we said, is like now you’re like solid. You’re solid in yourself. And now you’re able to use the solidness to like expand. Like it’s almost like a tree, you know, like growing out of the ground. I’m curious, what has changed in your life, even maybe things that are like we’re like a little bumpy or difficult. What’s changed around you by you making these changes and doing this work on yourself so much? 


Catherine [00:29:06] But I don’t know necessarily what tangibly. I mean, just little things also from my therapy work of just being able to show up more and be myself and be able to share that with the world. So that’s like my nose ring that I got after all these years and years, I was like I’m going to get it. 


Linzy [00:29:24] Yeah. Love it! 


Catherine [00:29:25] And I did get some of the responses that I was like worried about but that was okay because I wanted it, right? 


Linzy [00:29:32] Yes. 


Catherine [00:29:33] And I had a- one of my best therapist friends told me a few months ago just that she could see the changes in me, which was really encouraging, just the difference in just my whole being. So part of it is like I’m also this this journey of coming home to myself more and more, right? And just even this past week, I had this sense of like, okay, I am, I’ve really like put online and connected my brain, my heart, my voice, my gut and my inner wisdom. And that is part of that feeling solid, right? And feeling like, okay, I have what I need and I can figure it out and I can handle whatever is in front of me, which is really amazing. 


Linzy [00:30:13] Yeah. And I feel that difference in you too, just in the way that you hold yourself. And I do remember you saying very specifically at the point, because in your case, like, what part of what you identified, like you said, is you needed to raise your fee, right, which not everybody does identify that. But in your case, that was part of your picture. And I do remember you talking about how when you did raise your fee and started showing up to those sessions at that higher fee, like how much more confident you were and like clinically present by charging more money. And I’m curious if you could speak any more to that experience of like what it feels like to charge- for you, what it felt like to go from 125 to 175? 


Catherine [00:30:51] Yeah. I mean, I remember at the time I just felt like as a buyer, like, I’m doing this! Great. Like I think even now just to be kind of normal at this point. But also there’s a lot of I’m a very cut to the chase person and I’m just much more like, this is what’s essential. I am going to see this type of client that really fits me and I can really help and like I am happy to charge that much because we are doing amazing work, right? Like even in a few sessions people will be like, You changed my life and I’m like, I hardly did anything. But they already, you know, it’s just that synergy and that amazing like therapy magic, right? That comes out and it’s just really incredible. So yeah, there’s a lot more satisfaction there and fulfillment and confidence, right. And that if this isn’t working, it’s not necessarily something I’m doing, it’s not a good match. And that’s okay to say that. And it’s okay to stick to what I need and make that space for myself. 


Linzy [00:31:45] Yeah. Yeah. That’s interesting that it’s kind of stopped you from personalizing when therapy doesn’t work, because it sounds like you really know now because you’re charging a higher fee, you know who you serve, like you’ve got clarity around who you serve and also the impact like changing somebody’s life in a couple of sessions for like, what would that be like $350, $525? Your life is changed. That’s a good deal. 


Catherine [00:32:05] Right? That’s a very good deal. It is a good deal. 


Linzy [00:32:08] And so that’s that’s interesting to hear because before, it makes me curious, where are you personalizing more and where are you kind of seeing folks who weren’t a fit or weren’t really in your niche? 


Catherine [00:32:15] I was a little bit. I don’t- I think I was still honing my niche. Right. And then once I knew what that was or what that felt like, and then it’s like, okay, Maegan’s one of the people that is giving me permission to be myself in sessions and I’m doing that more and really that like that relationship with me in the client is so important and it’s okay for that to be important to how it feels to me as well. To talk to the client and be better for the client. Feels good to me too. Instead of I’m just enduring this. Like I’m just here to support them, this blank slate thing, right? That is part of like, I’m moving away from that for myself and I’m moving away from that for clients. It makes a big difference. 


Linzy [00:32:54] Yeah. And that’s Maegan Megginson you’re referring to, I should say, for folks listening, who is a business coach and one of my business besties, who’s brilliant and encourages us to show up as ourselves. 


Catherine [00:33:04] It’s her her program I’m about to start. 


Linzy [00:33:06] Yes, yes. So by showing up as who you are, it sounds like that. I mean, that also sounds like it connects right back to your coaching that can be offering like coming home to yourself, like letting yourself be yourself, nose ring and all. Yeah. 


Catherine [00:33:19] You know, and that’s taking a lot of courage even to say, like, I can offer something for exvangelicals in a very evangelical place. There’s a lot of people that I love that are still in that culture and I don’t want to offend them. But at the same time, I need to be able to hold that space and say, like, this is how it’s impacting me and this is impacted others and I need that space to help them heal. 


Linzy [00:33:40] Yeah, right. So it sounds like you are also having to kind of maybe be a bit countercultural or go against the grain a bit doing what you’re doing, where you’re doing it when you’re living in Florida. Is that correct? 


Catherine [00:33:49] Yeah, northwest Florida, southern Alabama. 


Linzy [00:33:53] Yes. So, which I think when we’re in those situations as well, we need to be even more in ourselves. Right. Like to have that solidity because people might not always like what you do, right? Our family members or friends might not always be that enthusiastic or supportive. Yeah. So with this work that you’ve done on yourself, like the money work and, you know, showing up with yourself as yourself more as a therapist. And I’m assuming that coming home to yourself also expands to your life. I’m curious, Catherine, like what feels possible or is possible for you now? That wasn’t before you did this work on yourself. 


Catherine [00:34:25] Expanding into coaching for sure, and having a practice I really love and really works for me. Yeah, the thing I’m still trying to figure out is like my schedule is not currently working for me, but that will be sorted out. 


Linzy [00:34:38] That’s fixable. 


Catherine [00:34:39] Yes. But other than that, like, I have the power to make it work for me however I need it to work for me. 


Linzy [00:34:45] So, yeah. And what do you think might happen in your life because of this? Where do you see yourself going? 


Catherine [00:34:50] Who knows? The sky’s the limit. 


Linzy [00:34:54] I love that. Is that your final answer? It’s like just sky’s the limit. It could be anything. 


Catherine [00:35:02] Yeah. 


Linzy [00:35:03] It sounds like you’re you’re kind of stepping into this because something that I noticed, I mean, I guess part of my reason for asking that question is I think sometimes when we are small, like when we keep ourselves small, when we don’t want to offend, when we’re tight around money, I think that really connects to that smallness and centricity and not trusting ourselves. Our futures can also feel small, right? Because it’s like, this is it, this is what I know. And like what I’m hearing is for you at this point, with this work that you’ve done, anything could happen. 


Catherine [00:35:29] Right. I still have to be able to step into expert status and still working on that. But I definitely don’t feel any imposter syndrome. I don’t feel any like sense of that. I am just following the next step. 


Linzy [00:35:43] So, Catherine, for folks who are listening, who might be relating to you and who are thinking about taking maybe their first step of starting to work on their money, maybe joining Money Skills For Therapists. Right. What would you say to them? 


Catherine [00:35:57] It’s life changing and I think you should do it. And I know I had heard a bunch of people say that, and I was like, I don’t know, will it be worth it? And I had just come off of a really bad coaching experience. And so I was more hesitant, I think, than normally. I’m just like, Sounds great, I’m going to do it. So I appreciated you took the time and space and were just present with me and just dreaming like a person, right? And saw me, even before I was in the program, and that was really helpful. Like, I knew I enjoyed working with you and that meant a lot to me. Right? So I was like, Well, even if I don’t get a whole lot out of the program, I’m going to get that. And I got so much more. So, so much more. 


Linzy [00:36:37] And what enabled you, I’m curious, to take that step to kind of like get off the fence? Right. Like, I’m hearing you could tell that, personally, we’d be a fit working together, which is so important, right? Because like, coaching is like therapy. Not everybody is going to be a fit for you. Right. So in your gut, you’re going to get a sense. But I’m curious, like, what tipped you over into joining? What made you finally take that leap? 


Catherine [00:36:56] I think I knew when I had the time and space to do it a little bit more because the pandemic wasn’t quite so pressing where I could actually be in the office and even have lunch to myself. And I knew that I was expanding what I was doing. And I needed support to figure that out because even at that point, like, I knew I needed to change something with my fees or clients or something like I was feeling. Any time I feel too like pressured, like there’s too much and I need to make space, I’m like, okay, that means some sort of policy change. And sometimes it’s time to change something. Yes. Right. And so that was part of. 


Linzy [00:37:29] Yeah, yeah. It sounds like I mean, right thing, right time, I think is is important. Right. Like things opened up, the pressure to become enough, that you were motivated to do something, and so you jumped in and joined us. Well, thank you so much, Catherine, for joining me today. It’s been wonderful and I’m so excited to see what offers you’re going to come up with over the next year or so. 


Catherine [00:37:48] Yeah, me too, thanks! It’s been so great to talk to you Linzy. 


