The Personal Finance Show

The Personal Finance Show is a place for people to tell their personal finance stories. Everyone has a personal finance story.

86 - Stacy Yanchuk-Oleksy

June 13th, 2019

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Stacy Yanchuk-Oleksy wants you to see a non-profit credit counsellor if you have credit problems.

Stacy is Director of Education and Community Awareness at the Credit Counselling Society.

If you’ve listened to episode 76 of the show, you know that I had credit problems 11 years ago. I filed a consumer proposal with a licenced insolvency trustee, under the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act of Canada.

My case was severe so I skipped the first step that many take and that’s going to see a credit counsellor first to discuss options.

There are a lot of great people out there looking to actually help you get out of debt.

Whether you see a counsellor or a trustee, most will help you make the right move for your debt situation.

As Stacy and I discuss in the interview, just make sure that you don’t pay anything upfront for debt solutions and don’t just click on the first link in the online search.

There are websites and companies that appear to be offering debt settlement solutions, but they are just payday lenders in disguise.

Make sure you find out about the company that you’re dealing with. The legitimate trustees and non-profit credit counsellors have nothing to hide. They have names of staff and locations and they are active on social media.

Stacy is very proud of the free workshops and educational resources that the Credit Counselling Society provides in order to try to prevent Canadians from getting into unmanageable debt in the first place.

The most important thing to me is that you know what your options are when you’re in trouble. And I fully recommend you take advantage of free consultations with as many organizations as you can handle. Go meet them in person and talk to them about solutions. Everyone’s situation is different and the more information you have from multiple sources, the better you will be at determining which solution works for you and more importantly, the one you can live with.

Stacy joined me in the studio in Hamilton to tell her personal finance story.

NEXT EPISODE

87 - Robert Farrington


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85 - Shanah Bell

June 6th, 2019

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Shanah Bell wants you to lead a happy, unorthodox life.

You can be successful without following the traditional 9 to 5 career path option. It’s true.

But to get there, you have to be open to opportunity and change, and sometimes you have to be a bit of a PITA, which I recently learned is an acronym for Pain In The Ass.

In fact, Shanah’s new book is called The Art of Being a PITA. It guides new adults and recent college graduates through the ins-and-outs of living life the way they want to. The way that no one talks about.

As she tells it, most people believe you are a pain in the ass if you do things that are contrary to societal norms. For example, if you don’t follow this checklist: 9 to 5 job, marriage, house, kids, work until 65, retire and then finally do what you want, society is like, stop being a pain in the ass and just do what the rest of us are doing.

Shanah’s path is a bit different. She figured out how to do many, many different things for money, on her own terms.

Because this show is about her personal finance story, we didn’t spend a lot of time delving into the 56 jobs Shanah has had, but if you’re interested in the details, pick up a copy of the book, where she goes through each job and the lessons she learned from each one.

Since she wrote the book Shanah has added 4 more jobs: dog boarding, cooking classes, AirBNB, and, of course, author.

Shanah joined me from her home in Raleigh, North Carolina to share her personal finance story.

NEXT EPISODE

86 - Stacy Yanchuk-Oleksy


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84 - Sandy Yong

May 30th, 2019

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Sandy Yong wants everyone to learn about personal finance so that their future self can thank them for it.

Sandy figured out early on that if you give your money to the big banks, and don’t know what you want to invest in, they will choose the ones with the highest fees.

Makes sense, doesn’t it? If you went to a car dealership, and said here’s some money, I want a car, and didn’t give them any parameters like fuel efficiency, or speed, or size or anything, they would sell you the car that makes them the most money. In fact, if they didn’t do that, I would question if they are in the right business.

Sandy figured out that if she learned the basics of personal finance, she could invest her own money, have more control over her risk, and save a ton on fees.

She learned so much about personal finance that when the opportunity came up to publish a book, personal finance was the clear subject.

Sandy’s book, The Money Master, will be published in the summer of 2019.

It’s always great to have another voice in the personal finance community to help increase financial literacy and democratize personal finance.

Financial wellness is nearly impossible to achieve if you are having mental health issues. Recognizing this, Sandy has decided to donate $2 from every sale of her book to CAMH, The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. If you’ve heard my story of addiction and recovery, you know that this has a special meaning for me, so thank you Sandy for making this commitment.

