I started Wholehearted Finance because I believe underneath all of the things we do with our lives–all the love, the joy, and the sorrow–money runs like a current. And the goal is to navigate that current so that you don’t feel its turbulence, and to do that, you have to look not just with your mind, but also with your heart. After all, it’s not your mind that spent $2,300 on that new bike of yours you couldn’t afford. Your mind knows better. The bike purchaser?
That, my friend, was your heart.
And so, in order to make real and lasting changes in our spending patterns, we have to listen not just with our minds, but also with our hearts. And we have to listen to our hearts, and we have to be unafraid to peal back the layers we find there.
Too many of us are embarrassed and ashamed when it comes to money. I would sooner expect to find a group of girlfriends parsing apart a recent sexual encounter than I would expect to find them detailing their monthly expenses. Shame, impulsivity, and and the desire to appear wealthier have infested America’s ideas around money. I started this blog to beat back those darker angels of our financial nature–for myself, yes, but also for my readers.
I am not a software engineer. I am not even an engineer engineer. I don’t work in finance. In fact, what I am is a 31 year old who recently quit her job as a high school English teacher who is still paying off student loans on her Master’s in Education.
I was raised to believe that money won’t ever make you happy, and to believe that making decision based on money might, in fact, bring you death, darkness, or, at the very least, will lead to a bad case of alcoholism. But after five years of working seventy hours a week at a job I found draining in order to make a lower middle class income, I have come to understand money as something else. Money is time. And time, fundamentally, is what we have in this life.
So, here we are. I am on a journey to learn everything I can about personal finance, with an emphasis on how our hearts influence our minds when we make decisions about money. I want to make saving and investing as painless as possible–because the truth is, I have terrible self control and need to leverage every bit of wisdom behavioral economics has to offer me about how my heart, not my mind, is influencing my bank account.
Wholehearted Finance isn’t about being rich. It’s about understanding yourself, and what you need to feel secure, and what you need to feel free. It’s about understanding that what you spend on is what you prioritize, and examining your life so that you make damn sure those two things are lined up. It’s about watching, without judgement, what your heart does with your money, and making sure that it’s you, not corporations, who’s calling those shots.