4 Ways I Am Now More Financially Confident
Kathryn J. has been a Financial Gym client for 1 year. She lives in Pittsburgh and loves gaming with friends, writing, and ceramics.
Before joining the Financial Gym I was fairly good with money, but I never felt good with money. I always worried I wasn’t doing the right thing or I was making an unknown mistake that would come back to bite me. Getting to work with my trainer, Bridget, didn’t alleviate those fears overnight but after a year with the gym I’m making progress. These are 4 of the ways Bridget has really helped me become more financially confident.
1. I have defined goals
When I started at the Financial Gym I thought I was good at defining my goals. But now, looking back at that first financial plan Bridget created I can see they were vague, timid goals. The kind of goals people see in articles about what they should be trying to achieve.
I think Bridget could tell as well and encouraged me to really think about what I wanted. That encouragement pestered the back of my brain for months. What did I really want? I realized slowly that I hadn’t been confident enough to even really think about them. Because what did I know about what I should be doing? But the truth is, I’m the only one who knows what I should be doing.
So before the end of last year I spent a lot of time thinking about them and writing them down. Having things that feel right that you’re working towards is an amazing feeling. Then I had to tell Bridget, which even though she’s always great and supportive, was a huge test to this fragile confidence in my own abilities to chart my own path.
When I had the call with her I could hear the excitement in her voice that I was giving her something real to help me with. It really bolstered my confidence in my goals to have someone smart and honest accepting them. Even more so when she asked questions about them and I could give reasons for each one instead of the old goals that I wouldn’t have been able to. Since then those goals have continued to grow and shift, I’m still working on finding my path, but it’s my path now, not a generic one that I’m walking only because it’s easier than being confident in myself and what I want.
2. I have a real plan
I love making plans. I do not love having to stick to them. So before the Financial Gym my plans were ever-changing. Any time something went wrong I would lose confidence and go back to the comfort of the heady planning phase. Repeating that cycle got me farther than having no plan at all but also meant I never fully achieved anything, which just reinforced the feeling that I wasn’t good with money.
But now I have someone else who knows the details of my plans, who has put effort into making them with me. Things still go wrong (guess whose wisdom teeth weren’t covered by insurance at all?) but now instead of making a whole new plan I work with her to modify the old one. Even though that doesn’t seem like a big difference, it’s been a world of difference in how it makes me feel about myself. I feel adaptable rather than defeated, which is obviously a much better way to feel about myself, making me confident that I can reach the finish line.
And that confidence has shown results. So far this year I’ve paid off all my debt!
3. She sees the me I could be
I wish I was someone who had an innate confidence in myself. But I’ve always been plagued by self-doubt when it comes to my decisions. I tend to undervalue myself and uncut myself in negotiations for money because I feel lucky to just have a job in my field. Bridget set what I needed to be making much higher than I would have asked for on my own. But I asked for it, because Bridget is very good at the ‘you know what you did’ expression (even over the phone, it’s uncanny) when I undercut myself.
And then I got what she wanted me to ask for.
I feel like Bridget can see the person I could become and is slowly pushing me to a place where I can see that person too. The more she pushes me out of my comfort zone where I don’t do things because I’m sure I won’t succeed, the more I see that my old comfort zone sucks. It feels so much better to be confident and as she helps me achieve more and more victories I’m able to be confident more often than I’m doubting myself.
4. Everything is fixable
This is something that Shannon says all the time on her podcast, and it really carries into the way that the trainers handle things that come up. When I feel like I’ve ruined everything by having unexpected expenses Bridget is always there with how to work through the issue. She never throws up her hands and gives up on me, which makes me feel like I can’t give up on myself or a problem.
And she’s always right that it’s fixable, even if the fix is hard work. And so far I’ve always ended up in a better place than I was before something needed to be fixed. The process of fixing has given me a lot of confidence that I don’t need to get everything right on the first go, that I can take calculated risks and learn from mistakes instead of being destroyed by them.
Looking at my budget sheet now doesn’t give me anxiety like I’m walking on a tightrope but a feeling of determination to push towards my goals and a confidence that I can reach them and that I know what I’m doing.
If you’re interested in learning more about The Financial Gym process and how our team of Financial Trainers can help you reach your goals, schedule your FREE 20-minute consult call here.