Episode 079

Slow Money Will Make You Rich

Did you know that slow money will make you rich? I’m discussing four different aspects of slow money today: investing, spending, pricing, and your nervous system. All of these pieces are important, but slowing down and healing your nervous system so you can feel more comfortable having money conversations is often overlooked.

Understanding slow money will give you a new lens through which to view long-term growth. Slowing down will speed you up. We live in a society where we want instant gratification. However, if you can be mindful in slowly reducing your outgoings while getting comfortable asking for more, receiving more, and being around other people who are doing the same, then you’re on the track to creating real wealth.

Tune in this week to discover why slow money will make you rich. I’m discussing a simple approach to investing that will grow your money slowly but surely over time, how to see whether you’re in a cycle of overspending, and how to change your mindset around the slow and steady approach to building wealth.

If you want a coach to help you with your nervous system work, so you can change from the inside out and bring a different version of you into the world that’s calmer, more grounded, centered, and calmer, reach out for one-on-one coaching!

What You’ll Learn from this Episode:

  • Why investing in the stock market doesn’t have to be risky.
  • How investing $100 per month during your working life will add up by the time you retire.
  • Why it’s always a good idea to track your spending, and how this tedious work will make you rich.
  • How your nervous system becomes activated when it comes to money.
  • What you can do to take action and start slowing down in order to get rich.


Read the full transcript now

You’re listening to the Mastering Money in Midlife podcast with Debbie Sassen, Episode 79.

Welcome to Mastering Money in Midlife, a podcast for midlife women in business to overcome financial anxiety and make more money without burning out or sacrificing their families. Join Certified Life and Money Coach Debbie Sassen, as she shares practical business strategies and mindset shifts that help you dissolve the money blocks that keep you stuck in a cycle of underearning and undersaving, sabotage the growth of your business, and prevent you from building the wealth that you desire.

Hello, my friends, and welcome back to the podcast. Today, we are going to be talking about how slow money makes you rich. I read that line recently in the book Happy Money by Ken Honda. I don’t even think that I read the words that were underneath that headline. But I so loved what Ken Honda had to say in his book, and it just kept turning over my mind. I thought this is a great topic for a podcast.

This week, I am celebrating the four-year anniversary of the launch of my book, The $1K Investor: Simple, Smart Steps to Start Investing with $1K or Less. And I thought this was the perfect title for today’s podcast. So, I’m not going to speak only about investing, we will speak about investing, but we’re going to talk about slow money today, from four different aspects.

The first one is investing, my book, what that will help you understand about long-term growth, and how doing it slowly will make you rich. The second aspect is spending. Many people are caught in the cycle of overspending, and how slowly reducing your spending will help you get rich over time. Then we’re going to talk about your business and pricing and raising your prices over time.

And the last point we’re going to talk about today is your nervous system. How important it is to slow down and heal your nervous system in order that you can expand to feel more comfortable with money, feel more comfortable talking about money, receiving money, charging higher prices, and even being surrounded by people who are having money conversations and making lots of money.

So, let’s start with number one, which is all about investing. Actually, before we start, I just want to say that the principle for every single one of these points, all four of them, is that slowing down, will speed you up.

We live in a society where we want instant gratification. We have our phones where we just can press a button and very quickly the message goes all the way around the world. And then we expect within three seconds we’re going to have a response from the other person that we just sent our WhatsApp or Voxer message to, or whatever system you’re using. We can speak with people on video, whether it’s by zoom or FaceTime, whatever it is.

We have this urge for instant gratification. And we expect it also, for some reason that’s wired into our brains and bodies and our nervous systems, we just have this expectation that we can also get rich quick; we can make money quickly.

There are times where people get really lucky with their investments. I recently heard about Disney acquiring Lucasfilm. Lucasfilm is behind Star Wars. And I forget the terms, maybe I’ll bring it in a future podcast. But maybe it was like a $4 billion or $10 billion investment that turned into $70 billion over the last, I think, 11 years that Disney acquired Lucasfilm. I think it was a $4 billion investment, which has created $70 billion of income and wealth for Disney. That was about 150% return on their investment.

