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Mar 26, 2024 | Podcast

Mindful Spending & Navigating Lifestyle Creep with Cris Caruso

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About the episode:

In this episode of the Prosperous Empath®, I’m sitting down with financial advisor and UNBOUNDED Mastermind Alum, Cris Caruso to talk about a phenomenon that many people have experienced in recent years: lifestyle creep. Cris has been in the financial services industry since 2004 and a financial advisor since 2008. Beyond that, she has pursued additional education in understanding how our behaviors shape financial outcomes by earning the Behavioral Financial Advisor designation from Think2Perform. She also earned the Accredited Domestic Partnership Advisor credential prior to 2015 as a way to support her LGBTQIA+bclients and continues to use this knowledge to work with unmarried couples and non-traditional families. You’ll appreciate her unique experience throughout today’s episode as she speaks on lifestyle creep, or lifestyle inflation, which is overspending on things that you don’t actually need as your income increases. When you’re early in your career, your spending habits focus on must-haves like housing and groceries. But as your income increases, it’s easy to lose track of what is a necessity and what are simply too many luxuries, and to just keep buying more. Cris and I discuss both values-based and practical strategies on how to identify the areas of your life you should spend generously on and where to be more mindful to reach your long-term goals. How do you live in alignment with your money, especially as an entrepreneur and an empath? You’ll get an answer to this question as you listen to our thought provoking conversation on purposeful spending, the importance of allowing yourself to have fun & fabulous experiences, and more.


Topics discussed:

  • Understanding lifestyle creep and how to identify and avoid meaningless overspending
  • The importance of spending generously on things that truly satisfy you and how to identify what they are
  • Recognizing how perfectionism, scarcity mindset, and societal expectations are contributing to your relationship with money
  • Finding the right balance between lifestyle creep and mindfully increasing your spending as your income grows
  • Navigating financial planning as an entrepreneur with a fluctuating income that often grows quicker than expected
  • How to start investing in a way that is aligned with your values and vision


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Click here for a raw, unedited transcript of this episode


Catherine A. Wood  00:02

Hey, Chris, welcome to the podcast.


Cris Caruso  00:04

Hi, thanks for having me.


Catherine A. Wood  00:06

Before we get started, I’d love for you to share your pronouns and maybe just a little, like quick, quick refresher about who you are, and, and your story, anything that feels meaningful to share.


Cris Caruso  00:21

Sure, my pronouns are she and her. And in 2022, I founded Safar financial, which is a financial planning, and investment management firm specifically targeted to working with women and people in the LGBTQ community. I really wanted to double down on who I am, and who I am in the world, and who I feel like deserves and is worthy of doing this kind of work and having people to support them directly in their financial journey.


Catherine A. Wood  01:01

You know, I think there are some industries out there or it is particularly challenging to venture off on your own after having worked with a team and under someone for a number of years. So I think that is like a major kudos to you. And after how many years? Was it working for someone else that you ventured off into your own?



I worked for the same team. I worked with the same team for 18 years. Yeah, that’s sharing out on my own. Amazing. Yeah.


Catherine A. Wood  01:31

So I’m, so we’re talking about lifestyle creep today, because I listened to a podcast that you recorded with a mutual contact to actually think you connected me with several years ago. And it everything you shared on the podcast, I was like, yes, that really resonates so deeply. So will you please define for us what that even means? Yeah.



So I like to think about the metaphor of a goldfish. And that they say, or even a plant, if you’re a plant person, or, you know, we talk about a goldfish will grow to as big as the space that you give it. So, so will our money, huh? So will our lifestyle. If we look as mid career women at how we’re spending our money, and what we identify as must haves. It’s an exercise I do with my clients a lot to say, what are the must haves? And what are the nice to have, the things that end up in the must have pile over time are things we only dreamed of 10 years ago, or $20,000 ago in our careers, and as our incomes grow, if we are not mindful, it is very easy to let our lifestyle grow with that salary.


Catherine A. Wood  03:02

So can you give us some example or some common themes with your clients around what your folks identify as their must haves versus their want to haves?