Linzy [00:38:03] In my interview with Catherine. What really stuck out for me is, even in an embodied way, how different Catherine is now from when I first met her and before she started doing kind of the more practical pieces around money, like she mentioned in the interview, she had already done some mindset work around money for sure, when she started working for me and there are certainly things that she had already done and like wonderful mindset work that she had done through, as she mentioned, listening to Tiffany McLain’s The Money Sessions podcast, which if you are not listening to, I definitely recommend. So she had already made some moves around money, but when I first met her, she was very kind of tight around money and her systems. She felt like there was one right way to do it. She didn’t feel like she could learn how to do it her way. And noticing the difference now in her body and of course also in like the things she’s talking about and saying, you know, like when I asked her, what does this make possible for you? And she was like, Sky’s the limit. It’s like, you know, the vastness of her sense of her future, but also just her groundedness and her presence and just she’s more herself than I think she was when I first met her, through this very practical work that she’s done around money and the mindset work that she’s done around money. It just makes me feel so good to talk to a grad and just see how their life has been transformed around money. And as Catherine says, if this is work that you’re thinking about doing, what you’re going to get out of it is often so much more than you think, because those practical pieces around money and how we get tight and small and unsure and how much it undermines our confidence when we don’t know how to make money work for us is often limiting what is possible for us so much more than we realize. If you want to hear more from me, you can follow me on Instagram at @moneynutsandbolts. We’re sharing free, practical and emotional content around money on there all the time. And if you’re enjoying the podcast, please jump over to Apple Podcasts and leave me a review. It is so helpful to get more therapists who want to hear these conversations connected with the podcast. Thanks for listening today. 

Hi, I'm Linzy

Hi, I'm Linzy

I’m a therapist in private practice, and a the creator of Money Skills for Therapists. I help therapists and health practitioners in private practice feel calm and in control of their finances.

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Episode Cover Tax Time Tips and Self-Care

Does the tax season fill you with dread? Rather than being unkind to yourself for the things you didn’t do the way you thought you should this year, listen in to these tips and action items that Linzy shares.

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Addressing Burnout and Finding Your Passion Coaching Session

Episode Cover Image Addressing Burnout and Finding Your Passion Coaching Session
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Addressing Burnout and Finding Your Passion Coaching Session

Episode Cover Image Addressing Burnout and Finding Your Passion Coaching Session

“I think the piece that really gets me so excited is being able to mentor and be, in a way, that anchoring and grounded person for somebody else [who is] encouraging and inspiring. For me, I had that. I left agency work, and I started in a group practice with an old colleague of mine, and she said, ‘Let me show you the way! Private practice can be so amazing! You don’t have to be burnt out with agency work working all these hours and not getting paid enough.’ And so I had that as a model, and I would love to be able to do that for other people, and especially for clinicians who are working moms.”

~Ilene Gold

Meet Ilene Gold

Ilene is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Registered Yoga Teacher, and Owner of Discover Peace Within in Denver, CO. She supports women in their 20s and 30s navigate life transitions and changes. Ilene combines traditional talk therapy, EMDR, and Yoga Practices to help her clients gain a deeper understanding of how their past impacts their present day. By doing so, they can heal and let go of what doesn’t serve them and move forward into the future with intention and mindfulness. As a working mom running a Group Practice, she strives to uplift and empower other working moms who want to engage in good clinical work, and then go home to their families. Ilene is a proud mama to a 3 year old human baby and a 9 month old fur baby. She and her husband live in Denver, CO where they enjoy hiking, biking, and being outdoors.

In This Episode…

Are you considering growing a group practice or looking for ways to address burnout? In this coaching, Linzy and Ilene focus on Ilene’s current state of burnout, and they work through what it would look like for Ilene to expand her group practice in order to make space for a significant reduction in the number of clients she personally sees each week.

Ilene shares about what she loves about being a group practice owner and what she hopes to offer therapists who join the group. Linzy and Ilene get into the practical numbers needed to help her reduce her caseload while also supporting the other members of her group practice, and they also work through the emotional components that arise when facing this transition. Don’t miss this coaching episode perfect for all of us who are facing or trying to avoid burnout. 

Want more support with your private practice finances?

Free workshop: Setting Enough Aside for Taxes (in 5 Easy Steps) 

A FREE workshop that teaches private practice therapists how to teel totally calm about your private practice finances knowing you have more than enough in the bank to make tax time a breeze!

In this pre-recorded online workshop, I teach you:

  • the real steps to make sure your taxes are totally taken care of,
  • what mistakes to avoid when setting aside taxes for your private practice,
  • how to use a simple and pretty tool that will tell you exactly how much to put aside to cover your taxes each year!

Click here to register for the free workshop today.

Episode Transcript

Ilene [00:00:02] The piece that really gets me so excited is being able to like, mentor and be in a way like that anchoring and grounding person for somebody else, but encouraging and inspiring. And I think for me, I had that. I left agency work. I started in a group practice with an old colleague of mine and she’s like, Let me show you the way. Like, private practice can be so amazing. You don’t have to be burnt out in agency work and like work all these hours and not get paid enough. And so I had that as a model, and I would love to be able to do that for other people and especially for clinicians who are working moms. 


Linzy [00:00:45] Welcome to the Money Skills For Therapists podcast, where we answer this question: How can therapists and health practitioners go from money shame and confusion, to feeling calm and confident about their finances and get money really working for them in both their private practice and their lives? I’m your host Linzy Bonham therapist turned money coach and creator of the course Money Skills For Therapists. Welcome back to the podcast. So today’s episode is a coaching episode with Ilene Gold. Ilene is a licensed clinical social worker. She’s a registered yoga teacher, and she owns the Discover Peace Within Counseling Center in Denver, Colorado. She is a graduate of Money Skills For Therapists and she’s also – as we mentioned in our conversation today – in Money Boss, which is my level two program after Money Skills, Money Boss Mastermind. So we reference that a little bit. You’ll hear in our conversation today. And today, Ilene and I dug into burnout, which is a topic I’m sure that many of you are familiar with, and specifically about starting to expand the group practice part of the work that she does so that she can produce for clinical work. So if you’re someone who’s been considering group practice or if you already have a group practice and are looking for ways to start to decrease the clinical work you do, and think about kind of that that equation and transition into supporting your clinicians more and bringing money into your group practice rather than clinical practice. This conversation is exactly for you. But I think it’s also relevant to all of us who are experiencing some burnout and starting to look for what are other ways to work and what are ways to adjust the way that we are working to heal from and prevent future burnout by thinking about what else is possible in the way that we’re doing our clinical work and what else can we add? Here’s my conversation with Ilene Gold. So. Ilene, welcome to the podcast. 


Ilene [00:02:47] Thank you. Thanks, Linzy. 


Linzy [00:02:49] I’m excited to have you here. We actually just had some time together, like literally half an hour ago because you are in Money Boss, which is my level two program. So we’re having more time together lately and I’m excited to be able to do this podcast with you to dig into something that is going on for you. And as I’ve seen you before, this podcast is very much like what we do together when we have one on one calls in Money Boss or in Money Skills For Therapists. So tell me about what you’re bringing to our call today. What do you want to get my support with or have more clarity on today on the podcast? 


Ilene [00:03:20] Yeah, I think for me, what I’m really starting to recognize in our work together in Money Boss is I’m clinically burnt out and at the same time I have a lot of excitement and energy and passion for keeping my feet in the therapy world, but expanding in other ways. I started a group practice in November of 2021. It’s very small still and I think in large part it’s me remaining small because I’m seeing too many clients. So maybe some support around how to start to shift what my day to day looks like, saying goodbye to some clients, helping them kind of transfer to maybe some of the new therapists in my practice, kind of terminating and just figuring out how to kind of move in that direction of building the group practice. 


Linzy [00:04:09] Okay, so thinking about this just gave me a sense of kind of where you are. I’m sure, first of all, burnout is something that I’m sure many people listening have either been through or are experiencing right now, because it is definitely a hazard in our profession right now. How many folks a week are you seeing clinically? 


Ilene [00:04:25] So I’m seeing on average about 25. 


Linzy [00:04:27] Okay. Okay. That’s that’s a lot. That’s a lot. 


Ilene [00:04:31] It is a lot.


Linzy [00:04:32] That makes me feel very sleepy when you say that. Okay. So 25 clients and what do you want to be seeing right now? Given where you are? This might be a different number than what it was like six months ago. Right now, if you think about what would be kind of a sustainable week, recognizing that you are feeling burnt out and probably need to recover, how many clients a week do you want to be seeing? 


Ilene [00:04:55] I think if I could see four a day. 


Linzy [00:04:59] Okay, okay. 


Ilene [00:05:00] Maybe even less right now. I feel like that still feels like a lot. Okay, maybe, maybe like three a day or maybe, you know, some days I have five, but others I have two. Okay. 


Linzy [00:05:13] Yes. So let’s start with that. So do you work five days a week? 


Ilene [00:05:16] I do. 


Linzy [00:05:17] Okay. So with this question, what I want you to think about is what is a day that, when you work it, you go home and you still have energy, you still have spark for your life. You’re like excited to see your family. You’ve got some play left in you, some creativity. What is that amount of clients per day? 