Sandy joined me in the studio in Hamilton to tell her personal finance story.

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85 - Shanah Bell


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To register for my next available personal finance webinar click here.


83 - Ed Rempel

May 23rd, 2019

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Ed Rempel wants you to know that the conventional personal finance wisdom most people follow, might not be the best for your financial situation. Unconventional wisdom, as he calls it, might be your path to financial success.

Ed has been a financial planner for over 25 years and a tax accountant for over 35 years.

He is a Certified Financial Planner, Chartered Professional Accountant, and Certified Hedge Fund Specialist.

Ed has spent the majority of his life actually creating comprehensive financial plans for Canadians and continuously building his knowledge base to help his clients reach financial freedom in the most optimal and efficient way.

Ed has so much unconventional wisdom to share that one podcast episode wasn’t enough. We didn’t even get to talk about all of the really interesting investing and tax strategies that he has become an expert in over the years. So stay tuned for Part 2 of this interview in the coming months.

Ed joined me in the studio in Hamilton to share part 1 of his personal finance story.

NEXT EPISODE

84 - Sandy Yong


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To register for my next available personal finance webinar click here.


82 - Sandi Martin

May 16th, 2019

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Sandi Martin wants someone giving financial advice to be paid by the person who’s receiving financial advice. And the someone giving financial advice should be paid a fee for the financial services they provide.

Sandi worked at a bank for years and her job was to sell the bank’s products.

When people came to her office to ask for financial advice, they didn’t have to pay her anything. The bank paid her. She worked for the bank and not for the people asking for advice. The bank would be happy if the people who came into Sandi’s office purchased one of the bank’s products before they left, and Sandi would be considered a success if she sold as many bank products as she could.

A lot of the time, the products at the bank were not the best products for the people who walked into her office. They weren’t terrible products, but they weren’t the right fit for some of the people. But she couldn’t recommend anything else because she would have lost her job at the bank.

The more she found out about the variety of financial products that existed, she realized that a lot of the best ones for the people who walked into her office at the bank existed outside of the bank.

So she left and created her own financial planning company, which is now called Spring Financial Planning.

She decided she wasn’t going to sell financial products at all.

She would talk to people and find out what they need to achieve their financial goals.

They would pay her a fee to help them make a financial plan that wasn’t tied to any financial products.

When the plan was done and they asked her how they should invest their money in a way that aligned with the goals in their plan, she could point them to a variety of suitable products that they could get from a variety of places. And they would be suitable for her clients because they would help them achieve their financial goals, not because she was getting paid to sell them.

Sandi Martin joined me from somewhere in the middle of the province of Ontario to tell her personal finance story.

NEXT EPISODE

83 - Ed Rempel

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To register for my next available personal finance webinar click here.

81 - Janine Rogan

May 9th, 2019

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Janine Rogan wants you to know that no one is born with an understanding of personal finance.

Janine got pretty good at making money early. Queen of the side hustle, they called her.

But somehow her bank account was always empty and her credit cards were always maxed.

This is, unfortunately, not uncommon in our society.

Making good money, but somehow the money disappears. Some people tell me this like it’s some kind of unsolveable mystery.

Luckily for Janine, she had a friend who pointed her to the world of personal finance books and blogs, and she was hooked after that.

Today you can find Janine’s personal finance writing all over the internet.

Janine joined me from Calgary, Alberta to share her personal finance story.

NEXT EPISODE

82 - Sandi Martin

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80 - Michael Kruse

May 2nd, 2019

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Michael Kruse wants you to not be afraid of changing your career.

We usually go to school for one thing. One field of study. One industry. Then we work hard to find jobs and build experience in that industry. We become experts. After 10 or 15 years we become well known for doing one thing very well.

Maybe you’ve been in the same job or industry for that long and you’re totally fine. You’re paid well, you enjoy the work - there’s no reason to move on.

After 10 years working as a lighting designer in the world of Canadian theatre, Michael Kruse wasn’t fine. Among other issues, he couldn’t see himself ever reaching a comfortable retirement or financial independence making the money he was making.

So in his early thirties, Michael left his long career in theatre and decided he was going to pursue something completely different...he was going to become a paramedic.

