In continued celebration of National Wellness Month, Ofosu and Leah (and some special guests) want to help you make wellness a priority in your life. So each week in August, they’ll announce a new wellness challenge for you to try with them.
This week, Ofosu and Leah talk with money expert Danetha Doe about how to set financial priorities and goals with a positive mindset—and without overwhelm. They also reveal the second Wellness Month challenge.
Tune in next Monday to hear how the challenge went for them, and don’t forget to share your experience, too. You can email a voice memo to email@example.com. Or you can participate when prompted on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and TikTok, or you can even tag @balance on a post on your personal account. The more you participate, the more you increase your chances to be featured in next week's episode!
More about Danetha:
Danetha Doe is an economist, award-winning TV host, and the creator of Money & Mimosas. Her mission is to have deeper conversations about money, and she believes it is possible to build wealth in a socially and environmentally responsible way.
Find her Money Date Checklist here: https://www.moneyandmimosas.com/moneydate And you can learn more about her work on her website — https://danethadoe.com/ — or her blog — https://www.moneyandmimosas.com/
Well Balanced is co-hosted by the expert meditation coaches of Balance. Balance is a highly personalized meditation and sleep app that's been named Google's App of the Year and Apple's App of the Day. Completely free for the entire first year, Balance is helping 3 million+ people around the world improve their stress, sleep, focus, and mood. Unlock your free year of Balance today by downloading it from the App Store or Play Store.
[Theme up and fade under]
OFOSU: Hi, I'm Ofosu Jones-Quartey.
LEAH: And I'm Leah Santa Cruz. We're the meditation coaches on Balance.
OFOSU: And this is our weekly show -- Well Balanced.
[SFX + Interview Start]
OFOSU: This week's wellness month challenge is all about drum roll - money and how to get away from feelings of fear and overwhelm and negativity. When thinking about planning, our personal finances, speaking from personal experience, this is not an easy thing to do. Money can obviously be a big source of anxiety.
Lucky for all of us. I've got an expert here to give us our money challenge. Uh, and her name is Danetha Doe. She is the chief economist for Clever Real Estate, an award-winning TV host, and has been recognized as a personal finance expert by Time, the Wall Street Journal and Fast Company. She's also the creator of, uh, this is like the coolest title in the world, Money and Mimosas, a financial education aimed at helping us have deeper conversations about money and a deep conversation about money is exactly what we're gonna have with her today. What up, how are you doing?
DANETHA: Hey folks.. I am so excited to have this conversation with you. I hope I can provide some great insights for you and the listeners today.
OFOSU: I think you absolutely will. Me and my wife every once in a while, we'll do a sip and soak where we just put our feet in the tub and drink champagne. And so, um, I think we'll, we'll switch and do things like a money and mimosas, um, uh, this weekend after having this conversation. Yeah, I think, uh, I think you're gonna inspire a financial sip and soak.
DANETHA: I love that. Oh, so the sip and soak is. So you can just soak your feet and sip champagne and talk. Not necessarily about money.
OFOSU: Yeah. We just talk, I mean money comes into it, cause like whenever we do that, it ends up being like a state of the union of like the family, the finances, us, all that stuff.
So yeah. So I think we could just like do a sip and soak, but like having money be like the central piece of it. Cause like I'm feeling ready to have that conversation.
DANETHA: You know, I love that. Well, you just inspired me as well with a sip and soak anything. Bath bubbles and champagne are amazing. And I also love that moment to reconnect in a relaxed environment rather than being anxious or stressed.
OFOSU: It definitely helps. She is like the person who chills me out. So whenever we're in that chill space, I feel like we make the best decisions. So, um, you have a challenge for us. I'm super stoked to hear it. Please hit us with the challenge.
DANETHA: My challenge for you, Leah and the well balanced community is to sit down and map out how you'd spend $300,000.
So just think magically $300,000 appears in your bank account and you have to spend it. You can't pay down student loans, you can't pay off debt. You have to spend it on things that will bring you joy and fulfillment. And excitement.
OFOSU: Wow, what a fun thought experiment. This is definitely how we are spending the sip and soak.
What would we do? Because I'm already starting to calculate in my mind, but I want to hear from you. Why do you think that this exercise can help us with our financial health or our financial wellbeing?
DANETHA: There's a few reasons why this exercise is super helpful for all those aspects that you mentioned. One is that it gets us in a state of joy. Who doesn't like to spend money as opposed to paying down debt?
Spending money is so much fun. Secondly, for many of us, $300,000 will force us to dream bigger. You know, for some of us a thousand dollars is easy to think about how much you could spend, maybe $10,000. But when we think about $300,000 in cash, just magically landing in your bank account, and you have to spend it, that means you have to start thinking about ways to enjoy it that you may not have considered before.