Ilene [00:05:36] Okay, a gut check is three. 


Linzy [00:05:38] Okay, great. Okay. And three, five days a week. Is that still kind of leave you feeling that leftover extra energy at the end of the day or does that start to wear you down towards the end of the week? What does that look like? Thinking about- yeah. 


Ilene [00:05:53] Yeah, that’s a good question. I think because I don’t have that right now, it’s hard to know what that would actually feel like on a Friday. I think for now, let’s go with three a day, for five days. 


Linzy [00:06:03] Okay. So you’d be going down from 25 to 15. Mm. Okay. Okay. So that’s helpful for you to think about where you want to go as you’re scaling up. Like there’s a bit of an equation here, right, of like thinking about what needs to happen to start to replace that clinical income for you. What do you need to start doing to help folks in your practice generate income so that you can start to work less clinically right now? I mean, just to give me a sense of like, how quickly do you need this change to happen, thinking about your burnout. 


Ilene [00:06:32] Like three years ago. 


Linzy [00:06:34] Like yesterday. Okay, great. Yeah. 


Ilene [00:06:35] Yeah. 


Linzy [00:06:37] Yes. Which makes a lot of sense because you are in burnout. What I’m hearing about is like this is not a change you want to make over necessarily six months. It’s like, what can you start to do now? So tell me about your group practice as it stands at this moment. 


Ilene [00:06:49] So I have two clinicians that work with me that are very much in part time mode. One works another full time job and one works a part time job. And so in the fall she is looking to build out her caseload. So she’s seeing about three clients a week. And I think that she might bump up to like ten or 12. And then I’m hoping to recruit another at least 10 to 12 or more. Or a therapist that could see ten or more clients a week. 


Linzy [00:07:19] Okay. So you would kind of have like clinician 2 is going up to like 10 to 12 people a week in the next couple of months. You have somebody else- what was that second number that you mentioned there? About the same? 


Ilene [00:07:29] Yeah. So hopefully I could hire a third clinician. 


Linzy [00:07:31] A third clinician. Yeah. 


Ilene [00:07:32] Yeah. About ten plus. 


Linzy [00:07:34] Ten plus per week. Okay. And your first clinician, how many are they seeing. 


Ilene [00:07:38] About three. 


Linzy [00:07:39] Three per week. Okay. Yeah. And that’s how it’s going to stay. 


Ilene [00:07:41] I believe so. 


Linzy [00:07:42] This is their part time, like on top of full time, stuff. 


Ilene [00:07:44] Exactly. 


Linzy [00:07:45] They’re extra. Okay. So, I mean, thinking about this, what is the split that you have with the folks who work for you? 


Ilene [00:07:51] So I pay them 60% and my practice takes 40. Okay. 


Linzy [00:07:55] So they get 60, you get 40. The reason I’m asking you these questions is to figure out how many of their sessions would replace your sessions. So that’s a little quick and dirty, but it just can start to help us like wrap your mind around what would be required for you to replace this money that you’re getting from clinical sessions? Is your fee the same as their fee? Is it higher? 


Ilene [00:08:18] I kind of did a fee increase when we built a website for the group practice, and although like my fee says one thing, I’m actually charging the same as those clinicians and I felt like if I took anybody new on, it would be at a higher fee. 


Linzy [00:08:34] Okay. Yes. 


Ilene [00:08:35] So I know that kind of isn’t a very direct answer, but. 


Linzy [00:08:38] Yes, yes. So you have a higher fee for like new folks who would come in. But your your clients are all the same level as your clinicians, which actually makes for easier math. So that’s kind of convenient in a way, because what we need to think about is basically what it means is when one of your clinicians works ten sessions, there’s money coming into the practice as though you’ve worked four, right? Because you get 40%. So for every ten that they work, there’s four sessions of money that comes to you. Does that equation that makes sense? 


Ilene [00:09:06] Yes. Yeah. 


Linzy [00:09:07] So that can help us start. I think about how many sessions to your folks need to be working, your therapists, who work for you, for you to replace that ten. So it would be if they do ten sessions, that’s four. So when they do the next ten, that gets you up to eight. So basically, once you have your team doing 25 more sessions a week, that replaces the ten sessions that you would drop down. So thinking about that, the idea of supporting your therapists and going up another 25 sessions a week between all of them. What do you notice? 


Ilene [00:09:41] Oh, it’s not as bad as I thought. 


Linzy [00:09:43] Okay, that’s good. Yeah. Not as bad as you thought. Yeah. 


Ilene [00:09:46] Not as long as I think in my mind that number was going to be higher, actually. 


Linzy [00:09:51] Yes. 


Ilene [00:09:52] But if clinician B goes to 10 to 12 and if clinician C comes in and is seeing 10 to 12, I mean that about. 


Linzy [00:10:01] You’re pretty close. 


Ilene [00:10:02] Pretty close. 


Linzy [00:10:02] Yeah. Okay. Yeah. And then are you bringing folks on as contractors or employees? 


Ilene [00:10:07] So they’re contractors right now. Buy my hope is – and this is something, you know, maybe podcast recording number two, or in one of our one-to-ones and we can talk about like the cost of a W2 versus the cost of a 1099, how much profit I would need in my business to, I think, transition to W2. 


Linzy [00:10:30] Yeah. Because with that, I mean, part of the difference of having an employee versus a contractor is with an employee, you can set more expectations about how they work or when they work or whatever. And as a boss, you get to still decide what that looks like. It doesn’t mean you have to be rigid, but you are able to say, you know, in order to be fulfilling your employment contract, I need you to see 12 people a week, which is certainly not- it would certainly not make you an exploitive practice owner. 


Ilene [00:10:54] Right. 


Linzy [00:10:55] Right. That would be one of the benefits of employment. But yeah, we could look at those numbers and compare a contractor versus W2. What I’m hearing is your first response to 25 more sessions is like, Oh, that’s not as bad as I thought. What do you notice comes up around thinking about possibilities of how to make that happen? Do you already have kind of a game plan set out? I mean, I guess already there’s some natural changes you’re looking for. A third clinician will be part of that. What comes up when you think about looking for that third clinician and just supporting your clinicians and getting those 12 clients a week? 


Ilene [00:11:24] I think one thing is like, why would somebody come work in a group practice versus just starting their own private practice? 


Linzy [00:11:30] Yes. Mm hmm. 


Ilene [00:11:32] One thing that comes up for me, especially if this is going to be their primary source of income or if they’re spending more time in my group practice versus whatever other side things they are doing or part time work they’re doing, why would they want to come work for me? Or why would they want to come work for a group practice rather than just starting their own? 


Linzy [00:11:51] Okay, so you tell me. If I’m a practitioner, I’m thinking about maybe working for group practice. Why should I come work for you? I mean, what do you offer me? 


Ilene [00:11:58] What I believe I offer. I think what’s important to me and my group practice is that we’re all mothers who are also therapists. 


Linzy [00:12:05] I said I’m a mother who’s a therapist. That sounds nice.


Ilene [00:12:08] Yes. So I think something that is really important to me when I bring on clinicians is knowing that we all get it. We all get what it means to be a working mom. We all understand that like things come up, we’re flexible, we’re understanding, we’re compassionate. We have that sense of like mindedness and understanding of those struggles. And I think especially being a working therapist in the pandemic, as a mom as well, like how much that weighs on you? And I think that there is like that sense of we understand and we get it. We want to support you in being able to come to work, do your excellent clinical work with your clients, and then you go home like you don’t have to worry about the marketing, you don’t have to worry about the billing, you don’t have to worry about the networking. You don’t have to work your business. You can just come and be a clinician with a bunch of other clinicians who also get it. 


Linzy [00:12:59] Mm hmm. Okay. Right. So they’re getting emotional support of having, like, a community of like minded people. They’re getting the practical support of having, like, the marketing and admin support those sound pretty appealing. 


Ilene [00:13:10] Yeah like I want you to also like work when you want to work and not work when you don’t. Different from working in an agency or in a nonprofit setting that they’re going to tell you when you need to work and how often you need to work. I think and especially with the 1099, I’m not really allowed to say how many hours. Right. So especially the way that the group practice is set up now, I’m sort of like, hey, you work when you want to work and don’t when you don’t. And we understand that and that’s cool. And that we do that here, you know? 


Linzy [00:13:38] Yes. Yes. Okay. So it sounds like a value for you as an employer is giving your- or your contractors autonomy. 


Ilene [00:13:44] Yes. 


Linzy [00:13:44] Right. To be able to choose when they work and when they don’t and something to be mindful of, something to notice as your group practice continues to develop and grow, is are there boundaries that are required for your practice to be well and for you to be bringing enough money? Because especially as your income increasingly relies on your contractors and not on yourself, it does mean that if you do have a month where everybody takes vacation, suddenly the bulk of your money is not coming in anymore. 


Ilene [00:14:11] Right. 


