Getting Naked with Allie
At the Financial Gym, we call the first meeting you have with a trainer the “financially naked session.” In this meeting, you share everything about yourself financially so the trainer knows where you’re starting and so that he or she can make the plan for how you can get where you want to go. Above all other meetings, this one scares clients the most, because they are afraid or ashamed of their financial situation.
A few months back on this podcast, I shared my financially naked session so this group could start dropping any fear or shame they have around their money. Well, podcast listener and Facebook Group member Dylan suggested I share more naked sessions on the podcast because mine really helped her open up about money with her friends. I’ve done two naked sessions with employees of the Gym, and this is the first non-Gym employee naked session.
Allie, a new Financial Gym client, volunteered to share her numbers with this group. A word of warning though, before you listen to this episode, Allie’s story has a very intense back story. If you are somebody with PTSD, or you have triggers around violence (specifically gun violence), this is an episode you should not listen to. I am giving you warning that this was very intense for me to hear and for Allie to live through, and unfortunately, she was one of the episodes I lost when recording, so this poor young woman had to share this story with me twice. She is an absolute rockstar, and I appreciate her willingness to share everything, but, again, if you can’t handle these types of things, please refrain from listening.
What are we drinking?
Allie — Coffee with hazelnut creamer
Shannon — Coffee
- Allie’s story really begins in August 2017. She had put herself through college and graduate school with student loans and had close to $75,000 in student loan debt. She was on an income-based repayment plan and had resolved that she would do the payback plan for 25 years and then age out.
- She never saw major movement in her balance, even when she would pay larger amounts. When she did the total calculation, she found that she would end up paying over three times the principal balance.
- She decided to do a little more research, when her payment increased.
- Her interest rate was 6%, and she was paying much more in interest than principal.
- Allie’s friend sent her a debt snowball payment worksheet and she began using it as a starting point. She was able to see the impact of putting extra on her loans each month.
- She then created her own spreadsheet that allowed for variable payment amounts every month. She figured out her fixed expenses and cut her budget, so she could put extra on her student loans. She was making about three to four payments on her loans per month.
- On October 1, 2017, Allie was at the Route 91 music harvest festival in Las Vegas. She was on the field watching Jason Aldean and was shot three times by a gunman. She loves live music and the tickets were a birthday present. It was supposed to be a fun, week-long vacation.
- Allie was close to the stage on the right side, which was the worst place to be, based on the people who were injured and the debris afterward. It was the last day of the festival and she heard what sounded like fireworks going off, but it seemed too early for that. During the second round of fire, she was shot in the leg, and she thought she was burned by fireworks, because it was a searing, burning pain. She was then shot two more times.
- Allie was with her partner and her friend at this time, along with a 14 and 16 year-old they met that day at the festival. The 14 year-old’s mom was fatally wounded on the field. They applied pressure to the wound, but she didn’t make it. They then had to run because the shooting started again.
- They ran about a mile and took shelter in a diner.
- When Allie realized she was shot, she tried to convince everyone she didn’t need an ambulance or hospital, because she was afraid she couldn’t afford the bill.
- Allie ended up going to the hospital and they found she was shot twice in her leg. They cleaned the wounds, covered them in bandages, and told her to get a tetanus shot when she gets home, since they ran out.
- The bullets are still in her leg. It’s impossible to forget about the bullets, because they still cause her pain.
- When she got back to the hotel, she realized she was shot a third time in her hip. The type of bullets she was hit by fragmented on impact, so it’s not just a solid bullet.
- She didn’t go back to the hospital, since they didn’t do anything, and she figured she would go to her primary care doctor when she got back home.
- Allie had a high deductible insurance plan and the starting estimate from the hospital was $50,000, for two hours and a band-aid. Her maximum out-of-pocket was $5,000 and she only had to pay $4,500, since she already had paid $500 in medical costs previously. By the end of it, the hospital was paid $25,000.
- Allie is going through a specific type of therapy called EMDR, which is the most common for PTSD. Prior to the shooting, she had been in therapy. She stopped going after the shooting, because she wasn’t ready to talk about it. She went back in February 2018, and wanted to go to that type of therapy to address the underlying issues. She was eligible for funds from the Las Vegas victims fund, which was started the day after the shooting through Go Fund Me. There was over $33 million in the fund for those injured at the event. She was also eligible for funds from the Victims of Crime fund through the State of Nevada, after her insurance company paid.
- Allie is getting her plan from the Gym tomorrow. Her trainer is Georgina.
- Questions from the financially naked discovery questions:
- Employment: Employed as a trainer
- Birthday: September 6, 1988
- Current Salary: $91,700
- Monthly Take-Home Pay: $4,290
- Checking Account: $91.50
- Savings Account: $65.20
- HSA: $6,400
- 401k: $50,000 (Target Date Fund)
- Employee Stock Program: Yes
- Student Loan Debt: None – paid off $75,000
- Credit Card 1: $680
- Chase United Credit Card: $550 (paid off weekly)
- Car Loan: $5,650 (2.29% interest, 13 mos left)
- Credit Score: 760
- Own or Rent: Rent
- Current Monthly Rent: $760 (half)
- Renter’s Insurance: $10
- Life Insurance: Free through employer
- Disability Insurance: Free through employer
- Will or Trust: No
- Children: No
- Pets: Yes
- Average Monthly Expenses: $2,800
- 1-3 Year Goals: Apply to a one-year program at Stanford, which will require a move to the Bay Area (she is able to work while she is in the program); Total cost is $1,500 in 2018, and they only run it every two years. She hopes to attend in 2020. The second two quarters, they pay you about $1,500 per semester, as they teach you to facilitate one of their courses through their graduate school of business.
- 3-5 Year Goals: Travel, work on her f-off fund
- 5-10 Year Goals: Possibly have one child and adopt another one
- What is important to you (sacred cows)? Health care, self-care/therapy, explore pain management care for her leg wound, continue to grow, learn, and push herself, traveling
TAKEAWAY: My biggest takeaway is that money should never be a reason you can’t take care of yourself physically or mentally. If you’re finances prohibit you from taking care of yourself, then this is a sign you need to fix your finances and become empowered by them instead of controlled by them.
Random Three Questions
- If you could travel anywhere, where would you go and why?
- If you were on death row, what would your last meal be?
- If you were to win a million dollars, what would you do with it?
If you’d like to get financially naked with my team and drop any fear or shame you have around your money, I hope you’ll reach out to us at the Financial Gym. My trainers have literally seen it all so nothing will surprise them. We don’t care how you got here, we just care about getting you where you want to go. Head to financialgym.com to sign up for a free warm up call to find out more.