How Karen Is Rewriting Chapters of Her Money Story A Year After Bankruptcy

Money Files

Brave is the word I’d use to describe the client that I’m chatting with this week in my Money Files series. After filing bankruptcy almost a year ago, Karen reached out to me because she wanted to rebuild her financial foundation. 

At the time, she was apprehensive about hiring a financial coach because she feared rejection and disappointment, something she’s experienced often and wanted to avoid at all costs. But she also knew that risking that was important because she wanted to regain her financial confidence.  So after talking, she said yes to my one-month intensive.

Karen has made phenomenal growth since working with me.  She’s gone from bankruptcy and inconsistently saving money to easily accounting for unexpected expenses like car maintenance and saving more than $2,000 in less than 8 weeks. 

Tune in to Karen’s story to learn…

  • How being honest with herself has helped her improve her finances and allowed her tackle challenges in other areas of her personal life 
  • How Karen changed her views about “extra” money in her account and why that shift created greater financial confidence
  • The biggest shift she experienced within the first two weeks of working together that gave her increased mental space 
  • What she’s learned about her own emotional spending and how she’s learning to process the urge to spend 
  • What she believes kept her in delusion about her finances 

Since working with me,  Karen has started to rewrite her financial story. This time she’s setting financial priorities and creating a new type of freedom, financial freedom.  You do not want to miss this conversation.  

This episode is for you if you want to stop believing the negative narrative you have about money or truly desire to see what’s possible when you have an accountability partner. I know you will find Karen’s story to be relatable, real and true. 

After you listen, hit reply and tell me what part of Karen’s story resonated with you most. 

And if you’ve been on the fence about whether financial coaching is right for you, let Karen’s story be an example that your life – and your finances – can change in the next month, six months, and beyond. Let’s schedule a call so you can rewrite your money story and reach your financial goals. 

Listen to Karen’s Money Files Episode

The Transcript


[00:00:00] Hello everyone. My name is Keina Newell. I’m a financial coach and I work with professional women and solopreneurs to create new possibilities with their money. If you are tuning in right now, you are joining me for money files. So welcome. Hello today, I’m joined by one of my favorite clients, Karen, and the word that I think about that describes her the most is brave.

[00:00:24] During our work together, she’s been incredibly reflective and I am incredibly proud to be her coach. And so thankful that she was willing to ask for her. I know that no matter where you are on your financial journey, her story will resonate with you. She’s experienced what some fear and that’s filing bankruptcy, but she’s courageously rewriting her money story every single day.

[00:00:48] And she’s including the chapters that weren’t there before she filed bankruptcy. So definitely tune in, open up a notebook and write down all of the nuggets that Karen drops. Hi, my name’s Keina. Thank you so much for joining me for another episode of money files. I am here today with my client. Karen, Karen, thank you for joining me.

[00:01:08] I’m glad to be here. Thanks so much. I just want to go ahead and give you an opportunity to just go ahead and dive into this conversation. Tell us a little bit more about who you are.


[00:01:21] My name is Karen and I live in Texas. I’m an executive assistant who is starting over in life. And it’s one of the reasons I reached out to you for help.

[00:01:33] One of the


[00:01:33] things I know before we recorded this conversation, you said Keena. I think that I can’t remember exactly what you said, but I felt like you basically told me you could be a poster child for bankruptcy. But one of the things I know in reflecting on your story is I think about how brave you are and I’ll let you get into this a little bit more.

[00:01:53] For listeners that are listening. Karen is a year out from filing bankruptcy. Am I right Karen? That’s right. Can you tell us a little bit more about like how bad was it really before we started working to.


[00:02:08] I think when I kind of discovered you on Instagram, I was pretty broken and I was pretty defeated by life.

[00:02:18] And the financial situation I had found myself in, you know, years of kind of being a brainwashing myself, by telling myself I’m really good at spending money. And I’m pretty good at making it. But other than that, I’m kind of useless. I used to always believe. The story of the ant and the grasshopper, where the ants work all year to get ready and be ready for the winter and the grasshopper just plays and then deals about it later.

[00:02:48] And that’s kind of how I was with money and it just kinda got to a breaking point. And when I started hearing about you on Instagram and. Following you and listening to you and watching you. I thought, I think this is someone that can help me and understand me and not just talk at me, but work with. And it was a giant leap of faith on my part because making significant life changes at 60, almost 60 is a hard thing to do.

[00:03:19] Uh, it’s a hard thing, especially coming from kind of a defeated attitude, just in general of life with the bankruptcy and a relationship ending and a bunch of other things. It’s kind of hard to think that you can learn a new trick, but I knew that there was only one way. I mean, there was only one way to go and that was up.

[00:03:38] And I knew that I was smart enough to figure out finances. And I knew that the only person responsible for me was me. So that’s kind of where I was when I discovered you.


[00:03:50] Thank you for sharing that. So you told us a little bit about where you were when we first started working together and you, we actually did the one month intensive.

