A new love language: why Chelsea Murphy wants us to love our money
I recently had the pleasure of speaking with money-wrangling whiz and downright inspiring human Chelsea Murphy from Cash Full Stop, a financial planning business with a focus on simple, effective cash flow management education, about all things money, career and purpose.
It’s a topic that’s so dear to my heart, because I truly believe when we have our core values and our financial values aligned, there’s no stopping us.
Chelsea is deeply passionate about empowering people to take control of their finances, and injecting a healthy dose of love into our relationship with money, (which, let’s face it, can sometimes be a bit of a love-hate situation).
But like so many other purpose-driven, dynamic women having a positive impact on their community, Chelsea didn’t start out knowing this was the path she would eventually tread.
While Chelsea and her partner Kieran already owned a financial planning business, Chelsea was working full-time in a corporate leadership role elsewhere so was relatively hands-off when it came to the business.
But there was a niggle that Chelsea just couldn’t shake, a voice in her head telling her that she wanted more. When a role popped up within their own business, it turned out to be just the push she needed.
‘We didn’t want anyone with industry experience because our approach with money is so different. We were looking for really good consulting skills and that really aligned to my experience so it felt like the right fit, and the right time… I didn’t know any other female financial advisers that did what we do, so I thought it was time to step up and be that person,’ she says.
Before making the transition to finance, Chelsea readily admits to experiencing bouts of Sunday night gloom when thinking about the week of work ahead in her previous career.
Despite this, she has no regrets about her time at the corporate coalface. The knowledge and skills she accumulated during that time have directly contributed to her ability to be successful in her new career helping people learn to manage (and love) their money.
‘Working for a large global organisation taught me a lot about organisational effectiveness and leadership as well as structure, process, data and analytics,’ she says. ‘I’ve been able to take the best of big business and apply it to a smaller business. I’ve never been specifically strategic with my career (as in a step-by-step approach of roles and organisations) but interestingly, almost everything I have done in the past has led to be really confident where I am now. ’
One of Chelsea’s key messages that really resonated with me is that fostering a good relationship with your money isn’t just a numbers game—it’s intrinsically connected to your personal goals and values.
‘When you know your values everything is easier—every decision, every commitment, every purchase, every investment. You know what will make your heart sing and every action you take just needs to be in alignment,’ she says. ‘I think the struggle comes when we don’t know what’s important to us, or we know and don’t take action to make it happen. My advice? When in doubt, check-in with your values.’
While money doesn’t buy happiness in and of itself, constantly feeling lost and stressed about your money can wreak havoc on your mental health, and given the strength of our mind-body connection, all that stress and anxiety has ramifications for your physical health too. That’s why having your finances under control is incredibly important and empowering; as Chelsea highlights below, it gives you the confidence and freedom to focus on the things that truly drive you.
‘When people have financial confidence it feels good, and that radiates… From our experience, having the finance fundamentals in place, and well managed, really gives people a sense of control, calm and liberation in their lives. We feel lucky to be able to help people achieve that,’ she says.
So, if your relationship with your money is less joined-at-the-hip bestie, more distant cousin that you exchange cards with once a year, it might be time to bridge that gap and invest in your financial future.
As someone who has worked in financial services for over ten years. I have my own simple steps that I think are helpful to consider when you’re setting some financial goals:
Determine your overarching values: what matters most to you in life? Family? Charity? Travel? The way you direct your money should align with your values. Spend some time reflecting on your values and better still, putting pen to paper.
Set actionable financial goals: what can you do, here and now, to start managing your money in accordance with your values? Perhaps it's opening savings account for a yearly family holiday, or perhaps it’s implementing a budget that cuts down on your grocery spend to redistribute the extra funds towards your new business. Every step counts.
Find a finance accountability buddy: Science tells us that sharing our goals with others means we are more likely to stick to them. Plus, you’ll need someone who understands why you might not be able to make it to that $150-a-head networking lunch and is happy with a budget-friendly alternative.
Ready to show that bank account who’s boss? Get to it, ladies.