The current pandemic has resulted in an increase in fears about financial security. People have been experiencing feelings of stress, failure and anxiety around money matters. Dr. Galen Buckwalter coined the term “financial PTSD” which may affect over 20% of the US population to describe this overwhelming fear and lack of financial security. My guest today will discuss how she works with clients in her financial planning business to identify hidden beliefs that impact their stress around money and why these beliefs may come from past traumas.
Here are a few techniques you can begin to practice to help you with financial fears:
1. Negative thought stopping – try to interrupt constant repetitive thoughts about failure and financial worries.
2. Take my guest’s advice and practice using affirmations to keep your mind from defaulting to fear thoughts.
3. Recognize that financial PTSD can impact your eating behaviors. Stay present when eating and identify any emotions that may lead to overeating, binging or obsessing about food.
4. Practice relaxing. Use apps like “calm.com” to hear relaxing music and meditations that will help lower your stress hormone levels.
5. Consider working with a therapist on your past traumas.
Find out if you are an emotional eater = take the quiz: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/Y8X8QYL
Join the webinar: “How to stop feeling crazy around food” http://bit.ly/2sEH7dS
To learn more about The Anchor Program – https://AnchorProgram.com
Supporting articles: https://goop.com/wellness/career-money/are-you-struggling-with-financial-ptsd/
My guest: Cady North
Bio: Cady North always knew she wanted to help others find financial resilience. Her parents were small-scale business owners, and she learned to balance a business checkbook by the age of 13. She spent more than a decade advising high-level executives of Fortune 500 companies while working for industry giants such as Bloomberg and Financial Executives International. In 2015 Cady took the leap to start a financial planning business; helping women act on their biggest dreams and build resilience for the future. As an investment advisor, public speaker and author, her work has been featured in Bustle, Business Insider, The Washington Post, and Forbes. She is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER®, Registered Life Planner®, has an MBA from Georgetown University and BA from the University of Texas at Austin. She is the author of The Resiliency Effect: How to Own Your Adversity to Act on Your Biggest Dreams.
How you can reach Cady: CadyNorth.com
**Link to article: “Three Tips for Building Resilience” – https://cadynorth.com/3-tips-for-building-resilience
Hi everyone and welcome to the show. Today we’re going to be deviating a little bit from our usual conversation and talking about something that’s many of you are probably concerned about and that’s financial insecurity, especially during the pandemic. Goop.com has reported that 23% of adults and 36% of millennials experience financial stress at a level that can qualify as financial PTSD and overall about 20% of Americans have financial PTSD and this could be from traumatic financial loss at like a foreclosure on a residence losing a large amount of money due to fraud, maybe an unfair divorce settlement, unexpected tax or business loss or losing your job or your income and that can lead to a lot of symptoms that are very similar to PTSD. Nervousness, anxiety, insomnia, you know, overeating bingeing, food addiction behaviors, and also emotional symptoms, like difficulty feeling close to friends and significant others and difficulty enjoying things that were once enjoyable. So this can be a very have a very big effect on your life. And I’m going to do a couple of shows on this topic just to explore what we can do about financial PTSD and how it interacts with our eating issues, such as binge-eating compulsive overeating, food addiction and emotional eating. Stay tuned.
Hi everybody and welcome today I have a guest with me on the show. Her name is Cady North and she is a financial planner in Southern California.
Dr. Ross: Welcome.
Cady: Thank you. Great to have me here. Thanks.
Dr. Ross: So you and I connected over a book that you’ve been working on about resilience, right?
Cady: Yup. Yup.
Dr. Ross: How you get interested in that topic?
