Financially Fabulous in Black or White

martinis and your money

Financially Fabulous in Black or White

Today on the podcast, I am tackling a topic that I have discussed offline, but never discussed online. People ask me all the time who are the hardest clients to get financially fit; and without a doubt some of my biggest challenges (and they would say so themselves) are my black women clients. For a number of reasons, they struggle with cultural, community and familial challenges that provide obstacles to their financial health.

While at FinCon, I discussed these challenges with one of my favorite and fabulous bloggers, Tonya from My Fab Finance, and I was thrilled when she agreed to come on the show and have an honest dialogue about the challenges. This is a long conversation that explored a number of ideas from hair, to mentors to women’s struggles in general. I hope you enjoy it!

What are we drinking?

Tonya – Ginger and Captain Morgan (She claims it tastes like cream soda. If anyone else can confirm this, I would love to know!)

Shannon – Vodka, Soda, Splash of Cranberry aka The Ponytail

Podcast Notes

  • Tonya talks about her parent’s military background and how that shaped her upbringing
  • Tonya shares how her financially and emotionally abusive relationship drove her to change her financial future
  • Tonya started My Fab Finance in 2013 to hold herself accountable for her financial journey
  • Shannon talks about her challenges getting her black women clients financially fit
  • Tonya talks about becoming a financial educator because she didn’t see anyone who looked like her in the mainstream media
  • We talk about the challenges of maintaining a budget when your hair just won’t cooperate
  • Tonya shares the conversation she had with her mother when she decided to wear her hair naturally
  • Tonya talks about how the money habits of our parent’s generation impacts our finances
  • Shannon and Tonya talk about the struggles of helping people get financially stable while also balancing the requests for money from their families
  • Tonya talks about the “Instagram Prosperity” challenge
  • Tonya discusses the problem she sees with shaming people for being working class
  • We talk about the importance of mentors and finding them in or out of your community
  • Tonya shares her best advice for people who are struggling to live a financially fabulous life but live in a non-supportive community
  • “The more you define what matters the easier it is to avoid what doesn’t matter”


Random Three Questions

  1. What is your biggest financial regret?
  2. If you could have any superpower what would it be and why?
  3. What’s your favorite restaurant?
Do you think there are cultural, community or familial challenges to getting financially fit? Does your community or family help you get financially fit or challenge your finances?


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Shannon is a financial planner who left a “traditional” financial services firm to start her own company, The Financial Gym, because she felt traditional financial services firms did not have the tools or resources to help people in their 20s and 30s who are starting out and trying to build assets while also managing debt. She realized that the key to long-term personal financial success is a commitment to financial fitness and making smart financial choices. Through her blog, Financially Blonde, her book, Train Your Way To Financial Fitness, her podcast, Martinis and Your Money and The Financial Gym, Shannon is committed to making financial fitness fun, easy and accessible for everyone.


  1. Tonya is an awesome gorgeous lady (with an awesome name I might add-lol) and can’t wait to listen. I had no idea she’s only had a blog since 2013! She seems like she’s been doing this forever! Congrats on your success T!

  2. Great Podcast!!! Loved the conversation and eye opening to some of the challenges different folks face due to trying to carry on a precedence that was set before them.. I am going to check out more on My Fab Finance.
    Tonya I had 1 of those 401K non roll over miss steps from a first job, but not by choice… the amount was under $5K and they had some policy where if that was the case they paid it out and the check just showed up it was spent at the time on things for my new home.

    On that note learning from mistakes… Just last week initiated a 6 figure 401K roll over which is currently in process.. I can’t wait to get that money over to my IRA and ROTH IRA..

  3. I surprisingly haven’t been to Tonya’s site that often, but I know she has high quality content. I’m particularly interested to hear her thoughts on this: “Tonya shares her best advice for people who are struggling to live a financially fabulous life but live in a non-supportive community.” This can happen to just about anyone and it’s interesting how much influence the people you hang out with and are close to can have on your outlook, mood, etc.

  4. I’m really glad that you did this podcast. The pay it back vs pay it forward vs spread it around dynamic is on that is incredibly hard for many of my friends. I think it can be incredibly damanging for parents and siblings to expect others to provide, but at the same time, it’s hard not to be the provider. I’m glad that you addressed that issue.

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