Michael joined me in the studio in Hamilton to share his personal finance story.

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81 - Janine Rogan

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79 - Ellen Roseman

April 25th, 2019

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Ellen Roseman has been sticking up for Canadians as an advocate for consumer rights for the past 35 years.

If you’re interested in Canadian personal finance, there’s a pretty good chance you’ve already read something written by Ellen Roseman.

Ellen’s been a personal finance and consumer advocacy columnist at the Toronto Star for over 20 years and though she officially retired from the Star in 2015, Ellen agreed to stay on in a freelance capacity to write a weekly column, featuring consumer issues she believes will have the most impact for Canadians.

Ellen has written 8 books, including Money 101, Money 201 and her latest book Fight Back: 81 ways to help you save money and protect yourself from corporate trickery.

Ellen also teaches investing and personal finance courses at the University of Toronto Continuing Studies and currently sits on the board as co-chair of the Canadian Foundation for Advancement of Investor Rights, which we talk more about in the episode.

Ellen joined me in the studio in Hamilton to tell her personal finance story.

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80 - Michael Kruse

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78 - Owen Winkelmolen

April 18th, 2019

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Owen Winkelmolen wants you to talk to someone...anyone...before you make any investment decisions.

Ideally it would be someone in the personal finance realm. A coach like me, or a financial planner or advisor.

But please just talk to someone, because if you do, you might save yourself from making the huge financial mistake Owen made in his late twenties.

You’ll have to listen to the episode to find out exactly what happened, but let’s just say it was a bad enough experience that Owen decided to start learning as much as he could about personal finance which ultimately led to the creation of his company PlanEasy.ca.

Owen joined me in the studio in Hamilton to tell his personal finance story.

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79 - Ellen Roseman

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77 - Saijal Patel

April 11th, 2019

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Saijal Patel wants you to know that women are 80% more likely to live in poverty in retirement than men.

This is a terrible statistic. Seriously, why is anyone living in poverty in retirement.

If someone is retired, that means they have either worked at a job or a business their whole life, or have supported someone else who worked, in one way or another.

And this person now gets to live in poverty? Why is this acceptable?

Saijal doesn’t think it’s acceptable. She started a company called Saij Elle where she helps women build the right money mindset and skills so they can own their financial independence and achieve true financial wellness.

And the thing about Saijal is that she comes from the business world, and knows how to talk to businesses as well as individuals. She knows that the system itself needs to be changed, and one of her mandates is to encourage businesses to build effective financial wellness programs.

Financial wellness takes a village and everyone has to be on board: individuals, companies, the media and the financial industry.

There is a shift in the way personal finance is being delivered to the public and Saijal is leading the way by helping reduce the money stigma and shame many women feel every day.

Saijal joined me in the studio in Hamilton to tell her personal finance story.

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78 - Owen Winkelmolen

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76 - Beau Humphreys

April 4th, 2019

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For this episode, the host becomes the guest and my wife becomes the host!

I decided that after 75 episodes it was time to become the guest and tell my story.

I’ve talked a lot on the show about my history with addiction but just bits and pieces here and there.

I asked my wife, Kaila, if she would take over as the host for an episode and she agreed!

We talked about how I got into my gambling addiction, how I got out of it, and what I learned about personal finance, and life in general, along the way.

It all started with a Super Nintendo…

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77 - Saijal Patel

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75 - Recap of Episodes 1 to 74

March 28th, 2019

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For my 75th episode I decided to record a 75 minute episode with 74 1-minute (or less) segments, one for each of the 74 shows published so far (leaving 30 seconds for the introduction and whatever is left for the sign-off).

Each segment has an introduction/commentary and a short clip of the show.

So if you want to experience the evolution of The Personal Finance Show without spending 75 hours, now you can get a taste of the first 74 episodes in only 75 minutes.

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76 - Beau Humphreys (Yes, I'm the guest next week!)

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74 - Larry Bates

March 21st, 2019

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Larry Bates want you to Beat The Bank.

That’s the title of his new book and it’s all about challenging the status quo of Canadians paying the highest investment fees in the world and believing that the financial industry has their best interests at heart.

You see Larry spent his whole career on the business side of the banking and investment worlds. One day he was sitting up in his ivory tower and a phone call from his sister changed everything.