[00:04:00] How did, if you can remember, how did you feel coming into that first call? And just within those first few weeks of us working together, I know one of the reflections you had is that you thought about like, there’s, you know, there’s only one way in that that one way is up.


[00:04:17] Well, I think I knew by the time, cause I stalked you on Instagram for a long time.

[00:04:20] Like, I think I must have stocked you probably since March or April. And we just started working until September, maybe I think, or October, September thing. So I spent a lot of time. Watching your money files and listening to your clients and that kind of thing, because I knew that if I was going to make this leap of faith and try and make this change in my life, that had to be the right person, because if it was another person that disappointed me or rejected how I was at the time, that was going to be it for me.

[00:04:53] And I know the first phone call, I felt very comfortable with you. You asked all kinds of questions and I was able to. Tell you of the bankruptcy and talk about how my relationship with money and where I had been, or like, or how I grew up with this relationship with money. I came from a very influential or very wealthy family, you know, governesses and private planes and private schools.

[00:05:15] And the weird thing about growing up with that kind of money is that we were never taught about it. How you save it. This is what you do with that. There was never, we never were talked to about that. And I had a parent who it turned out was who I followed in that area at where made it, made it and bought things to impress people and bought things.

[00:05:40] So they would be friends with him and very unhealthy attitudes about money, but certainly back knowing my father’s own relationship with his father and their money issues. I understand how he got to be like that. And my mom was the complete opposite in the fact that she was very tight with her money and she held onto her money.

[00:06:00] I was a joy spreader for me. Money was about spreading. Taking people on trips or going on trips or buying people what they needed or helping people with a mortgage. It was, you know, I would give everybody my last dollar. So in talking to you about like my shame around money, the shame around bankruptcy, right after that first 45 minute phone call, I already felt better.

[00:06:22] Like there was somebody on my side. And then when we started working together, even though it was overwhelming with the fact that here’s, um, I’m here now and I’m paying for it and I have to actually do it, which I was reluctant at first, the tracking was a hard thing for me. And then I even at the beginning was like, hide this over here.

[00:06:42] She will see an item. Then when you started saying, well, let’s look at your bank account. I’m like, oh, well, okay. I guess I can’t do that anymore. So it was really, it was really about being honest with myself and like, You know, looking at my accounts every day and facing the mirror and seeing everything.

[00:06:59] And I think it was amazing to me that what you could do with my not big paycheck. I remember just being flabbergasted, that she was like, oh, we’re going to put it over here and here and here and here. And we discovered very quickly that I do much better. If the money is not near me, I do much better when it’s over.

[00:07:20] You know, this is over here and that’s over there and I can still visit. I can still look at it, but I can’t do anything with it. That was a big thing for me. Then I, then I just said to you last week, I do much better when I am reigned really in with like, this is how much you have for groceries and gas and entertainment, everything else.

[00:07:38] Don’t worry about it


[00:07:40] so much. Yeah. I have all these notes down that I’m like, okay, let me ask all these follow-up questions. One of the things that I want you. You talked about being honest with yourself and the fact that you realize that when I ask you to show me your bank account, she couldn’t hide anything.

[00:07:59] And for any of you who listening, I’ve heard from several different clients that they’re like, well, I have to go on this. Like last supper, last spending spree before I worked with Keena or whatever. And my goal is not to make any of my clients feel like shame, guilt, or overwhelmed. You already have those things.

[00:08:17] I don’t need to provide that reflection for you at all. But how has being honest with yourself really helped like your progress in our work


[00:08:26] together? Well, it’s more freeing because. I can’t really get away with anything anymore. And when you’re alone and you don’t have anybody helping you or dealing with Eden other things in life, you know, their little ways to get around a situation or get through a situation.

[00:08:42] But this is very unforgiving and it’s not a bad thing to be truthful with yourself. Cause I was even thinking about today. I was like, you know, if I can actually deal with this financial thing and get on track and understand and be comfortable with it, what other part of my life. And learn, you know, kind of attack as much as I have with this, or try to make a change as much as I have, but this is not, it’s not ever easy being honest with yourself because I think everybody tells themselves little lies on a daily basis, you know?

[00:09:14] Oh, you look really cute in that outfit. You don’t really, or my hair looks really good today. Yeah. Not really. I mean, you know, there are there, you know, everybody has that mirror, they like to use and you know, with the money, there’s just no doubt. And I understand that some people will think it’s weird that, you know, you’re looking at the bank accounts, but it’s not peanut doesn’t have access to my bank accounts.

[00:09:36] We share a screen and we look at my bank and she could see exactly what I have done in the two weeks prior or the week prior in your,


[00:09:46] from your perspective, why do you think I asked you to share your screen so we can look at your bank?


[00:09:51] For that reason only accountability. And because there are people like me, I think I know there’s, I’m sure there’s a lot of people out there that have had years and years of dodging their husband with things that they have bought or dodging themselves with things are bought.

