This Girl Talks Money with Pink Palms
Welcome to the first in my brand new content series where I ask five big questions about money to ladies from all walks of life to give you an insight into their money mindset, habits & what they wish they'd known before.
Meet Ashleigh, a wedding planner and stylist based in London. Through her business, Pink Palms, she transform a couple’s engagement period by making it fun, lighthearted and creative. They plan weddings together, and design them to have the wow factor and are pinned thousands of times over on Pinterest by future brides!
When was the last time you checked your bank balance?
This week! I am much more on top of checking my bank balance for my business account-for some reason I see this as separate to myself. My personal account has so much more emotion attached to it (I’m working on that!) We have a Beagle called Louie, and his amazing dog walker Andy-who we literally couldn’t function without-takes Louie out twice a week and sends his invoices weekly. Because of Andy, I open my banking app weekly to pay him. At first this made me SO uncomfortable, but I’m learning that burying my head in the sand doesn’t help anyone and usually I’m pleasantly surprised!
How have you learnt what you know about money and finance?
Being totally honest, from living paycheck to paycheck for most of my life. When I was an employee, because I knew that paycheck was coming I kind of didn’t take any responsibility over my finances. Now I’m self employed, I’m very conscious that my own energy and vibe can attract clients, in turn affecting my finances. I have the power to influence that and I think that’s such a positive thing!
My parents didn’t teach me about finances at all, I wouldn’t say they were terrible with money-my Mum stayed at home with me and my sisters, and my Dad owns his own company and he always gave us everything we needed. But he hates his job, and so because of that, he regularly bought himself nice things: cars, holidays etc. I totally get that, he needed to find enjoyment and joy somewhere and he felt trapped in the family business. But I think I followed his example, even though I didn’t have the same need to find joy elsewhere-I just thought that’s how I should spend my money. So like 10 years ago, I’d get paid and then take myself off to buy a new TV. I’d need one, but I didn’t look at the most cost effective option-I was a total impulse buyer. I’m changing that outlook as I get older.
When was the last time you had an open conversation about money? With who and why?
With myself! I did a course on money and manifesting last year and it opened my eyes to how I view money. I now totally see it as a renewable energy almost-it comes in and goes out, comes in and goes out, and I’m learning to be comfortable with that. I’m also trying to master my emotions around money coming in and going out, and not making snap decisions when I’m feeling flush and not panicking when money is going out.
We’re renovating our house at the moment-it’s our dream home (or will be when it’s finally finished!) and we really stretched ourselves financially to get it. It meant that the renovations are slow and it’s almost a constant reminder of a lack of money – and last year it really got us down. I’m trying to reframe how I see that, which is difficult when we live there.
Has money ever been an issue between you and someone close to you?
Oh yes! My husband and I see money very differently. He has a very lack mentality around it-always waiting to win the lottery and thinks all his problems will be solved when he does (even though he earns double what I do!) It’s really made me realise that at no certain amount of money will we click our fingers and all of a sudden be happy, we’ve got to focus on being grateful instead.
His parents were immigrants, and one thing I’ve learnt is there’s no hustlers on earth like immigrants-quite often they come with nothing and literally brick by brick build lives for themselves and their families. Although his parents had great careers and are comfortable financially in retirement, I feel like my husband has really absorbed the financial struggle of his younger life, and he has such a panic mentality around money. If he goes anywhere close to his overdraft he physically goes into panic mode and then can’t cope. That means quite often, I’m left to pick up the pieces of tasks that need doing because he’s in fight or flight mode.
When we met, I moved into his flat with him, he already had bills etc set up in his name so I just transferred my share to him each month. That’s carried on now we’ve moved to a new house, and I really want to change it. We’ve now settled on me being added to his bank account so I can see how much our bills are each month and make a financial plan for us. It’s taken months (probably years) of asking to get to that point, and when I was on maternity leave I was happy to be blissfully ignorant, as my earning potential reduced and I felt powerless in a way. But now I’m back with a boom and sorting out our shit!
I feel like he’s mirrored how his finances were handled in his family, and my family were the same-but we’re changing that. I guess that’s what happens when no one sits you down and teaches you what to do step by step, you just mirror what you’re familiar with. But it’s 2020, I work full time so I should damn well know where we stand financially as a family. I want our daughter to realise that there aren’t any gender specific roles in households (cos if that was the case same sex households wouldn’t get everything done!) We all pitch in and help each other, and share responsibility for things equally.
If you could talk to your younger self about money, what would you say?
SORT YOUR MONEY SHIT OUT SOONER WOMAN!
Honestly, just notice how you feel when you spend. You think you spend because you should-but right now at the end of the month you’re always short and it doesn’t have to be that way. Spend mindfully, when you need it or when you really want it-but invest in good quality items that bring you joy every time you see them or use them. Know that money comes in and goes out, you don’t need to attach so many emotions to it. Money and how you manage it, doesn’t define who you are.
Also, work for yourself sooner-that way, there’s no limit on your earning potential. You’ll read this phrase when you’re a bit older and it’ll change your life and how you look at money forever. You can earn as much or as little as you want to, but define your ‘enough’. Don’t slave trying to make £100K cos I can tell you, nothing changes when you get there. But if you know you're enough, everything will change when you get there.
And put a beach house on Manhattan Beach on your vision board sooner!