Making decisions about money is enough to put anyone on a feelings rollercoaster—especially if you’re trying to make decisions with a partner at home or a colleague at work. But as uncomfortable as it is, how you handle your finances plays a role in building the life you want. This week, Emily’s kicking off a brand-new series called Simplified Finances, where she’ll help you grow more confident around money so you can find the freedom to use your time and resources in ways that matter to you. And here to help is a very special guest: her husband Bryan Ley! An entrepreneur himself, Bryan has a rich background in finance and banking, and today he and Emily hash through how their parents raised them to think about money, what their conversations around money were like when they were first married (spoiler alert: there were a few sparks) and how their financial decisions have evolved as a married couple and as business owners. They share some of their biggest money mistakes, some no-shame tips for getting out of debt quickly, and why talking about money, as hard as it is, is key to using it wisely and trusting each other.
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“Having enough money to decide how you and your family want to spend your time and resources, how you truly want to live—that is real freedom. And I want you to have that freedom.” – Emily Ley
“Situations and experiences define your character and your decision making going forward. You hear stories all the time about the people who grew up in the Great Depression, and for years they still slept with money under the mattress. We met just prior to the 2008 financial crisis. I was in banking, so I had just lost my job in that sector. You met me during a moment of my life where I was reshaping my financial picture to accommodate a much more modest way of earning, because it just wasn't consistent. So having gone through that is just another experience at the time where it's shaped me a little bit in how I look at money going forward.” – Bryan Ley
“Money's not everything, but it's certainly a means to the tools. It's a means to so many things. It's such a big part of how we operate as a community and humans. So, absolutely, somebody needs to make it a priority. Ignorance is not bliss when it comes to money.” – Bryan Ley
“Look for a way to get the burden of debt out from underneath you, because the minute you have financial flexibility, then you're always going to be in a better position to make better financial choices.” – Bryan Ley
A Blessing for Your Week
May you find freedom to know what matters to you and choose how you'd like to live.
May you find the confidence that says, "I know how to make good decisions for myself and for my family."
And above all, I hope you find the peace that says, "I have enough and I am enough."
Simplicity Tip of the Week
Find out where you’re spending your money. You can do it the old-school way of paying close attention to your bank and credit card statements, but now, there are online tools that make this infinitely easier. You can sign up for a program like Mint, or Personal Capital, or You Need a Budget. You can hook up all your different accounts to these programs, plug in the numbers for your own personal budget, and see if you’re hitting your goals or if you’re missing the mark. This is super helpful to know how you can turn the dials a little bit and adjust your spending to get it where it needs to be. This kind of tool is invaluable, because don’t forget: what gets measured gets managed.
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