Why Money Buys You Happiness: Empowering Women & Their Finances with Farnoosh Torabi

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Why Money Buys You Happiness - Empowering Women & Their Finances with Farnoosh Torabi

“They say money doesn’t buy you happiness, but I think now the studies say: it ABSOLUTELY does.” – Farnoosh Torabi

Listen to this episode before you disagree! 

In this episode, financial expert, journalist, and host of the So Money podcast, Farnoosh Torabi, joins us to share a message that we as women don’t often get to hear. You can excel at money. Money is your domain. Money is not complicated. And it is your birthright to be wealthy, rich, and have financial security. But how?

Join us as we discuss how anyone can be good at money, why it is so intricately tied to our wellness and answers common questions about getting your finances together, becoming more of who you are, and making the impact you want. 


  • Farnoosh’s journey to financial expert
  • How is money and finance connected to personal well-being?
  • What are the first steps to getting your money together?
  • Is crypto a good idea? 
  • The pandemic’s impact on women and their finances 
  • Financial advice for newly married women 
  • Why making more money allows you to become more of who you are

Listen to the episode on Apple Podcasts here, or simply click play on the player below:

Connect with Farnoosh:

Transcript: 06 Why Money Buys You Happiness: Empowering Women & Their Finances with Farnoosh Torabi

Elizabeth Rider 0:02
Welcome to the Elizabeth rider show where we talk about optimizing health, personal evolution and defining what true wellness means to you. I’m your host Elizabeth rider. I’m a certified health coach, longtime blogger and author of the health habit. On this podcast we dive deep into all things health and well being from physical and mental health, spirituality, relationships, lifestyle choices and personal growth. Each week, I bring you inspiring interviews with guests and thought leaders as well as solo episodes where I share my own experiences and insights. My mission is to give you practical insights, inspiring stories and transformative tools that can help you unlock your full potential and create a life you truly love. I hope this podcast serves as a valuable resource to develop your sustainable habits, mindful living and an overall state of health and happiness. Let’s dive in. Hey, everybody, welcome back to the Elizabeth rider Show. I’m your host Elizabeth rider. And today we have an incredible guest my friend Farnoosh Torabi, who is a financial expert. She is a journalist. She is a podcast host host of the so many podcast that I think has over 25 million downloads. She is a mom of two A wife just an all around incredible woman. And I wanted to have her on today to talk about women and money and specifically how in these post pandemic times, we should think about money, maybe some things that changed because of the pandemic. And just answer some questions. We got a few reader questions and listener questions as well that I’m excited to dive into. So Farnoosh, thank you so much for being here.

Farnoosh Torabi 1:35
Thank you so much, Elizabeth. I’m such a fan. so impressed with everything you have built in your world in your space. And it’s nice to share the virtual stage.

Elizabeth Rider 1:45
Yes, the virtual stage Farnoosh. And I met actually at a media event furnishes an expert in media as well, on top of all of the other things we just talked about. You’ll see her on the Today Show Good Morning, America, Kelly and Ryan, all of the big shows, and I met her at a media event. And I was so immediately impressed by your just commitment to women and money and helping women understand money and go on this financial journey wherever you’re at in life. So this isn’t just for somebody who’s starting out. But it could be not just for married women, it could be for single women, and really just people right? It doesn’t have to be women, people around the world understanding money. Can we back up a bit? Because I think you have been a financial journalist. Since before even social media. Is that right? Like you’ve been in the game a long time. This is not just I started learning this six months ago. And now I’m a financial expert. So back us up a bit. How did you get into the financial arena?