[00:10:07] And I think, you know, you can’t make a significant life change or be significantly better with your finances without being a hundred percent.


[00:10:18] It’s so funny. Cause that’s not why I ask you to share your screen. There is definitely an accountability part, but as we’re like coaching together. So for anyone who’s listening to this, it’s for my processing style, it’s easier for me to see what’s happening.

[00:10:37] Cause there’s things that trip you up and you, you come to this money date and you’re balancing your spending plan. And you’re like, well, Keina I can’t, I can’t get it to balance. It’s not working. And so I’m able to reflect back. What with you to say, like what happens or some of my clients as well, like they’re using credit cards still.

[00:10:57] And so I want them to know if I spent $30 on my credit card. Where does that come from in your spending plan? So really taking you through like that cognitive process, because so many times. We use, I saw somebody post this on Instagram today that like your credit card is like a debit card. So treat it like a debit card, not a gift card.

[00:11:20] And so many people are treating your credit card, like a, like a gift card. And it’s just like, look, it’s just endless money. And so we don’t think about how we have to pay that back, but it does definitely present a level of accountability.


[00:11:33] And plus I think also, because when you do that with me, it also helps me understand how to do the money date with myself.

[00:11:41] ’cause that’s been the hardest process for me was learning how to like this week. Finally, I did it by myself and I got it to zero and I’d never been able to do that, you know, but I think by going through that every week or every two weeks with you and seeing how you do it, it just kind of by osmosis.

[00:11:55] And I did it exactly how we have been doing it for the last six weeks, like where all the balances down. And then I opened up all those accounts and went back and looked and again, Breathing heavily as I started, because like I said, I had put it off for two days because I was so afraid of not doing it.

[00:12:11] But once I got into it, I was like, oh yeah. I mean, you know, half those accounts don’t really change that much because I’m not using them except adding money. So it’s really only two or three accounts that I have to kind of worry about then. And because I get now, like you had said, I had this kind of healthy, a little bit of a fear of mine.

[00:12:30] Which is a good thing. So now whenever there’s something that I, you know, like all of a sudden I have a hundred dollars left over. I’m like, I’m not touching it because I don’t know what I’m supposed to do with an excess of, I mean, I could tell you what I would have done with an excess of a hundred dollars and that would have been spent it.

[00:12:47] I thought I’m just gonna leave it there. And then when I talked to kinos, she will, we’ll talk about what I’m supposed to do with it. So yeah, there is a, you know, it’s kind of funny to me the way I am with money now, because. I, and I literally have shared what I’m doing with nobody in my life, because most people probably would fall down dead.

[00:13:06] If they learned that I knew what a budget was or that I had multiple savings accounts. And then I was like, oh, I can’t sorry. I can’t go, nah, I can’t none of the budget. And they’re just like, wait, what, what,


[00:13:18] tell us some more about what shifts have you had since we what’s our, like, what’s the biggest shift you’ve had since we started working together.

[00:13:25] You know, I think


[00:13:26] the biggest shift because I was so. Broken and so defeated by the money thing. And I think I had told you, like right off the bat, I think right after I think our first. Intensive where I woke up on payday and had moved all this money around. And in the next couple of weeks, I would look at my well my spending account and it wasn’t bleeding money because before you, I only had one.

[00:13:52] And everything went into everything came out. It was just a steady stream. I also, I think another shift for me was I can do this. I was believed that I couldn’t and that I want to, and then it made me a boring person. And then once I started doing it, I know my personality hasn’t changed that much, except that I’m a little bit more aware.

[00:14:12] Uh, what I’m doing with my money. And I think because I was so defeated on so many levels, when I came to you that I’m starting to kind of get my mojo back a little bit as who I am and what I’m worth financially. Like isn’t a job. I don’t get paid as much as I know I’m worth, but I think battling this and getting this in a place where I actually can see that, that that’s true.

[00:14:35] Like I do need to make more money and I am worth more than what I’m making is probably the biggest shift. That’s awesome.


[00:14:43] And I also know that you talked about being able to sleep better at night. Which I try to articulate. The reason I love these conversations is because I feel like the things that you, my clients can project are so powerful.

[00:14:58] And oftentimes for me, I’ve distilled it down to like the things that. I think happened first for clients in working with them in terms of like results. Like, no, you probably don’t get to stay in with like a letter board that says you paid off $50,000 in a month, but you definitely get to say, like, I am more aware, like I have a new awareness that.

[00:15:21] That’s enlightening. Right. It’s not heavy. And then also being able to like shift the financial stress, I’ve had a lot of people share that it’s like, literally I feel like I can, like a weight is lifted off my shoulder or like some section of my brain that was only thinking about money. Like now it has the capacity to think about something else.


