Leisa Peterson is the Founder of The Wealth Clinic and author of the Amazon best-seller The Mindful Millionaire. Leisa is also the host of The Mindful Millionaire podcast, a show that features inspiring discussions, interviews and commentary aimed at teaching self-mastery and practical financial wisdom. Leisa is a mindfulness teacher and long-time finance-pro, who joins the show today to share her expertise. Today, Jonathan and Leisa touch on the topic of financial trauma and how it can have such a profound impact on a person’s financial future. Leisa provides her thoughts on the dangers of having a scarcity mindset and what affect it can have on your finances. They talk about the importance of teaching financial literacy, especially to young people, in order to foster financial success. Finally, Lesia speaks to the value of applying a mindful approach to money and highlights a bold move each of us can aspire to for a better financial future.
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00:03 – Jonathan introduces today’s guest, Leisa Peterson, who joins the show to share some of the early lessons she learned about money growing up and discusses the concept of financial trauma
07:27 – Leisa provides examples of financial trauma she’s witnessed throughout her career
15:23 – Lesia reflects on her own career development
20:20 – How trauma affects financial success
25:35 – The dangers of having a scarcity mindset
26:53 – The importance of teaching young people financial literacy
32:02 – The Less Than Fifty Percent Rule
36:15 – Questioning the assumptions of what you value
39:08 – Something Leisa changed her mind about recently
41:13 – One thing that Leisa wishes people knew about her
42:53 – Jonathan thanks Leisa for joining the show and lets listeners know where to learn more about her
“You have to control your destiny because your destiny is not going to just deliver itself on your front porch.” (05:45)
“What I think is first and foremost the most important thing is that you can’t just tell yourself affirmations or read a book to change how you feel about yourself. What I have seen is you actually need to be in the presence of a mentor and a group of people who are shifting that at the same time. You have to be an example of it on a regular basis.” (08:28)
“I am in a ‘Take Out More’ space because I am enough, because I see the value that I’m creating in the world. And that starts to create feedback loops because the business, or the money, starts to come in but it’s fueled by this sense of self that is not prideful but fully enveloping the life and the care and the compassion and the love that we bring into what we’re doing. It’s a much fuller experience than most people give themselves permission to live.” (14:19)
“It’s helpful to show people their patterns, such as, ‘This is what it feels like to be stuck in scarcity and let me show you what it looks like on the other side because I want you to be able to do this for yourself in the future.’ And I’ll start to show them the possibilities that they’re not even aware.” (26:12)
“The idea that you could have all of your necessity expenses at less than fifty percent of the income coming into your home is a game changer.” (33:13)
Leisa’s Websites – https://www.wealthclinic.com/
The Mindful Millionaire – https://www.amazon.com/Mindful-Millionaire-Overcome-Experience-Prosperity/dp/1250261910/ref=asc_df_1250261910/?tag=hyprod-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=509245866633&hvpos=&hvnetw=g&hvrand=15624224005950802587&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9004216&hvtargid=pla-923685320075&psc=1
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Jonathan DeYoe: So, in this episode of the Mindful Money podcast, I’m chatting with Leisa R. Peterson, who I’ve known for many years and admired for many years. she’s the founder of the wealth Clinic, author of the Amazon bestseller the Mindful Millionaire. We’ve always had similar, thinking about those places where love and money overlap, and so I’m just really excited to have her on the podcast. And, Lisa, welcome to the Mindful Money podcast.
Leisa R. Peterson: Thank you, Jonathan. I’m so happy to be here.
Your son is going through the whole college planning process right now
Jonathan DeYoe: So I know you’ve moved around a bit, so I wanted to check in real quick. Where are you calling in from now, and where are you connecting from?
Leisa R. Peterson: I am connecting from Sedona, Arizona.
Jonathan DeYoe: And that’s home now.
Leisa R. Peterson: It’s home now. Yeah. It’s been home since 2016, but we also tried living in Flagstaff, which is only an hour away, so my son could go to high school, but we are back, and he is in high school in Sedona, thanks to the pandemic.
Jonathan DeYoe: And going to high school.
Leisa R. Peterson: Going, yes. He’s got one in a little bit of years left.
Jonathan DeYoe: Yeah, mine, too. I’ve got one little. That’s middle of a junior year right now. Yeah. Going through the whole college planning piece, right?
Leisa R. Peterson: Not quite. He’s in denial of whether or not he wants to go, but I think he sees that the tide is turning in that direction. He doesn’t want to figure out the rest of his life right now, so I guess it works to go to college.