What I speak about in my book, however, is that if you start investing when you are young. I know that some people listening to the podcast are younger, and some people are older, but let me just share the principle with you.

Investing $100 a month for 45 years. That means from the time you’re 20 until the time you are 65, which is retirement age in some countries. I know that we are pushing retirement age out, so take it from the age of 25 to the age of 70. But basically, for 45 years consistently, you would be investing $100 in long-term investments.

And over time, that $100, which if you count it up: 25 years, 12 months, the number of $100 bills you would put into your investment account will add up to $54,000. And your investment, if you invested it in the stock market, which has an average annual return of about 10%, your $54,000 will multiply to $502,000. Because of the magic of compound interest.

That means your $54,000 was invested, you earned interest on your investment, and interest on your interest, and interest on your interest. And the cycle continues for 45 years, such that you gain back $448,000 in compound return on your investment. Because you chose to go slowly and every month set aside $100 in an investment account.

Again, I’m going to specify that this would be specifically an investment in the stock market, which has an average annual return of 10% over time. This is how slow money, not going into a super high risk… The stock market over time has always had a positive return. If you take any slice of 25 years, and that includes the Great Depression in 1929, any 25-year slice of time has always had a positive return on investment.

So, I personally don’t consider it very risky if you have a long-term investment horizon. And that’s why the majority of our personal wealth is in the stock market. Because it’s so easy. I can put it in a market tracking fund, set it, forget it, and it will continue to grow over time. That’s my approach to investing. And you can read more about it in my book.

Point number two, let’s talk about spending. There are people who are either over spenders, that’s just their nature. People kind of divide out between spenders and savers. So, I’m speaking specifically to those people who are over spenders for emotional reasons, and that’s a different topic for a different podcast. And/or also people whose families have grown, their expenses have grown, their kids are older.

As a mom of five boys, three of them are now in their 20s and two of them are married and don’t live at home. But I still have two teenage boys at home, they eat a lot of food. God bless them. My girls also, as teenagers, ate a lot because their bodies were growing and developing. But there is nothing in the universe like a teenage boy.

In my next reincarnation, I want to come back as a teenage boy and stay that way, because I can eat as much as I want and I can sleep as much as I want. It just seems like… I’m chuckling a little bit, but it seems like just the perfect life. And they have so much energy when they wake up. They could just go bicycle riding and camping and hiking and all the things that I love to do, for it seems like forever.

Anyway, if you have a family, and if you are having a growing family, your expenses continue to grow over time. And then, there’s education. We think that once they’re out of diapers, all of a sudden, we’re going to have a lot of spare cash on our hands. But that is so not true. There’s education and there’s food, and there’s all the extra things that families need as the family continues to grow.

So, you might find yourself strapped for cash and in the cycle of overspending. What most people want to do, when they want to reduce spending, is make these drastic cuts to their budget. And it is so uncomfortable. We’re going to speak a little bit about the nervous system at the end of this podcast.

But it’s a jolt to your nervous system to go from living in let’s call it abundance, overspending, but living one way and all of a sudden there’s a drastic reduction. Change takes time. I’d like to recommend to people that they go through their budget first and track what they’re spending, before you’re making any changes. Just the very act of tracking your spending, which is tedious, but doing tedious work will make you lots of money.

Doing tedious work will make you rich. When you do the tedious work of tracking your money, it’s amazing. All of a sudden, you have awareness around where your money is going. And that gives you the opportunity to make different choices.

People say to me, they come to me, “Well, we’re cutting back. We’re not spending. I haven’t gotten myself any new clothes in three years.” But when you actually look at the numbers, whether you did or didn’t spend any money on clothes for yourself in the last three years, it doesn’t matter. But there is usually some fluff that can be cut.