[00:15:44] Right. I think, you know, I told you, I think I actually had sent you a message when it happened. One morning. I noticed my battery in my car wasn’t quite acting right. And when I got out of work that day, it definitely was not working well at all. And before working with you, I would have freaked out because this was, I don’t know, four or five days past payday, and probably I would have been broke and it would have been freaking about where to get money for it.

[00:16:09] Drove the car to the dealership. And I was confident because a, I knew I had an emergency fund that would hold the money and be, even though my first instinct was to put it on the credit card and then worry about it later. But then I was like, no, Keina won’t like that. So I just moved the money while I was waiting in the waiting room.

[00:16:27] I literally was in the waiting room at the dealership. I moved the money from one account to the other and pay for it. And off I went and there was no stress and it was a big, big moment for me that. It doesn’t like does not have to be this kind of rollercoaster with money as it’s been like with that in the past.


[00:16:46] When you think about like, I know earlier you said something to the effect of, it’s amazing what Keina can do with my paycheck. Would really, it’s amazing what Karen can do with her paycheck.

[00:17:00] What has been like most enlightening for you in creating a spending plan?


[00:17:07] I think one of the most enlightening thing is. Just the amount of ridiculousness of the, I turned out that I am an emotional spender and I never knew that, but to bit, but in all fairness, prior to my bankruptcy, I had taken five years off from life and had traveled around the world.

[00:17:25] Many, many times I had a grandfather that had left me a significant amount of money and my plan was suspended and I did. And that’s how it kind of landed me where I was in the wrong end of life. So for five years in my life, I bought anything and everything that moved. If I wanted to go surfing in valley, I went, if I wanted to buy iPads for all my friends for Christmas, it did.

[00:17:48] So I had to shift out of that mentality and that was a hard thing to do, but it turns out that even that spending was emotional. And so learning about the fact learning more about me from this, the emotional spending. And even though I bought that cute $25 thing on Amazon, did it do anything really? For me?

[00:18:12] Did it feel, you know, did it really bring home the reason why I bought it? No, it was just pretty, it was just pretty and shiny and pretty and shiny.


[00:18:22] How have you, how have you been processing emotional space? You know, actually,


[00:18:28] you know, within, I think probably the first month of working with you, once I started seeing what my money could actually do and where it can go and how it can grow, the urge kind of stopped.

[00:18:38] I mean, I think the last time I had an urge to buy anything was probably has it been a month maybe for some reason, even though I don’t really recognize the holidays, like I don’t really do much for Christmas. I had gone on pottery barn and I had $200 worth of stuff in my cart and I was going to use my.

[00:18:56] And then I looked at it and all I thought, oh God, then I have to explain it. It’s not going to be a good. And so then I just got rid of it because I’ve never had to, I’ve never had, I’ve never had anybody hold me accountable. Don’t have a husband, don’t have a kids, don’t have mortgages, don’t have any of that stuff.

[00:19:10] So it didn’t matter to anybody but me how my money was spent, having somebody accountable for however, how long that is, is grateful until I can be accountable. And that’s the big difference.


[00:19:25] I’m going to see how you answer this question. I’m really interested in what you say in terms of celebrating yourself.

[00:19:31] What accomplishments would you say you are most excited about celebrating?


[00:19:37] You mean financially


[00:19:39] or even how this is like spread into other areas of your life? Right.


[00:19:44] Well, I think for the first time in my life, I actually have financial goals. And there are some days, you know, when it’s a bad day or if it’s a beat up day or, you know, the urge to do something reckless that my money is there.

[00:19:55] I still can go back to that and look on my spreadsheet and see what we had talked about, you know, back in September about what my financial goals were like, maybe I can buy a house and maybe I can move to a different state and maybe I can do all things. And I think that’s something I’ve never done.

[00:20:11] I’ve just kind of gone through. Going through life, never had any goals or anything. You know, I went to college, it was in the military, it was an advertise. I mean, it just, wherever it went, it went. And I think that has been the biggest thing for me is like all of a sudden there’s a plan, a little late in life to have a plan that works for now.

[00:20:32] And hopefully it’ll keep working.


[00:20:35] I definitely think it will keep working. What would you say is something that you still find to be challenged?


[00:20:42] I think I haven’t quite gotten into the schedule of sitting down once a week and doing the financial date. It still scares me a little bit, even though I know, like, I think I told you the other day, I sit in the parking lot at the grocery store and I look to make sure I have X amount to go grocery shopping.

[00:21:00] Like before I do anything now I look and I make sure. That I, that money is there because there’s nothing worse than going in someplace and swiping a card and it doesn’t work, but trying, you know, trying to, to stay where I’m supposed to be staying in. My lane has never been my forte ever, even when I was a kid and I was swimming, I would latterly swim in somebody else’s lane.