Jonathan DeYoe: Yeah. Eli is saying the same thing. He wants to be a musician. So college is. I don’t have to go to college to be a musician, like. No, you got to go to college to be a smart person. That’s all. So learn how to think. Where’d you grow up, though?
Leisa R. Peterson: I grew up. I was born in Oakland and raised in the east Bay area, so I went to Dublin High School then I went to college at UC Davis, and then I got my MBA at Cal State East Bay.
Jonathan DeYoe: All right, cool. So very, very much an east bay, an east Bay child.
Leisa R. Peterson: When I was growing up, my parents had a hair salon and a facial salon in Rockridge, Oakland. And so I felt like I could be in the suburbs and then I could be really cool in Rockridge. And it was a really fascinating time in the 70s, like late sixty s and the seventy s to be in the Bay area. That’s all I can say. Like a lot of change and a lot. And my parents were hippies, and we would go to protests, we would go to concerts. I remember waiting in line with my dad for five days to get like, front row seats to Bob Dylan concert, and we literally camped out at the coliseum. Like, my childhood was pretty cool. Yeah.
You talk about your childhood struggles with money. You’ve become a multimillionaire
Jonathan DeYoe: So it’s a perfect segue talking about the childhood, because I really want to know, first couple money lessons you learned when you were growing up in the Bay area.
Leisa R. Peterson: I think that the lessons I learned were the opposite, like what not to do versus what to do. So my parents had married when they were 1819 years old, had no training whatsoever with money. My mom did okay, but my dad really wasn’t great. It was like if he saw something he wanted, he bought it immediately. And we got into financial trouble. Like, my earliest memories were about the struggles with money. And, I think that what I learned was, I don’t want to be like my parents, and I’m going to figure this out on my own. And I remember when I was seven or eight, I was like, I have to figure out how to get money. I mean, it’s funny to be thinking about that young, but I just knew I wasn’t safe in my home as far as money was concerned. And I remember back then, you’d find these magazines, and I would do mail order to get things that I could sell door to door sent to me. And then I would show up and I would sell seeds, I would sell candy, I would sell lemonade, like, whatever I could sell to make money. And I think that inspired me because I was like, this is something I can do. I don’t have to be dependent on other people. And that was a big lesson. Young in life.
Jonathan DeYoe: So our first conversation, I think it was after my book was published, I was on your podcast, and I think my first conversation, I remember we had this similarity because for me, growing up, it wasn’t so much that they were spending a lot, and I was learning a lesson about that, but I had the same scarcity because we didn’t have any money. So a little bit of background is neither of my parents had a real job, like, a steady income from my age three to 15. So for that twelve formative years, I was always scared of not having much, having enough money. So same as you. How do I get some money? I got a job. I worked. I sold stuff. I sold sandwiches door to door, candy. Door to door. Totally. I did all those things. So those similarities, I wonder. You work with a lot of people. Do you know other people that have had that kind of experience? How pervasive is that?
Leisa R. Peterson: It’s not that common. However, right now I’m doing a live keynote, and I’m going to be talking about flow. And I’ve been doing a lot of research about flow recently. And one of the things that I came across is that people, so a lot of times it’s like athletes will reach these extreme states of flow in what they do, or business leaders who kind of have a book come out of them and all of that kind of stuff. And what I think is fascinating is the research shows that people who go into flow, like later in life or kind of go on to achieve a lot in the same amount of time that anyone else has. I’ve had really tough childhoods with a lot of stress and trauma, and there’s a tendency to seek out, like, you have to control your destiny, because your destiny is not going to just deliver itself on your front porch. And I just totally relate to that. So I help a lot of people who haven’t had the experiences with money that I have had, where I’ve always figured it out, I’ve always done really well. I’ve become a multimillionaire without actually making a lot of money, but just being really smart with it and turning it into more. Whereas people who come to me may have had trauma growing up, but they didn’t equate that trauma to achievement. Like, I have to figure this out. And so later in life, they’re plagued by trauma or difficulty, and they don’t have the financial situation that they want, and they don’t know how to change it. And so I’m kind of reverse engineering the things that I’ve learned along the way that have helped me and then helping people. And what’s so funny is you can’t actually do it just by teaching money. It actually is all about the inner journey that changes the way someone thinks about themselves and the way they think about money. And then they start doing these miraculous things, or they’re like, my whole life has changed, but I don’t even know why or how. It’s because they’re not changing their external as much as their internal. But I had to learn that. I’ve been figuring this out as we may have talked about, like, I started teaching meditation in early two thousand s. I have been trying to figure this out for 22 years. This has not been a quick fix.