I often do these types of exercises when I realize that I've reached my upper limit in my career, because you've achieved so much thus far, and there's always something else though, to experience, but you don't know what that is.
Have exposure, so you can actually see a vision for it. And so this is what this exercise forces you to do. You may have to do some research. How much does it cost to go to Bali and maybe stay at the fanciest resort? Um, and take a class with Leah while she's there? You have to do some research and see. Oh, okay. This is how I can dream bigger. And this is how much it cost.
OFOSU: Yeah. I am in that kind of space where it's like, okay, well, a lot of what I wanted to have happened has happened. So this is already very personally helpful. So let me ask you another question. Um, what, what got you into this line of work?
DANETHA: Well, from a young age I was interested in how money works for my eighth birthday. My parents got me business cards at the time I wanted to be a nail artist and that was a failed business venture but it opened up my eyes to, oh, this is fun. Uh, to have an idea and to possibly make money for, from it. My real joy in learning about money started at 13.
I was taking an entrepreneurship class in high school and that semester-long class, we were able to come up with a business plan and then present it to bankers for a fake loan. And that process opened my mind up to this reality that if I was passionate about an idea, if I was creative, all I needed to do was understand how money works so that I could then present it to potentially a lender or prospective client in that class.
I learned about cash flow projections and financial statements, and that language that I hadn't been taught before. And I realized that was the language I needed to know as someone who's very creative and passionate and wanted to carve out her own career to be able to do that, I needed to understand money.
And so that's how I got into this line of work. Um, I went on to study it formally in school. Um, but that was the initial spark.
OFOSU: I'm curious. I've been around huge amounts of money and very like small amounts of money and, you know, just in, in my life. And one thing that's constant is that it can just feel intimidating, you know, no matter what it can just feel like, uh, I don't know what I'll do with this, or I don't, or I don't know how to get this, or I'm not sure what to do or where to put it, you know, all those types of things.
So what tips do you have for helping people work through that feeling of overwhelm and fear that is connected to money, no matter how much or how little we have.
DANETHA: Great question. I came into this industry from more of the analytical perspective of running numbers, looking at balance sheets, just seeing money as black and white numbers on a page.
Once I started a business, that's when I realized, oh, there's a lot of psychology here. There's a lot of opportunity for self discovery and empowerment in this journey. And so while I'm not a psychologist, this line of work has forced me to better understand my own psychology and others' money psychology.
And so when we talk about overwhelm, that's a psychological state. When we're in a space of overwhelm, we tend to shut down and avoid, uh, because it's just too much for us to handle. And so one of the first steps that I recommend to folks, if they're feeling a sense of financial overwhelm, which likely means they're not looking at their bank account statements, or they're not checking their credit card, they aren't mindful as they're spending their money is to try to infuse some aspect of fun into the relationship with money.
So a sip and soak, a money and mimosa date where you're thinking about money while doing something that's pleasurable, because we wanna shift from that state of overwhelm to a state of some sense of calm. Eventually we wanna get to the place of joy and excitement around money.
But we can't just leap there immediately. So we wanna shift to a state where we're like calming our central nervous system when we're thinking about money. And so doing things like a weekly money date can help where you sit down, look at your finances while drinking a mimosa or doing a bubble bath and start there. That's one step then you can do another step.
If you're in a space where looking at your bank account is terrifying, set up alerts so that you don't actually have to physically open up your bank account. So whatever bank you're with, you're likely able to set up an alert to show you how much your current balance is.
I still have alerts that let me know whenever I spend over $20, just because I want an ongoing intimate relationship with money. I wanna be in touch with this energy. I see money as energy. Yeah. And so set up those alerts so that you're starting that relationship with this energy, with money. And from there, uh, you know, it will start to unfold for you.
OFOSU: I love that. I love the idea of money as energy. This is personally relevant. So I am actually interested in kind of walking through doing a light dance through this challenge real quick. So do you feel comfortable sharing what you would spend your 300 K on and do you know what the answers are already?
DANETHA: I do. I'm happy to share a high level cause I can get really granular. I did this most recent exercise probably like four weeks ago. So not that long ago. Um, because I had reached a point in my career where I realized, oh, you stopped dreaming. Like you've achieved all that you've wanted to accomplish.
And I realized I still had dreams, but they were all tied to work. They were all tied to what more I could produce as an entrepreneur, which is great. Awesome. I also would like to infuse more downtime in my career, more time for relaxation with my partner. And so I sat down and did this exercise and for me, the challenge was don't think about ways that you create more work for yourself.
How can you spend your money so that you can really relax? And my current goal is to adjust my career so that every year I'm able to take a mini retirement. I take three to four months off, go to another country, preferably a country where English is not the first language.
