Beginning My Finance Journey
Hello my loves.
This post has been a LONG time coming. I have been thinking about this topic for a while and wanted to share with you all, but didn’t because I teach health. That’s what I’m known for and to branch out into the financial world and sharing my finance journey was such a different style I wasn’t sure if you all would want to read about it. Well… I was wrong. I did a poll on IG a few weeks ago asking if you wanted me to share some financial knowledge that I’ve acquired along with my journey into this semi-scary world.
My plan is to start this up as a regular thing, getting really real and honest with you all, and hopefully to inspire more of you to really start to understand and prioritize your financial knowledge. Suffice to say, this will be part one because there’s just way too much to share in one post. (Finish reading this then read Part II)
Beginning my finance journey
Like most females (I can’t speak for my male followers here), I was pretty terrified of looking at my bank account for many, many years. I pretty much avoided it at all costs until tax season when I then had to really look into my money. This would cause me to get highly depressed, binge on food, look for comfort in alcohol and do just about every distraction possible to avoid the reality.
It’s not that my finances have been bad per se. It’s that I just had NO idea where to start. And when you are starting to climb a mountain, such as Everest, with no knowledge of what to do, it’s a wee bit scary.
Because I never looked at my statements or was aware of what I was spending, I was always shocked when I would get notified that I didn’t have a bunch of money in my account. Like seriously, where did it go?!
Paired with the avoidance (at all costs) of understanding, I also had another limiting belief about money: I wanted to enjoy my life right here, right now. Saving for 20 years down the line? No way! I want to travel to Bali NOW!
Who can relate with me here? We as humans tend to do and think some funny things when it comes to money which cause us a whole lot of beliefs, which then turn into the actions that we do, and as such become our reality.
Making money…then “losing” it
When I began selling the detox ebook I was making a lot of money. I then wrote a few other ebooks and was making $30, $40, and upwards of $50,000 a month. This is a much longer story than I’m about to tell (and one I haven’t shared publicly yet that I will share one day). At this time a woman in London came onboard to become my PR agent. She then had me bring on a business manager. We brought on a branding agency, lawyers, accountants, researchers… I suddenly had this huge team of people at 27 or so. My ego was happy. My bank account was not. I was paying out $20,000 a month for this entire team, month after month.
I ended up getting rid of every one of them. I felt taken advantage of with no one delivering much of anything. My website/rebrand wasn’t done after 6 months, my lawyer charged me $4,000 to write a will that if I died my money would go to my parents (um – duh?), the accountants were the best in London and slapped with me a £12,000 bill (around $15k), which I refused to pay.
This was one of the hardest moments in my life. I felt alone, “lost” a shit load of money, and didn’t feel I had anyone to talk to. More bad things kept happening (let’s just say some lawyers got involved) and I was battling a pretty hard time.
I walked away from it all with a very sad bank account even though I went in doing well and a defeated soul. And this is when I moved to America. To focus on selling the detox into a book, creating my app and starting fresh.
Getting into debt
A few years ago I decided to do another rebrand, seeing as I never went through with the first one and had nothing to show for it. I was living in LA, working on launching my app and had just gotten a two book deal from Random House with my first book, The 5-Day Real Food Detox coming out a few months later. It was a good time to showcase that I was the wellness expert that everyone kept referring to me as.
It was exciting because I knew that with a new, slick website people would take my brand more seriously. And so I plunged full speed ahead, again hiring a branding agency that would also help with Facebook ads for my book. This was NOT cheap. We sat in many sessions going over who I was, my brand, where I wanted to go. I was still disillusioned from before, but had faith.
Cut to a few months later and I had easily spent $30,000 on the rebrand, website and ads. That’s a LOT of money. At this point some (pretty bad) personal things happened which caused me to finally look at my finances and I realized that I was not sitting so pretty. I had to cut working with the agency, all ads, and quite honestly was very scared about money at this point.
Not only that, I had no income for a long time and suddenly found myself in $22,000 in debt. I was miserable, depressed, and didn’t know the first thing about what to do. I ended up applying for a bunch of new credit cards as I couldn’t spend anymore on the current ones. I got declined by every single one because of this debt ratio to income/what I had in my bank. Bad idea Nikki. I didn’t know that every time you apply for a CC your credit gets dinged.
This was different than when I was in London as I now had no money. The prior experience left me with some cash and a hell of a bruised ego, but this was different. I didn’t have income and was terrified.
I finally got a job as a business/branding consultant (this is a side gig I’ve done for many years and love) which allowed me to pay it off, taking a good chunk of time. I still didn’t understand anything about finances though.
And I didn’t learn my lesson.
I kept living life in the present moment. Traveling, having fun, working with clients when I wanted to, not because I should have in order to save money…
I’ll end this part of my finance journey here though, because Part II is where I really learned what I know now and there’s another big story I want to share. This is where I really started educating myself and where the things I know come from.
I do want to share some tips that I learned in this chapter of my life that I believe can help you. These were the little nuggets that I wish someone had shared with me.
- Become aware of your attitude towards money. Are you a freestyle spender? Do you buy nice things to show on the ‘gram? Do you use money for experiences or for material things? Are you scared of looking at your bank account or do you do it regularly? Do you self-sabotage if you don’t like what you see?
Knowing your thoughts around money is the first lesson I can teach you, because quite frankly, we are not really taught this growing up. We are taught money is good and that we need to save, but most don’t truly understand the deeper beliefs they have.
- If you are in debt know that it will be okay. You will survive it and come out on the other side. It’s sticky and painful now but it won’t always be that way.
I’ve been in debt two times in my life, but there was a drastic difference of my mindset between the first and second time which I’ll share more about later. Just know that while debt is normal (although really shouldn’t be), there are ways to go about it that won’t make you so fearful.
I’m looking forward to sharing more of my finance journey with you – because quite frankly it’s pretty scary to be sharing my story (more intimate details to come later) but I believe it will help those of you who read it. Finances is one of those topics that we don’t talk about enough and so it’s become shunned in society to say that you are scared of. We are expected to know things but then have to go out and learn on our own, not knowing the first place to start.
So with that, I bid you adieu. Until next time. Please drop a comment below if this post has resonated with you at all or if you’re excited for me to share about finances. It helps me because this is a new side I’m telling you all and I want to make sure it’s something you want to learn about!
Tons of love,