And then when you start cutting, don’t make drastic choices. Think about making a 1% reduction in your expenses every month. So, as I’m recording this in May, if you would reduce your expenses by 1% in May, and then 1% in June, and another 1% in July, and you keep going, it will end up that by the end of a full year, you will actually have reduced your total expenses by 37%.

You help your body, your brain, your family, adjust slowly to the reduction in your spending. Now, you might find things that you can cancel altogether. Maybe there’s a magazine subscription that you no longer use. Maybe you could call your cell phone company and have them reduce your fees. Or your bank, or something like that. Insurances, you might be able to change your deductible.

There might be some sweeping changes that you can make that will yield fantastic financial results in a very short time. But if you’re talking about your electricity, food expenditures, things like that, do those changes slowly, so that you give yourself, your body, your brain, and your family time to adjust.

When you feel confident that the process is going to work, you trust it, you stay in the process. That’s when slow money, slow changes, slow reduction in your expenditure will make you rich over time.

Let’s move on to point number three, and that is in building your business. And this is really where I work mostly with my clients. When you are pricing your offers… And last week, when I met with my group coaching program, students from Wired for Wealth, we solidified signature offers. Your signature offer is what you are offering to your clients. The terms and conditions of your offer.

If it’s a coaching program like I’m offering, my program is nine months long. So, those are my terms and conditions. We meet three times a month. And then, there’s the price, which is $6,000 for my offer. Your price is something that you decide in your mind reflects the value of what you are delivering to your clients.

Now, in the beginning of your business, you probably wouldn’t be able to take a program like mine… Let’s say you wanted to run a group coaching program and charge $6,000. Because there’s going to be a misalignment in what you know, about what you’re doing, the services you’re providing your clients, the results that your clients are getting, and also the way you’re feeling in your body.

I always love coming back to the body because the body has all of the wisdom and all of the information that we can use, when we actually drop into our bodies and we really pay attention to what’s going on.

If you tried to take an offer that you have and charge a very high fee in the beginning, you’re just going to feel very, very shaky when you’re saying that out to your potential clients. And they’re going to sense that. They’re going to sense your lack of security and confidence and safety and believing in your value.

So, I always recommend that you start a little bit lower. It should be a stretchy kind of a price. Not something that’s going to snap you and snap your nervous system and make you crazy, but you can stretch a little bit. And I said this to one of my new Wired for Wealth clients yesterday, who is reconfiguring her offer from a three-month offer to a six-month offer and setting the price.

I said to her, “This is not your forever price.” Because she was thinking the three-month offer times two is more than the six-month price. And I was like, “Yeah, but let’s get comfortable selling this six-month offer at this six-month price. And then, after you’ve sold three of these or five of these, then you know that you will be able to deliver. You know that you have clients who are saying yes. You know how to sell it at this price. And then, when you really connect more deeply with the value and you feel more certain about it and more confident about it, then you will be able to raise your price.”

If we look at the long term of our business, kind of like looking at that 45-year history of investment. But if you’re looking at your business as a 10 year or 20 year or 30 year going concern, the difference of $1,000 on your six-month offer today, or even $5,000 on your six-month offer today, versus where you will be in 10 or 20 years from now. Again, it’s just a drop in the bucket.

So, slow money, raising your prices slowly so that you will feel congruent in your body, that is what is going to make you rich over time.

Number four let’s talk about our nervous systems. This is the part of the podcast where I’m going to remind you that if you are listening here with me today, that you have inherited ancestral trauma living in your nervous system. If you were raised as a woman, if you are Jewish like I am, if you are a person of color, there is a 100% chance that someone in your immediate bloodline was punished for having the audacity to have money, to make money, and to thrive financially.

I’m Jewish, I’m a direct descendant of people who are arrested, imprisoned, fled from their homes in countries where they were living. There is some anecdotal evidence that we were also living in Spain during the Spanish Inquisition. But I don’t have any evidence of that, that I can find. It’s only family hearsay and stories.