Yeah, so you know, when we’re in our early careers, our must haves are the basics are must haves or making sure we have enough money for rent or housing, making sure we have enough money for groceries, and then we get in our incomes grow, we get that next job, we get that next promotion, we make more money, and it’s easier to uplevel and upgrade that cost of living. And it’s hard to think that what we think we need is what we need. Or there’s how we buy food. So thinking not just about buying groceries, but what we’re buying in our groceries and how easy it is to just keep buying more. Or where dining out becomes part of that grocery where it used to be the tree and now it’s the regular it’s easy to lose track of what becomes a luxury versus what becomes a necessity.


Catherine A. Wood  04:24

Is there a certain approach that you walk your clients through to help them differentiate what falls into each category?



Yeah, so I feel like I should be able to tell the things that are most important to you when looking at your banking statement. And way back in the day when I started I used to say your checkbook but who has checkbooks anymore. But by looking at your bank statement, and we’re living in line with our values, I should be able to tell you what the most important things in your life are when I look at your bank statement To see where you’re spending your money. And if that’s not aligned, that is where we are starting to see that creep. So sometimes I see people spend money on gyms and personal trainers and a lot of money on groceries. And so to me, I might say to that person, health and fitness is really important to you, can you confirm that that’s one of your top values. And if they say no, that is money that they are spending that maybe isn’t in alignment, maybe they’re spending a lot of money on that gym, because it’s the gym, that they think they should be going to, or it’s the shiny, fancy new boutique gym in their neighborhood. But it’s not aligned with what their fitness values are. Maybe they should be at the why. Or maybe they want to work out at home. Or maybe they don’t even go to the gym at all. And they’re just spending this money because they think they should. And that exercise of identifying your values, and identifying what’s most important to you. And spending your money in alignment with that is one of the best ways that we can be satisfied with life with what we’re doing with our money. And to sort of avoid that unnecessary creep.


Catherine A. Wood  06:26

Oh, I love that you said unnecessary creep,



right? Because don’t get me wrong. I believe very firmly that on the things that are the most important to us, we get to spend ridiculously, we get to spend generously on the things that fill us up, that satisfy us, and that are the most important. But we can’t do that with everything we can do. We can spend generously in the areas that that fill us up the most. But we can’t spend generously on the things that aren’t important because then we are used aren’t using our resources wisely. I really


Catherine A. Wood  07:06

appreciate you saying that, you know, so Parth, my husband, he loves travel. But the biggest reason he loves travel is because he loves to fly. And he has been working towards his pilot license and you know, he’s homeless became a pilot, instead of going to become an economist and like, he loves the experience of fine Travel. And for me, when we first started dating, it was such a conflict for me, because I would see the money that we would spend or he would spend to upgrade us to business or the points, the credit card points that I so diligently saved to pay for all whole trip go towards business class flights. But then I would just kind of like notice the like sheer childlike joy that he got from having his meal in business class with his warm face cloth and his table linens. And his you know, before dinner warmed up, like nuts. And it was just like, it’s like the highlight of the whole trip for him. And so I really have come to appreciate that you really do need to spend on what’s the most meaningful for you as long as you’re willing to make the sacrifices and other areas where your values aren’t aligned?



Yeah. Yeah. I mean, I really believe that we need money as a tool. Just like anything else. And I know that in our work together. And a lot of what you talk to your clients about is how do we leverage our time? How do we leverage our energy? How do we, how do we, you know, work in alignment in those areas, as business owners and as entrepreneurs, but we don’t often talk about how we live in that purposeful alignment with our money. And it’s a tool like anything else. And yeah, I feel like there is plenty of room to live generously on the things in ways that are the most important and the most aligned and understanding what those things are. I don’t know many people who have gone into business for themselves to say, I want to make ridiculous amounts of money. Maybe there’s a few, I’m sure. But when we talk about especially as women, we go into business, to spend time with family with more time with our families, to have a better work life balance, to do all of these other things, and money helps us get their money absolutely gives us a sense of security. It gives us a sense of safety. It creates the opportunity to have this flexibility and these other things that we want On. But if we’re not paying attention, and everything is creeping out all over the place, he’s not gonna We’re not. We’re not using that tool in the best way that we can.