[00:21:23] I mean, I didn’t, I never wanted to be the same as everybody else. And I think this is still the hardest thing for me is this is adulting. And I’ve never been good at adulting clearly. So this has been a challenge, but the fact that I’m doing it and, um, you know, being successful at these little goals as I go along tells me that I’m, I can do more than I ever thought I could, because this is a big, huge deal, especially coming out of a bankruptcy because that’s defeating on so many levels and that’s so filled with shame and that’s so filled with failure to be a year.

[00:22:01] 14 months out and getting a credit card. Again was a big achievement, not in your eyes, but in my eyes, it was a big achievement.


[00:22:11] I didn’t say anything. I just said, we have to make sure that we use it responsibly. If we’re using, using it to build your credit, we want to make sure that we’re using a responsibly and.

[00:22:25] Right.


[00:22:26] And valley is not using it responsibly. Well, you


[00:22:29] know, we talked about like your financial triggers and what were the things, right? Like one of the things that I’m going to share with the audience, which they’ve already heard it at this point, because it’s going to be in the intro is like, I feel like you’re rewriting your money story and this, like, I know that you have a love for books.

[00:22:47] And so when I think about like, you rewriting your money story, like you’re including the chapters that like may have been missed in the past. And so like you’re actively going through and you’re editing it. And I’m excited for like each chapter that you’re writing from this point, moving forward, because I know that there’s going to be a shift for you and.

[00:23:08] Like, as you know, your financial coach and having worked with you in the past several weeks, like I admire you for your bravery, because I know that it’s not easy to ask for help, especially with a story that you shared with me. And you’ve even shared with our audience about like where you came from and to come to this point and say like, Hey, I’ve been stalking you on Instagram.

[00:23:29] And, you know, and, and also just to trust me to say like, you know, I think. You actually can be the person that will walk alongside me to help me shift some beliefs that I’ve held, that haven’t served me and helped me rewrite those beliefs. So


[00:23:46] when I think I had told you earlier, too, is that early on? Just quietly, you would say, don’t worry about it.

[00:23:52] Don’t worry about it. I got you. Or I got your back and I can remember leaving the conversation and. Because I’d never had anybody say that to me in my entire life. Not my parents, not my siblings never had the Navy maybe, but I’ve never had anybody actually say, don’t worry about it. I got it. Because I’ve always had to worry about it.

[00:24:09] Cause I’ve only ever had my own back. So to have someone who doesn’t talk at me, but like give us for real advice and does for real work to show me how it can be done is worth a million. Oh, that’s so sweet. You can’t, they can’t, you can’t. I mean, for me, I can’t thank you enough for how you’ve treated me and my story.

[00:24:33] And with such graciousness and kindness and civility, because money is a weird thing. And there are some people that should not be teaching people about. Oh,


[00:24:47] that means so much to me. And like I said, thank you so much for like trusting me because I don’t take the work that I do lightly because I realized people are inviting me into their life into a very private sector, their lives.

[00:25:01] And now you’re also sharing with whoever listens to this, right. Like right. Letting, letting people know that, like you’re not alone. And that’s what I want people to know is like, We need to be having more financial conversations because everybody is looking at everybody else like, oh, you have a nice car, you have this, you have that.

[00:25:18] And you don’t know what’s behind those layers and what that individual person, you don’t know their story. Instead, it becomes like. You have shame or jealousy and you want for more, but it doesn’t necessarily serve you in the capacity that it should.


[00:25:34] You know, when I first got in the military, I had nothing.

[00:25:36] When I went in, I had nothing when I came out, but I had a job, but I was taking the bus every day to work. And I can remember sitting because I used to sit in the back of the bus because it was warmer and it guys I could read. And I remember hearing a guy sitting a couple rows in front of me and he was talking either on the phone or to somebody about his killer.

[00:25:55] Uh, BMW, something. It was just all tricked out was fine. And then after he got off the bus, I think I was chatting with the lady that he was talking to. She said, yeah, that’s great. She goes, but you see his apartment. She goes, it’s a complete dump. And I thought it was super interesting that he was investing all his money into.

[00:26:13] Versus I’ve only taken my money and I’ve always invested in experiences and travel. And, and I think that’s kind of what always kind of kept me in delusion a little bit about my finances was that I wasn’t buying things. So I was better than everybody else. I was making the world a more joyful place cause I was spreading my money and I was going places and seeing people.

[00:26:35] And I think that’s been, um, a big come to Jesus moment of having to find some more. To understand that, like you understand all different levels of people that come with you with their stories about money.


[00:26:49] And I still, like, I want you to be able to still spread joy and have experiences and do all of those things.

[00:26:55] Like I’m excited to see. Where your journey continues to go knowing, I mean, I know all of the things that you love to do, and, and I know that you, you would probably have a backpack in a, in a one ticket and you’d be like, Kena, can we have a meeting at 2:00 AM in the morning? Because I’m halfway across the world.