That’s when he decided to use his knowledge about the financial industry to become an advocate for Canadian investors. Larry is all about transparency and making sure you don’t pay high investment fees and he proves in his book that you don’t need to be an expert to be an investor. You just need to know the basics.

Larry joined me in the studio in Hamilton, to share his personal finance story.

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75 - Recap of Episodes 1-74

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73 - John Lanza

March 14th, 2019

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John Lanza wants to help families raise money-smart, money-empowered kids so that they can live happier, more fulfilled lives.

John is the creator of the Money Mammals and the author of The Art of Allowance.

I want to tell you everything about the Money Mammals because I like them so much, but it’s probably best that you listen to the interview and then go to Youtube and search for the Money Mammals. Describing them as puppets who are in a band and sing and play songs about money, just doesn’t feel like I’m doing them justice.

There is a Money Mammals DVD, 3 books for kids and now for parents the new book The Art of Allowance, which provides an allowance framework to find the right way for you to set up an allowance system for your kids. There is also a companion Art of Allowance podcast where John interviews parents about their allowance systems and what’s working, or not working, for them.

The thing I noticed most about all of John’s money resources for kids is how well designed and produced everything is. From the websites to the videos,songs, interactive games, and books, it’s just an amazing collection.

John joined me from Los Angeles to tell his personal finance story.

NEXT EPISODE

74 - Larry Bates

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72 - Loonie Doctor

March 7th, 2019

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The Loonie Doctor wants to keep new doctors from falling into the lifestyle inflation trap.

The Loonie Doctor prefers to remain anonymous so all I can tell you is that he is a doctor and he lives somewhere in Southern Ontario.

As you may have heard, doctors are always the best at managing their own personal finances and it’s not surprising. I want my doctor to be really good at being a doctor. They have tons of information in their brains and for many, there is no more room for finances.

And it may seem like doctors don’t need help because they make so much money, but the sad truth is that the more money you make, the more debt and subsequent trouble you can get into.

The path to getting your medical licence is often very long. You get your undergrad, then 3 to 4 years of medical school, and then 3 or more years of residency, before you start making what you and I would consider to be real doctor money.

So the shift from the student/resident lifestyle to the doctor lifestyle can be shocking for some and can lead them on a path of spending money they think they have, but really don’t, not tackling their debts right away and not thinking about saving money at all. Often they end up working longer than they need to, and burning out as a result.

The Loonie Doctor decided to start a blog to try to help new doctors get a handle on things as early as possible in their careers.

He joined me in the studio to tell his personal finance story.

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73 - John Lanza

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71 - Tom Drake

February 28th, 2019

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Tom Drake is known as the godfather of Canadian personal finance bloggers.

In fact, Tom just hit his 10-year blogging anniversary this month, February 2019.

Originally Canadian Finance Blog, Tom rebranded to Maple Money and now even has a podcast called the Maple Money Show (I was on as a guest in November 2018).

Tom has created thousands of personal finance posts over the years and he did it all while working a full-time job during the week, at a company that he started with 18 years ago and still works at today.

If you’ve listened to the show, you’ve heard me talk about FinCon, North America’s largest personal finance conference. I did Episode 51 live from FinCon 2018 in Orlando. Well, Tom has been to every single FinCon since 2011, and I’m sure I will see him again this year in Washington, D.C.

Tom joined me from Calgary, Alberta to tell his personal finance story.

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72 - The Loonie Doctor

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70 - Michelle Hung

February 21st, 2019

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Michelle Hung is on a mission to empower women to take control of their finances by providing them the education and support in order to gain the confidence they need to make their own investment decisions.

Michelle has a degree in math, is a Chartered Financial Analyst and worked on Bay Street as an investment banker for 7 years. But instead of keeping all of this financial knowledge to herself and continuing to make buckets of money in IB, as she calls it, Michelle decided to focus on helping others.

Michelle wrote a fantastic investment workbook called The Sassy Investor which was just released in early 2019 . As you’ll hear in the interview, I’m a huge fan of this book. It’s colourful and fun, and you can even colour in it. But it also breaks down personal finance and investing so it’s easy to understand.

As she states on page 6 of the book, Michelle wrote The Sassy Investor to create an inviting and comforting environment for women when dealing with finances.

