You guys already know that I heart Aisha. She is creative, smart, and kind. Three things I love in friend. We met at the 2014 Get Radical Conference and we immediately clicked on so many levels– how we viewed the world, personal finance, and entrepreneurship. It was a no-brainer to have her join The Frugal Feminista community as a writer and showcase all that she is a business woman as a DreamGirl! 🙂
What do you do and why is it important?I teach women that their self-worth is not dependent on their financial worth. FNPhenomenal (Frugal –n- Phenomenal) is a financial literacy & empowerment company that helps women to identify their passion and authentic self, and develop the tools, mindset, and techniques to become financially free.
This is important because so many women are caught in the vicious cycle of making money but not keeping it. Often it has to do with not feeling worthy enough to keep their money. I created FNPhenomenal because I believe that every woman has a purpose. It’s hard to live your purpose if you lack self-worth or self-esteem or if you are stressed out over money. My goal is to help women to stop using money as a crutch for their self-worth, find something else besides money that brings them happiness, help them to focus on what makes them phenomenal, and then teach them the tools to clean up their finances.
What advice would you give to your 20 year-old self?Don’t be afraid to stand out and be phenomenal. Be secure in who you are and stand up for what you believe in. You don’t have to look a certain way or be at all of the events to fit in. People love you for who you are as a person, not because of the clothes you wear. Never dim your fire, out of fear. Don’t charge up your credit cards trying to be like everyone else. Be you…unapologetically.
What are three things that you know for sure?
1. I know for sure that everyone has a divine purpose. It’s just a matter of breaking through the clutter and the desire to be like everyone else. When you find that purpose, everything just flows like an unobstructed river.
2. Give back & Pay it Forward. The universe is balanced and to whom much is given much is expected. It is our duty to share our gifts and talents with the world, and to make the world a better place. A part of that is the duty to help other people. We didn’t become successful by ourselves. We all had someone who cared enough about us to invest in our future through mentorship. We owe it to ourselves, God, and everyone else who paved the way for our success to take the time to help someone else.
3. If you don’t risk failure, you will never truly be great. It’s impossible to make it through life without failing periodically. It’s how you respond that matters. If you fail, get up, dust yourself off, learn from your mistakes, and try again. If you aren’t failing then you playing it too safe, and safe is average not phenomenal. Who really wants to just be average?
What is the best advice (financial, emotional, spiritual, health-related) that you have ever received? Why did that piece of wisdom resonate with you so much?I heard a comment that people are born, they die at the age of 21 or 22 years old, and then are finally buried at the age of 65. People die at the age of 21 or 22 because that’s when their dreams get stolen. They get placed in the preverbal box, because they have to be a “grown-up.” This resonated with me so much because I was that person who cared so much about what other people think. I needed for people to tell me that I was beautiful in order to believe it (wow I can’t believe I actually wrote that down in an interview). It caused me to make decisions on what I did and didn’t do based on perception. I subconsciously allowed other people to put me in a box. I gave my power away.
Even when I was starting FNPhenomenal, I asked so many people for their opinions and feedback about the company. I was so used to asking for validation that I didn’t trust my own vision. If I got a negative response, I questioned what I was doing. Luckily I had a burning desire in my soul that wouldn’t quit even if I tried. Also, luckily I developed the confidence to trust my vision. I surrounded myself with enough positive people that the negativity and doubt didn’t bother me. Everyone isn’t as fortunate. It breaks my heart to think that someone stumbled upon their purpose, but quit because someone else laughed at their dreams, said that they weren’t good enough, or “get a real job”.
What are you the most proud of as a woman, entrepreneur, scholar, or anything in between?My first thought was to list something off of my resume or the herculean effort that I made to get into Business School, but then I thought my resume doesn’t define me. My most proud moments are those where I help other people.
I think that I’m most proud of starting FNPhenomenal, because this gives me a vehicle to touch the lives of so many women. I was terrified to share my story. I wondered what people would think of me and what they would say. Would they talk about me or laugh? However, I did it anyway, and by me sharing my struggles with self-confidence and self-worth and how it impacted how I managed my money it gave other women the courage to face their own feelings of inadequacy, and give them the permission to embrace what makes them phenomenal. It’s nothing more rewarding than to hear people say, “Thank you. This has changed my life.”
What is going on in your business/career that EVERYONE should know about now? Is there a product or services that we should ALL know about?
I am the author of the #1 Amazon Best Selling Book, “5+5 FNPhenomenal Ways to Save $100 This Week Without Killing Your Lifestyle.” It is an approachable guide to personal finance. This book follows the story of four women (Nina, Jordan, Bretta, and Amber) who are fly, successful, professional women. When you look at them, you just know they have it all together, however beneath it all they all have a secret – they are living paycheck-to-paycheck. But one day, everything changes. The four women are forced to confront their financial struggles and embark upon a new life—a life that includes lifestyle changes to achieve their ultimate goal of financial freedom. Follow these ladies as they discover their authentic purpose, and learn about the steps they took to start their journey to become phenomenal and financially free. More information can be found at www.5plus5book.com.
“21 Days to Moving Beyond Paycheck-to-Paycheck Living” is a 21-day self-study program designed to help people break the cycle of paycheck-to-paycheck living. The 21 daily modules are structured in three parts: Belief System/Values; Savings Strategies; and Confidence/Relationship with Yourself. This program is structured this way because I want people to first explore their beliefs and why those beliefs exist, then start to understand and learn how to save, and last ensure that they actually have the confidence to execute the strategies learned in the modules. More information can be found at www.fnpchecktocheck.com
What makes you a DreamGirl?
OMG sometimes it’s so hard to talk about why I’m phenomenal!
I’m such a giving person. I love service and everything that I do is centered around two central pillars:
1. How do I ensure that I’m honoring God in everything that I do?
2. How do I make this world a better place because I was here? Beyoncé said it best in the song, “I was here.”
“I want to say I lived each day, until I died
And know that I meant something in, somebody’s life
The hearts I have touched, will be the proof that I leave
That I made a difference, and this world will see.”
When I think about my vision for FNPhenomenal, I get so energized and know that I can conquer the world. My confidence is that strong. I haven’t always been this confident. However, something magical happens when you get clear on who you are and your purpose. You get this unshakeable confidence. When I look at myself even a year to a year and a half ago, I was so broken. I was so incredible hurt, confused, and emotionally broken. I really lost confidence in how phenomenal I really was. FNPhenomenal became an outlet for me to not just heal immediate wounds, it allowed me to heal the residual ones as well. Through this re-building process I emerged as a stronger, more confident version of myself. I’m so incredibly happy. I feel so incredibly alive. I literally have a hard time sleeping, because my dreams are so huge and I know that they will change the world for the better.
What rituals, if any, do you do on a daily, monthly, or yearly to keep you focused, positive, or centered?
I pray first thing in the morning and right before I go to bed. I focus on personal development every day. I listen to audio books or podcasts centered on motivation, personal development, and/or leadership.
How do you handle setbacks? What skills, support, or personality trait do you rely on the most to help you overcome adversity?
I keep going. I know that a setback is just a setup for victory. I think that at times it’s so easy to stay stuck and frustrated when things aren’t going well. If I’m in the midst of a storm or am dealing with setbacks, I rely on my faith. I know that God won’t give me anything more than I can’t handle. I also know that sometimes he forces your to step back or go through a storm to get you to where he wants you to be. Adversity is a part of life. If you have faith and are resilient, then you will not just overcome the adversity, you will thrive.
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