Money Talks is an xoNecole series where we talk candidly to real women about how they spend money, their relationship with money, and how they get it.
Ladies, I don't know about you, but when I see other women making their coin and a name for themselves through their passions, it just makes me feel all fuzzy inside. Especially when those women spread the wealth of knowledge to help other women earn extra income and secure all of the bags in the process. Contrary to popular belief, there is enough to eat sis, so we can all have a seat at the table. Lyn Allure, founder of Good Girls Gone Boss, is someone who believes that it pays to pay it forward.
The Toronto-based entrepreneur took advantage of the power of the internet and has been able to create multiple streams of income by changing her mindset around money and educating other women on how it's done. With a background in finance, Lyn used her experience in corporate and her bachelor's in Business Administration to jump-start her journey into entrepreneurship. Since leaving her corporate job seven years ago, Lyn has been able to harness the power of the internet to spearhead successful online businesses, including a successful YouTube channel.
Courtesy of Lyn Allure
In July 2020, Lyn launched her online platform Good Girls Gone Boss. She explained its inception, "I started Good Girls Gone Boss as a solution for other entrepreneurial-minded women to connect and share gems along this business journey. When I first started making money on social media and growing my brand, it was a very isolating process. I was in my own little world most of the time. None of my friends were into social media at the time, but I knew I had an interest in YouTube and I saw the potential there."
Lyn continued, "I thought to myself, 'If I can turn a fun hobby into more money, then why not?' So I had to learn how to do things on my own, like how to inquire about brand deals, tips for Google AdSense, affiliate links, etc. After I started to see the money coming in, I thought it would be helpful to really make this community with Good Girls Gone Boss because I figured other women felt isolated as well."
As a solution and a resource, Good Girls Gone Boss offers weekly YouTube videos surrounding personal finance tips, an exclusive community that includes hands-on support and trainings, and financial resources such as a budget workbook. The platform is a space for a community of unapologetically, ambitious bosses who are looking to design, plan, and execute their dream life.
In this installment of "Money Talks", xoNecole spoke with Lyn Allure about how normalizing financial literacy, staying humble, and making your money work for you are the keys to creating financial freedom.
On the definitions of wealth and success:
"With wealth, I believe that aligns with being financially free. To be able to live a quality of life without worrying about if you can afford it or not. I also consider someone being wealthy by the company they keep. You are only as wealthy as the people around you; whether that means helping your friends to get to your level if they are struggling, or passing down wealth for future generations.
"Now, with success, to me, is simply happiness. Not just being content, but being proud of yourself for where you are in life and in a state of bliss. We know success can be different for different people. Success can mean making six figures for some people and for others, it has nothing to do with money at all. Whatever success may mean to you, it should definitely include happiness."
On unhealthy mindsets about money she had to let go of:
"One thing for me was, the idea [that you have] to spend money to make money. You know that saying, 'scared money, don't make money'? That is absolutely true (laughs). I grew up in the hood, so I thought the best mindset about money was to make a lot of it and then save a lot of it. But the reality is, it is not just about how much money you make. It's about how much money you make and how much you invest in order to make more. When you invest, now you have equity and assets that produce income for you. I had to really change my mentality with money early on, in order to get to where I am right now."
"The reality is, it is not just about how much money you make. It's about how much money you make and how much you invest in order to make more. When you invest, now you have equity and assets that produce income for you."
Courtesy of Lyn Allure
On her investments:
"Right now, I have two main investments. My first investment is a single-family home investment property with tenants. I currently reside in a condo because I have no desire to live in a single-family home for myself. I am not going to be mowing the lawn or doing those other things (laughs). But with my property, I am thinking about renovating the basement and renting that out as well. My second investment is stocks. I try to invest in stocks on a regular basis with buying index funds and stocks in companies I truly believe in."
On her biggest tip to beginner investors:
"Something that people often think, is that we need to be involved in the finance field 24/7 in order to be a successful investor. That's honestly not the case. If you put money away periodically or every month into an index fund or an ETF, it appreciates. You will be able to see a 7-10% return on that every year. This way is low effort and it's definitely better than just putting your money away into a savings account."