Cady: Yeah. So the book is called the resiliency effect and I came upon this topic because in my work with clients I do a lot of coaching around everything from you know, not just looking at investments and goals. You might have like buying a house or starting a family. But I really like to dig into kind of the whole page of a person’s life. Right? And so I ask a lot of questions around, not just things we’d like to do in the short term, but you know, things we’d like to accomplish over our whole life basically. And what I came across with working with clients is that a lot of women in particular, you know, we can all name, really big dreams that we have for ourselves. Maybe we want to, you know, completely change careers and do something completely different. Maybe we want to retire early. Right. And he seemed like big lofty goals. But what I see missing is a lot of people immediately putting themselves down and saying, Nope. No, that’s not a right now thing. That’s just something I want to do in the future. And so what happens because it’s so hard for us to conceive as humans of our future selves down the road is the dream just gets put on the back burner. You know.
Dr. Ross: Yeah. Yeah. So I guess what I was asking is how did you come, come around to the topic of resilience in your own life? Has this issue come up or what, what personally attracted you to this?
Cady: Absolutely. Yeah. So this came up for me too, right? For years I worked a corporate job. I climbed the corporate ladder. I was very well known. I was on TV, you know, I worked for a global news and data organization. But I didn’t find a lot of fulfillment or happiness with that route. And part of the reason I think is because I hadn’t fully dealt with a lot of my own trauma growing up yet. And so I was on this constant merry-go-round of needing to prove myself and what happened in practices I just kept moving the needle. I kept moving the goalposts, even after I would achieve something I, I wanted. Right.
Dr. Ross: So how did trauma in your own life lead you to need to prove yourself and others.
Cady: Yeah. I grew up in an alcoholic family, right. And I was the oldest of three. And so sort of the way I felt worth something was to achieve outwardly. You know, like in school I was, I tended to be a good student and I wanted to sign up for all the clubs and I remember my senior year in high school I carried around a big notebook, full of to-do lists of stuff that I was working on. And I think my brain just craved, um, You know, approval, right? Anything external was, was what my brain craved was approval externally. And so that ended up creating just a strong need to always be busy, no matter what I had already achieved or done, it was hard for my brain to hold onto those old achievements and just always seeking new things.
Dr. Ross: Yeah. So a lot of people come from alcoholic families themselves struggle with addiction. Did you have any of those problems?
Cady: Yeah, so I didn’t have any outward addictions. I would say I’ve always said that my addiction is to busy-ness right. And my brother and sister didn’t have the same, I mean, um, didn’t ha grew up in the same family, but my brother ended up with addiction issues. My sister did not. So it’s one of those things where it comes out in some way, it just is not always in a direct sort of what we call like. You know, a direct addiction sort of way. So I never had like, you know, a clinical type of addiction, but I had a different kind of addiction, which for me, it was sort of an addiction to achievement and busy-ness.
Dr. Ross: Okay. All right. So you work with the same kind of people. How, how do you find out if they have a trauma background similar to yours?
Cady: Well, I don’t actually need to identify typically whether or not they have a trauma background or not it’s not integral to my work. My work is, is mostly around getting people to be okay with the dreams that they have and then we work to start working on them. And so I actually work around in just trying to develop that sense of intrigue and energy and and support, right? Because if we believe we can do something, we can, we can do it. And it’s just a matter of time. It’s just a matter of a plan. It’s just a matter of putting the steps in place. And so my work with clients is not necessarily, it hasn’t traditionally been to sort of solve the trauma piece or even to uncover it necessarily.
Dr. Ross: Yeah. But but you had mentioned to me earlier that you felt that a lot of what holds. Particularly women back is this history of trauma. So how do you see that your work and how does it influence people’s ability to be, you know, to reach their dreams or to be financially successful, et cetera.
Cady: Yeah. I mean, I, what I end up seeing is a lot of people in a rat race that has no finish line. And so that’s the problem that I was trying to solve by writing my book. The resiliency effect is to, you know, in a way to be able to reach more people on these topics and to raise awareness that it might be something different than sort of working harder, fitting more in a day, trying to find a life hack. You know, that would solve your problems or get you to achieve your dreams. It may take a deep work. It may take an inner journey that will help you match this outer journey. Right.
Dr. Ross: So how do you help your clients go on this or even start this journey?
