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Mindfulness is practiced in a variety of ways to refine and deepen the ability of humans to connect with and experience life. Some people do breathwork, use a money mindset journal, do yoga, mindfulness meditation, or mindfulness counseling in hopes of cultivating conscientiousness in their lives. Everyone can benefit from practicing mindfulness regardless of their approach.

Mindfulness isn’t about logic or knowledge that’s acquired, but a practice or way of living. It’s been conceptualized as a state practiced in mindfulness meditation and as a trait, in terms of one’s predisposition to be mindful in daily life.

Based on this description, would you say that you apply mindfulness in your life?

  • If yes, how so?

  • What does mindfulness look like to you?

Is it?

  • Figuring out your WHY

  • Being intentional about your actions

  • Creating clarity to support your goals

  • Aligning yourself to your purpose

Regardless, mindfulness is going to set you on the right track to reaching your goals, personal and/or financial.

Check out my guest spot on the Mindfulness for the Culture Podcast. I’m talkin’ square biz to ya because “Getting Your Money Right is a Mindfulness Practice”.

In many ways being mindful is like budgeting. Budgeting serves as a tool for us to monitor our expenses and encourage planning for the future. Similarly, mindfulness can mean being attentive to our spending patterns and making conscious decisions about budgeting and overall money management.

Integrating mindfulness into daily life

Mindfulness practices must be incorporated into our daily lives so that we can develop a habit out of it. The first step to being mindful is figuring out your WHY. Why do you do what you do? Why do you make the choices that you make? Once you find the answers to these questions, your financial journey will feel more intimate, and balancing instant gratification vs delayed gratification will become more natural. Figuring out my WHY led me to realize that I was deserving and capable of the peace of mind that comes from financial freedom.

I’d never heard of a financial coach or a money mindset coach and I had no idea where to start so, of course, I ended up spending ALL my free time reading personal finance books from the library. From that point on, I realized that it wasn’t meant to be a solo journey because I wasn’t the only one that was set up to stumble and bumble through life without financial education.

I started with friends - sharing tips, tricks, concepts, and systems that felt like buried treasures. That eventually led to me hanging out my shingle so that I could help more than just the people that I already knew. That WAS (and IS) being scared and doing it anyway personified. Listen, I’m a product of Gen X propaganda and Stranger Danger started with us and I took that ish to heart. 😂😂🤣🤣

Listen to this clip about WHY I coach.

Check out the full episode here.

Another practice is intentionality. On the topic of finances, this would mean handling your money with careful deliberation and a sense of purpose. Taking the time to consider your values and priorities and aligning them with your financial choices. Intentional spending, for example, means spending within your budget ~ the budget that you designed to create positive changes in your life. The realized savings becomes the money that helps someone who values wealth building be able to leverage real estate investing strategies or someone who values travel choose to save for a vacation, a stint as a travel blogger, a sabbatical, or even early retirement - Highly Recommend (10/10).

My own journey with intentionality has been full of lessons and realizations. Recently, it began with me unintentionally taking a break from coaching - in retrospect, it became somewhat of a sabbatical. The last 8 months of 2022 included planning and celebrating my 50th birthday, real estate transactions, moving, lots of travel, exhaustion, rest, taking deliberate steps to get back on track, and much more. What began as an accidental 2 months off turned out to be 8 months off that I needed for me to move forward. My first newsletter issue talks about this in detail. Don’t miss out on future issues. Sign up to get my newsletter!

Clarity, simply put, is the ability to think clearly and not get easily distracted or confused. Financially, it means having a clear awareness and understanding of your financial situation. This includes knowing how much money you have, where it comes from, where it goes, and when. This is the foundation of financial clarity.

It also means having a clear set of financial goals and working consistently to achieve them instead of succumbing to distractions. A recent moment of clarity for me was earlier this month when I was on an airplane reflecting on where I was headed (to my future home of 🇲🇽) and how far I’ve come. I was able to appreciate and see the beauty of the journey despite the occasional turbulence. It inspired me to buckle up, stay focused and not lose sight of my goals, and remember to put my mask on first. Planning and mapping out my vision for my life has allowed me to find clarity ~ and not just financially.