On my dad’s side of the family, my grandfather, who co-owned and co-managed a large department store in Germany, was forced to sell his store for 1/10 of its true value. And then shortly thereafter, my grandfather was arrested on Kristallnacht, The Night of Broken Glass, on November 8, 1938. And then he was imprisoned in the Buchenwald concentration camp for three weeks.

Thankfully, my grandfather already had a visa, so he was able to leave Germany. But he fled pretty much with just the shirt on his back. And then, when he got to the United States, he worked as a janitor and as a Fuller Brush salesman, before he actually went to night school and learned bookkeeping. And then later in his life, he became a bookkeeper.

Shortly after my grandfather fled, my grandmother and my father followed my grandfather to the United States. They were able to take some of the family heirlooms. There were a couple of wooden pieces of furniture that I remember growing up with in my in my grandparents’ home. But mostly they left their possessions, most of their possessions, and even my grandmother’s father, they left in Germany. Because forget the material things.

Actually, my grandmother’s father did not die in a concentration camp in the Holocaust. He died of natural causes in 1943, which was something that sort of calms my nervous system. But basically, when my grandparents left, it was like, leave the stuff behind. Let’s just save our skin. Because life matters, right? It’s either live or die.

And it was the same thing in my mom’s family. My grandparents on my mother’s side left family wealth and family businesses, and they fled to the United States. My family built everything up from scratch. And if you’re anything like me, whether it’s your grandparents generation, your great-grandparents generation, even six generations back, inherited trauma will be living in your nervous system.

You might feel that in scarcity around your pricing, scarcity around talking about money, scarcity in spending. You might be overspending and you don’t even know why. But there could be internal programming and internal wiring that’s giving you messages like, “We have to get this all now. Because maybe tomorrow, we’re not going to have enough money.”

So, the question is, if you have, and it’s not even an if. Because you have inherited ancestral financial money trauma, living in your body, living in your nervous system, what do you do about it? The first step is that you want to orient your nervous system to safety.

Now, orienting is actually something that I do with my clients when I work with them one on one. Sometimes I even do it when I’m working with my group. And EFT tapping is another one of the modalities that I use to help calm our nervous systems and close stress cycles.

But let me give you a specific example. Because yesterday, one of my clients expressed that she was in a cash crunch. And this happens, it’s so normal. Let’s take the shame away from being in a cash crunch. Life happens; there could be a medical expense, there could be a family celebration, there could be something unusual, your car broke down, you needed a root canal, whatever.

There’re so many reasons why we get into cash crunches; you didn’t plan correctly. So, let’s just have a rule between us that there’s no guilt, shame, or embarrassment around cash crunches. It’s something that happens. And we can learn from the experience, to make sure that we plan as much as possible to have a cash cushion.

But anyway, my client wanted some coaching on pricing a custom proposal, because she was in a cash crunch. She asked me, “Is this coming from scarcity?” And the first thing I did, is I validated her worries and concerns, that “Yes, it’s coming from scarcity.”

Again, let’s unshame financial scarcity. Sometimes it happens that you don’t have money, and that is okay. We’re just going to use this as an opportunity to learn. I told her that it was good that she recognized that her pricing and her worry and her spinning in her mind, around what was happening, was coming from scarcity.

And already knowing that, having the awareness, that is a huge first step. Because when you’re aware of what’s happening, that’s when you have the opportunity to heal it. Right? We have these dark places in our lives, we have the scarcities, we have the spinning heads, let’s use them to heal and grow and expand.

Let’s stop being afraid of dark places. Let’s stop running away and trying to get out of scarcity as quickly as possible. That’s when you end up with these get-rich-quick schemes and trying to make fast money. But let’s use these opportunities for growth and healing and expansion. And as I said to my client, when your nervous system is activated in scarcity, and we’ve talked about this before on the podcast, your brain is thinking, “No money, no food, I’m going to die.”