Cady: Yeah. Yeah. So I mean, I do, like I said, I do a lot of work trying to try, discover and uncover what the dreams really are. Cause a lot of times, even if, um, we’re successful outwardly, there’s an sort of a fear sometimes about sharing too much or, um, or saying, even saying that we want to do something for me, that was the case with this book. All right. I’ve been saying for, in my mind, it’s been sort of a thing that I wanted to do for probably a decade. And I never said it out loud. I never said it out loud to anyone until just a few years ago. And even when I said it out loud, I had no plan, no support, no way to actually achieve writing a book, but at the turn of the year, I, that all changed. And I started talking with a coach myself about some of these things and the things that I wanted and was able to not just share the dream that I had, but actually got enough energy and enough kind of excitement around the idea that I was able to do it all in one year. So it’s like when you finally change shift that that change in your brain that says, yes, I am going to do something for a lot of us who have this sort of overachiever personality, we can, we can often do things and try to change the direction then, then we would have just sat and languished for a long time, you know, in the sidelines.
Dr. Ross: I guess one of the things I’m trying to get at is because I work with a lot of women who have come from alcoholic families or who have other traumas even. And I like to help them connect the dots between what they’re experiencing in their day-to-day life right now versus and how that is impacted by their childhood or their younger, younger years. And what I’m hearing you say is that all you need is a plan and you need to shift these things and it’s kind of a positive thinking mentality, but I, I know there are a lot of women who are struggling with you know, kind of beliefs about themselves that they’re not good enough, or they’re not worthy because of these childhood traumas and I don’t think a goal or plan is going to necessarily shift that. So I was wondering if you could iterate from your personal journey like it. Do you have any negative beliefs that you had to work on personally that helped you to achieve what you’re doing today?
Cady: Pretty much constant negative, negative words and negative self-talk that came out of my mind. I think that’s what always drove me to need this overachiever kind of guard in front of me. Right. Is that behind, behind that is I’m not good enough. So I have to keep trying and I have to keep working and I have to keep proving. And so for me one, one key turning point for me was not just working on therapy and, and talking about some of the things that I experienced, but kind of developing a system of affirmations to start changing some of the neuro pathways in my brain. And so what I would, I would do is I would create a set of, you know, maybe five or six affirmation that I was working on at a time. And, during my walk to work in the morning, I would pull out that list and something about the, you know, the movement of your body and sort of the lateral movement back and forth of being able to read and or say out loud, some of those affirmations was really helpful. And I, and it was at the very beginning, I didn’t believe any of it. I thought it was nonsense, you know, and what, what I found the more and more that I worked on it, the more, you know, slowly but surely some of this sort of seeped into my brain and I started to believe some of it. And one of the most important affirmations is just I am enough. And when I first started saying that to myself, I honestly believe enough. What is enough? That sounds like a failure, you know, average, what does average? That sounds terrible. I don’t want to be average, you know, but as I started saying these words, I am enough. I started to re recall or, or, my brain would put it kind of a guidepost and say, you know, You did do enough there and that was fine. That was totally fine. And so that started to change kind of some of these behaviors that I had that would take me way too far in one direction, you know?
Dr. Ross: And what did you learn about yourself and your trauma in therapy?
Cady: All kinds of things. Um, I never, I never would have
Dr. Ross: Give us an example of something that was really significant for you that maybe shifted.
Cady: Yeah, for one thing, um, thinking about my personality and learning about how a lot of that was influenced by my trauma was huge, hugely powerful in understanding kind of like why I am the way I am and I think I always grew up with this semblance in my life. Right. That there was something wrong with me. Like, you know, why, you know, why do I need to, um, continuously prove myself, right. And why, despite the proof do I still feel terrible and am I still unhappy and depressed and dealing with anxiety issues? Right. So, what I learned through therapy right. Is to say, yeah, I mean, there’s a reason why I have this need to prove myself all the time and it’s because of the way I grew up. And it’s because I was given way too much responsibility as even a five-year-old child, you know, running around that I started to have a lot of compassion for that part of me and that, that child that grew up like that, you know? I think developing some compassion for that piece of me just helped, you know, help me like, just tone it all down. You know, tone down some of these, the self-talk, you know, to tone down some of the feelings. Like I’m not that I’m not good enough.