And finally, purpose gives a sense of direction and meaning to your financial choices. This could mean having a long-term vision for your finances and only making decisions to support that vision. For example, someone who wants to retire early may make different financial decisions than someone who wants to accumulate wealth to leave as an inheritance.

In my case, the work that I do with my clients gives me a sense of purpose. After decades of wondering what I wanted to do (or was “supposed” to do) with my life, it’s a relief and a blessing to be tapped in. It’s clear to me that I’m doing what I’m meant to do.

All of which are things that I’m familiar with because my financial literacy journey led me to financial freedom. My lived experience, learnings, and training can help you find your financial purpose. Book your free financial coaching consultation call.

During my 3-month coaching program, we work together to:

  • Figure out your WHY

  • Be intentional about your actions

  • Create clarity to support your goals

  • Align yourself to your purpose

Mindfulness in a consumerist society can be difficult to navigate. Capitalism has a way of monetizing and putting a price tag on everything. Inner peace is priceless.

Having a Financial Coach is like having a personal trainer for your money.

Find out if a guide, accountability partner, mentor or cheerleader is right for you by scheduling your FREE 30-minute Q&A call.

  • Terry Banks

It’s no secret that Black people have a general distrust of US institutions. Banking is not an exception. One of the reasons is the rise and collapse of the Freedman’s Bank in 1874. Black people who have never heard of the Freedman’s Bank have inherited a legacy of distrust instead of generational wealth.

Slavery was abolished in the United States With the passage of the 13th Amendment and the end of the Civil War in 1865. 4 million men, women, and children were freed with most having no home, no money, and no work.

Because of the brutal practice of selling family members away, their relatives were scattered all over the country and nearly impossible to find. The Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands, commonly known as “the Freedmen’s Bureau,” was created by U.S. government. The Freedmen’s Bureau provided food, housing, and medical aid to tens of thousands of freed slaves.

During the Civil War, there were multiple attempts at establishing private banks in several states to help Black soldiers have a safe place to save their money. On January 27, 1865, John W. Alvord, a Congregational minister and abolitionist, proposed a plan to more than twenty philanthropists and leading members of the business community. This group decided that a bank charter should be secured from the federal government. A bill to incorporate the Freedman's Savings and Trust Company was brought before Congress on February 13, 1865. On March 3, 1865, Abraham Lincoln signed into law the Freedman’s Bank Act which authorized the organization of a national bank for recently emancipated Black Americans.

The objective and purpose of the Freedman’s Bank Act was to accept and safeguard deposits as a simple savings institution for former slaves and their descendants. Part of keeping it simple was that no loans would be made. The deposits were to be invested in stocks, bonds, Treasury notes, or other securities of the United States. A board of fifty trustees was authorized to manage the bank, and the company's books "were to open for inspection and examination to such persons as Congress would appoint."

In 1870 an amendment was made to its charter that changed its loan and investment policy. Loans and mortgages were now being authorized and they were usually given only to whites. Trustees made risky loans to friends, some without collateral. Some trustees ran other banks and offloaded bad loans to the Freedman’s Bank.

Using deposits for speculation in the railroads and property losses from the Great Chicago Fire in 1871 and the Great Boston Fire in 1872 in addition to mismanagement, abuse and fraud made the bank vulnerable. The Panic of 1873 then put further strain on bank reserves. For context, The Panic of 1873 was known as the Great Depression in the US before it was renamed after the devastation of the 1929 Great Depression.

Rumors and reports of corrupt practices by the white managers began to circulate. Sensing that the Freedman’s bank was in trouble depositors began to pull their money out of the bank. In an attempt to prevent further withdrawals, the management team was replaced with leaders from the black community. In March of 1874, Frederick Douglas was appointed president. To prove his faith in the bank, Douglas invested 10k of his own money. After a few months of leading the bank, Douglas soon found that he was "married to a corpse" and the bank was closed.

$83,317,376.56 is the amount in 2022 dollars ($3,299,201 in1874) of the total deposits over 10 years. These deposits were made in relatively minuscule amounts by people that went from making no money for their labors to people being poorly paid and yet they saved. Freedman's Bank opened 37 branches in 17 states and DC between 1865 and 1871. In less than a decade around 70,000 accounts had been opened and closed.