As I mentioned about my grandparents, let’s save our lives instead of die, right? But when you’re feeling that financial scarcity, this is your invitation to slow down. You could do some deep breathing. You can do some orienting. You can do tapping on your shame, on your scarcity, whatever is coming up for you.

Or as I told my client yesterday, give yourself 15 minutes, 20 minutes, whatever it takes to close your stress cycle. Move your body, go for a walk, give yourself time. This is where we slow down money in order to get rich. This is when we slow down the things that we’re doing. We’re not going to be a human doing, you’re going to be a human being.

You allow yourself to be in your body and find out where you’re feeling triggered, where you’re feeling scarce. Is it tightness in your belly? Is it in your jaw? Is it in your throat? Do you feel tension in your shoulders? Is your body frizzled and fritzing out because there’s this electric charge running through you? Again, is your head spinning?

Notice what is happening in your body, slow down, allow, and help your body process all of the emotions that are coursing through you. Because when your emotions are high, you don’t have the ability to think clearly. Your intelligence and your higher thinking powers are low.

And you want to be able to access your higher-level thinking in order to send a custom proposal, or any pricing proposal, to a potential client. You want to do it from confidence. You want to do it from certainty. You want to do it from an awareness of what you’re doing.

What I recommended to my client, because her original proposal was rejected. Her potential client really wanted a smaller job. And my client was like, “Well, what she’s offering me is only two thirds of what I think it’s worth.” What my recommendation was, “You can accept her proposal and have in your mind that your client is getting an amazing deal. Because she’s getting, let’s call it $3,000 worth of value, for $1,500.” Or as I said, two thirds.

“She’s getting $3,000 worth of value for $2,000, whatever it is. And you can just be so grateful and thankful, because you are in a position of scarcity right now. You do need some money coming in the door. You can be thankful that God sent you this client right now. And just be so happy for her that she’s getting such a great deal. This is the way God set things up in this moment.”

I also told her she could go back and negotiate if she wanted to, but not from a place of frenetic ‘need money, have to get money in the door. I’m in a cash crunch. I need to get it now.’ But do it from being grounded. Do it from like, “Hey, maybe we can negotiate a middle path. I said three, you said two, maybe we can settle on $2500,” whatever it is.

There’s no right answer, it’s whatever you feel in the moment. But allow yourself to feel financial scarcity. Allow yourself to heal from the body up. When you heal down into your nervous system, that is how you earn up the income ladder. That is how you slow down money in order to become rich.

So, let’s just recap, for the end of the podcast. Slow money will make you rich with your investments, because you consistently invest small amounts of money over time. And if there’s a financial dip, a stock market crash, whatever, you don’t get scared and pull out. You keep investing at lower prices.

Slow money will make you rich with your spending. When you slow down to track what you’re spending, make different choices, and then slowly, slowly, slowly reduce your budget, reduce your spending. Small changes every month will result in large changes over the course of the year.

Third point, raise your prices slowly in your business, until you can be fully congruent and fully aligned with the price that you’re charging and the value of the results that you are delivering to your clients.

And point number four, no shame in being in a place of money scarcity. We all have inherited ancestral trauma around money living in our nervous systems. And when you slow down and really find out what is coursing through you, what’s the energy like, what’s happening, and you allow yourself to go to those dark places, that is the way you heal your relationship with money and you earn up the income ladder.

I want to remind you that on my website you have access to a free money mindset workbook. Go to my website, DebbieSassen.com/mindset. You have some exercises in that workbook to help uncover your limiting beliefs and money blocks. when it comes to money as a person, a civilian, as a business owner. And I give you the opportunity to reframe some of the thoughts that you have around money, so that you’re learning new thoughts and new behaviors. So go to my website, DebbieSassen.com/mindset.

I will see you next week on the podcast. Bye-bye, for now.

Thanks for listening to Mastering Money in Midlife. If you want more information on Debbie Sassen or the resources from the podcast, visit MasteringMoneyInMidlife.com.

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