Financial Coaching

As I am a Financial Coach, I like to include personal finance advice on the blog from time to time. Often those times are Fridays, but I not officially starting “Financial Fridays” just yet.  Seems like I get closer to doing so every week though…

Today I want to describe what a Financial Coach does.  I know that sometimes people are confused about what exactly I do, so here’s my brief explanation.

My primary goal is to help people achieve a sense of peace when it comes to their finances.  People generally come to me with one of two situations.  They either might be spending more than they earn and are in an uncomfortable amount of debt – wondering if they will have enough money to make it through the month. They might earn what they feel is plenty of money but have no control of how they spend it – basically ending a month wondering where all the money went.

Both of those situations can be very stressful.  Money issues are the leading cause divorce.  Likewise, financial woes are one of the main reasons why people commit suicide.  Less drastically but still seriously, not understanding money has the effect of sleepless nights, stress-related illness, and arguments between partners.

As a Financial Coach I come alongside individuals or couples who are in need of help with handling their finances.  I provide an unbiased look at their income and expenses and help them develop a monthly spending plan that everyone agrees on and helps them work towards their goals.  I provide accountability as they begin to work within the framework of a budget, often for the first time.  No budget runs perfectly the first month, I am there to help fine-tune; working with what went right and recommending changes for what didn’t.

For the majority of those I help, getting out of consumer debt is their immediate focus.  I teach them how to establish an emergency fund and then begin the process of paying down debt using the debt snowball method (Dave Ramsey’s method.  I trained through his organization).  Others have achieved that already, but need guidance on what to do next on a monthly basis as they prepare for their future.

I don’t sell any investments, mutual funds or insurance.  I don’t want people to think I want to work with them just to push products.  Many people tell me how much they appreciate that because everyone else they’ve gone to – traditional Financial Advisors – have a sales agenda at the root of their limited budgeting help.  I don’t mean to criticize Financial Advisors or insurance salespeople, they do a good job at what they do, but walking someone deep in debt through the steps of detailed budgeting over the course of several months just isn’t likely their area of expertise or focus.

When I attended my training in Tennessee with Dave Ramsey’s team, upon graduation I received a coin.  The coin serves as a reminder of what my role is as a Financial Coach.  As you can see in the picture above, surrounding the key element – the heart of a teacher, are my three main priorities.  Understand the situation.  Provide information.  Inject hope.

So many people face what can feel like hopeless situations in their financial lives.  I strive to help people move from that feeling to one of financial peace as they take control of their money and debt.

Have you ever heard of a Financial Coach before today?  Are your finances causing you stress and sleeplessness?  Feel free to contact me with any money-related questions you might have!

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