When we were little, our parents constantly reminded us that money doesn't grow on trees, and while this is somewhat true, it's also somewhat… not.
According to Tiffany Aliche, best known by the internet as The Budgetnista, we are all in possession of every seed we need in order to harvest true financial freedom, but it's up to us to plant them.
Courtesy of Girl Trek
Tiffany is the founder of a movement that has helped over 800,000 women worldwide save more than $100,000 and pay off more than $700,000 in debt, but according to The Budgetnista, it all started with one seed. We recently caught up with Tiffany at Girl Trek's 2019 Stress Protest, where she reminded us that true wellness means getting your financial health in alignment, too, sis.
The Budgetnista's road to success hasn't been linear, but she picked up a few gems along the way that have helped women all over the globe dig themselves out of debt and into better budgeting. In an intimate conversation about leveling up your mindset and becoming a self-made mogul, Tiffany put us on game and told us everything we truly need to know about money management.
Here what we learned:
Money Is A Tool
Courtesy of The Budgetnista
As the daughter of a Nigerian CFO and accountant and one of five girls, Tiffany says that she was introduced to the concept of financial wellness early-on in her life. She explained, "[My dad] taught us about money because he wanted to make sure that who we chose to marry was not as a result of what we needed from them; that we can take care of ourselves."
Although Tiffany had grown up in a household where financial wellness was a priority, before she was the money-saving mogul that she is today, life threw her a number of curveballs that her father's financial proverbs couldn't have prepared her for. Shortly after buying her first condo at the age of 26, Tiffany found herself broke, unemployed, and drowning in more than $35K worth of debt due to an irreversible credit card scam. After being laid off and forced to move back in with her parents, the one-day online financial expert felt defeated and depressed.
Cash rules everything us, and at this point in her life, Tiffany had none, leading her to believe one of the biggest lies ever told: that she was no longer the master of her finances nor her destiny. Tiffany shared, "Sometimes we feel like we don't have control; that we are not in charge when it comes to money. [We feel] that money is sitting in your purse at night, conspiring against you."
But in reality, Tiffany said, this way of thinking is not only self-defeating but wrong AF. It was then that those proverbs and analogies that were given to her by her mom and dad truly came in handy. The Budgetnista recalled:
"He reminded me that your money is like a hammer. You have a hammer in your hand and you can use that hammer to build your financial house, but that same hammer can be used to destroy that very safe financial house; that who decides what the hammer does is you, you do it. It's the same thing with money."
Tiffany continued, "You picked up that hammer. So it's like, the bad news is, it's you. But the good news is...it's you. And so,when it's you and you take ownership of that, at any moment in time today, you can decide that you're not going to be in bondage to money anymore because you truly aren't. That's your hammer. You get to decide."
Money Is A Seed
According to Tiffany, the first mistake that you're making when it comes to money management is believing that you don't have any. She told us, "You don't believe that it's already there. Like literally, we could be sitting right now, the sky could open up and a million dollars could fall through this roof right now. That could happen. At any moment in time, money's going to come to you."
The odds of winning the lottery are only 1 in 275 million, yet, 11.8 million households in the U.S. net more than $1 million per year, proving that wealth isn't about luck, issa cultivation game.
"We think that in some lump sum, wealth is going to drop into our lap. No, wealth is earned. $5's, $10's, $20's right? $10 has come your way, $20 has come your way. Those were seeds to be planted."
Less than a decade ago, Tiffany says that she was out of money, options, and hope. $1.1 million dollars and 271K loyal followers later, Tiffany realizes that both the hammer and the seed that she needed to grow her financial house were in her possession all along, she just needed to learn how to use them. "I used to be [a] preschool teacher for 10 years, making $39,000 a year, which in New Jersey meant I was broke. It's not much. And yet I sit before you now a self-made millionaire."
She shared that by using this simple rule, you can reach mogul status, too. "Seeds come my way. I'm going to put up 20 of them in the beginning. You think to yourself, well 20 is not a million, but just wait. You eat up 80 put up 20, eat 80 put up 20," she explained. "After a while, you have enough of that 20 so that you can plant those seeds. That's called investing."
By using the 80/20 rule, Tiffany says that you can develop an entire ecosystem for your money that will set you on your way to true financial freedom. "Putting up the 20s, it's called savings. Eating 80 is called budgeting. The 20 that you have is called investing, and over time, if you watered the seeds, if you give it sunshine and you look after it, that is called increasing your knowledge as it relates to investing."
Money Is Abundant
Courtesy of The Budgetnista
You have everything you need to be successful, sis. Let that sink in for a minute.
But don't just take my word for it, Tiffany's journey is a reminder that being broke is a mindset, and the key to becoming a self-made mogul is changing your perception. "[Having financial freedom] looks like knowing that money is not the goal, it is merely one of the tools that you can use to achieve the goal."
You often hear people say you have to have money to make money, Tiffany came to debunk this myth with a vengence. Securing a bag might make you rich, but planting a seed can make you wealthy. She explained, "Let's just say we're planting apple seeds. So these seeds have now grown into this tree. What happens when you cut open an apple? [There are] seeds. From one seed comes 200 apples. From those apples come millions and millions of seeds. You don't need to have $1 billion to make $1 million. If you just plant the seeds that you are given, you can grow to that."
Tiffany also noted that investment capital isn't always monetary and in some cases, your sweat equity can be more valuable than any number in your bank account. "I took like my skill set as a teacher and I planted it and I invested it. I invested in myself. I grew into a business. Now, I'm a self-made millionaire."
The Budgetnista also reminded us that her story isn't unique, and by using this formula, you can level up your income and your net worth, too. "I just want you to understand that you have the power within you. The money is coming your way. What will you do with it? Are you going to be someone that's going to eat every seed that comes [your way] or [are] you going to be someone who's going to set some aside?"
Tickets for Girl Trek's 2020 Stress Protest go on sale Oct. 1, click here to learn more about how you can be a part of next year's experience! To keep up with Tiffany, follow her on Instagram @TheBudgetnista!
Featured image courtesy of The Budgetnista.