Linzy [00:14:12] Right. So that’s something to just kind of be aware of in terms of balancing those values. Because if you’re going to be working less, then you don’t have the option to just like, work more to make up money if you’ve reduced your own caseload. 


Ilene [00:14:24] Right. 


Linzy [00:14:24] Right. So that’s something that you can- and, you know, we’ll continue to explore this together in Money Boss. Thinking about fine tuning your numbers. But that is something that’s kind of picking up on my radar. Just thinking about when you’re making your practice more reliable on your contractors’ income, what are also maybe some of the things that need to be minimums that would be more like employee stuff just to keep your practice running and healthy and keep the money coming in so you’re not losing money on certain months in a big way. 


Ilene [00:14:48] Yes. Linzy, and thank you for saying that, because I think that’s important for me as I move forward into this sort of new role as a business owner. And thinking about this as a group practice owner is that I’m not really good at those sort of like anchoring, grounded, sort of like, let’s logistically look at this and let’s talk about it because I can be like, Oh, I have this great idea. Let’s just like go for it. It’ll all work itself out. So that’s really helpful to think about. 


Linzy [00:15:13] Yeah, I’m used to being a bit of a buzzkill. It’s kind of like a bit of my role in life. So that was maybe a bit of a buzzkill for you. But like, you know, in Money Boss, we talk about this this visual of kind of like keeping your feet on the ground, while also like being expansive and in giving yourself that ground because that would be a grounding piece, is just understanding what needs to be happening in the practice to make everything good. And then that expansion is like bringing in the values, bringing in the right people, like really letting your therapists be humans in the workplace or whatever those values are that you really want to be living out. 


Ilene [00:15:43] Yeah. 


Linzy [00:15:44] So I’m curious, you know, Ilene, and this is also for folks listening because I think I’ve done a couple podcast recordings now where I’ve talked about how I often talk people out of group practice, and I’m not doing that with you. And I’d love if you can share with me and with the folks who are listening. What do you love about being a group practice owner and what draws you to running a group practice? 


Ilene [00:16:05] I think the piece that really gets me so excited is being able to like, mentor and be in a way like that, anchoring and grounded person for somebody else. Like I’m also good at it myself. For myself. But I can be that for somebody else. Yeah, right. But encouraging and inspiring. And I think for me, I had that. I left agency work. I started in a group practice with an old colleague of mine and she’s like, Let me show you the way. Like, private practice can be so amazing. You don’t have to be burnt out in agency work and like work all these hours and not get paid enough. And so I had that as a model and I would love to be able to do that for other people and especially for clinicians who are working moms. I started my solo practice full time before I had my kiddo, and in fact the week that I went into my private practice full time, like the second week later, we found out we were pregnant. So I had to learn a lot real quick about how to save for taxes, how to have a healthy profit in the business, how to see clients in a way that still helps me feel energized and sustained energy at home for my kid. And I would love to be able to do that for other people, to give them an opportunity to not be so stressed. 


Linzy [00:17:27] Yes. 


Ilene [00:17:28] Just do their clinical work and go home to their families. 


Linzy [00:17:31] Yes. Yes. And we were talking earlier in a workshop that you and I just did together this morning, where we were kind of laying out financial projections and what’s possible about like following what excites your body, right? Like tapping into that, that wisdom that you also have. And I can see like you have such spark around this. This is something that, like, you want to lean into. So there is like this real kind of embodied Yes that you get when you think about leaning further into group practice. Yeah. Which is very different than the like. Well, people tell me to and it’s an easy way to make money because of my practice as well. I’ll just pass them on to other people, which is sometimes where it’s not always the most- the best reason to take on group practice, because group practice is a lot of work. 


Ilene [00:18:11] Right. 


Linzy [00:18:11] Which I think you were talking about earlier too. 


Ilene [00:18:13] That I’m finding out like there’s a lot of moving parts and pieces, which also feels exciting because again, like kind of going back to what we were saying at the beginning, it keeps me anchored in clinical work without having to be the clinician. 


Linzy [00:18:26] Yes, yes, yes. I 100% get it. That’s kind of where I live now. Yeah. It’s I’m not a practicing therapist, but I get to support therapists and like still bring in my clinical lens, but without doing that direct clinical work at the moment. So thinking then about where we started, come back to the beginning. You’re talking about feeling burnt out. We talked about this idea of going down to 15 clients a week. When you check with your body about going down to 15 clients a week and doing more work instead to support your clinicians to get them up to 25 more sessions a week, what do you notice? 


Ilene [00:19:01] A lot of guilt and having to say goodbye to current clients. Because I love working with them. And I love the work we’re doing together and I feel like I would let them down in some way or like, how am I gonna choose like which 15 stay with me and how do I get to help the others transition on? Like there’s a lot of guilt that comes up there. 


Linzy [00:19:23] And what is the guilt? Like, what’s the narrative? Why do you feel guilty about things like that? 


Ilene [00:19:28] I’ve committed to this relationship and I’ve committed to our work together, and then I’m supposed to, like, stay in it until they’re ready to say goodbye. 


Linzy [00:19:36] Okay. Right. So you’re committed indefinitely. 


Ilene [00:19:40] Indefinitely. 


Linzy [00:19:40] 20 or 30 years, if that’s what it takes. Okay. 


Ilene [00:19:44] I see where you’re going with this Linzy. 


Linzy [00:19:45] I’m curious, did you have you closed on your practice before? Have you gone through this experiance? Like with mat leave? You probably didn’t say goodbye to all your clients, did you?  


Ilene [00:19:55] No. But we took a four month pause because it took four months and then I went back part time for the first year of my daughter’s life. 


Linzy [00:20:03] So yeah. And what was that experience like? 


Ilene [00:20:05] It felt easier than this for some reason because I was doing it for her, you know, like I was taking the time off for my daughter. 


Linzy [00:20:13] It was for somebody else. 


Ilene [00:20:14] It was for somebody else. 


Linzy [00:20:16] Okay. Okay. And what makes it easier about it being for somebody else and not for you? 


Ilene [00:20:21] Feels like there’s, like, no room for a client to, like, not argue. Not that a client would be argumentative, but they’re- like a client could see that that would be totally justified. Like, Oh yeah, see, over these last six months, like, your body is changing and you are growing a human, like, of course you’re going to take time. 


Linzy [00:20:37] We all see what’s happening here. 


Ilene [00:20:38] Yes, of course. You take time off to be with her and then we’ll see when you’re when you’re back. But this sort of feels like I am saying I need more time to grow this thing. Well in a way like I’m growing another thing and just not a human. But so it feels like it’s just not as justified, I guess. Hmm. 


Linzy [00:20:55] Okay, so I’m curious, like, for the folks that you work with, do they struggle with doing things for themselves? 


Ilene [00:21:01] Yes, they do. 


Linzy [00:21:02] So clinically, how could this actually be maybe a positive thing? 


Ilene [00:21:08] Yeah. Modeling that, like, permission to take time for yourself to do the things that excite you. Yes. That parallel process is very clear. 


Linzy [00:21:17] And what do you notice thinking about that? 


Ilene [00:21:19] Don’t be so hard on yourself. 


Linzy [00:21:20] Yes, yes. Yeah. I mean, like, I think I’m very passionate about closure. I’ve closed my practice twice now. Yeah. And I’ve also taken a six week leave before, like for my honeymoon. We went to Europe for six weeks. So I’ve done like that where it’s like a long pause and then I closed it for mat leave. And when I went on Mat Leave, I really closed it because I was gonna be off for a year. And then I kind of reopened my practice, but kind of didn’t and then said, Actually, never mind. And then I closed that down, right? And so I think the closure process is underrated, something that I personally noticed clinically. And I don’t know if this is something you agree with, but I think a lot of people don’t get good experiences of goodbyes in their life. A lot of goodbyes are abrupt or confusing and disorienting or just sad, and there’s no chance to actually like close it off. Right. And something that we’re able to offer as mental health clinicians when we know that a change is coming, is we’re able to offer people a different experience of goodbye, right, a goodbye that is intentional. That leaves space for all the emotions and all the grief that comes up right a goodbye that is respectful, where you actually get to see the things that you want to say and express, like the gratitude, but also maybe the frustration, the space for all of it. We usually don’t get space in our lives just as people for that kind of goodbye. Is this resonating with you, what I’m saying? 


Ilene [00:22:41] Yeah, absolutely. I talk about closure and termination in my first meeting with a client. 


Linzy [00:22:46] Yes. 


Ilene [00:22:47] It’s very intentional part of my practice. 


Linzy [00:22:49] Yeah. The end is there at the beginning. Exactly. Yes. Yes. So this is actually an opportunity for you, if you accept this framing, to give them this experience that most people don’t get this kind of intentional, thoughtful goodbye. How does that idea land with you? 


Ilene [00:23:04] I think, you know, what I’m noticing is just like the sadness in my own heart about my own experiences with goodbyes not being helpful and meaningful. And that could possibly be the barrier to some of, you know, like my inner child is having a hard time thinking about saying goodbye to these clients. And it’s not really about my clients and their challenge with saying goodbye, but maybe even more of my own. And I’ll have to talk to my own therapist about. 