So I could learn another language and maybe stay in some luxurious places. Maybe not? Maybe a combination of the two, but that's what I want in my career. Like sooner rather than later. And so this exercise forced me to do some research. Like how much would it cost to live in South America for four months?
And if we're going bouncing around to different countries.
OFOSU: That's, that's awesome. We have kind of parallel goals here. Like for me, I'm really interested in having the option to retire ASAP, but I still love to work. I love teaching. I love performing. I love being creative. Um, but I would love to be able to do all of that without financial stress, you know, being, being a driver of it.
But yeah, I mean, I’m also really interested in being able to deepen my meditation practice, to visit other teachers and other temples and all kinds of other stuff. And, and then to just have the freedom to create and do all like my music and visual stuff. So just full transparency. I'm talking like this and our producer Max is like, okay.
So how does that translate into spending 300 K. I don't know yet. Maybe I would set money aside too. I don't know. I'm not sure. I guess I have to think about it and do research, Max. I can't figure this out on the spot, but I will do research and figure out how I can have a more free flowing life.
I'd like to be on for six months and off for six months.
DANETHA: Exactly. I'm the same way. Well, and I love that you said that, like I could see the wheels turning in your head because this exercise isn't to be done in five minutes. It really is an exercise to dig deep, do some research, maybe talk to some folks for inspiration. Look through magazines to get inspired visually. Really soak in this experience because you don't have to make a decision right away. Actually, the more time you spend thinking about it, the clearer you'll get on what you really want.
OFOSU: Yeah, for sure. I would go to the Boulder Mountain guest ranch, which is in Boulder, Utah, and spend a month or two there, because they have all the amenities.
Like my family can stay there. They have a full kitchen and everything like that, but they have like a very high level recording studio when it's just right in the middle of the Utah mountains. Like you come outta that studio and you're just like, oh my God. And so, and there's a big performance space in there and a bunch of meditation spaces in there. I would just be there creating that's one thing I know I would do. So, um, any last minute tips on how we can walk through spending our 300 K?
DANETHA: Well, I just wanna say that I love that you shared a specific example like that because for someone listening, who has never heard of Boulder, now you just opened up their mind to, oh my gosh.
I didn't even know that was possible. I didn't even know this existed. And that's what these exercises are meant to do, especially if you're doing it with maybe a romantic partner. If you bring it up to friends or folks that you feel safe with sharing your dreams with, that's part of the beauty of this type of exercise.
Um, I would say the last tip around spending 300,000 - don't limit yourself because it's easy to think like, oh, I don't know if that's possible. If I can take a whole month off or four months off, whatever, try not to limit yourself. And if you do have someone, you can share it with, try to find someone to share it with, because that can make it feel much more real and attainable.
OFOSU: Awesome. Danetha, can you give us the challenge one more time please?
DANETHA: Absolutely. Uh, so my challenge for you, Leah and the Well-Balanced community is to sit down and map out how you'd spend $300,000. You can't spend it on debt. You can't pay it down. You have to spend it on experiences or things that make you feel happy and bring you joy.
OFOSU: Yeah. Yeah. Okay, cool. Well, my gears are turning and it's making me really happy inside. I love this idea and that is gonna be the focus of the sip and soak my wife and I do on our staycation this weekend. So thank you. So, and I feel like, I feel like, um, I want to hear more about the money date. Can people find out about the money at moneyandmimosas.com.
DANETHA: Yeah. So if you head to moneyandmimosas.com, there's a tab dedicated to the money date, and you can download a checklist there and the checklist will walk you through five easy steps to do on your money date to help you bring more awareness to your finances, um, practice money and mindfulness.
OFOSU: Awesome. Okay. Well, thank you so much, Danetha. It's been wonderful having you and, uh, we'll see you next time.
DANETHA: This has been so much fun. Thank you for the lovely conversation.
OFOSU: Absolutely. Okay. So if you want to dive into the money date that Danetha mapped out for us, check out the link in our show notes for her money, date checklist, and you can also check out more for work @moneyandmimosasdotcomordehadoe.com.
And we've got links to everything in the description. And just like in today's episode, we'll be sharing how this challenge went for some of you next week. So email us a voice memo, sharing what you'd spend your 300 K on and how this thought exercise shifted your relationship with money. Or you can submit a response to us via social media, cause we're gonna be putting out a post during the week on Balance’s, Instagram story, Facebook and Twitter.
And we'll be asking you to share. So look out for that and be sure to submit your response. You can find our handles and email in the show notes. We'll be back next week with another wellness challenge from a friend of the show, Jessica Holzman from Study with Jess. She has a tip for changing how you use your smartphone that might help you focus better. Until then, please remember to be kind to yourself and take care. Peace.
[Interview End + SFX]
[Theme up and out]