People often get a belief about themselves that they’re not enough
Jonathan DeYoe: Can you give us an example of one of those things that people have to one of the traumas? What results internally about that trauma from that trauma, and then what’s the solution for it?
Leisa R. Peterson: Sure. I think that one of the most common things, and I was just listening to someone right before this conversation, people end up, getting a belief about themselves, even if they’re like world class in the field, that they study or that they operate, but they get a belief about themselves of not enoughness, not good enough. I’m good at this, but there’s all these other things I’m not good at. And that can translate into our relationships, right into the work that we do, into how we are with money. And so that belief system, is difficult to change. It is really deeply rooted inside of how we identify ourselves, how we see ourselves in the world. And so I like to take on big problems. So what I think is, first and foremost, the most important thing is that you can’t just tell yourself affirmations or read a book to change how you feel about yourself. What I have seen is you actually need to be in the presence of a mentor and a group of people who are shifting that at the same time, you have to be in example of it, like on a regular basis. But many of us, not without realizing it, have surrounded ourselves with people who have that same belief. So there’s never a reinforcement that you are enough. And it’s funny, because after a while, and this is why I think I keep going back to memberships or community building, is, it’s the only place that I see people make the big changes. And it’s not any one thing that I’m teaching, it’s the spirit that people have to be around that’s consistently saying, you are always doing the best that you can, no matter what. No matter what, you’re doing the best you can. And I feel that way about myself, and I am encouraging people to question every assumption other than that, to the point after a while, they’re like, oh, this is a story that I’ve been telling myself that I had control about what was happening. I’m telling myself I wasn’t enough. I was actually reinforcing this belief for myself over and over, and I was surrounding myself with people who also reinforced that belief system. no wonder it was hard to change. And yet I notice that once it sticks, once you really get the memo, like, oh, my gosh, I’m the same as everyone else. Everyone has a bit of this one way or the other. Some is more prominent than others. And, I don’t have to live this way. And I have a choice about how I think about my life and how I think about every action that I take. It sticks because it’s the truth. I mean, we’re not teaching something that’s not the truth. We’re just trying to remind people of the truth of, who they really are. It’s a lot easier to do that once they understand.
Jonathan DeYoe: I think the metaphor is you’re wiping the dust off the mirror. Right. And that’s the buddhist metaphor. So you have somebody that’s been doing the same thing with the same group of people for weeks, months, years, decades, multiple decades. How do you. With a one group activity or with a book or, with one course, how do you unpack that quickly after it’s been 20 years? And I know I’m learning just as you’re learning. I’m learning about my stuff, too. I’m learning about what I took out of how I was raised and what I took out of the last couple of years and what I keep adding on and how do you stop adding on and with something simple? What is that step to get from here to, oh, I have this issue. I now see the issue. I can’t just take a course and solve that. It’s now a lifetime of unpacking and then not fixing, but making better choices.
Leisa R. Peterson: Yeah, making better choices. Yeah, you’re right. There is the I prosper process that takes people through that longer experience of rediscovery. And I think that’s the journey people go on in my book. But I’ll give you a very specific example. Again, just got off the call, a call with someone, and she’s going through this process, and she’s been doing this work for five or six months, and she comes at it from a very scientific. She’s a scientist, like PhD scientist, which is always the coolest thing, because what we’re doing is not absent of science. I just don’t necessarily focus on it as much because it’s not my background, but when the intersection happens, it’s really magical. The thing that we just talked about and I could just witness what was happening for her is there’s one way that she’s been positioning herself as a consultant for 2030 years. And, I invited her to give herself a promotion, and I started talking about, like, here’s your bio, and here’s the bio, who I think you are. And I said, at first it might feel like I’m lying to you because you’re not giving yourself permission to step into who you really are. But we got into the mechanics of, like, well, you’re this, and based on what you’ve told me, you’re a world class mentor in this particular area of study. She’s like, yes, I am. I’m like, okay, good. It doesn’t feel like you’re lying anymore. But by the time we’re done with that, she’s looking at this going, that is me. But I would have never given myself permission for that promotion. And this is something I work with a lot of business owners, and a lot of business owners really struggle with this because you enter in one place and then you grow and you expand, but you never really step into who you’ve become. And so I’m merely showing people who they’ve become and inviting them to have that experience rather than who they were in the past.
