Archives For Money

By Eric on September 17, 2014 9

Getting the mail is NOT one of my favorite things to do. For some reason, Kelsey likes it, but since our mail-box is right on my way home I usually pick it up before pulling into the garage.

I guess I really don’t like it because we typically don’t get anything worth getting excited about. Except when my Grandma sends me cards. They are the best!

My grandparents venture their way down from Iowa to Texas for the winter every year. And once or twice she’ll send a card with a note about how they are doing and what they are up to.

It’s my favorite thing to receive in the mail! Here’s one that my grandma sent to me once.


In case you can’t read it, here’s what it says…

Dear Eric,

We don’t see robins in Texas. Right now the mocking birds are singing and are very busy starting their nesting. They are very pretty singers.

The shuffle (board) tournaments are over for us. In 2 or 3 weeks the Canadians will be going home. 5 to 6 weeks and we’ll be coming. Aunt Wilma is on her way down.

Hope spring is soon in your area.

Have a Happy Birthday.

Grandpa & Grandma

So, imagine my delight when I saw this envelope in the pile of mail last week. It looks eerily similar to a card that my Grandma would send. So…. I did what I normally wouldn’t do with most mail…. I opened it.

Continue Reading…

By Eric on September 9, 2014 4

Why is it so difficult to stick to a budget? This is one of the most frequent questions I get asked, and the biggest problem we all have with starting the process of managing our finances.

Before we start honing in on the resources we have, we’re managing our finances without a purpose, and while we’re getting by on a monthly basis, there is no traction toward bigger financial milestones like: paying off debt, building wealth, giving, or saving regularly.

5 Key Steps to Sticking to a Budget

The solution lies in the keys below and requires regular routine maintenance of our focus, and discipline. Over time we begin to develop bigger budgeting muscles that help us stay on track. The five keys to sticking to a budget will help you win with your money and achieve your goals.

1. Define Goals

Before we decide to start budgeting, it’s helpful to spend a bit of time soul searching. Asking “why” we really want to get a handle on our finances, why do we want to pay off debt, why do we want to build wealth, why do we want to give, why do we want to save money?

These questions help us understand our deep motivations. Keep asking why until you really know the answer. At that point, our dreams can be pulled from the clouds and turned into goals. Put some time restraints and numbers behind goals, because a vague goal is one that is hard to achieve.

Once we know our why, it’s much easier to do the following steps.

Continue Reading…

By Eric on September 2, 2014 +

I’ve never been “good” at reading. At least not in my own mind. I’m a terribly slow reader and every comprehensive test I ever taken revealed that reading comprehension was my area of extreme weakness. On top of that, I’ve never really considered myself a reader.

Despite my weakness, one quote has motivated me to create a discipline of reading in my life:

“You will be the same person in five years as you are today except for the people you meet and the books you read.” – Charlie Jones

Reflecting on the Charlie Jones quote, I found myself inspired to write this post because of the personal implications it’s had on my life. If you haven’t heard, I just left my cubicle job to pursue a passion in helping others with they personal finances. While this is a complete career paradigm shift in my mind, it’s been a long time coming. (today is my first day on the “job”)

I’ve always wanted to own my own business, and while that has taken a shape of it’s own in this new adventure, I think teaming up with someone else is a win-win. The deeper root of my dream to own my own business, has been working in an area that I am truly passionate about, and not having a ceiling on my potential based on positions available. More importantly, I want to work on something I believe in, and can be passionate about everyday.

That being said, I’d love to share with you some books that have guided me toward this transition. Whether they directly or indirectly helped me, I’m not sure, but I think there’s something for everyone on this list.

It’s a long list, here are my top 5 from what I’ve read.

5 favorite books

Continue Reading…

By Eric on August 28, 2014 8

It’s been a busy summer for sure. A summer unlike any other for the Williams family. After Kelsey created a summer bucket list, we’ve been slowly but surely checking them off. It’s been fantastic, and I’ll say that summer with a 2-year-old is amazing (and challenging… but mostly amazing)!

Aside from checking off the summer bucket list, we’ve been working toward a big transition. As of tomorrow, I’m leaving my current job and partnering up with another Financial Coach and joining his established business (Strong Tower Consulting) to help individuals, families, and businesses see the bigger picture when it comes to their finances, through teaching, direction and accountability.

The Beginning of the End

It all started after being featured on the local news. We have known Justin Bennett for a few years, and Kelsey and I met with him twice as a financial coach to help us figure out a few things, and we had a great experience. I’ve also chatted with him a few times over the years trying to figure out how to work together in an online sense, but the timing never really seemed to be right.

But, after being featured on the news, they asked if we new any professionals they could interview and we gave them Justin’s number. After the news aired, Justin and I got together once again to catch up.

We wanted to try to do a podcast or webinar together, but that’s when the conversation went down a different road. I told him I was thinking of getting into financial coaching. Essentially we would be competitors, although while he has been working with a lot of local, Des Moines-area folks over the past four years, my focus is finding a way to best help this community online. Continue Reading…

By Eric on August 19, 2014 6

The most frequent personal finance struggle that I hear (by a long shot) is this… “I know that I need a budget, but I just don’t know where to begin.” Followed by similar comments of “It’s too complicated” or “I’ve tried before, but couldn’t stick to it.”

Budgeting & Planning for Emergencies Workshop

Come learn about budgeting & planning for emergencies!

If any of these phrases resonates with you, I’d like to tell you about a live event I’m co-hosting in September with a few other awesome people. Erin Smith from Restoration Coaching and I are co-hosting the event while my good friend Justin Bennett with Strong Tower Consulting presents a presentation proven to help you create a spending plan you can stick with.

If you are in the Des Moines area and want to start taking control of your finances, I’d love to see you at the event. Details and registration are available here.

P.S. If you are not in the Des Moines area, is this something you’d like to see as an online event? We’re trying to gauge interest for future events like this, so speak up in the comments!