Farnoosh Torabi 2:40
Yeah, maybe Friendster was around I’m not certain. I remember being a always a child who loved to write and to communicate and perform. There was like a lot of performance in my in my childhood theater, and I wanted to be an actress and all of that stuff that you go through. But I don’t think it was inconsequential. I think that it led ultimately to me today being somebody who is continues to love to to storytel. And you know, ultimately you have to pick kind of a lane or niche. And in college, I abandoned this for a little bit. I majored in business I majored in finance because my father, you know, my parents, and both of them, they’re, you know, they’re immigrants from Iran, they came here they want their children to be successful, quote, unquote, successful. And for them, the shortcut to that was to basically become like a doctor or a lawyer or someone who was financially independent. So they said major in finance, because what is another what more could you want, you know, in terms of like, being able to graduate and get a job and make money, finances money, so All right, Mom and Dad, I’ll follow your wishes. But pretty quickly, I recognize that the pulled back to the creative field of writing and storytelling and acting, and I was doing a lot of theater in college still, just, you know, it endured, and it wouldn’t go away. And I thought, you know, um, once you get to know me, you know, like, I’m a pretty, I like to combine things. I’m like, a hybrid girly, you know, I like to, I don’t say either, or I say, you know, and both, and maybe that goes back to my, you know, my stage work, but I, I felt like, I’m gonna figure out a way to combine these worlds because I am still the daughter of my parents. I have a very logical, pragmatic side. I do want to make money. I do want to create security in my career, but I also want to have fun and I want to pursue what I want to pursue and enjoy it. And so I thought, Is there a way to combine business and finance with storytelling and performance and I finished with a degree in Finance at Penn State, but immediately then enrolled in journalism school at Columbia. Which, you know, if you knew if you knew me when I was like fifth grade, sixth grade and the day, our teacher said to us today, we’re gonna learn how to put together a newspaper. It was like the stars aligned for me, I was like, This is my calling. I just, you know, sometimes you get that spark. And I think we should, as parents teach our kids to be on the lookout for that when you when you experience when someone introduces something to you for the first time, and you just find yourself having an out of body experience, or being so overwhelmed with curiosity, and maybe even a little bit of fear, but it’s healthy fear. You know, there’s something there. And I don’t think it’s, it’s, it goes away. I think that when you look back as an adult, and you know, we’re having this conversation now, like, where did it all begin for you like it happened when I was a kid, and maybe I wasn’t in tune enough or brave enough or, you know, diligent enough to pursue it right away, but it continues to follow you. And so I ended up pursuing journalism, with a focus on personal finance. So it wasn’t even business so much, I wasn’t so much interested in like covering the, you know, the corporate world, or earnings and things like that. And CEOs, although that is still part of a little bit in my wheelhouse. But it was really about personal finance. And that’s because my first writing opportunity, I was an intern at Money Magazine, which back in 2000, and this was my first internship, I think it was 2002 1000. Maybe it was before 911. I got to work in a newsroom in New York City. And learn from the best in the biz, you know, these these editors and writers who were able to demystify and simplify very complex financial things like index funds, and exchange traded funds and term life insurance and whole life insurance. And luckily, it didn’t bother me, in fact, HR that before they gave me the internship they called and they said, Do you know what you’re in for? Because so this was part of a broad internship program at timing at the time, which is now Meredith, I think, and maybe now it’s dotdash. I don’t know it’s like been a lot of different acquisitions, since I worked at timing and money was one of the many magazines at timing, along with InStyle, and Entertainment Weekly, and people and time and when you applied, you had to pick your top three magazines that you would like to be placed. I even then knew that being different helps, wanting what other people don’t want is a quick way to get to your finish line and to get like advance in your career if you want what everybody else wants, but you’re gonna just have so much more competition. But I was like, I want to, you know, and this isn’t I knew this wasn’t gonna be like a forever thing. In my mind, I was like, I just need to get my foot in the door. I’m gonna say because I also have a finance background that I would like to work at money. Things like Fortune and Fortune, small business, and HR called me said, are you aware of what you picked? Like, nobody picks these these magazines at your age, your you know, life stage, like the things that would interest you this, this is what interests you. And I said, Yes, but in my mind, but in my mind, I was thinking, I just gotta get in the door. I love it. And, you know, I’m doing the same cafeteria with all the other editors and people in time and, and I’ll walk the same hallways and ride the same elevators. And I kept it open. I said, Well, maybe I will like network and land and Entertainment Weekly, the next summer, but I ended up loving personal finance so much. And I think it was just because again, it was different. And when you presented as somebody who knew about money, people were like, wait, what? Yeah, money, I need so much help. You know, it was like you you really tapped into an underserved market. And then even beyond that the women market the female market was sorely untapped. You know, we were writing for we were told, you know, our target listener reader is a white man in his late 50s. Wow. Yeah, with resources. So that leaves a lot of people outside the conversation and I I vowed that when I would leave there that I would be more conscious of speaking to people who were in my peer group who looked like me who didn’t even look like me, but maybe weren’t that white man in his 60s or 50 and we know that’s a lot of people right?