Jonathan DeYoe: You’re holding up a mirror and say, look at this great person you are. Do you not see yourself? I mean, that’s awesome.
Leisa R. Peterson: Yeah. Ah.
Jonathan DeYoe: And, that gives them, like you said, the permission to see themselves in the way that you see them.
Leisa R. Peterson: Yes. And I love the context of both business and money because it’s one thing for us to be like, well, I’m that, but it’s a whole nother game to be like, I’m going to put this out there to everyone I communicate with. Like, I’m going to take up more space because I am enough, because I see the value that I’m creating in the world, and that starts to create feedback loops because the business or the money starts to come in. But it’s fueled from this sense of self that is not, like, prideful, but just fully enveloping the life and the care and the compassion and the love that we bring into what we’re doing. It’s a much fuller experience than most people give themselves permission to live. And I think part of the reason I can do this so well is because I didn’t have anyone doing this for me. I kind of had to figure it out because I don’t think a lot of coaches realize the power that they have to change someone’s life by that mirror. And I’m just a really good mirror, and I had to learn that it was actually that helpful. I didn’t know it would help people as much as it does now. I had to try it and see.
Jonathan DeYoe: So I’m imagining you just didn’t one day wake up m and say, oh, I can be this great mirror.
How did you get to where you are today as a financial advisor
and I read a little bit and I’ve heard a little bit, I’ve heard you speak before, but could you just kind of go through your career development? I mean, how do you get to where you are?
Leisa R. Peterson: My career development? So I finished my MBA in 92, worked for all kinds of big brands. I, worked for state Farm insurance as my first job out of my MBA program. And one of the interesting stories that happened with state Farm was I got married to my husband, and about six or seven months later, I got a job and he lived in reading, California, and we had built a house there. And then about eight months later, the northridge earthquake happens and State Farm is in desperate need of people. They were trying a new program because they had had such a bad time with the previous hurricane. I think whatever had happened before 94, I was like, it’ll look really good if I volunteer to go to disaster work there for six months. And I said, but they’re not going to pick me. And like 05:00 that night, I show up and I’m like, I leave at 06:00 a.m.. Tomorrow. I’ll, see you in six months. He’s like, what? You said they weren’t going to pick you. I, was like, they did, and I’m going. So six months, I got a very high profile, 1000 claims with some of the most famous people on the planet in studio City and Taluca lake. And I was responsible at all of 25 or 26 for millions of dollars of, earthquake damage claims. I became a really good negotiator in a very short amount of time with that experience, and it helped me start to really understand the differences between the wealthy and those who didn’t have money, and how wealthy people managed their homes and their affairs and how they showed up to their lives. It was absolutely amazing. And I think it gave me that seed that I was like, well, if all those people can be millionaires, why couldn’t I be a millionaire? Why couldn’t I do this? They’re not smarter than I am or what have you. And I came back from that and ended up going into marketing with a different company, insurance, then got recruited to Wells Fargo, where I spent the next 17, almost 17 years working in various capacities. And at one point, pretty early at my Wells Fargo, Fargo tenure, I found myself three or four people from the top of the whole entire company, which was just unheard of, but it was like a series of events that gave me this huge opportunity. I was managing teams of 60, 70 people, and again, just, I was good at it, but the corporate world was not the place for me to be. And I walked away from a huge job. Nobody ever walks away from these jobs. I walked away and became a mortgage banker with Wells Fargo because I couldn’t handle the corporate politics and the stuff that was going on. I was a mortgage banker and underwriter for several years and became a financial advisor. And in 2014, I was like, I’m done with all of it. I am out of here. I’ve got my CFP, I have a book inside of me. I’m going to go tackle the world and teach people about their relationship with money. And, yeah, that was eight years ago. Yeah, 2014.
Jonathan DeYoe: Are you a practicing financial advisor still?
Leisa R. Peterson: No. I decided to keep the CFP because it keeps you fresh with what’s going on and how to advise people in that way, but not more from the governance of, like, how do you create a financial plan for yourself and tie it into, the things that people need to be thinking about? But I love not having any products or any, I love that part of it. It’s really fun because I feel like I can point people in different directions and it works for me and I can focus more on the inner experience.
