The Year of Less with Cait Flanders


The Year of Less with Cait Flanders

You may remember my guest today from my episode entitled Minimalism for Everyone. I’ve been blogging friends with Cait Flanders for almost four years now and I’ve loved following her blog writing and I’m excited to share with you that she’s written a book: The Year of Less: How I stopped shopping, gave away my belongings and discovered life is worth more than anything you can buy in a store. This January, I’ve focused my podcast around changes, and Cait’s book chronicles the changes she made to lead her to the minimalist lifestyle and she’s sharing more of that on my show as well.

What are we drinking?

Cait — Coffee

Shannon — Coffee

Podcast Notes

  • Cait started as a personal finance blogger in 2010, but she deleted her blog, because she wasn’t done spending. She had about $24,000 in debt at that time.
  • She came back to blogging at Blonde on a Budget a few months later, and she was maxed out at $30,000 in debt.
  • For a few years, Cait wrote about getting out of debt. Cait has been experimenting with different things and, since then, she did a shopping ban initially for one year, and it turned into two. She then got rid of a bunch of her belongings and is now experimenting with slow living.
  • Cait initially stopped blogging, because she knew she wanted to pay off her debt, but she wasn’t ready to change her lifestyle.
  • Every change you make pays compound interest. When you accomplish one thing, it gives you confidence to change something else. Getting one area of your life in order, like your finances, makes it easier to do that with another area of your life, like your health.
  • Cait is always willing to experiment with challenges, to get to a more aligned version of herself.
  • If you are carrying credit card balances and not paying them off in full every month, it is a sign that you are spending more than you make.
  • Cait realized she had several self-limiting beliefs about her earning potential, after her friend made a comment. Sometimes it takes someone close to you to point it out.
  • One of the books that helped Shannon when she was growing her business is Think and Grow Rich, by Napoleon Hill. Shannon would one day like to sell the Financial Gym and use the proceeds to create the Golden Girls Fund to invest in women start-up businesses in the early stages.
  • You are a Badass at Making Money, by Jen Sincero, was a book that was helpful to Cait.
  • Cait’s new book, The Year of Less, is found on Amazon, under dieting and mental health. It’s not just about personal finance, it is a lot of things in one book.
  • Cait was featured in Forbes for her shopping ban. Within two weeks, she received emails from six different literary agents about turning her experience into a book.
  • When looking for a literary agent, representation is very important. Talk to everyone and interview them. Find someone you would be happy entering a long-term relationship with, since the hope would be writing more than one book.
  • It took about 18 months for Cait’s book to be written and published.
  • The timeline in the book is the year of her shopping ban, but there is a lot backstory and other information that Cait has not published in the past. There was a lot of self reflection and practical information in this book.
  • Shannon called Cait’s book “The financial Eat, Pray, Love”.
  • Cait and Shannon talk about negative self-talk and being kinder to yourself. If you make a decision to eat something unhealthy or spend on something that wasn’t planned, be kind to yourself. You might need to work a little harder now, but get over it. Don’t quit!
  • Shannon said sometimes it takes a solid year for everything to click with clients, but they keep showing up. It takes a lot of courage to keep pushing through.
  • Cait started her blog seven years ago and says she is still a work in progress.
  • Cait’s book will be released January 16, 2018, on Kindle, Audible, and in hardcover.
  • Cait’s book can be found on, or Instagram

Random Three Questions 

  1. What is a book that changed your life?
  2. What is a show you like to binge watch?
  3. Where is somewhere you would like to go or you would like to go back to?

Connect with Cait

If you want to make a big change this year in your finances and want someone to help you along the way, I hope you’ll reach out to my team at the Financial Gym. We have clients hitting financial goals every day they they never could have hit on their own. You can schedule a free call here to find out more. So head over to or send friends to to sign up today!


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