Elizabeth Rider 9:31
I love that that you that just shows how scrappy you are. Just yeah, I’ll I’ll do that. Yes, I do want to do that delts get in the door. That’s That’s incredible. So this podcast is all about personal evolution and how that’s connected to your well being and growth. How in your mind is money because I think it’s very connected How is money and understanding finance connected to personal well being it

Farnoosh Torabi 9:51
is the backbone I think of well being you know, they say money doesn’t buy happiness, although I think now the study say it absolutely does keep you know, Going back and forth on that on that thesis, I certainly definitely think that money is necessary. And it does lead to happiness to a certain point, right? You need enough in this country, especially when things like health care and education, higher education are not given to us affordably or not free level and affordably. That now too, with inflation and rising interest rates and the job market being so tumultuous, I don’t know what’s going on in the job market. I mean, we know there are a lot of layoffs in tact outside of tech, but it’s, it’s really hard out there. I hear from people all the time, like those who got laid, be laid off at Twitter and Google, they’re still you know, looking for jobs months and months later. So all this to say that course money is important. And, of course, having a pile of money is not it, it’s about learning how to manage that money. Well, knowing what your goals are, what your ultimate need for this money is beyond, you know, the basic needs, but be out, you know, so what do you want your money to be a tool for, and to be very conscious about that, and really direct about that is, is part of the what what I think creates that healthy relationship with money. And that success that we all want with our finances is to be very deliberate about how we spend and how we earn and how we invest. So yes, to answer your question, I think money is intricately so tied to our wellness, our quality of life. And that’s, I think, why I love this area, similar to when we talk about health or relationships, or food, even, you know, it all goes back to life, it all ties back to your values, culture, goals, relationships, and money is just sort of a it’s one doorway into all of those conversations. So when I say when I’m talking about money, I’m really talking about life. It’s what has sustained me, if I just thought that, you know, 401 K’s were the end all and all we need to know about money, or you know that it was this very one sided sort of scenario. And then it didn’t mean anything beyond just investing for retirement know, it’s the conversation about money runs deep. Yeah. And that’s where I really like to show up, I like to show up and having those deep conversations, we can talk about the Roth IRA and how to do the rollovers. And that’s important. How do we move the needle, how do we get people to really care about money is when we talk about how money matters in their lives, and how money can be a tool to get where they want to go.

Elizabeth Rider 12:29
Money is such a multifaceted conversation. And there are many parallel truths running at the same time. And I think something that you hit on that it’s really important, I want to say to everyone right now is the idea that money doesn’t buy happiness, you know, is a thing that came up through this, you know, 70s 80s 90s, but it comes from a very privileged place. Because if you’re able to say that money doesn’t buy happiness, you have all of your basic needs met, right? And there’s a there’s this faction and a, you know, a lot of adults have experienced this, when you you grow up, you leave the nest, and then you realize that, wow, it actually does make me happy to not have to worry about paying rent. And it does make me happy. There’s a tremendous amount of privilege that’s built into that. So there’s a lot of parallel truths that are that are happening, a giant pile of money doesn’t necessarily make you happy. But it is certainly a factor in creating a life that you love, and that you’re excited about. And the pursuit of only money isn’t going to make you happy. But having money in your pursuits is going to allow you to do a lot of things with less stress. For sure.

Farnoosh Torabi 13:30
Couldn’t have said it better myself. You’re right. And it is it does be it does come from a place of privilege. People say money doesn’t buy happiness, don’t know what it’s like to not have money,

Elizabeth Rider 13:40
right? Yeah. And there’s these you know, bringing in what you mentioned about the values of food is, you know, for me in the same way as food, people in families especially get really testy about diets and food and all these different types of things. Like if you want to see that’s why we we talk about Thanksgiving, the Thanksgiving table being like, Okay, who are we inviting this year? Are we really going to their house or what are we going to do, because food represents all people need to eat right? And food represents so much of what an individual humans values are, whether that what they choose to eat, what they choose not to eat, how they choose to engage in food. And when you bring a bunch of people together who only see each other once a year, or twice a year. All of those values start to hit up against each other and the differences in those values and the same thing is about money the same thing happens with money. So Farnoosh I want to get into like what’s happening in these post pandemic times with money but can we just back up even a little bit more in we don’t have in the space of this you know podcast I know we’ll have you back as many times as our our money friend of the pod but if someone is hesitant to even start thinking about getting their money together, their money shit together, like what are some first things or where should people start to go just to kind of get their footing? What are the beginner steps that you teach? People,