Jonathan DeYoe: And it’s funny, I’ve been blessed with great clients. So I had, this client came up to me pretty much the last live event that we hosted for clients. they came up to me and said, this is late 2019, early 2020, I don’t remember, but he came up and said, oh, jonathan, I get it. You don’t manage portfolios, you manage people. So you’ve actually just kind of shed the product, the portfolio part, and now you’re just working with people, which is, I think that’s magnificent. And we’re not going to get into it today, but, on an outside conversation, I’d love to hear how that works in terms of, you’ve got podcasts, you’ve just published the book as a bestseller, and so you’re out there. I know you’re at the fire community, you’re doing public speaking. So I love what you’re doing. You’re helping people on the ground, doing the things that they need to do in the most important parts of it.
How trauma affects our financial success and our financial worlds
And you mentioned this earlier, we all have some kind of a trauma. You use the word trauma. And the first time I heard the word trauma used in sort of a financial setting was in Oakland with Eso Ventures, which, is a group that I work with. And this woman said, hey, I see that you’re a financial planner. Do you do anything with trauma? And I was like, what do you mean? How do they go? Didn’t, this was like, just a few years ago. I didn’t grock it. I couldn’t understand what she was talking about. So could you just kind of touch on that trauma and how trauma affects our financial success and our financial worlds?
Leisa R. Peterson: Yeah, there’s so many different entry points with this. I’m just thinking about even. There was this study done with Kaiser Permanente way back. I remember the dates, but they studied, like, 14,000 people, and they noticed that the more incidence of adverse childhood experiences. So this is going back to zero, to 18, let’s say. The more adverse experiences a childhood had, the more likely they were to have problems in relationships with addiction, with health issues, with financial matters. They could see the relationship based on the questions that they were asking people, and they were looking at it from a health perspective, but it turned out that it affected incarceration. I mean, just like the list was long of all these things. And that was really helpful for me, because at that time, when I first came across that data, I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt, intuitively, after working with so many people for 25 years with them and their money, that people who had had a lot of trauma early in life seemed to have it come and affect their money. Now, it was one of two ways, and this is where I get into talking about scarcity. One way is that they’re so consumed by it, like me, like I was, that they’ll sacrifice the quality of their life and all for money.
Jonathan DeYoe: Me too. I did that.
Leisa R. Peterson: Or there’s the other side, which is like, it’s always in a mess and they can’t get themselves out of it. It’s one of two extremes. And the one that nobody complains about are the people like us. People are like, oh, well, what’s the problem? You have money. It’s like, well, you don’t know. Probably all the divorces and all the broken relationships with children and the parenting skills that suffer because of your hierarchy of money and relationships. Those things are really serious and they have an impact in people’s lives, but nobody cares about it because our society acts like, if you have money, everything’s awesome. But then you can also look on the other side of poverty and the perpetuation of trauma causing maybe not extreme poverty, but always worrying about not having enough and never feeling like you do, and then using spending as an emotional gap filler, which is what my mom did, like, she would buy just to try and feel better. She taught me how to do that. I had to break that pattern later in life. But I guess my response is that I think my work is trauma informed, not because I’m a psychologist, but because I’m a person of a, school of hard knocks, and I witnessed bad behaviors being shown to me, and then I would do them, and they would cause problems, and I had to break that cycle. And so I see a lot of people come to me where they’ve done therapy, and it’s been very helpful for them. But the therapist, if they don’t have a background in money, then it’s tough for them to help them with money or making the links between, like, what did this thing that had to do with my childhood have to do with what I’m doing with money now? And I just have seen it so much that I can be like, hey, these are connected. It’s not arbitrary, and there’s some things that you can do about it. And so, in addition to breakthrough work, which kind of sounds a bit woo woo, but it’s really about forgiveness. I mean, it’s not woo woo. It’s like forgiving yourself, forgiving your family, forgiving everyone, so you no longer have to keep that story going, like, really letting it go. I’m, an expert in that. And then what do you do next? Because what I’ve seen is a lot of people want the emotional transformation. They’re still scared to go back and become more aware and mindful of, money. And so what I’ve had to do, and it’s not just me, it’s other people, coaches. In my community, I’ve assembled people that are just so exceptional in their ability to help people break the cycle and start doing budgeting and actually paying attention to how much money gets spent and paying attention to how much money you’re earning. And those are the things that we focus a lot on.
You talk about the importance of financial literacy and the fact that we don’t
Jonathan DeYoe: And so you brought up this idea of scarcity that leads me to say, scarcity mindset. I think you actually mentioned this in the book, tunneling, like, the risk that the scarcity captures in our mind and we can’t get out of it. That sounds like that’s the work that you spend the most time on.