On the worst money-related advice she has ever received:
"That scarcity mindset around 'don't spend your money because you don't know when you are going to get it back' needs to be thrown out the window (laughs). There is an abundance of money out there and it's really about reframing your mindset around it. A phrase I like to follow is 'a dollar today is worth more than a dollar tomorrow.' So for example, if I am holding on to $10,000 in my savings without putting [it] into an investment opportunity, in 10 years that $10,000 will be worth around $9,000. The money loses its value. You have to treat your money like an employee and let it work for you."
"There is an abundance of money out there and it's really about reframing your mindset around it. A phrase I like to follow is 'a dollar today is worth more than a dollar tomorrow.' You have to treat your money like an employee and let it work for you."
Courtesy of Lyn Allure
On the money mantra she swears by:
"I would say my mantra is 'what doesn't get measured, doesn't get managed.' What I mean by that is, a lot of people do not know what their financial standing is. It can bring up so much anxiety for people because they don't want to face those hard facts of their spending habits. But I find that once you get over that hurdle and really know what your hard-earned numbers are, you realize what steps you need to take to improve it. It's important to manage your money no matter what financial state you might be in. But remember you can't manage it if you aren't measuring it."
On the early challenges that came with starting her business:
"The inconsistency of cash flow when you first start out is real (laughs). I remember one month I made five figures and then the next month I made three figures. I was like ummm, what's going on here? (Laughs) I definitely wasn't prepared for it at the time. But luckily, I referred back to what I preach to my Good Girls Gone Boss community. Do not rely on one stream of income. Think of it as a table. Every single leg is a stream of income. If you only have one leg, then if it collapses, you collapse too."
"Do not rely on one stream of income. Think of it as a table. Every single leg is a stream of income. If you only have one leg, then if it collapses, you collapse too."
On the most important lesson she's learned about creating wealth:
"I have always had this hustler mindset where I had multiple side hustles in college. So I have always been thinking to myself, 'Where's the next job and where's the next check?' (Laughs) But what I have learned is that, I do not need to have multiple jobs in order to make all this money. It is not the key to creating wealth or financial freedom.
"There are only 24 hours in a day. Finding a way to make those passive streams of income with a business has definitely been an eye-opener for me. You also do not need to make a certain amount of money in order to make passive streams of income for yourself. Whatever your salary is, you can still make things happen, especially on the internet."
Read more money mindset conversations in xoNecole's "Money Talks" series here.
For more about Lyn Allure, follow her on Instagram @lyn.allure. You can also subscribe to her YouTube channel here.
Featured image courtesy of Lyn Allure
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'K' is a multi-hyphenated free spirit from Chicago. She is a lover of stories and the people who tell them. As a writer, 9-5er, and Safe Space Curator, she values creating the life she wants and enjoying the journey along the way. You can follow her on Instagram @theletter__k_.
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What Are Intrusive Thoughts & How Do We Manage Them?
TW: some depictions of intrusive thoughts may be disturbing for readers.
Have you ever caught your mind drifting off to entertain the most disturbing scenarios imaginable? Maybe you can’t stop thinking of all the ways a loved one could pass away or worrying that you left every candle lit in your apartment to which you’d return to a home in ruins. If distressing ruminations like these have crossed your mind, you may be experiencing an intrusive thought.
What Are Intrusive Thoughts?
Intrusive thoughts are unwanted or distressing thoughts, images, or impulses that pop into your mind without your control or consent. These thoughts can be repetitive, unsettling, or even violent in nature, and can cause anxiety and frustration for those who experience them.
“Generally they're unwanted thoughts that come up in our head that interrupt what we're doing or thinking, and can feel very foreign,” says Adia Gooden, PhD, licensed clinical psychologist and host of the Unconditionally Worthy podcast. “It’s any thought that intrudes or interrupts what you are doing. They can be distressing and upsetting for us because it feels like we are not in control of them, and they're coming up out of nowhere and aren’t in line with how you normally think.”
What Causes Intrusive Thoughts?
Certain trauma or stress can contribute to the development of intrusive thoughts, so having a challenging experience from the past or current life situations may trigger them to form. “An intrusive thought could come in the form of a flashback, image, or a thought about something that's happened to you,” Dr. Gooden tells xoNecole. “When it gets to the point where you feel like you can't function or make clear decisions, that's when intrusive thoughts become really challenging.”
