A Money Coach in Canada

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Are you a broke mom who gives too much?

I worked with many women in their 50s who were broke. At most, they had their home partly paid off, but they had little savings and not much of a nest egg at all. They were understandably deeply anxious about it.

At the same time, they were sacrificially supporting their young adult kids: requesting no rent, or making their kid’s car payments/cel phone bills and more than one mom was putting them through private college.

This was difficult for me. I don’t have kids so I don’t personally know the deep, deep sacrificial love these moms had. And I didn’t know all the familial complexities and history the led up to this point.

But the moms were broke indeed, and rightly starting to sense that they were running out of time.

We would work together to find ways to ask the kids, sometimes for the first time ever, to start contributing to the family finances (rent. paying own cel. selling the car). Sometimes it happened, sometimes not. I suppose that’s because asking a child to start paying rent is so much more than a financial transaction, isn’t it?

If you’re a broke mom who gives too much, the one thing I’d say is this: it’s like being on an airplane and the oxygen mask drops down. Adults are asked to put their masks on first, and *then* help get the masks on the children. If you’re own financial life isn’t healthy (esp. at midlife), consider putting your own financial “mask” on and once you can “breathe normally” you will have a lot more capacity to help your children.

Look.  Bringing your lunch instead of eating out is good.  So is wearing sweaters instead of raising your thermostat.  And there are lots and lots of good ways to live wonderfully but frugally.  All that’s well and good.

But if you’re Canadian, and if you’re reading this, you use the internet.  And it looks like our fees are going to increase.  A lot. No point in being frugal on our lunches out if we let this one just slide by, is there?

There’s something we can all do about it.

1. Watch this vid

2. Sign the petition

Food prices are the highest they’ve been (worldwide) since 1990. Don’t know about you but that really scares me. Haiti, Egypt …

The IRS has made an iPhone App for tax refunds!

If you’re Canadian, you’ve probably seen all the headlines about how in debt we are. Here’s a good article that explains it in plain english, and provides some context.

I’m not really sure why this article was published at this point, but it was news to me that Whistler-Blackcomb was an IPO last November. I’ll be investigating further!

LEEDM.N.1970.34.1 obv

Are you a slave to your money? Or is your money your slave?

I was one of those people brought up with injunctions like “you cannot serve both God and money”.
The way it played out for me was that I didn’t really concern myself at all with money. And I certainly wasn’t about to make it an objective to – God forbid – accumulate wealth (and for that matter, I didn’t really make it an objective to have basic savings, either).

And then it struck me like lightning: having to scramble and not having enough for unexpected things and having to fret about how to pay the bills and not having savings and having a growing fear of growing old without RRSPs and sleepless anxious nights—- all that was an indicator that I was serving money after all.

It still took a number of years to reprogram my core beliefs about money esp. vis-a-vis my spirituality. But somewhere along the way it became so very obvious that actively managing my finances, ensuring I have savings for things ranging from emergency vet visits to my annual holidays, and yes, building a nest egg (accumulating wealth) means money is in service to me, not vice versa.

How ’bout you? Are you enslaved by money? Or is money serving you?

Just a quick headsup: February is the month of love! Wednesday’s posts will be about our relationship with money and Saturday’s posts will be about relationships and money.
If you have questions you’d like me to answer in a post (anonymous!) please e-mail me at moneycoachcanada at g mail dot com.

And of course, check back on Thursdays to be Savvy about current $ news, Fridays for frugal ideas, and Mondays for some gentle images about Contentment.