[00:27:17] Like I


[00:27:17] said, I could. Take all my money and go, and I’d be fine, but you know, that’s not where I am right now trying to, trying to be an adult. And this is the hardest part. Seriously. It’s really hard for me to be like everybody. I have to be like everybody else and have a budget. And that’s


[00:27:34] their part. It’s a spending plan because it’s going to allow you to do those things that you designed.

[00:27:39] That’s like the, the shift that I want people to understand, because I think we all, we all have some type of budget, whether we acknowledge it or not in the sense that like you do what you want to with your money. And it’s like, oh, your money is controlling you in some capacity. It’s so either your money has control or you have control.

[00:27:59] Like those are your two options. Sometimes I don’t think we realize that.


[00:28:04] Well, cause I think I’ve told you I’ve had. Friends that that are not good to themselves. I mean, they make good money. Good money. Four or five times when I make and just say favorite, favorite, favorite? Like, they’re the opposite to where I am.

[00:28:20] They’re so afraid of something happening. Something catastrophic that they’re paralyzed by their money. And I have a friend of mine she’s been thinking about buying an iPad for four years, thinking about buying it. That’s three minutes discussion with myself, 30 seconds. And I cannot wrap my mind around somebody.

[00:28:41] Thinking, so little of themselves that they have to think about buying an iPad for four years. And I, when I asked her about it, she’s like, well, you know, it’s just not a priority. Okay. But I mean, maybe you’re looking at it wrong. You’ve been talking about it for four years. So just do it. That’s where I kind of get with them.

[00:28:58] Like you have, you know, she sees us more money in a year than I do,


[00:29:05] but we all have our different, yeah. We all have our different perspectives when it comes to finances.


[00:29:11] It could she even asked me, she asked me if you could help her. I said, I don’t know if Kita coaches, people that have too much money. I don’t know. I suppose that she could teach you how to like, okay, your spending account is $4,000 a month.

[00:29:23] I don’t know. I mean,


[00:29:25] sometimes people do need permission to spin and I mean, it’s, it’s the, it’s all about the money story. Like what’s the reason that people are hoarding or holding on to money. And so, yeah. Being able to listen to. What happened in your life? How did your parents handle money? Looking at different relationships?

[00:29:44] Because there’s a reason behind all of it. Whether, you know, our parents were big spenders and we told ourselves we would never be that, that way because we saw them get into financial trouble or, you know, your parents never spent any money. And so you never had new clothes. And so when you became an adult, you said I’m going to buy whatever I want, because I never had it when I was younger.

[00:30:04] And so all of these things, or. How we like interact with money and that saver versus spender mentality. So it’s definitely when people, one of the things I ask people to do too, is like thinking about their first money memory. Right. And so when you start to think about like your first money memory and how it showed up, and how does that inform how you actually move about in your current reality?

[00:30:30] Yeah.


[00:30:31] I mean, yeah, it does really. It’s surprising when you sit with yourself, like the pandemic has forced me to sit with myself and see things. And so I think the pandemic brought, brought you to me much. And I would have, because I don’t think I ever even thought of the idea. I didn’t even know if I needed to coach existed.

[00:30:48] I knew about like life coaches and, you know, there’s that huge myth that those are useless. I don’t know. I’ve never had one, but you know, the fact that, that the term you use is financial coach and the pandemic and having to be in the house and people on social media and, you know, and then all of a sudden it was there and I’m a big believer in the theory of.

[00:31:09] If something comes into your life three times, that means the universe is telling you, you need to look at this a little bit closer and that’s always, always worked for me, transcendental meditation. That way I found you that way. And a couple of other things, just so you know, it’s meant to be


[00:31:27] well, I’m glad that Instagram brought us together and I was just really impressed that you had Instagram.

[00:31:32] Yeah.


[00:31:33] And plus I do like taunting you with things. I still want to buy on my Instagram. I post ridiculous things on my stories and I always tag them like, how about this? Can I get this? So you cannot.


[00:31:48] So if you could step into my shoes, what would you have asked yourself that I didn’t.


[00:31:56] I think probably how does my future look like, how do I feel about my future from this point on?

[00:32:02] And you know, it’s still a little, I’m still a little unsteady. I’m kinda like it goes baby giraffes. You know, they got all those legs and it takes them a while to get up on their feet and find their balance. And I think because I was so far on one side for five years ago, And then I was so far on the other side and that’s kind of where I found you kind of broken and desperate, and now I’m kind of working my way to the middle.

[00:32:27] So I have a better viewpoint of my future. I am a little bit more strong in my future. I mean, my bank accounts that I have now I didn’t have before. And I can only understand now that those can be. Okay versus disappearing. So I feel better about myself. I feel better marching into this new person in the white house.

[00:32:51] So hopefully it can help with the economy and turn things around. And so I feel better about that. I feel better about inching up my game and getting a better job and things are just better. That’s the only way I can put it, you know, I wouldn’t say like dancing in the streets better, but I feel better. I sleep better.