Catherine A. Wood  10:15

So, I wanted to share this story with you, because I don’t think I ever shared it with you. And it feels so relevant. And you knew me at this point in life, because when we were working together in the mastermind, I bought our first house. And it was also one of my highest years in business, and it was just really an explosive ear for me in so many different ways. And, you know, I’ve worked so hard on getting my perfectionism in check in other areas of life. But then when we bought our first home, and then we had a lot of challenges in our home, and I had all this extra disposable income. I feel like I experienced lifestyle creep, disguised as home renovation projects. And because I had all this accessible income, and I was thinking about it as a long term investment, I just would throw money at problems. But it I think it’s so hard sometimes when you when you don’t see a problem for what it is, because now looking back in hindsight, I was not only letting my perfectionism getting get in the way of, you know, solid financials, which I’m so well educated and practiced in. But it was also like my own my own experience of lifestyle creep in like a really untenable fashion. And so I wonder, you know, for your clients, for our listeners, who, who might kind of see themselves walking down this path that feels unsustainable. Like, how do you? How do you pause it? Like, how do you pivot? You make those redirects, because with financial investments in particular, you know, once you’ve jumped, it can be really hard to to redirect.



Mm hmm. I think there’s two things that we have to think about, and one of them is if some of our behaviors coming from a scarcity mindset, or if it’s coming from, like you said, this perfectionism, or keeping up with the Joneses, or keeping up with this exterior life that we think we should have. And we have to really examine that to see why. Why we’re doing that. And and what is, what is that drive is that drive this perfectionism is the drive, keeping up with someone else’s expectation or society’s expectation of who we should be, and always working for that next promotion, and the next job or a bigger business or a bigger launch or a higher priced offer. If we sort of have to look at the why. And when we do when we start to scratch that and peel away. Often it’s these money stories, it is a scarcity loop or a scarcity mindset of, well, if I don’t make all this money, or have these things, I won’t ever have them again, or I won’t be able to get them again, or I’m always striving towards this next thing, because it’s what I think I shouldn’t do.


Catherine A. Wood  13:56

Love that you said, keeping up with the Joneses, because it makes me think of a couple books, which I’m sure you’ve read. And I’d love to chat about because it feels resonant. Have you read The Millionaire Next Door and the next Millionaire Next Door?



I haven’t read the second one. But I have read the first one. Yeah, so the next Millionaire Next


Catherine A. Wood  14:15

Door, he co authored with his daughter around the characteristics of the next generation millionaire. So for our listeners who haven’t yet read this book, first of all, I highly recommend but second of all, as someone who really loves data and statistics, it’s a statistical perspective on the the millionaires next door around us based on data here in the US around really like characteristics and personality traits of middle of millionaires and how you can how you seemingly how they’re seemingly living next door, but you don’t even know because they don’t act like it. And so I’m wondering, you know, what do you see as some of the similarities between these next door millionaires and and lifestyle creep? Yeah,



yeah, the new the new thing the kids are calling it these days is stealth wealth is that I never heard of that. I just listened to a podcast, where they were talking about about it. And it is this idea that, and maybe it’s the pandemic, maybe it’s been, but the idea of luxury, as a status has become rampant. And I think it’s a social media thing. I think it’s this, again, it’s this external idea. But, you know, and you and I both grew up in New England. And so, you know, the stories you hear about the guy in his truck from the 80s, in his overalls, you know, shows up and pays a lot of money pays cash for a house, that we never really no who has wealth. And the people who have wealth, often don’t live like, or look like what we would expect that person to be. Because they have made progress over their lifetime by small habits, and strategic decisions. And they are not the people who are caught up in caring what people think that their clothes look like, or their house looks like, or having that next new, shiny thing that we know, isn’t really satisfying, that you know, always having something new, it satisfies that immediate dopamine hit of buying something or of consuming something, but then it doesn’t really satisfy us in the long term. But the things that do satisfy us in the long term, are our relationships and our meaningful work and our the balance that we work so hard to try and create. And all of those things, none of those things cost money.