Linzy [00:23:28] Yes. So content for therapy, which is always helpful to find. But yeah, like, I mean because we do have our own experiences and our own traumas around goodbyes. But I have certainly found in my own experience at least, that having these experiences of goodbyes is so healing and refreshing, both for the client and and for you as a therapist. Right. To be able to give both of you an experience that is intentional and thoughtful, that’s maybe less coaching more than me, like being like But this… But so I’m hearing there’s that piece, the goodbyes like, you know, sometimes goodbyes are hard. I also was hearing about kind of how do you choose what clients stay and what clients go? Tell me more about that piece. 


Ilene [00:24:05] Well I think because when I think about my caseload. There are 50 people on my caseload. I don’t see them all weekly. Obviously some are as-needed basis, some are once a month, some are every other week. Some are weekly. If I’m only reserving 15 slots a week, how do I even choose that? How do how do I do that? 


Linzy [00:24:23] Well, I think this goes back to your needs, thinking about this kind of new I want to say upgraded. However you want to think about it, this new intentional version of your practice that’s going to help you recover from burnout and give you the bandwidth to help other therapists be expansive and reach and do their best work. For you as a clinician and a person, how often do you prefer to see clients? What is the piece that makes sense for the work that you do in the way that you work? 


Ilene [00:24:49] I mean, I think weekly makes sense. Yeah, I think that’s how you really gain momentum. That’s how I want it. I like to see my therapist weekly. I think it makes sense with the with the in-depth type of work that I do. Yes. I mean, that weekly makes sense. 


Linzy [00:25:04] So that would be the first place to look is like who’s weekly? Who wants to be weekly? If you just count those folks who are weekly and are really doing the work and that way, that feels really productive and clinically helpful for you. How many folks is that who are in that category? And that’ll let you start to see like, I mean, this is an opportunity for you to really decide as a clinician, what are your boundaries, what is the best way that you work? Because you can’t work all the ways when you’re only seeing 15 folks. 


Ilene [00:25:29] Right. 


Linzy [00:25:30] What do you notice when I say that. 


Ilene [00:25:31] It kind of goes back to this like interesting boundaries idea around like, oh, yeah, I haven’t seen you in six months. Come on in for a session and check in and like this. Well, that can be helpful for the client. I don’t know that if moving forward, if I’m really going to try to create bandwidth and energy and time on my calendar to grow the group practice, if I can just be available to anybody at any time. 


Linzy [00:25:54] Right. Okay. So that’s good information for you because that will also help you start to see like kind of whittle down who’s doing the work that you really love to do and that you do best and who is looking for more like occasional or check in or biweekly that actually one of your therapists might love to do that kind of work. 


Ilene [00:26:12] Right. Right. 


Linzy [00:26:12] Because we all have kind of our difference, just kind of like frequencies and styles as therapists. Like, I know for me when I was practicing, I was totally fine with biweekly work doing EMDR, which I did. Some folks who do EMDR are like, No, never biweekly, always weekly. Like, we all have our own thing. And so sometimes the, you know, the style that doesn’t work for you might work perfectly for your therapist on the whole. 


Ilene [00:26:33] Mm hmm. 


Linzy [00:26:34] So that would be a starting point. And the name is popping into my head right now. To Ilene is Jelisha Gatling. Do you know Jelisha? 


Ilene [00:26:40] I don’t. 


Linzy [00:26:41] She used to be a coach at Money Skills For Therapists. She’s done workshops that I’ve offered to Money Skills grads. She’s awesome. She also used to coach in Lean In Make Bank. Jelisha. 


Ilene [00:26:51] Yes, yes, yes, yes. I know her. 


Linzy [00:26:53] Yes. So she does work in this area around like as a clinician, setting your boundaries and being clear about like your boundaries and expectations and creating a practice that really serves the way that you work. So she’s also someone to look to for resources like specifically on this. This is like her niche, but really putting yourself and your needs at the forefront of the work that you do. Mm hmm. Because sometimes with burnout, too, burnout happens when we haven’t been doing that. 


Ilene [00:27:18] Yeah. 


Linzy [00:27:19] Am I saying something accurate? 


Ilene [00:27:20] You are hitting me so hard here in my heart, like. Oh, yeah, I’m not. I’ve not been doing that. Yes. 


Linzy [00:27:28] So coming towards the end of our conversation today, I mean, what are you taking away from our time together? 


Ilene [00:27:33] So breaking down the numbers and seeing how many clients a week feels sustainable to me. What’s really helpful then? Thinking about that next piece of, okay, how do I then help my group practice replace those hours, and then eventually grow past that and expand past that? But hearing the number like yeah, though that will require work- marketing, networking, you know, I’m not naive to think that that will require work to get those clients and fill my clinicians case loads. But it didn’t feel like overwhelming. It wasn’t as high as I thought. Yeah, so that felt good. And then thinking about this piece around saying goodbye, really coming back to some more like intentional and sustainable boundaries for my clients because all really good stuff for me to play around with moving forward. 


Linzy [00:28:22] I’m excited for you, I think you’re going to build something awesome. Thank you, Ilene, for joining me today. This conversation with Ilene today makes me really think about just like listening to where your excitement is in your practice. So in her case, you know, the clinical work, she said that she knows she maybe hasn’t been holding her own boundaries, kind of working more sessions that she wants to are working in ways that aren’t actually how she really loves to work as a clinician. And now she’s experiencing this burnout. But when we talked about the idea of her, you know, working ten less sessions and supporting her clinicians in working 25 sessions, it was like, oh, that’s easy. So noticing where that kind of like ease is and where you do have energy for it, because I think sometimes when we’re experiencing burnout, sometimes it’s total burnout, of course, and everything just feels like blunted and difficult. But sometimes it’s that we have too much of a certain thing on our plate and we’re like burnt out on clinical work. But there still is actually a spark and interest kind of going out in different directions. So rather than moving into an all or nothing space of like, I need to stop being a therapist, I need to shut this down, which is like definitely where our brains can go when we’re feeling so exhausted. It’s being curious as to are there still places that you do feel spark even within the work that you’re doing? Or are there things that feel exciting to pursue that are like a little bit beyond or outside? And noticing where that energy is, there’s definitely a difference between the work that you actually kind of know what it feels like and escape fantasy. Ilene and I talked was it in this episode it might have been beforehand about, you know, that fantasy that you can have of like, I’m just going to go start a new profession that’ll solve everything. And often that’s an escape fantasy and doesn’t actually really represent what it would be like to be in that profession. I think when we think about making massive overhauls, sometimes it’s good to pause and ask ourselves like, Is that actually going to solve my problem? But in this case, where Ilene already knows that she likes doing her practice work, she’s already in it, she’s already doing marketing, she already has folks working for her. She actually knows she’s already living what it’s like to be a group practice owner, and her body is saying yes to doing more of that. So there’s a lot of wisdom in that Yes that she’s getting. If you are enjoying the podcast, follow me on Instagram at @moneynutsandbolts. I’m sharing content on there all the time about the practical and emotional sides of money. And if you’re enjoying the podcast, please jump over to Apple Podcasts and leave me a review. It is, as I’ve said, the best way for new therapists to find the podcast. Thanks for listening today. 

Hi, I'm Linzy

Hi, I'm Linzy

I’m a therapist in private practice, and a the creator of Money Skills for Therapists. I help therapists and health practitioners in private practice feel calm and in control of their finances.

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Managing Financial Anxiety and Preparing for a Recession with Lindsay Bryan-Podvin

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Managing Financial Anxiety and Preparing for a Recession with Lindsay Bryan-Podvin

Episode Graphic Managing Financial Anxiety and Preparing for a Recession with Lindsay Bryan-Podvin

“We can’t change certain things, but we can change how we are prepared for them or how we adapt to them. So as we experience a recession, we have to think about [how] I can’t change how the stock market performs or whether Amazon is going to lay off more people. I have no control over that. But what I do have control over is figuring out what will make me feel more financially secure in the face of this recession weather.”

~Lindsay Bryan-Podvin

Meet Lindsay Bryan-Podvin

Lindsay Bryan-Podvin (she/her) is a biracial financial therapist, podcast host, speaker, and author of the book “The Financial Anxiety Solution.” In her coaching practice, she helps therapists in social justice or of marginalized identities grow their profitable practices from the inside out; so they can stop feeling icky about money, and start setting and sticking to sustainable rates that allow them to grow their businesses in alignment with their values. She lives with her partner and their dog on the occupied land of the Fox, Peoria, Potawatomi, and Anishinabewaki peoples also known as Michigan.

In This Episode…

Do you have anxiety when you think about your finances? In this episode, Lindsay Bryan Podvin shares about the emotional side of money, and the ways that anxiety around money can show up as either procrastination or perfectionism. Linzy and Lindsay discuss what the recession can mean for therapists from a practical and emotional standpoint, and what we can do now to be more financially prepared for it. 