The deposits were not actually protected by the federal government as depositors were led to believe. The Black community was devastated financially and their hopes and dreams of what their money could have done for them were shuttered along with the bank. Feelings of betrayal, abandonment and deep distrust of the American banking system still remain. Half of the depositors recovered nothing while others received about ⅗ of the value of their accounts. ⅗ recovered for someone that up until a short time previously was considered ⅗ of a man is not lost on me.

According to Frederick Douglas, the Freedman’s Bank became “the Black man’s cow but the white man’s milk.” Much, much more than 83 million was lost by the Black community. The inability to participate in wealth-building activities then as well as many lost opportunities over generations. Nationwide at least 100 banks failed in the Panic of 1873. The Freedman’s bank did not have to be one of them.

In 1899, the DC headquarters of the Freedman’s Bank was demolished. About 20 years later, the US Treasury Department built its new Annex building on the same spot. For me, this is yet another example of white wealth being built on Black demise. On January 7, 2016, the Treasury Department renamed the Treasury Annex the Freedman’s Bank Building to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Freedman’s Bank.

Utilizing a Financial Coach is like having a personal trainer for your money. Find out if a mentor, accountability partner, guide or cheerleader is right for you by scheduling your FREE 30-minute Q&A call.

  • Terry Banks

Last June when I began working on an article for my local trial lawyer association magazine, The Verdict, I found myself drawn to learn more about institutional racism and its adverse effect on building generational wealth.

June is National Homeownership Month and homeownership is a common way create and protect wealth. I love using my financial coaching services to prepare clients for purchasing their property. I’m not just a budget coach that gives debt elimination advice so that my clients can experience debt free living. I know firsthand how homeownership protected my family from rising rents. The 1 bdr apt that we last rented in 2009 for $950 is currently $2550. That savings provided us the flexibility to continue to contribute to our emergency fund and boost our retirement savings while building equity in our tax-advantaged home. This is just one of the many reasons that I am an advocate of financial literacy.

The murder of George Floyd became the catalyst for many people in the US and around the world to learn about the historic and current treatment of Black people and their financial stability. One of the events that became more widely known is the Tulsa Race Massacre because of the recent 100-year anniversary. The Tulsa Race Massacre resulted in unquantifiable economic losses in the area known as Black Wall Street. There were nearly 100 other massacres in the U.S. as well as countless documented and undocumented terroristic acts committed by the government, corporations and individuals that stole, diminished or prevented wealth from being created and/or passed down.

Considering National Homeowner Month and the ever-present battle for Black people in the US to take advantage of the primary strategy of homeownership to build wealth, my focus of this post is on EQUITY.

In society, equity is the fair treatment, access, opportunity, and advancement for everyone while identifying and eliminating the barriers that prevent full participation by some groups.

Home equity is the value of a homeowner’s interest in their home which means that the lower your mortgage balance, the higher your equity.

After WWII the middle class was emerging and growing in large part due to the influx of veterans using their GI benefits to buy their homes with government subsidized financing. The home equity created from these friendly mortgage terms went on to help those families and their descendants pay for college, fund down payments, set up businesses and allow for a dignified retirement.

For all homeowners, equity is created through time, money and improvement projects. For Black homeowners, protecting equity has its challenges. That equity can be erased by racist appraisers not assigning full value to a home if they perceive that it’s owned by Black people or if it’s in a Black neighborhood.

Our capitalistic culture has taught us that time equals money. Juneteenth becoming a national holiday highlights another example of stolen time which affects the opportunity to build wealth. It took about 2.5 years for the news to reach the enslaved because enslavers chose to ignore the law so that they could continue to build their own wealth.

Compound interest can’t work its magic if every generation is starting over or not able to start at all.

Utilizing a Financial Coach is like having a personal trainer for your money. Find out if a mentor, accountability partner, guide or cheerleader is right for you by scheduling your FREE 30-minute Q&A call.

"You can be young without money, you can't be old without it."


-Tennessee Williams

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