Catherine A. Wood  17:06

Yeah, I mean, before you and I hit record, we were talking about kind of where Parth and I are going to move next. And you know, we both share this love for New England do and die. And I was sharing just how much of an abundance of parks there are here in the greater Boston area. And I have without a doubt, and an almost entirely subconsciously cut my own spending back substantially living here because I find so much more daily access to joy in nature, and swimming in the ocean and taking the dogs for walks in these kind of constantly available and excessive accessible pockets of of nature that that I kind of previously took for granted when I was raised here. But now coming back I cherish Yeah.



Yeah. Yeah, it’s about aligning our resources, right. It’s about aligning all of our resources, including our money with what’s important. And yeah, when we’re doing that, and so by keeping those experiences free in the parks, with the dogs in your neighborhood and in your community, that frees up the money for those trips that are so valuable, and create that joy for you in Perth.


Catherine A. Wood  18:41

Yeah. Okay, so coming back to this book, because I’ve been really craving someone to digest some of this. But statistics but it’s a one of the fascinating there’s so many Chris but one of the fascinating statistics from this book that I really appreciated was looking at the square footage of millionaires homes, versus the square footage of kind of, you know, the aspiring millionaires and how in general, most millionaires live in in smaller square footage homes with non luxury cars, and they do not have the best homes in the neighborhood. And they often don’t even live in the best neighborhoods. They live in middle class neighborhoods, where they’re not looking at their neighbor on either side and feeling envy or jealousy or a desire to you know, get the landscaping team out or buy a luxury vehicle or buy the RV or get the boat and I just I so appreciated that permission slip. You know that sometimes when you are surrounding yourself with values aligned people, it can be easier to adhere to your own values. When there’s not those kind of external subconscious pressure, and social comparison that we don’t always see for ourselves in the mobile, or in the proximity even.



And when we’re living around and with those values aligned people, it’s easier to say, why don’t you come over and we’ll open a bottle of wine instead of going out to that restaurant and spending, right because the value is spending time with our people, or, you know, creating those community and friend connections, and let’s go for a walk, or let’s go do these other things. And being very clear about it, because you know, they are doing the same work that you’re doing, rather than feeling like the only way to spend time is to go to restaurants, or to go to things that cost money. And we can be clear, and we can be loud about having, you know, what it is we’re working towards, and support our people in doing the same work.


Catherine A. Wood  21:08

So let’s talk about this theme, which I think it applies to finances as much as it applies to mindset and certainly, entrepreneurship, but it’s this idea of defining your what’s enough metric? And, and really how to be able to quantify it and qualify it. So what does that look like for you in a in your line of work?



Yeah, I mean, in terms of the work that I do with my clients, you know, we have a lot of those conversations, it’s being clear about goals. It’s about being clear about what it is you’re working for, and the most important things, and some of my clients will tell me that they’re willing to work 10 more years, because travel is super important to them, and they don’t want to give up that opportunity. And so we know that as we’re thinking about, you know, how we engineer this work, optional life for them, or retirement. Other clients tell me that they want to spend as much time with their family as they can. And, you know, that maybe means working really hard, really, you know, right now, but finishing work in their 50s. It’s all being clear about what we want to do and what we want out of life, but also, remembering that none of it’s guaranteed, and so that we kind of also have to live the best life that we can today, and not get so caught up on planning for a future that may look really different than we expect. And so it’s a balance, it’s a big balance. Yeah, I


Catherine A. Wood  22:55

appreciate in your what you just said, how it’s not an all or nothing, that it’s not about sacrificing everything today, for some future perceived lifestyle or experience of life, it’s really a balance between being clear on your long term goals and acknowledging the lifestyle that you want to live in the present moment.