Farnoosh Torabi 15:00
I think it’s very important to understand why having money and getting your money shit together is important to you, you know, what is it that you want to accomplish? And let’s start with baby steps make it really simple. Where do you want to be this time in six months, in a year, professionally, with your debt, with your savings with your income? What are some realistic goals that you can achieve within the next year? And then the next step is how can we reverse engineer that? I think a lot of this also requires a level of education that you may or may not have, and the education is out there. That’s one of the beauties of being alive today and learning about money now, versus maybe when I was back at Money Magazine, where you had to literally like, subscribe to Money Magazine. If you wanted to get in on the, you know, the insider knowledge. And now we have so much transparency, we have so many really wonderful thought leaders in this space from the financial planners to the people on Instagram and bloggers and podcasters that I would say the next step is to educate yourself and tap into a community that did not exist when I was coming up in this industry, there really weren’t these, these pockets, right? We see it everywhere, whether you’re looking for a community that speaks to your identity, in whatever however you define that identity, there is a person out there that has probably walked a similar path as you who you can then trust and will be able to give you that literacy. I think what, at the end of the day, you know, there’s only so many ways to talk about how to invest or what is a form of 401k, or what is a high yield savings account. These are just definitions, right of things that exist in the financial world, but how it ultimately gets communicated to us by the people that we trust and the forums that we feel comfortable in. That’s the key. So finding that those environments and those leaders to to usher you into this world is so important. And for some that may mean working with a financial planner that understands where they are in their, in their life stage and their goals that they want to meet. But for others, because that’s a bit of an investment. So but for others who are maybe not interested in making that investment, and don’t maybe even need it, but just want to get a little bit of hand holding and a little bit of awareness slash guidance from someone that they can trust. They’re out there, you know, I can, after the show, provide your audience with a list of people that I you know, perhaps like me, they they kind of have this longevity in the business, they are all about literacy first. And they’re inclusive, and just really engaging with their audience, they have a lot of free resources. So I think it’s important to know what your goals are step one, to tap into a community or with work with someone who will help you get there and along the way, you’re educating yourself, you’re listening to a podcast, you’re reading a book, I think the third thing to really recognize too is that this is not complicated. This is a mental step that everybody needs, I think at some point to take, which is the especially women, I think because we often don’t get this message that you know, we can completely excel at money and money is our domain. That this is not complicated. It is your birthright to be wealthy and rich and have financial security. Anyone who tells you that this is not your domain that is too complicated, it’s probably going to sell you something. Anyone can be good at money. It just takes a recognition that you are capable that you deserve it, and that you’re gonna, you know, reach out and get those resources. And it’s not going to show up at your doorstep, the literacy, unfortunately, we will have to go out there and seek it. But it is out there and it’s out there for everybody.

Elizabeth Rider 19:01
Yeah, that’s wonderful. And for everyone listening, we’ll get that list from Farnoosh. Obviously, you can follow Farnoosh. We’ll put her information in the show notes, but we’ll put that in the show notes here so that you have some links to go to for that I completely agree with you on that. I want to talk about these post pandemic times with money because there’s something I think you and I feel the very same way about I’ve seen you talk about it on Instagram is crypto there was like all these fads in finance and leading up to the kind of, you know, 2020 timeframe. It was like crypto that isn’t Bitcoin and all these things. It was like buy this now buy now and it was like, Is this good? What’s happening? There are people making a lot of money here. I’m confused. And then you know, during the pandemic times that all kind of just imploded. And I want to hear from you as our resident financial expert like, why was crypto a good idea? Is it now what is what is your stance on this?