Leisa R. Peterson: Yeah, it comes up a lot. And because I know the signs, I’m able to be like, when someone’s asking a question from me as a coach, whether it’s privately or in a group, I’m able to quickly see that they’ve tunneled and they’re only seeing a couple options, whereas there’s a ton of different options. And so it’s helpful to show people their patterns. Like, this is what it feels like to be stuck in scarcity. And let me show you what it looks like on the other side, because I want you to be able to do this for yourself in the future. And I’ll start to show them the possibilities that they’re not even aware, so they can start to say, oh, yeah, I hadn’t thought of that, or, I’m going to try that. And then when they try the things that they wouldn’t have thought of and they have success, it breeds them to go back and think, well, what else in my life am I doing this with?
Jonathan DeYoe: Right. You give me a sentence, and there’s four places in the sentence I want to pull on. So I’m going to go back a little bit. You said something to the effect of, it reminded me of the thing in your book where you talk about the importance of financial literacy and the fact that we don’t have it in the country. I mean, there are 17 1819 states that it’s required in. It’s not very good, it’s not very consistent throughout the grades, whatever. But this idea of, from generation to generation, you have some people who have the wherewithal and teach their kids, and you have other people who do not have the wherewithal or teach their kids horrible lessons around money. And the probability that the former set ends up doing much better is enormous relative to the latter set. So we look today at media, and we see inequality is greater than ever. It’s a new gilded age. You pick your headline. You’ve read it, I’m sure. Do you think that a little financial literacy and a little, I think maybe trauma awareness training would be good for students, even probably more important than some of the other stuff that they learn?
Leisa R. Peterson: I think so. I know that I went out and got it for myself, and I know a lot of my clients. The number one thing we hear over and over again, when I ask people like, well, what are your earliest memories of money? Or what do you understand about money? I’m blown away that in some of the questions we ask, like 90% of people say, I don’t understand personal finance, like 95%. I’m like, okay, where do we start? It’s a little overwhelming. They don’t understand. They say on a scale of zero to five, they’re like, I’m, at two or something in how little I understand, and I don’t feel comfortable with my skills. So I think that that is something that has to start really young. But I would also say, just as important as the financial training also would be skills to help young people know that. I read somewhere it was like, on any given day, we’re going to have five events that occur that are going to be upsetting to us in some way, shape or form that are going to derail us. Like, five things that are like, oh, we have to pivot or do something different. To me, if we were to teach, what do you do when things don’t work the way that you wanted? The resiliency would come first and foremost, because I think that, because we’re not teaching that, then you have money, which is always seeming to go something wonky. No matter who you are, no matter how much you have, I want everyone to hear you. It’s just wild, the things that happen. And I’m a multimillionaire, and I’m like, what else is going to happen? Craziness. But if you were to teach kids from a really young age, and every year they had to go through resiliency training, where they learned how to pause, how to think about the various options of how they’re going to respond and breathe and, I mean, just basic stuff that we all need as human beings. And then you taught money. That would be the ideal situation.
Jonathan DeYoe: Yeah, I cannot agree more. I think we might get more financial literacy training. I’m not sure we’re going to get a lot of mindfulness training in the schools. I think teachers are. Teachers are a little bit overwhelmed as it is. But, yeah, I totally agree. Have you done that with your son?
Leisa R. Peterson: So my kids, we’re so unusual, I think, in the way that we parent, that it’s hard to know what it is. My kids are amazing. They don’t sit and meditate, but everything that we’ve taught, eventually they seem to want to do. But I have a 24 year old and a 17 year old, and, yeah, they’ve never been forced to meditate. My parents did that to me, so I wouldn’t do that to them. But they are the most balanced, self regulated people, and they speak their feelings and their emotions so that I have the good grace of being able to be like, oh, wow. I’m like, I’m still learning these things now at 55 that my kids do on a regular basis. And they’re like, why are you raising your voice? Because I need you, obviously, to help me. It’s just downright comical. So we’ve done something right that I actually don’t totally know, except for we care a lot and we communicate like crazy to the point where they’re like, we really shouldn’t need to talk about these things. I’m like, oh, yes, we do.
Jonathan DeYoe: It doesn’t surprise me in the least that your kids would be somewhat emotionally balanced. Like, it doesn’t surprise me at all. So you can pat yourself on the back, even if you don’t know that’s the vibe you give off. So I think that the vibe comes, I believe so.