[00:33:07] I kind of walk around a little bit better. I look at things differently. Just the other day I was looking at something and I thought they want $30 for that. And I thought, that’s the craziest thing I ever heard in my past life. I wouldn’t even have thought about it. I just bought it. I was like $30 is nothing.

[00:33:24] Yeah. Well, $30 times, five years of everything. That’s $30 is how you get bankrupt. But I have to say definitely my future is in my own hands. And then it feels like it’s going to be.


[00:33:37] Well, I’m excited for your future. And I hope that anyone who’s listening, I hope that Karen story has encouraged you because in working with her for the past several weeks slash months, I’m encouraged every single time that we talk on zoom.

[00:33:52] And I don’t know if you guys can hear this, like through these conversations, but I really, really enjoy working with every single client that you heard me. Too. That’s true. She doesn’t


[00:34:05] mean she does. So she does it every day, but she does Keana. Keina has you have this remarkable ability to be focused in, on every client all day?

[00:34:15] Like, I’m the only part. I mean, I know I’m the only person in the room right there with you, but still, I mean, you bring this amazing energy and positivity to a subject that is extremely difficult for people. I mean, and you know, I’m almost 60 and post-bankruptcy, and I told you the day I said that it’s a huge.

[00:34:34] I know there’s other women that are like, you know, maybe divorced after 40 years of marriage and it got screwed, the divorce and you are trying to relearn their steps and they don’t know about you. So I hope, I hope more people that have gone through a bankruptcy. And if that’s, what’s holding them back and I’m here to tell you that when I was in bankruptcy court, I was shocked how many people it’s a full court.

[00:34:57] Okay. Eight to eight to five of people filing bankruptcy and the stories I heard it wasn’t just mine. It was, you know, incredible medical debt or, you know, divorces or businesses failing, et cetera, et cetera. So, no, you’re not alone when it comes to any kind of financial problem. But the fact that, that out of the millions of people in the world that I found you, I find that to be incredible.


[00:35:21] It was meant to be that’s right. The power of three.

[00:35:27] You said you found me early on in the pandemic. So March, April. Yeah,


[00:35:32] it took me, I think I found you in like April, I think. And it was not until September that I pulled the trigger cause I just kept watching and I just kept going back and I was like, yeah, I think it just kind of kept getting stronger and stronger.

[00:35:46] And I think your smile had a lot to do with it. Cause I was watching. And I think just the, all the positivity that you posted. And then I started listening and I was like, I think I would like her, like, I would be friends with her if I ever met her in my life. Yeah. And like I said, that was the big, big thing for me was to be able to trust somebody with my story.

[00:36:05] Yeah.


[00:36:06] What made you pull the trigger and say like, yep, I’m going to go ahead and book that call. Do you remember?


[00:36:12] I, I know where I was. I mean, I was sitting upstairs and I was at my desk. I must’ve been looking at Instagram and then there must have been another post about work with me or something. And I thought in that moment, I’m going to, you know, like I went out to the website and I was like, okay, I’ll try the call because the calls free.

[00:36:30] It doesn’t, it doesn’t take it’s just time. And then we’ll go from there. That was as simple as it was. I mean, there wasn’t any, any momentous moment, but I think I, I just, I was tired, you know, it was, I mean, it was September and we had. Six months in the pandemic. And I was so tired of everything and I thought, I need to make a shift somewhere for myself.

[00:36:50] And I remember I did that. And then I got the immediate response, like pick a date. And I was like, oh, here we go. I mean, you know, once you kind of push that button, there’s always a choice to not do it. But I mean, and I did think many, many times. ’cause I was scared, but I thought, no, because I know better than that.

[00:37:07] I know in order to get change going in your life, if you have to plow through the fear that I know, and I’ve always had great luck with plowing through the fear. Like when I joined the military, I was frightened out of my mind. They threw me across, across the world and I was like, I don’t know what I’m doing and I’m scared, but I’m not going to tell anybody I’m scared.

[00:37:24] I’m just going to do it. And I think that also by not sharing my story with my immediate circle has made a big deal. Because it’s able to, let me keep focused, say more about that because when you start telling people what you’re doing and trying to make change, I have found that especially coming from a large family, you know, you, when you grow up or when you’re in your soccer friends, you have a role.

[00:37:46] This is who you are. So I was the one that was always out having fun and traveling and this and this, when you stop being that person or being in that role and step away to do something. Did they don’t like that pull you back in to where, whatever level they are at or whatever difficulties they’re having.

[00:38:04] My family, all Republicans. I’m the only liberal I’ve had. I had divorced my family many, many years ago because of that reason, because they didn’t like me stepping out of that role of not being falling in line with everybody else. And I’m also through this journey and also found out, I think. I need more friends at a little bit of a different level than I am at, like that are financially more solvent.

[00:38:28] I mean, I need to get above my raising a little bit because you know, like I opted to keep working with you because I knew that you could get me to a better place with my money and more secure with it.