Farnoosh Torabi 19:57
Crypto is an alternative investment. like investing in horses, investing in art. It’s risky. And if you want to dabble in crypto because you’re curious and you want to take a huge risk, then I guess, but it’s not something that I would recommend as part of a legitimate practice in your investment strategy. I think that we there’s a lot that we don’t know about crypto, I think that it’s to your point been hyped up. And I’m very skeptical of things that get hyped up like that. And when you see all the marketing and all of the the frenzy around it, you know, I think that it’s not for me, and honestly, I don’t think it’s for most people, most of us really just need to get the basics going. We need to save, we need to get a retirement account going we need to pay off our debt. Crypto is a whole other category. That doesn’t mean that you’re not like sophisticated enough or ready enough, or it’s only for like, an elite group of investors. No, no, that’s not what I’m saying. I’m just saying that. It’s an outlier idea. And if you’re into outlier ideas, okay, but don’t assume don’t bet the house on an outlier idea. You know what I mean? And so I have been pretty bearish on crypto ever since the start. And I have done plenty of episodes on so many about it. I’m, I’m really just more curious about it. I asked a lot of questions. I’m not sold on it. And I think that’s okay, people. When we talk about crypto, sometimes, there’s this scarcity mentality, there is this like, oh, fear, right? Like if I don’t get on this now, I’ve missed an Lifetime’s opportunity to make money. And I’ll tell you, the people in this country that are richest, they don’t invest in crypto, they’re investing in stocks, and bonds, and real estate, and things that have been tried and tested and proven true. So I think look, if you want to take make it, take an experiment, recognize the risk, recognize that you may lose all of your money. And if you’re so okay with that, then I can’t stop you do what you want to do. But I won’t be somebody who’s going to hop on the crypto parade for the foreseeable future.

Elizabeth Rider 22:21
Yeah, I’m with you on that one. So now that we’re kind of in the post pandemic times coming out what is something if there are like something that you think it has anything, set people back or set women back and finances from the pandemic? And then on the flip side of that, what have we gained, like, what new information do we have?

Farnoosh Torabi 22:40
Certainly, during the pandemic, we saw a disproportionate number of women being displaced from the job market, it wasn’t that they wanted to leave the job market, it’s that they were ultimately left with no choice, because we learned we knew this but we became really face to face with it. And the pandemic is that our country does not have the right infrastructure to support families, who were members of this of this family want to work and raise a family at the same time. You know, we don’t have enough infrastructure. In terms of childcare, and even our education system was, you know, it was it was a very difficult time for families. And so women who are more often the caregivers in our society, right, caring for children, as well as their parents and elder leap folks, those who were working and then suddenly having to also caregiving, the pandemic, I mean, something had to give right and so a lot of women left the job market, again, more than men. And so it was for a while there, dubbed a she session. You know, we saw Conversely, in the interesting fun fact, in the 2009 recession, which was the global, the financial recession, we saw more men lose their jobs because of the industries that were impacted during that couple of years that were most hard hit, like real estate, and then banking and construction. So fast forward to the pandemic, women losing more jobs, for the caregiving debate because of the caregiving debacle. Now, I think, based on some of the economists out there that have dedicated some research to looking now post pandemic, Where are the women? Where are those jobs? I think that there has been a leveling out that there are many of those women did return to the workforce. And so the she session is over in that realm in that regard. But I think what it was it was a really a reckoning time, right for us to think about, well, how can we be better advocates for ourselves as workers to demand what we need and I think that one of the good things that came out of the pandemic, it was a hard lesson learned it was a hard struggle to get to where we are but we recognize that You know, as workers, we have a lot of power to say, No, we’re not going to come back into the office, or we need to tend to our families, and we’re transparent about it. I remember, early in my career, it was like taboo to talk about the fight, we had to leave work early to go take your kid to a doctor appointment. Oh, um, people say it freely, and it should be understood and it is understood. And so I think that’s been one of the positive things since then to be very, not closeted about your knees as a family, and to talk about that at work, and to talk about that with your employer and say, here are the boundaries that I need to have. And the employers that want to be competitive, or are implementing more, whether it’s family leave, or flex work, so that they can attract the best talent because the best talent recognizes that they’ve got some clout here, and they’ve got some political power. So that’s one thing, I think the other thing when it comes to our finances recognized during the pandemic is that you can have all your shit together. But all it takes is a pandemic. And you’re back to square one. And it’s not your fault. And then you saw all these businesses, right, that had to layoff so many employees, they couldn’t even just furlough their employees, they couldn’t even just keep head above water for a week, a month because they were so stretched them because they were living and working and employing above their means. And so this expectation on the individual that we need to have six months of savings and all this in our investments, and you know, that it was unfair, right to expect individuals to have all this, especially in a country like ours, where, again, we have to pay so much out of pocket for health care, and so much out of pocket for education, that in child care. And so it’s it’s unrealistic to put all that all those expectations on the individual and that, most importantly, we should not shame people Yes, or where they are in their financial lives. You can be 35 and not have a home and only have one month of savings. Fine. You know, I think there was a lot of shame around like the fact that I wasn’t hitting certain financial milestones, or that if I did need to apply for unemployment, or I did need to apply for PPP. Like, I think that at least as someone who helps to empower people around their money, one of the things that I really want to drill down on is like, there should be no shame. I mean, remember it, but there is, you know, during the pandemic, if you if you applied for the stimulus or whatever, like, there were some people that would say, Oh, don’t you have a rainy day? Like, how, why would you need this money? Why do you why do you think I need this money? You know, this is, these are unprecedented times?