While some of the 1 billion videos found under the #intrusivethoughts hashtag on TikTok would lead you to believe that these thoughts are nothing more than casual displays of our imagination going untamed. Intrusive thoughts are more than sticking your hand in a soap dispenser, wanting to cut all your hair off at 3 a.m., or having a random impulse to eat fake bread in public.
The Anxiety & Depression Association of America reports that approximately six million individuals, equating to roughly two percent of the American population, encounter intrusive thoughts. Intrusive thoughts are often linked with obsessive-compulsive disorders, but they can also manifest in individuals with post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, or anxiety.
Examples of Common Intrusive Thoughts
Because of the explicit nature of intrusive thoughts, they tend to cause shame and internal conflict in those who experience them. Although these thoughts can differ from person to person, these ideation can consist of:
- Violent or aggressive thoughts towards oneself or others, such as harming or killing someone;
- Sexual thoughts that are unwanted or inappropriate;
- Repetitive thoughts, such as a song or a phrase that keeps repeating in your mind;
- Contamination or germ-related thoughts or the fear of contamination and getting sick;
- Religious or blasphemous thoughts, such as questioning one's faith or having thoughts that go against religious beliefs;
- Doubts or uncertainty about one's own actions or decisions, such as fear of making a mistake or fear of not doing something right.
Intrusive Thoughts and OCD
That’s why Dr. Gooden encourages everyone to understand the difference between our fleeting thoughts and impulses and true, intrusive thoughts. “What level of distress does it cause and is it something you would never consider,” she says. “If you're finding that these thoughts are getting in the way of you living your life and that you're controlled by the thoughts, those are some signs that it would be good to get some support in navigating it.”
She also emphasizes the importance of understanding that while we may not always have control over our thoughts, we can control our behavior. “On TikTok, people are sort of blaming intrusive thoughts on their behavior, and our behavior is always a choice,” she says. “If we are in our right mind and we're not having a psychotic episode, our behavior is our choice — we are not obligated to follow any given thought that we have.”
Are Intrusive Thoughts Normal?
With intrusive thoughts, it’s natural to question whether these thoughts are “normal” to have. However, these thoughts are not meant to define who you are as a person but simply indicate that you have a functioning human mind with automated thoughts that you, or any of us, can’t control. These thoughts may come, but they don’t have to be acted upon, nor do they define who you are.
“I've worked with clients in the past who say, ‘Why am I thinking these things? What's wrong with me?’ But if you're not acting on the thought, then it's probably not a huge issue,” Dr. Gooden says. “If you are thinking a harmful thought towards yourself or someone else and you are making plans to act on that thought, then yes, we need to do something about it.”
How To Manage Intrusive Thoughts
If you are struggling with managing unwanted thoughts, Dr. Aida suggests taking these tips to help manage your mindset when they occur:
- "Recognize that it's a thought and thoughts are just thoughts. We often put a little bit too much weight on our thoughts, and that can create a lot of distress. But remember that thoughts are not facts."
- "Having a thought that's disturbing or upsetting doesn't make you a bad person, and it doesn't mean that you are suffering from a mental illness."
- "Sometimes the best thing you can do is say, 'Huh, that was an interesting thought. I'm going to let that go. That thought is not helpful for me right now."
- "Ask yourself: is this helpful? Is it helpful for me to buy into this thought and believe this thought? Asking that question can be really helpful because we are not at the mercy of our thoughts. If it's not helpful, you can let it go."
Intrusive thoughts can feel bizarre and foreign when they come up, but they aren't inherently "bad." Our minds can sometimes be filled with random and inappropriate thoughts, but that's what our stream of consciousness does: it thinks. Fortunately, we can release those thoughts at any moment; you don't have to follow through with them.
And ultimately, not every TikTok diagnosis is one that we should label ourselves with.
"It's important for people to acknowledge what they're experiencing but not run too quickly to diagnose themselves with some mental illness or disorder," Dr. Gooden advises. "It ends with confusion, and we miss the opportunity to understand the people who really do have that mental health challenge."
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Featured image by Westend61/Getty Images