Connect with Lindsay Bryan-Podvin

Take Lindsay’s free quiz on understanding your money archetype: www.mindmoneybalance.com/quiz 

You can also find Lindsay on Instagram: www.instagram.com/mindmoneybalance 

Want more private practice finances support?

Free workshop: Setting Enough Aside for Taxes (in 5 Easy Steps) 

A FREE workshop that teaches private practice therapists how to teel totally calm about your private practice finances knowing you have more than enough in the bank to make tax time a breeze!

In this pre-recorded online workshop, I teach you:

  • the real steps to make sure your taxes are totally taken care of,
  • what mistakes to avoid when setting aside taxes for your private practice,
  • how to use a simple and pretty tool that will tell you exactly how much to put aside to cover your taxes each year!

Click here to register for the free workshop today.

Episode Transcript

Lindsay [00:00:00] We can’t change certain things, but we can change how we are prepared for them or how we adapt to them. So as we experience a recession, we have to think about, yes, I can’t change how the stock market performs or whether or not Amazon’s going to lay off more people. I have no control over that. But what I do have control over is figuring out what will make me feel more financially secure in the face of this recession weather. 


Linzy [00:00:28] Welcome to the Money Skills For Therapists podcast, where we answer this question How can therapists and health practitioners go from money shame and confusion to feeling calm and confident about their finances and get money really working for them in both their private practice and their lives? I’m your host Linzy Bonham therapist turned money coach and creator of the Course Money Skills For Therapists. Hello and welcome back to the podcast. So today’s guest is Lindsay Bryan-Podvin. She is a financial therapist. She is a consultant who helps therapists with their finances. And I’m so excited to have her on today because as we talk about a little bit, once our conversation gets rolling, she brings such knowledge and experience around the emotional pieces of money that I’m so passionate about and that I feel like are just you know, there aren’t a lot of people who are really like in that world. Today we get into discussing financial anxiety, what it looks like, its relationship to procrastination and perfectionism, and how sometimes it can disguise itself. We also get into the word that is kind of on everybody’s lips right now, at the time that I’m recording this, which is recession, what a recession means, what it means for us as therapists and how to actually respond to and take care of ourselves in this time of recession. And finally, of course, there are even more useful tidbits from Lindsay about those first steps of what to do if you do identify that financial anxiety is a big part of your relationship with money. Here is Lindsay Bryan-Podvin. So Lindsay, welcome to the podcast. 


Lindsay [00:02:16] Thanks, Linzy. 


Linzy [00:02:18] I was going to say, obviously, we have to make that joke immediately two Lindsays who like to talk about money in the same place. And I was on your podcast like a few years ago. A couple of years ago. 


Lindsay [00:02:28] Yeah, I was gonna say, at least two years. Yeah. 


Linzy [00:02:31] It’s been a little while. And I don’t know why I didn’t have you on two seasons ago, so I’m so glad you’re here. 


Lindsay [00:02:35] Well, happy to be here. 


Linzy [00:02:37] So, Lindsay, you know, we were just chatting a little bit before we started recording about how I have lots of different folks who come on the podcast, lots of folks who have knowledge of a private practice building and like kind of different facets of money, but like something that you bring to the table that I think is really different than folks who’ve come on the podcast so far is such a knowledge of like the psychology of money, given your training and the work that you do. And something that you and I see a lot that I was hoping we could dig into today is financial anxiety. So I was curious. I know that this is a topic near and dear to your own heart, because folks who are listening can’t see this on Lindsay’s bookshelf. Behind her is the financial anxiety solution, which is a book that she wrote. So Lindsay, how do you define financial anxiety? 


Lindsay [00:03:26] Well, I think given that your audience is therapists, they will get this pretty quickly. But if we first just think about anxiety as a sensation that all of us have at different points in our time – not clinical anxiety, but different points in our lives – is feeling nervous, worried or on edge about a certain thing, or experiencing intrusive thoughts or having physical reactions because of that worry. We just layer money on top of that, right? So financial anxiety is feeling worried, nervous, or on edge any time you are engaging with thinking about or doing stuff with your money. And I think all of us experience financial anxiety at different points in time. It could be as quick as like, Oh shit, did my paycheck get deposited and refreshing your bank app going, Oh, it’s there. Okay, cool. It’s like very time limited. Not a big deal. Or it could be pretty insidious where it’s kind of this ruminating thought at all hours of the day of I’m bad with money, I don’t have enough, I’ll never learn. I’m so worried. And that is more of what I’m interested in, is how can we help people, who are experiencing kind of consistent financial anxiety, dial it down. The one time financial anxiety is more of like, let’s be curious about that, right? So again, putting on our therapist hat, why is it that I get nervous when my paycheck gets deposited? Or why is it that I feel anxiety when I look at my retirement account? Now we can kind of dig in there and get into it. But with anxiety, just with financial anxiety, just like traditional anxiety, it doesn’t feel good. It doesn’t feel good to have your heart racing. It doesn’t feel good to have thoughts kind of running through your head. It’s a sensation that most of us dislike. And so we do whatever we can to avoid it. Yes. And so oftentimes in my work, I see people fall into two kind of buckets of how they cope with financial anxiety and it’s perfectionism and procrastination. And I can dig into that a little bit more, but I’ll pause for now. 


Linzy [00:05:27] Well, yes, I mean, perfectionism and procrastination. I feel like in my own work in Money Skills For Therapists, I feel like people tend to fall into either of those two camps, pretty much two different manifestations of the same thing. So let’s dig into procrastination first. This is what I tend to see kind of more of, at least with the folks that I see in Money Skills For Therapists, so probably folks who are listening tend to be more on the procrastination side. Also, statistically speaking, what do you notice or what can you tell us about that procrastination response? 


Lindsay [00:05:57] Yeah, often times I think with procrastination it is perfectionism just by another name in that a lot of the times when I’m working with clients who have procrastination, the surface level thing they’ll say to me is, I know I should do it, but I’ll do it later, right. When we dig under it, it’s really, I don’t want to make a mistake, right? I don’t want to not know what I’m doing. I don’t want to feel dumb. So instead of taking messy, potentially making a mistake, action with your finances, people just don’t do it at all. So if I can’t do it exactly right, I won’t do it at all. And so oftentimes procrastination can look like, I’ll do it later, I work better under pressure, I’ll do it in tax season, right? A lot of these kind of external things. But when you dig under it, it’s usually this fear of not enough ness. I don’t know enough. I’m not smart enough, I don’t get it. And that’s where we can really kind of use some of our skills to figure out what would it take for you to feel comfortable enough to take that next step in relationship to your finances. Yeah. 


Linzy [00:07:03] Yeah. I mean, I love what you’re talking about right now because I think that this is such a missing piece so often in talk about money in general. Yeah, like I think probably similar to a lot of different topics is like the people who talk about it the most are often the people who it comes – as long as it comes easily – it’s like if these parts are there for them, they don’t talk about this piece. They talk about the stuff that they do. So if you look at like blogs about how to save enough money, they’ll just do….. or I just did….. And it’s like seems like nobody else is struggling with these things and that they’re just like taking action even though probably, under the surface, you know, there’s other things happening. But when people talk about money, they don’t talk about all like the hard feelings and the things that might be happening for us simultaneously. I find that sometimes it’s just a very kind of robot-y content about, Just do this, which totally ignores this whole other part of the experience. 


Lindsay [00:07:51] Yeah. And you’re speaking to this thing that happens in the personal finance space, which is it’s very individualistic. If you have debt, it’s 110% your fault. If you didn’t negotiate a raise, that’s on you. Instead of acknowledging that there is this both/and. Yes, we live in a society that makes it hard for certain people to move forward and to have access to this knowledge. And it’s important for us to get the knowledge that we need so we can take care of ourselves. But in so many personal finance spaces, it’s just about it’s all your fault. You’re bad with money. And as we know, that’s not a great motivator for change, like, oh, I feel like garbage. Yeah. Now I’m going to start doing good things that, like, never happens. And we know this as therapists, we know and we’re thinking about motivation and behavior change. It’s really about self-compassion and values. So why we don’t apply that to money, you and me. 


Linzy [00:08:49] Well, and I love you naming that both/and, because I find that something that I think I, I even grapple with sometimes how to hold those things simultaneously. 


Lindsay [00:08:57] Yeah. Oh 100%. 


Linzy [00:08:57] I think sometimes with money and even in the therapist space when we talk about like just like raise your fees and just do it, there is under this this kind of stripping away or ignoring of the systems that have got people where they are, that continue to make things ten times harder for Person A than they are for person B, right. Like when we ignore all of that and individualize, we blame people for things that are so much bigger than us and not in our control. And at the same time, there are things that are in our control. So kind of holding those things. I love how you named it as a both/and, because I think that when we lean too much into either, we become in some ways a little bit powerless – or not powerless – just disconnected. I think there’s truth in both of those, I guess, is what I’m saying there. 


Lindsay [00:09:39] Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. 