Elizabeth Rider 27:52
Well, in the pandemic, you know, for everyone, it was one of the things that it was just like at a meta level was it it was a giant mirror to the entire world of what can go wrong right now in everyone’s lives. And that hap that’s, that’s traumatizing. That’s good collective trauma for everyone, you know, experiencing that at the same time? Yeah, absolutely. And there’s a tremendous amount of shame built into that. I have a listener question here. I did a q&a on Instagram. And we’ve covered a lot of what people ask, but one was a very specific one that I want to ask you because I feel like you would be able to give her great advice. She said, What advice do you have for a newly married woman? Joint or separate accounts? Do you have an opinion on this? Or how would you help a newly married individual choose that path?

Farnoosh Torabi 28:36
This is such a popular question. And I would say that before I answer this question, I want to make sure that something more important is happening more important than I think the question about separate or joint accounts is this question. What is our framework around transparency in this relationship? What is the expectation of knowing about each other’s income and savings and debt and investments? Do I know how much my partner brings home every month? Do I know what’s in his or her savings and 401k. And the reason this is important is because it’s the groundwork this is like you got to know right? You got to know what you’re dealing with. If you’re asking the question about joint or solo accounts, because part of you wants to know what’s the strategy that’s going to be easiest or more impactful in our relationship? It doesn’t the logistics don’t matter as much as how you are behaving in the relationship when it comes to money, Ron, the kinds of conversations are having in the transparency and so I used to be pretty strict about I believe in yours, mine and our accounts and that’s how we do it in my marriage. And I used to think that that’s what everyone should do. You know, have a joint account for the expenses that you share in and then a separate accounts for your own managing your own financial autonomy in the relationship which I still think is really important. But if you are a couple that is especially like, if you’ve been if you’re getting married later in life, or you’re just for whatever reason, you want to be keeping everything separate, or everything together, do you. But most important, this is like the non negotiable for every couple is we got to be able to have a system where I can see what’s going on at all times, and the cash flow and where our investment levels are at and whether that credit card statement got paid off last month, because often, you know, it’s human nature, we just want to get to the shortcuts. We just want like the rules of thumb, and and I get it, and those can be very helpful. But you got to like, take a giant step back and go, okay. What’s our commitment around our money in this marriage in this relationship? You know, what are our goals. And really, the transparency is so important, I have to say it because I have often met couples who’ve been married for years, and they don’t know, their spouses salaries, they don’t know, where the money’s going, one partner is most involved are all involved in in the money department managing the money, and the other keeps his or her head in the sand. And I think that’s way more problematic and more something to address than, like, do we have joint accounts or separate accounts, I think that once you can get that foundation, leveled and determined in terms of like, you know, what we use in my marriage is with an app, it’s called empower. And it basically it’s free, there is a free version, you can essentially bring all your accounts to it yours and your partners, and then you log in, and you can see where you’re at in real time. And so you don’t have to ask about you know, did that check clear, or, you know, I wonder what my partner makes? Well, you can just go find out, and then from there, you can come up with a bucket system for your cash. But at that point, hopefully, whatever you decide on is just, it will work. It’ll be obvious, maybe at that point, or you whatever you decide, it will just be, you know, just a way to facilitate what are all already the good work that you’re doing. Yeah. But I’m not strict. You say, Oh, you can’t keep all your money in one account? Well, some couples that’s really important to them. Just be really clear on the fact that if there’s money that you want to spend on certain things, you don’t want permission for that. You’ve talked about it ahead of time, so it doesn’t become a fight every time.