But also being really aware that life could be long that we could, you know, live until our 80s or 90s, or 100. And I, I don’t want to have to work that long. And so part of living a life, the more my lifestyle creeps, the less I have to see for that future goal. So part of that making decisions today also sets me up to create a future down the line that isn’t so hard, where I don’t have to work that, you know, my spouse doesn’t have to work that we can, you know, carve out a life that we want later, because of the decisions we’re making today about how we’re using our capital and using our money. I


Catherine A. Wood  24:15

mean, something I’m appreciating is the idea that for some of us, you know, especially as entrepreneurs, we can experience pretty large income increases in a short timeframe, right, like that was certainly my experience. And how do you draw how do you define or or find the line between lifestyle creep, and in intentionally and mindfully increasing your expenses as you increase your earning potential and power? Yeah.



You know, nobody expects when we, you know, talk about, as I sort of talked about at the beginning, you You know where we are early in our life. And in our mid career, nobody expects that we’re going to live in the same living accommodations that we lived in, in college or in our 20s. But being aligned with what serves you, and what serves your lifestyle, if you are someone who loves to travel, than having a home base that might be smaller and more pared down, is aligned with that if you are a homebody, and you work from home, and you love to be at home, and you’d love to have people in your home, then maybe your home is where you spend money, and you invest in your lifestyle. I also really believe that as business owners, and as women, you know, bringing in people to support us paying people to support us paying people generously and paying them well, to support our businesses, and to hire out things that free up our time to work in our businesses and to grow our businesses is valuable. So not saying we have to live as pot. But I like the idea of knowing where we’re at, and knowing what we’re working for. Because if we are constantly working towards more, that we will never meet that line, we will never meet that benchmark if we are constantly working for more. So we have to figure out what’s enough. And it’s going to be different for everybody. I also really like the idea of when we have whether we have a salaried job, or whether we run a business of knowing what we need to run our lifestyles, to fund our businesses and to be comfortable, and to be happy and satisfied. And then have a plan for what to do in those years where there’s more, or there’s extra. And I kinda I get this a lot with my clients where we do like an 8020 rule, or we’ll do a 20 3050 rule where we take a percentage of any windfall, or additional profits. And we take 20% of that to do something fantastic and fun and fabulous. And we take another percentage of that towards and put it towards goals, whether that’s paying down debt, growing our business reinvesting, and then we take the rest of it, and we invest it towards our long term goals. So we’re not denying ourselves fun, and fabulous experiences, but that we are also not over indulging, and not preparing for the future. Or as entrepreneurs, we often not only have the potential to have really big earning years, we also have the potential to have a lot of roller coaster years where maybe two years from now, you might for any number of reasons, pull back and not earn as much and then you have a cushion to rely on. Because we haven’t indulged in all of those profits in those high earning years.


Catherine A. Wood  28:30

I mean, I really appreciate the wisdom in that because I think, you know, being a decade in business now and expecting our first having had the intentionality and long term planning to do something similar to what you’ve shared over the past decade, I certainly have a lot more peace of mind in, in, in stepping back for however many months I decided to step back, because I prepared for those, you know, and and I also think it makes the roller coaster of entrepreneurship a lot easier when you are expecting it financially rather than assuming it’ll never happen and then being caught off guard.



And that’s true whether you’re a business owner or an entrepreneur or an employee, because we’ve experienced, you know, layoffs in the tech sector lately. Like there’s life is lifing all the time and we never know if something, you know, an illness and injury, a family experience a family need or decision that somebody else makes that could potentially impact our earning capacity. It could be intentional or not, and having that safety net. So powerful. Having that safety net to be able to pivot it or strategically, you know, leave you know you’ve read the Rachael Rogers book we should all be million So she talks about having that walkaway money or she actually uses a different title. But I call it that walkaway money of being able to leave anything that doesn’t serve you at any point, because you have enough money to support you to do that. That’s job, a marriage relationship, anything to not let finances be the reason that you have to stay in a situation that isn’t working?


Catherine A. Wood  30:27

Yeah, I mean, absolutely. You know, we’re, we’re talking about themes in this episode that I find so much resonance and overlap in so many of the conversations I have on this podcast, and the themes I hear are really around intentionality, values alignment. And then the third one is not robbing ourselves from oh, gosh, I don’t remember the term you said. You said fun and fabulous. It could have been fabulous. Yeah, fun and fabulous experiences. And I think that last one, is something that people can often roll their eyes at. And I think it plays such a invaluable role in our willingness to follow through on a financial plan or a business plan. Because when we don’t rob ourselves from those fun and fabulous experiences when we really honor them and hold them sacred. It allows us to be more diligent and to follow through every other day, because we know that that we’re going to reward ourselves for our efforts. We’re not just self sacrificing, we’re not being martyrs. We’re not like stocking away every dollar like the prior generations did. Were living with intentionality, resolve, and also aligned with our values, but also with the lifestyle we want to live today. Right?