Linzy [00:09:41] So we talked a little bit about the procrastination then, which you’re saying is often perfectionism. Just manifesting differently. What about the perfectionism, just straight up perfectionism that you see related to financial anxiety? 


Lindsay [00:09:54] So related to financial anxiety, I often see it kind of take shape in consuming a lot of information, listening to a lot of podcasts. Hashtag meta. Listening to a lot of podcasts about personal finance, doing a lot of research. Which bank is the best bank to bank with? For my private practice therapist, which electronic health record is best? Which website provider is best? Right? So spending a lot of time kind of splitting hairs over things that might not be the best use of our energy. And for perfectionists, I love kind of creating a little arbitrary deadline, which is like, you can research this all you want until this time tomorrow, you set a timer for an hour and you can look at the difference between therapy notes and simple practice. But you have to make a decision at the end of that hour. Right. And what that does is it gets us out of our own way, because at the end of the month, is spending $2 more or less really going to make or break it? No. But taking action to get an electronic health record up and running will likely pay you back in terms of energy that you gain back in making it easier for clients to schedule, making it easier for you to bill your clients, make it easier for you to communicate with them. All of those things are just so much more seamless when you have something like an electronic health record. But in non therapists there’s a lot of this researching and consuming information. But then oftentimes what that does is it makes it even worse. As in if I’m just trying to figure out how to create a budget and I start reading books about budgeting, there’s always going to be a little appendix about investing or about life insurance or about, you know, saving up for your kid’s college. And then I’m going to go down the rabbit hole of kids college, investing, saving for retirement. And before I know it, I’ve spent all this time and energy researching things, and yet I haven’t started on my budget, which is again how it comes back to procrastination. Yes, but I want to name that that perfectionism around money also comes from that feeling of discomfort. I don’t like feeling like I don’t know enough. I don’t like feeling like I’m not smart enough and it comes from that place. So if we can be kind and gentle with ourselves again to take forward action, it’s good. And the other thing about money, Linzy, is like, it’s not if we make a mistake with money, it’s when, right? Absolutely. When. And we have to normalize that. We will make financial mistakes, that none of us are perfect. I make plenty of financial mistakes and I will continue to make them sure. And it doesn’t mean that I run full force ahead and I don’t do my due diligence. But there’s just things where, you know, when you look back, that wasn’t the wisest decision. But you keep going. 


Linzy [00:12:40] Yes, absolutely. Yeah. The saying that I say sometimes to students in Money Skills is perfect is the enemy of done. 


Lindsay [00:12:47] 100%. 


Linzy [00:12:48] Because, you know, and the other thing that I’ve started to talk about a lot more with students, is just being in the weeds. You get so in the weeds, you’re so caught up in this, as you say, $2 a month. The detail of like, oh, this one’s kind of better, but it’s $2 more expensive and like that, you miss the big picture. Right. You have to zoom out to the big picture and realize, like, right, regardless of what system I choose, having a system, as you say, that like gets me paid, allows me to keep track of cancelations and bill those people and get people into my schedule makes immediately probably, you know, a 30x return on that $2 that you’re worried about. You know, if it’s a whole session fee for you, but it’s so easy for us to get caught in the little things that don’t matter and not take those like bigger, if imperfect actions that do actually count. 


Lindsay [00:13:32] And I can share with your listeners, too, that I am a person who did that. When I first started out in private practice, it was a $40 surcharge or addition to add on electronic billing to my electronic health record. And I was new to starting out and I was like, $40. That’s ridiculous. I’ll do it. And so I did I manually like did my own insurance billing, but it took me between two and 4 hours a week. 


Linzy [00:14:00] Whoa okay. 


Lindsay [00:14:01] A week! Yeah. So if we think about. Wow, what would I have done? Forget the money, I potentially lost seeing 2 to 4 clients a week that I could have seen, but just the energy spent. When I think back to that time, I’m like, I wasted so much literal time. I missed out on money because I was so scared of spending that $40. 


Linzy [00:14:20] Yes, right. It’s like that tightness. I mean, whenever I notice myself or my students in a space of kind of like tightness or restriction, right. Of like $40, that’s a lot of money, when from an outside perspective, somebody to be like, well, is it a lot of money with the money that you’re about to make? That’s always a good clue of like, oh, maybe there’s another way to look at this situation and and valuing your your time too. Because like something that I also think about in terms of our time, in that time for money tradeoff, is like time is not equal, right? So like time, if you choose to do some of your own graphic design because you actually love doing graphic design, that is like time that although you are maybe could be seeing a client making more, you’re enjoying yourself, you’re engaging your creativity, you’re like, Oh, that blue is so pretty, right? That’s very different than time where you’re doing something that like you’re not good at and you hate, which is like going to have an emotional impact on you, which goes beyond that time where, okay, you’ve saved $40, but now you’re in a wretched mood and you’re going to just like eat McDonald’s and like binge on Netflix all night because now you’re like, you know, you feel like you’re bad at things. So I think, yeah, there’s there’s so much nuance to all of these details. And like being connected with those different impacts too, I think adds a lot more to that equation. It’s not just a financial equation, it’s an emotional equation. 


Lindsay [00:15:29] Right. And that pressure to scale, to grow to 3x your income or whatever. I also think it’s worth kind of figuring out whose message is that, whose story is that, and is that something I’m willing to take on? Because I have been really intentional and see like no part of me wants a group practice. Could I do that? I have a very full practice with a waitlist of 170 people. Like. That’s ridiculous. A very easy solution, right, would be to hire another clinician. But I don’t want to do that. I have no interest in doing that. It’s no shade to people who do. But I know myself well enough to say that is not going to be the best use of my time and energy. And I’m- I just surveyed my audience to figure out what they want. And, you know, I’ll figure it out. But I’m not willing to sacrifice my mental and emotional well-being just for the sake of earning more money. 


Linzy [00:16:17] Absolutely not. Yeah. Like I and the phrase that I think of and this may not resonate with everybody listening based on their spiritual things, but like if this is my one and only human life, how do I spend it? This is my time here that I know for sure I’m going to get. And so it’s like, yeah, if, if you know that managing people is like but yeah, like don’t do it right. No amount of money is going to be worth that. Absolutely. So, yeah, really valuing your your time and your emotional experiences, not just dollars on a page because, you know, dollars in your bank don’t actually make your life better. 


Lindsay [00:16:45] Right? 


Linzy [00:16:46] It’s everything else that’s happening around them and what you do with them that actually matters. 


Lindsay [00:16:50] Mm hmm. 


Linzy [00:16:50] So for folks listening, especially if folks identify with this term of financial anxiety, there’s something hovering over us right now that is very financial anxiety inducing for people, which is the R word. Recession. Running around. Yeah. So I’m I’m curious, how are you thinking about the recession and how therapists and health practitioners- how we should be thinking about this looming recession. 


Lindsay [00:17:17] Well, first to folks who are younger than me. I’m a millennial. This is not my first recession. And if you’re younger than me, welcome. This might be your first one, but it will certainly not be your last one. And if we go again, to your point, Linzy, of zooming way out, and we look at economy when we think about a recession, it just means that there has not been growth in the economy. Stock markets have gone down for two quarters in a row, which let’s be really clear, these types of things happen all the time. But when we zoom out, there are periods of good economic times and periods of not so good economic times. So the other thing that as therapists we can do, and I’ve been using this analogy all the time, so apologies for folks who know me. You’ve heard this analogy before, but we’re going to go there is that I’ve been saying to my clients and particularly to my therapist clients, we deal with something every single day that we have no control over and we’ve learned how to deal with that. And that particular thing is the weather, which is different from climate, which is a different discussion for a different day. But if you think about the weather, you and I are both you know, we’re a handful of hours apart. So we’re used to when it’s winter here, we’re getting our wool socks, we’re getting our long underwear out, we’re getting our hats or our touques, as you say. And we’re getting all bundled up so that we can make sure that we feel comfortable and safe outside. Same thing if you’re in like Portland or Seattle, you probably have an umbrella on you at all times. If you’re in the South, you’re used to wearing shorts, whatever. Doesn’t matter. I could go on and on. But the idea here is we can’t change certain things, but we can change how we are prepared for them or how we adapt to them. So as we prepare for a recession or as we experience a recession, we have to think about, yes, I can’t change how the stock market performs or whether or not Amazon’s going to lay off more people. I have no control over that. But what I do have control over is figuring out what will make me feel more financially secure in the face of this recession weather. And for me personally, I’m looking at bulking up my emergency fund a little bit more. I had topped it off or so I thought, and now I’m like, You know what? I think I’m going to start contributing to it again just to give myself a little bit more breathing room when it comes to my private practice. I actually just de-paneled for my last insurance provider, which some people would say Lindsay isn’t insurance a guaranteed income stream. But for me, I’m like looking at that gap in what insurance pays me versus what my out-of-pocket fee is. And I’m like, that no longer makes sense given the context of where we are going. Other things that therapists can consider is making sure that if looking at their retirement accounts, it’s causing them a ton of anxiety because it’s all red numbers and arrows pointing down right now. You don’t have to look. And I know it sounds weird to like do nothing with money, but when it comes to retirement, if you’re listening to this, hopefully you’re at least ten years out from retirement, which means the numbers that are in that retirement account right now will not be the numbers that they are when you do need that money. So saving more, continuing investing and then increasing your income. I know I talked about my fee, but also as therapists: marketing. Marketing invisibility is a way to kind of protect us from the weather. As awful as it sounds, as therapists, we know that we’ve been in more demand in the past two and a half years than ever. We’ve had crises on top of crises on top of crises. And the demand for therapy continues to be high. And as we enter into a recession, some people are saying like, oh, people are going to stop therapy to save money. And I’m like, no, they are not. If anything else, they’re going to make sure that they’re taking care of their mental health and they might cut other things like that Netflix subscription. And also there are so many ways to be accessible, which is a different tirade for a different day. But those would be the things that I would tell private practice therapists is increase your savings if you can, check your sliding scale, check your insurance rates and see if you can still afford to offer them. At that rate, make sure that you’re marketing your services and showing up consistently. And when it comes to retirement, just like don’t really look at it as often right now. 