Dr. Ross: Awesome. Great. So I’m sure you’re seeing a lot of clients now who are, you know, experiencing a lot of stress because of the pandemic and yeah. What kinds of things are you noticing about that and what kinds of advice are you able to offer them?
Cady: Yeah. I mean, so a lot of what I do as a financial planner, right? Is we, we make, we make plans. We look at risk, we look at contingency, you know, situations. And so, but even despite contingency planning, even despite having a solid emergency fund, there’s a lot of fear that comes up for people and there’s a need to maybe double protect or overprotect, sometimes. And so, I often start to dig in and ask a few questions. Like where do you think that comes from? You know, where, where do you think this need comes from? And, you know, my attempt is to show them like, no, we thought through this already and we’ve given you, you know, some contingency arrangements. Does that feel safe for you? Does that feel like enough? Um, and typically, you know, clients will say, yes, actually it does. And it helps me to talk about this stuff. And so sometimes it’s, uh, it may be irrational, you know, the fears that come up, especially around something around a pandemic, um, feeling like you don’t have enough. And, um, a lot of times talking outside yourself, just talking with someone who’s trusted and who knows you and your situation can be enough to try to get you out of that mindset and that fear.
Dr. Ross:Do you have any clients, so who have lost their businesses or who have, you know, had to shut down during the pandemic?
Cady: I’ve had a lot of clients, who’ve had a pretty significant pay cuts that they’ve had to deal with. And for most of them it’s been temporary. So a lot of them have by now been reinstated to some degree. Um, but I haven’t had any wholesale job losses at this point. Thankfully or anyone who’s suffering from that degree, but what I have offered and I have done some free consultations for the public, um, who are people who are suffering from virus related job loss or job insecurity. And so I have had some, you know, some. Talks with people on the along those lines to try to make sure that they’re finding all avenues with government support, that they can find, um, you know, that they’re, they’re working through their channels and that, um, even just to give a little guidance and support and encouragement can go a long way with that as well.
Dr. Ross: So what is it that you hope people who read your book when it comes out in a couple months or so? I think you said five weeks, right? Yeah. I always add time because my experience, it never happens exactly on the day, but what do you hope that people take away from reading your book?
Cady: Yeah. So I really hope that people take away a deeper understanding of how trauma can not just impact like our mindset and the way we think about our mental health, but it can also impact the way we think about our career and our lives and the trajectory of our dreams and the things that we want to achieve in life. And once we start making that connection, there’s a lot more power we have to do something different, you know, to unlearn some of the coping mechanisms to focus on, you know, the skills that we do have and the resources that we do have to be able to start moving forward, to achieve some of those big dreams that we have in life.
Dr. Ross: Great. Well, it’s been wonderful talking with you, Cady. And I am one of the stories I think that is in your book. Did my story.
Cady: Yeah. Yes. It’s a great story to talk about. Yeah. Internal generational trauma. Absolutely. Yes.
Dr. Ross: So, uh, we all look forward to that and tell the listeners where they can find out about you. And I will also put it in the show notes, uh, where they can look for your book.
Cady: Yeah, sounds great. So, my website is cadynorth.com and my name is spelled a little bit funny, C A D Y N O R T H.com. And there, you can find information about my financial planning practice as well as my book, which is going to be released in early December on Amazon
Dr. Ross: Okay. Thanks for being on the show.
Cady: Thanks Dr. Ross.
I hope you enjoyed Cady North story and some of her tips about financial resilience so she is offered to give us a link to a really great blog called “3 Tips for Building Resilience” you can find that in the show for this show. Please give us a review for the podcast which helps with our ranking and all that stops. And then this is a series that I’m going to be repeating so keep your eyes open for the next financial advise podcast which will be coming up very soon. Thanks for listening.