We’re talking about things people can do to improve their finances
I do want to get to a couple of things, and that is one of the purposes of this podcast is to separate the things that people can do. We’re talking about, specifically about their finances that are helpful and move the needle. The most important things that people can do that are helpful and move the needle relative. Those things that we read about and hear about and people talk about and the media goes on and on and on about that are not helpful, that we shouldn’t pay any attention to. I’m just wondering, when you’re working with clients, do you see a couple of things that stand out as, hey, these are things you got to do. These are things, hey, better off, you ignore.
Leisa R. Peterson: Yeah, I’ll, go really bold, and this is, like, maybe controversial, but it is one of the things that has changed my life, and I can’t help but want to talk about it. So one of those things that I think makes a huge difference is having some kind of basket strategy around the money that’s coming in and where it’s going and the percentages, we can figure out what works for us.
The idea that you could have all your necessity expenses at less than 50%
But the one that I want to talk about for a moment is this goal that could easily take, and it took my husband and I, I think, ten years to get there. So this is not instant gratification, but the idea that you could have all of your necessity expenses at, less than 50% of the income that’s coming into your home is like a game changer. if you can aspire to that and you can dream around that, and you can finagle a life where your necessities. Right? So what is that? Housing, transportation, food, everything that you need to live your life at the style that you wish could be less than 50%, then it gives you the luxury of having that 15%. I’d like to say to invest, whether that be in the stock market or the real estate or whatever it is, and then you get this time to focus on, well, maybe I’m going to spend 10% on fun and 10% on personal development, and I just don’t know how people do it because I have been living this way for a really long time, and I think I set that goal early on of, like, what’s the combination to get there? We just don’t spend a lot of money, so it’s not as hard for, us to achieve that goal. But the freedom that you get by setting that goal is just such a game changer. And I wish more people talked about it. Is that bold?
Jonathan DeYoe: I think more people should talk about it. I don’t know about the exact percentage, but less spending per unit of income is better, period. That’s the only way you build the asset that lets you live off it later. That’s the only way. Less spending per unit of income. 50% is bold. That’s bold.
Leisa R. Peterson: It is bold and how expensive it is, especially for young people. But the other piece is that it’s giving us the ability to have so much discretionary. It’s not that we’re going to save 50%. It’s about choice in the things. Because I think the idea and what we teach in my programs is how can you spend lavishly on the things that are the highest value for you and strip away everything else that isn’t that. How can you get around that? How can you cut out that stuff that is not of your highest and best purpose driven, life supporting stuff? That’s when things start to change. Because the budgeting man, just to save money, I have been in those phases. That’s not very fun. It’s not a long time lifestyle.
Jonathan DeYoe: It’s like budgeting from a scarcity mindset, versus budgeting from an abundance mind. I’m budgeting so that I can spend the money on the things that I really, really want to spend the money on. Right. What’s the purpose of your budgeting? Is it just to cut or is it to enable? It’s beautiful. I love what you’re saying there. I love it, and I would expect nothing less. What about some things that people hear about? Media talks about, it, other pundits talk about it. It just doesn’t really move the needle. It’s not really beneficial. You can kind of ignore it. Name?
Leisa R. Peterson: Name? Yeah, right. Well, there’s the whole coffee thing. Some people love their coffee. And I have gone through phases where I love my coffee. And I think, here’s the other thing about coffee or something else that we enjoy. My love hate affair with coffee is that there’s also an addiction there that I have to watch. I notice that I just want it the next day and want it the next day. So even though I think it’s something that’s really important, what’s the motivation underneath it? So I feel like the problem that we have is this Internet filled with all these five steps to this and ten things you do here, and none of them are asking the deepest questions, which is, can you please prioritize your values? Can you set aside some time to get crystal clear about what your values are and in what order are they important to you? And then create your life around those values, because I promise you, you will be a lot happier. Maybe not month one or two, but after a while, when you break the addictions, you question the assumptions. You’ll start finding out what really gets you happy. Most people don’t actually know what brings great happiness into their lives because they haven’t given themselves the time to know and to test and to be like, oh, I thought that was really important to me, but it turns out it’s not. Sometimes we have to go do things to find out how they rank, but at least you’re asking yourself. So I’d say I don’t like all of that quick fix kind of stuff. I’m in it for the long haul. And questioning your assumptions about what you value is probably a good place to start.