[00:38:39] So what would you say to the person that’s like, Hmm, I’ve listened to a lot of money files and I’ve been stocking keen on Instagram, but I don’t know if I’m ready to book.


[00:38:47] The fact that you’re not ready to book the call is when you should book the call because the, because what if it doesn’t, it doesn’t hurt anything it’s 45 minutes or an hour. It’s 45 minutes to you to free to talk to Keena, to meet Keina, to discuss what you can, you will know within that 45 minutes, whether or not you’re compatible with her, if you can trust.

[00:39:07] And she kind of will also, will you go through things with people so they can understand how they can afford your services, which is key because when you don’t make much money, it’s kind of hard to kind of go, how am I going to find money for this? Oh, here we go. Like that. I was like, oh, okay. I mean, you’ve done the simplest things and I’ve kind of went how I lie.

[00:39:24] Not ever, like, I think when you first started like opening all these different accounts and we were putting money to the car and the emergency fund and this and this, I thought, how is it? I never knew how to do that. How did I miss out on that?


[00:39:37] Because nobody taught you. But


[00:39:41] I mean, I think, I think I had told you, I think early on, I think at one point I had opened another checking account just to move money over for rent, but it never occurred to me to open nanny accounts.

[00:39:50] Yeah. They have more than one. I mean, never even, it never even crossed my mind. There’s like, sometimes you do the simplest things. I’m like, oh, okay. Like when I, we were talking about my emergency one day and I said, I have to take money out of that. She goes, well, we’ll just put money back into. Really never thought about the fact that you could take, you could take money out of something and then put money back into it.

[00:40:10] I mean, literally it’s just the dumbest thing, but it’s always these simple things. So I’m just like, but I’m a big believer in also making decisions in the moment that’s always been. That has always well suited me as well. As far as a lot of people, like I said, thinks about buying an iPad for four months, I bought a new apple TV right before I started working for.

[00:40:31] Because I couldn’t deal with it anymore, but then I’m like, I can go into a store and put a whole house together because I can make decisions really easily. A lot of people struggle with making decisions. I just don’t. So I’m always like, I’m a big believer in like, if you think Keina could possibly be the person that can help you try dry.


[00:40:50] I feel like there’s only, like we said earlier, only way up one way up. Right. And in being able to take that. You know what I’m going to bet on myself in this way. This is like the gift that keeps on giving. Like I know in Karen and I, because we’ve worked together, Karen is going to have a skill set that lasts her.

[00:41:12] Like, as she earns more money, as she continues to be years out from her bankruptcy, that’s just going to help her also in other areas of her life. I know earlier you said you started to think about like, you know, in what other areas of my life, can I be like more honest? In the same way that I have for my finances.

[00:41:29] And that’s like the power of coaching, because you have this partnership, like I’m here for clients like to hold a space for you to help you think through things that not to say you couldn’t solve on your own, but you’re going to get results a lot quicker because of the fact that like two heads are better than one.

[00:41:48] Right.


[00:41:49] I have always told her I’m a big believer in therapy also. So I’ve always told friends, like, Go talk to somebody because it just does help. And talking to your friends about finances. Or anything else? It defeats the purpose because they’re just going to tell you what you want to hear versus you tell me what it’s really like and how it happens and what we can do.

[00:42:10] And so many people were like, well, why would anybody take an interest in what I have to say? I’m like, cause that’s what they do. I mean, that’s her job. And a lot of people find it. They find it incredible that a stranger could actually help them. I’m thinking I would much, I would much rather turn to a stranger who has the ability to help me, who has the knowledge to help me then this idiot that I’ve known for 25 years.

[00:42:36] I mean, just because you’re a friend of mine and I’ve known you since, you know, I was in kindergarten, doesn’t mean that you can solve the problems. All you’re going to do is nod your head and agree. Oh yeah, Kara it’s too bad that you’re having money. Oh, okay. Well, yeah, I wish I could help you because that’s, you know, but that’s friends are not for that.

[00:42:53] Husbands are not for that therapy. Coaching is, was what will help you? Do things in life, I think.


[00:43:01] Well, you guys heard it first from Karen.

[00:43:08] Yes. Well, thank you guys for tuning in and thank you Karen so much for joining me. If you are listening to this and you know, you’re wondering like Karen. Go ahead and book the call. I would love to talk to you and help you understand like how I can help you shift your relationship with money and help you save more and pay down debt and ultimately Stressless.

[00:43:29] So thank you again, and I’ll see you next time. I just love it, that you made it to the end of this episode of money files. I hope some part of today’s story resonated with you and showed you the power of coaching today. I’m inviting you to take the first step and book a one-to-one call with me. We’ll discuss.[00:43:49] What you’re hoping to achieve with your money, where you need support and how I can help you reach your financial goals faster than you ever could alone. Go to and book a call once again, my name is Keena and thank you again for joining me. Also stay tuned for the next episode.

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