I like this book so much, Michelle agreed to give me 3 copies to give away to my listeners. To enter the giveaway head to beauhumphreys.com/giveaway before March 31st, 2019. And if you’re listening to this after the giveaway has closed, you can get a copy of the book for yourself at thesassyinvestor.ca.

Michelle joined me in the studio in Hamilton to share her personal finance story.

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71 - Tom Drake

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69 - Jason Butler

February 14th, 2019

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Jason Butler wants you to know that you can still have fun and live your life while you are in debt.

Jason graduated from Savannah State University in 2008 with around $25,000 in debt, but due to a variety of factors, which we discuss in the interview, his debt increased to over $72,000 by 2015.

His most recent debt report from the end of December 2018 has his total debt down to just over $66,000.

In 2013 Jason started The Butler Journal, and starting blogging about his debt repayment and side hustles to help him become more accountable with his finances.

He decided he wouldn’t let this huge debt control his life. He would try his best to pay it down over time, but since he knew that would take a while, he made a point to try to enjoy his life as well.

In 2019 The Butler Journal rebranded as My Money Chronicles, and Jason is working on some great things for 2019 at mymoneychronicles.com.

Jason has had a few setbacks over the years, but what I admire about him is that he keeps trying different side hustles, writing about them and helping others find ways to pay down their debts and make extra money with their own side hustles.

Jason is not alone with his large student debt. As of 2018, the total student debt amount in the US was $1.5 Trillion.

Jason joined me from Atlanta, Georgia to tell his personal finance story

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70 - Michelle Hung

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68 - Rubina Ahmed-Haq

February 7th, 2019

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Rubina Ahmed-Haq wants you to know that personal finance can be exciting!

Rubina is a personal finance expert and has been a broadcast journalist for 20 years..

Rubina’s experience in broadcasting means that she has this ability to take dry financial topics and make them interesting.

20 years in broadcast journalism also means that Rubina has some very interesting stories, some of which you will hear in this interview.

Rubina did an excellent job as host of the Canadian Personal Finance Conference this past November and I’m excited to be helping her launch her new podcast called Dear Rubi. Head to dearrubi.com for details on how you can be part of the podcast.

Rubina joined me in the studio in Hamilton to share her personal finance story.

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69 - Jason Butler

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67 - Nico Barawid

January 31st, 2019

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Nico Barawid wants you to know that personal finance is very different for immigrants.

And it’s even harder if you’re an immigrant who is also a woman or person of colour, like Nico’s Mom.

Nico came to the US from the Philippines with his parents when he was very young.

Despite the fact that they were both medical residents and eventually doctors in the US, Nico’s parents faced a lot of financial discrimination because of their lack of credit history.

And the worst part about this is that it isn’t that they lack credit history entirely, it’s that they didn’t have credit history in the US. They had student loans and credit cards in the Philippines before they left.

So why wouldn’t that credit history count in the US? Good question. It’s because the credit evaluation process is broken. For as long as financial institutions have been around, no one has ever thought to connect the global credit reporting systems in a meaningful way. And all of the local systems are different so good credit in the Philippines means nothing to US banks.

So when the 3 founders of a new company called Nova Credit were looking for their first employee, Nico jumped at the opportunity to help fix this broken system.

Nico is now working with banks and credit bureaus around the world, connecting them one at a time so that one day, immigrants with good credit will be able to bring that credit to the US and Canada, and not have to go through what Nico’s parents went through.

I’m very happy that Nico is doing this and that he joined me from the San Francisco Bay Area to tell his family’s personal finance story.

NEXT EPISODE

68 - Rubina Ahmed-Haq

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66 - Jackie Lam

January 24th, 2019

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Jackie Lam wants you to be proud of being frugal.

Frugal doesn’t mean cheap.

There was a time when Jackie needed to be frugal because she had no choice.

But today, for her and many others, being frugal is really about making sure that her spending behaviour aligns with her values.

It’s about making money decisions that help you live your best life.

But for many years, Jackie was shamed for her frugality. Whether it is actually a symptom of living in poverty or a value choice, many people still judge frugality and praise free spending.