Jonathan DeYoe: That’s great. I think that what my experience was last year was. I talk about this, my stage presentation is probably the exact same as your stage presentation, different specifics, but the idea of know what you want and then go after that, that’s very simple. But I never actually practiced it until something smacked me in the face. I worked really hard until last year, and last year I got smacked in the face with my brother. My brother died last year, and so I was like, oh, wow, this whole life thing short. I need to rearrange a lot of stuff. I hope other people don’t learn the lesson by getting smacked in the face and just ask the question first. What is it that really excites me? And go after that? We’re getting pretty close to time, and there’s something I want to. There’s a couple of things I want to ask, and there’s about a dozen more things we’re not going to have time for after that. But a couple of things.
Things change and the science changes. I say that science doesn’t prove anything
First, is there anything that you’ve thought for a long time and that you just read something or saw somebody and it’s really made you change your mind on something?
Leisa R. Peterson: Feel like I’m changing my mind all the time.
Jonathan DeYoe: Good. That’s healthy.
Leisa R. Peterson: I’m good at, being like, wait a minute. I think I’m constantly blown away at how we have to stay fresh with things because science changes. So, something that I thought was a reality, and I study the brain and neurobiology and neurochemistry, and I’m just blown away because I thought it was one way, and I started explaining it, and somebody says something as I’m a teacher, as a coach, and I’m like, okay, time out. We’re just going to pause this discussion and let me come back to it, because things change and the science changes. And so for me, I think I’m just learning a lot about right alongside of the neuroscientists, because that’s fascinating studies. I would just say that science is changing because the research gets completed. I wish there was more time in the day to know about all this stuff, but as you know, there’s so much. But I try to not put my foot in my mouth on a regular basis.
Jonathan DeYoe: Hard to do when you’re on the cutting edge, I think. I had this conversation with my son. I say that science doesn’t prove anything. Science proves things that are not. And so you learn something that’s not, and then you go, this is the way it is then. And then you put your foot in your mouth because it’s not that way either. Later. It’s not that way, right?
Leisa R. Peterson: Yeah. I like to listen to these scientists get interviewed because they’re really savvy about explaining it. And I listen to them, I’m like, oh, I need to take lessons of how to talk about this stuff because it’s so inconclusive that they’re used to explaining it that way.
Jonathan DeYoe: Yes. These are things we can’t know. What we’re certain of is this and this and this. This other stuff, not so much.
Is there anything that people don’t know about you or don’t remember
Is there anything that, and I don’t know if you can answer this on the fly or not, but is there anything that people either don’t know about you or don’t remember about you? They learned it once, and they don’t remember about you that you really wish that they knew? When you don’t see a friend for a while, you haven’t had a conversation with, them they haven’t been reminded of a thing, but then they say something, you’re like, gosh, I really wish you knew this about me. So you knew not to say that.
Leisa R. Peterson: You ask very creative questions. I don’t know if it’s the right answer, but I think that what comes up a lot in our business is that because of all these years of mindfulness and paying attention to my own experiences with life, I don’t think that people understand what happens. The transformation that happens, unless you’ve been meditating for a long time of being so focused on other people and what’s important to them comes really easy for me, and I don’t know anything different than that. Right. So the old me was completely self centered, didn’t have an idea of what was going on for other people. And not that I’m not still that person, and I have those aspects to myself, but I wish it was easier to just show people. Well, I show people all the time. But explain what that means to be mindfully oriented to others conditions, because I think that if people really understood it, more people would want to create that for themselves.
Jonathan DeYoe: Yeah. How do you get to real empathy? that wraps the hard stuff. I do have one short, simple thing, and that’s just tell people how we can connect with you. I know you’ve got courses. The book tell people where to find you and where they can, find out more about what you’re doing.
Leisa R. Peterson: There’s two websites that you can check out, wealthclinic.com, that has my blog and lots of different resources there. And then the other site is mindfulmillionairebook.com. And if you pick up a copy of the book, we have all kinds of freebies that add to the experience. And again, we’re just trying to give you food for thought that can change your relationship with money and help you move in the direction that you want your life to move. But you know that money has just been something that, been holding you back.
Jonathan DeYoe: So we’ll put all that in the show notes for sure. so everyone has access to those links. Definitely get the book and then sign up for the extras. I took a peek at some extras. They’re definitely worth it. And I just want to say thank you, Luis, for coming. Always, always love having the conversation with you. you’re amazing, and I appreciate your time.
Leisa R. Peterson: Thank you. Thanks for all your listeners.