And what’s fun and fabulous for you might be completely different than what’s fun and fabulous for me. And that’s the joy of it is that I get to carve out that money to do whatever I want to do with and that can, you know, it can be as it can vary from year to year, it varies from person to person. And it shouldn’t be those things that bring us joy, it should be the things that just make us happy. And keep the light on and keep us aligned with why we do what we do. What


Catherine A. Wood  32:32

are some of the most fun and fabulous things either you’ve done or you’ve witnessed clients do?



Oh my gosh, so for me fun and fabulous is always at the ocean. It is always beach vacations. It is always time with Tina, you know, on adventures, like we’re getting ready to plan a trip to California this summer. And it’s just making us both so happy thinking about all the places that we can go eat delicious, plant based food and the beaches, we’re going to go put our feet in the ocean, then all of those things, but I’ve seen clients do so many things by you know, growing their families supporting their, their, their supporting their immediate families, growing their families with, you know, children in, you know, non traditional ways adoption, reproductive health and being able to confidently know that they can pay for these non traditional ways to grow their families, without it being you know, disastrous. Being able to take their parents who maybe didn’t make a lot of money in their lifetimes on amazing trips to where their families originated from. That is one of the things that delights me the most is watching my clients meet their goals and just do all these amazing things.


Catherine A. Wood  33:59

I love that. It’s certainly mine have also been travel and they’ve often been like trips by myself. Like, last summer I took myself on a week long yoga retreat to the Kripalu Institute in Western Mass. I had the most magical time and several years ago and I wonder if you’ll be near here when you go to California. But I went to Esalen in Big Sur, California in Southern California. It’s this beautiful retreat center. And it was just so restorative like so beautiful. And and I don’t know the act of doing it by myself. It allowed me to hold it with more a bit more reverence. Yeah. Okay, well, I’m mindful of the time and there’s two more things I want to talk to you about. Okay. So the first is my audience, right? Like you and I, we are empathic entrepreneurs. We have huge hearts were often extremely generous with charitable donations, gifting, also just giving away of resources. And so I wonder, for someone who’s so heart centered and empathic by nature, what might you offer to my listeners differently that would support them in retaining, investing forward more of their income versus kind of feeling this propensity to give it away?



Yeah, and I think so many of the people that I know that are in your world, we talk so much about our boundaries around that time, we talk about boundaries around our professional knowledge. And I think we have to apply those same filters to our money. And we have to track and build a relationship with our money, the same way we have to build a relationship with ourselves. So I would challenge our listeners to start to explore what their relationship is with money to open up their bank statements. And without judgment, just facts, start to look at where their money goes, and start to create these categories have, this is aligned, this is gray. And this is not, and see where we can bring change to those gray and non aligned areas. And it doesn’t take a lot of time, it becomes the five minute thing that as we start to get to know our money. And we start to get to know how we feel about our money. Because a lot of women especially, we have feelings about money, we have stories that we were taught or things we weren’t taught that money is for us, or that we’re not good with money. And we have to start to change those stories. And we have to apply the same filters to our money that we do to all the other resources, we have our intellectual property and our time. And I would challenge you to start looking at your money and building a relationship. Here, here.


Catherine A. Wood  37:33

Alright, so the last thing I want to talk about is investing. So there’s this publication, I love reading bi weekly called bottom line, I don’t know if you’ve ever heard it. It’s one of my favorite financial publications. And it often gives investment advice about stocks and funds. And something I’ve appreciated recently and it also infuriates me and I don’t actually know if it’s more conservative leaning publication, but the the, the flavor of the funds, and the stocks feel so out of value alignment for me, like I’m talking big oil, fracking beer, I don’t even drink like, and so they’re talking about how these, like smart investments. And, and I just noticed such a dissonance with where I want to put my investment dollars and, and how I want to be investing aggressively, but doing it in a value alignment way. And I wonder, you know, like, how do we how do we do both?