So imagine the validation when Jackie gets to college and meets other frugal minded individuals like her. Finding frugal friends that celebrated their frugality inspired Jackie to create a blog in 2009 called Cheapsters, which morphed into HeyFreelancer.com, her site about keeping your money in check so you can do what you love.

Jackie joined me from Los Angeles to share her personal finance story.

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67 - Nico Barawid

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65 - Damion Lupo

January 17th, 2019

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Damion Lupo wants you to ask yourself: How can I serve and contribute to others in a deep and meaningful way?

If you’re just chasing dollars without meaning, you could end up rich if you’re lucky, but even if you are one of the lucky ones who makes millions, there’s a good chance you’re going to be miserable.

Damion’s been there. He made millions and then lost it all. And he wasn’t able to get back on track until he found meaning and truth and focused on that instead of just making money.

After going through this experience he and a friend wrote a book called Reinvented Life. Reinvented Life is a process and methodology for stepping into the life you are supposed to be living versus the one you are living today.

Personally, I think we should make it a habit of stepping back from our lives and asking: is what I’m doing adding value to the world? Is what I’m doing fulfilling? Am I making a difference in any way other than lining my pockets?

The most important thing to me is that you’re living the life that you want and that you chose, rather than just following a path or a checklist made up by someone who has no idea what is best for you.

Damion shifted from helping himself get richer to helping others have the life they always wanted. Here is his personal finance story.

(To get the free Reinvented Life workbook head to:  http://reinvention.net/)

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66 - Jackie Lam

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64 - Melissa Leong

January 11th, 2019

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Melissa Leong wants you to spend smart, save right and enjoy life.

Those are the words on the cover of her new book Happy Go Money, which was just released this week!

Melissa is a personal finance writer, on-air personality, speaker and bestselling author.

You might be thinking, Beau, you can’t say bestselling author if Melissa’s first book just came out.

Well we didn’t talk about this in the interview but Melissa is already a bestselling author. Her self-published paranormal adventure novels, What Kills Me and I Am Forever, written under the pen name Wynne Channing, have sold almost 70,000 copies and soared to #1 on a number of bestseller lists on Amazon.

Melissa is funny and mindful and really just wants to help you manage your money while maximizing your happiness.

Melissa invited me to her home where I got to meet her family, have some snacks and talk about her personal finance story.

NEXT EPISODE

65 - Damion Lupo

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63 - Cal MacWilliam

December 21st, 2018

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Cal MacWilliam helps developing countries get money when they need it most.

Cal is a senior economist at the World Bank, a global organization that helps to reduce poverty and build shared prosperity in developing countries.

Cal will meet with the government officials of these countries, who have already reached out to the World Bank for loans or grants, and provide them with the funding they need.

OK it's not that easy.

The government officials might need to make a few changes, before they qualify for the loans or grants. These are usually changes that will improve their country in some way. Positive changes.

Sounds like it should be an easy decision, right? Implement policy change that is meant to improve the lives of your citizens and you get money from the world Bank.

Money you asked for. Money that you said you really needed. And If it's a grant, you don't even have to pay that back.

But often Cal will visit these countries after speaking with their government officials and find they haven't made the changes necessary to qualify for the money.

Despite these frustrations, Cal continues to dedicate his career to helping others, as he has since he started at the Canadian International Development Agency or CIDA in the 1980s.

Cal now lives near Washington DC and I was very happy that he agreed to sit with me, when I was visiting earlier this year, to talk about his personal finance story.

NEXT EPISODE

64 - Melissa Leong

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62 - Zena Amundsen

December 14th, 2018

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Zena Amundsen wants you to know that money is emotional.

One of the emotions often associated with money is fear.

That’s what Zena felt when she separated from her husband for 2 years, with 2 small children and absolutely no knowledge of her personal finances.

It was during that time that she decided to stop worrying about money and start learning about it instead.

Today she is a Certified Financial Planner, Certified Divorce Financial Analyst and a Certified Cash Flow Specialist.

She’s got the financial knowledge but that’s only part of it. Personal finance isn’t just about graphs and rates of return.

Money is emotional but we don’t talk about it that way. Realizing the current financial education system is lacking, Zena decided to write a book called “The Heart of Your Money” specifically to empower Canadian women to build a healthy relationship with money.

Zena joined me from Regina, Saskatchewan to tell her personal finance story.

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