Linzy [00:21:32] And there is a distinction to be made there, as you kind of indicated, between not looking at your your investments. Right. And that that other kind of like procrastination avoidance we were talking about earlier, one of my students told me the phrase that she was given is like, you know, stock market is like a roller coaster. So like buckle up and don’t try to jump off yet. So don’t try to jump off. You don’t jump off. Right. If this is really the money that you are going to be using to do stuff with your grandkids or go on amazing trips, you know, when you are retired, you don’t need it for so long, like leave it alone. And that’s very different than avoiding. This is like very mindful. Don’t react, right? Like don’t don’t panic. Basically, don’t panic. But which I think is very different than what you were talking about earlier of procrastination, because the procrastination is about the things that we can control. Right. Those things that you’re talking about, like the emergency fund, that’s something you could do something about. You know, looking at your numbers and calculating if they still work for you, you can do something about that. But we can’t, looking at our investments doesn’t make them any better. Right. But it is a good way to make yourself feel very stressed if you’re looking for a good shot of stress. 


Lindsay [00:22:36] Absolutely. Yes. 


Linzy [00:22:39] And I love you put it in context, because I think I am also a millennial, an elder millennial, not to brag, but and so there have been other recessions, certainly in my lifetime. But I also think that just where I was in my career and my life, I wasn’t necessarily paying attention to them then like I am now. And so I think kind of like as we get older, we start to notice it as we’re running businesses. But that definition that you give of a recession where it’s just a time where the economy like where, you know, stocks do not increase, the stock market doesn’t increase for two quarters. Mm hmm. That doesn’t mean that everything’s burned to the ground. Exactly right. And I think that we have this idea, obviously, in capitalism, the story is endless growth, endless prosperity. And that’s not actually how it works. So it’s just like this is just how it works. Market correction is the other term. Right? Yeah. If we want to let you frame it. Yeah, it’s a little market correction. Things have gotten a little out of control. But I agree. I don’t think that it’s going to be massively impact us in our sector. Yeah, if I was working at Amazon, I might be nervous. Right. Because there’s certain areas where big corporations are going to make these big moves. But none of us are working for those big corporations and like good for us that we’ve created financial security. And your boss is not going to fire you. 


Lindsay [00:23:47] Yeah. Yeah. 


Linzy [00:23:48] Because you’re your own boss. So, Lindsay, if folks who are listening are thinking, well, yes, I do have financial anxiety. You’ve, like, hit the nail on the head. This is my life with money. What would be some small first steps that they could take to start to shift this financial anxiety for themselves? 


Lindsay [00:24:07] I think it’s a blend of the the practical and the emotional, which is basically what we’ve been talking about during this entire podcast interview. But thinking about what is the area in my personal finance life that is the most important for me to start feeling less anxiety around. So kind of choosing that area that feels the most important because the reality is all things with personal finance are important. And getting started with one area is better than getting started with no areas. So if for you, saving an emergency fund feels like the most important thing to do, then that’s what I would invite you to do and just start working on that one thing. Just like we don’t tell our clients to just do life overhauls, we tell them, try one thing for a week and let me know how it went when I see you next week. Right. We have to give ourselves that type of permission to take steady steps, not small steps, toward making change and giving ourselves permission that we’re so much smarter than we think we are around money. I think so many therapists say things like, Well, I went into therapy because I’m not good at math or science. And I’m like, Yeah, I failed college algebra. The type of math that we need to be to have a good relationship with money is like very, very minimal. And also the internet exists. So Google a calculator and you’ll be fine. So giving ourselves more credit that we are smart enough to understand this stuff. 


Linzy [00:25:35] Yes. And I think too, you know, therapists, this is one of the things that I think can make therapists and health practitioners especially anxious around money, is I think that we’re used to being really good at things. At least, certainly the folks that I see and work with in Money Skills, is like we’re usually achievers who are used to just being like, Oh, I learned that easy peasy. And so when something is not easy, I think it’s especially tempting to want to like avoid it and spiral into shame because you’re like, Well, if I’m not good at this, it must be because something permanent and fixed about me rather than like, we’re never really taught this. And also people talk about this in a very specific way that is not your language. And like once you get it translated and once you have kind of a corrective experience, what I do find is, as you say, it’s not it’s not the hardest math. It’s arithmetic. Mm hmm. And you can do arithmetic. It’s just, I think oh, so much of it is like when that anxiety starts to calm and you start to shift, then your brain can come online and start doing the math thing that it absolutely is capable of doing. Yeah, absolutely. So, Lindsay, if folks want to get further into your world, what is the best way for them to find you?  


Lindsay [00:26:41] Yeah. My business is called Mind Money Balance, and you can pretty much find me all the places under that handle. My website. My podcast is of the same name. My Instagram handle is of the same name. So you can find me there if you’re interested in learning more about your personal relationship to money, I have a free quiz that’s fun to take. It helps you understand a little bit more about your money archetype at mindmoneybalance.com/quiz. Pretty easy to remember. And then, yeah, as you mentioned, Linzy, my book is over my shoulder. It’s called The Financial Anxiety Solution. And it’s a workbook that really kind of comes at money from kind of an active CBT acceptance based lens. And it’s not really about the mapping to your point, it’s more about the emotions. So that could be a good starting point for therapists. And If you’re going to order my book, I really encourage you to call or email your local bookstore and have them order it for you. It’s just a good way to keep those dollars kind of flowing throughout your community versus, you know, overnighting it on Prime. 


Linzy [00:27:41] Yes. Yes. Awesome. Thank you so much, Lindsay, for joining me today. It’s been really wonderful talking with you. Thank you. 


Lindsay [00:27:48] It’s fun chatting with you again. 


Linzy [00:28:02] I really appreciated, in my conversation with Lindsay, that analogy about the weather. When it comes to recession, I think recession is a word that’s so scary and so loaded, and it can definitely spiral us into the kind of anxious thinking that everything’s about to go sideways. Nobody’s going to come see me anymore. My business is going into the ground, you know, endless opportunity there for catastrophic thinking and black and white thinking and all of those things. And as she mentioned, we all have the capacity to do certain things to support ourselves around the things that we can’t control. So those things that she mentioned around, you know, building up your emergency fund or looking at your numbers just makes so much sense in terms of we can’t control everything about it. And I don’t think it’s going to be that bad for us. But there are things that we can do. And even if those things just give you a little bit more of a sense of like grounding and control, if you have found yourself feeling anxious about the recession, then you’re doing something and you’re taking action and you’re letting those feelings that you have do something in your life rather than carrying them around. And frankly, it’s almost never a bad idea to shore up your emergency fund a little more. So if you don’t have an emergency fund and you’re like, Oh, that’s bringing in financial anxiety for you, then that is a great first step. Just getting a little bit of money put away, that is for those rainy days. Even if you’re only putting away, you know, a couple hundred dollars a month. What I’ve often found is just seeing yourself taking those actions in your finances can start to alleviate anxiety because it makes you realize, I can do these things. These things are within my reach. And there’s something so powerful about that, taking small actions and then pausing long enough to take in the fact that we are taking action and notice and start to shift our beliefs around what we are capable of and let ourselves have new stories about how we act and what we do around money. It’s very powerful. So great advice from Lindsay and definitely check her out on Instagram. She has a wonderful Instagram presence. She also has so many different ways that she supports therapists and people in general with finances and private practice. Definitely worth checking out. I’m so glad you joined me today. If you’re enjoying the podcast, you can follow me on Instagram @moneynutsandbolts. We share practical and emotional money content on there all the time, and if you’ve been enjoying the podcast, please jump over to Apple Podcasts and leave me a review. It is the best way for new therapists who want to be part of these conversations to find me. Thanks for listening today. 

Hi, I'm Linzy

Hi, I'm Linzy

I’m a therapist in private practice, and a the creator of Money Skills for Therapists. I help therapists and health practitioners in private practice feel calm and in control of their finances.

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