Yeah, I think we have to be cautious just like we were talking about anything else. Investing is a long game. And it is strategic game. And we have to be careful that we don’t also get caught up in the Oh shiny, of investing, like we can get caught up in the Oh, shiny of anything else that we do. And there’s a lot of ways there’s as many ways to do what we call socially responsible investing, as there are things to believe. So again, aligning your values, understanding what you do, and don’t want to be contributing towards and seeking out funds that are socially responsible or what they call SSRI. And then the other filter that often gets put on funds is what we call ESG, which is environment, social and governance screens and these are companies that are meeting certain benchmarks. And then the other thing that is coming to more and more individual investors that hasn’t been available is in direct indexing, where you can with your investment advisor, select things that you do and Don’t want to invest in and create and shape a portfolio around that. And I have a lot of clients that come to me and tell me exactly what you just said, you don’t want to be investing in guns, I don’t want to be investing in Big Oil. Because they don’t believe that that’s they don’t believe that. And that’s what they don’t want to be putting their money in growing those industries?


Catherine A. Wood  40:25

No, sir. I’m so glad I asked that question. I just learned something new. And I’ve actually never heard of either of those acronyms before. So I’m imagining some of our audience hasn’t either where, where could we go to learn more about those, like environmentally conscious investing models. So



if you work with someone like me, if you work with an advisor, I always ask that question of my clients, are there things you do or don’t want to invest in, and then I help them build their portfolios around that. But ask that question of the person that you’re working with. And then if you’re on the DIY side, you can use those there, there are often filters to check to say, show me, you know, these indexes that are eliminating, you know, the following things. So there’s, there’s lots and lots of resources out there.


Catherine A. Wood  41:21

I love that. That’s awesome. Yeah. Well, I’ve so appreciated this conversation. You know, some of the feedback I often get from listeners to the podcast is how calming my energy is. And I’m really appreciating how calming your energy is, and specifically for a topic that I think can be really emotionally jarring for folks to talk about. So I imagine our audience are going to love today’s conversation. And as we wrap like, I’d love I’d love for you to share what do you say has made the difference for you and becoming a prosperous empath?



I think the biggest growth that I have had into prosperity and owning, being this heart centered person that I am, is, is coaching is working with people who can help me become the best version of me that I am to help me get out of my own way. And to really help me trust myself, and trust you, I have the capacity to be


Catherine A. Wood  42:35

you know, I feel like people so often think they need coaches to tell them what to do, or to give them the guidance, and the things that you just said, like get out of your own way. Trust yourself. Like, that’s everything. Yeah, certainly made all the difference for me and and it’s been beautiful to watch your unfolding. Thank you so much for today. This has been beautiful and I’ve been so grateful for our conversation. Well,



thanks for having me. I always love chatting with you.



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Navigating Neurodivergence: Energy Hacks for Empaths with Regina Carey

Regina Carey joins me on The Prosperous Empath® this week for a truly heart-centered conversation about neurodivergence and how it is often interconnected with being an empath and/or HSP. Regina is a special ed teacher turned Executive Coach who has spent the last three decades educating, empowering, and advocating for those who feel stuck, yet long to take that next great leap. Recently, she returned from an adventurous trip to Machu Picchu and shares her experience of how saying yes to physical challenges has helped her balance intense emotions as an empath. But something I deeply appreciate about this conversation are Regina’s insights on neurodivergence, especially ADHD, and the importance of managing energy and advocating for oneself. Regina reflects on her upbringing and the influence of the women in her life, emphasizing the need to break patterns of burnout and dis-ease to live authentically. This episode is for anyone who is neurodivergent (or loves someone who is) and is seeking energetic balance in their life. Tune in for actionable steps on thriving more as an ambitious empath.

Visit this episode’s show notes page here.

The Prosperous Empath® Podcast is produced by Heart Centered Podcasting.

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