Elizabeth Rider 32:41
Yeah, there’s two things. One, I’m curious to know what our listeners think of this. So put it in the comments below or on the show notes under the comments if you’re going to the website. But this, this reminds me that look, money and food, all of these big things that we talked about at the beginning, they’re all just magnifiers. So if you have a trigger around money, or you have a trigger around food, all that’s going to do is magnify, a feeling that you’re already having. And it just reminded me I was I was just recently talking to a friend who is divorced. And she was thinking back on something, lino red flags that she didn’t see early on. And one of the red flags for her is that at the end of every month, they would go through the credit card statement, and her ex would say, like, let’s say they spent, you know, $101.50 on dinner, well, he would put in her column $50 and whatever, 75 cents, whatever, whatever the amount was, but it was down to like, you know, $13.18 and it, for some reason really bothered her. And she said, we’ll just round up like for some reason it was really triggering her that like exactness, somebody else that might not trigger. So that doesn’t have to mean that that would trigger everyone. But she was ignoring that trigger for a very long time. And that probably is just a microcosm of other things that are happening in that that relationship or that situation. So I would always say to somebody to look at what the trigger is, is it the way it’s being managed? Is it a fine point on something, whether it’s money or food or any of these things in your lives, they’re all magnifier. So look at what that is. And like for our new said, the logistics, you can easily figure out the logistics can be one main account, it can be each having your own account, those things are easier to figure out but look at what those fine details of those triggers are. Because that will show you more about the relationship than anything else will

Farnoosh Torabi 34:30
so so true. I would say the person who is triggered by the exactness maybe and I’m not a psychologist, but maybe there’s something there about control. That it feels a little bit like this person is trying to control me and because the specificity and the exactness doesn’t feel flexible, and that can mean that maybe there are some control issues that she has to address in her life in her relation. worship. This is where working with a financial therapist can be so, so helpful. And, you know, this is a growing field within financial advice and financial planning where some certified financial planners are also getting licensed therapy, beginning later licensed in therapy, and so they’re able to help people with not just their retirement and their insurances, but also, how did that make you feel and talk about how you learned about money growing up, because that’s also not inconsequential to how as adults we relate to and think about money. And so that’s another thing for couples too, as you are looking at designing your financial life together. If you do pick up on some of these differences, or you recognize these triggers, thinking about having a conversation around what was money like for you growing up a judgment free conversation, my husband and I went got like margaritas. At one point during our meal wasn’t the only time we get we like margaritas and we got these margaritas. Right before we were gonna move in together. Because it’s like a big, you know, it’s a big step for the relationship, but also for our finances. And we talked about money. But specifically we like shared our financial facts, our little factoids, we put them on posted, like, I want to know your credit score and your bank account balance. It sounds like you’re prying but I mean, come on, this guy’s gonna come move in with me. Like, I need to know a few things. And I would encourage us for all couples is you know, we, in that meeting, we talked about the facts, but have another meeting where you talk about going down memory lane and you can do this as early on as like, sit between the months zero and six of dating, you know, and it’s not an intrusive, it’s in you don’t have to go right to the money. You can just say like, what was it like growing up? Did you go to college of your choice? did you how did you afford college, I worked during college to help, you know, just thinking about these icebreakers as I call them, these financial icebreakers, which on the surface don’t seem like money conversations, but ultimately, you are talking about money. You know, did your parents both work? If they say no, my mom was a homemaker. And we didn’t my dad was very traditional. Well, that’s interesting. But that in your pocket, you know, because then later if then you’re having arguments, right? Like, because it all influences and all informs it doesn’t mean we can’t change just mean we can’t evolve. But it just it’s important context. I think what ultimately gives couples is an exchange of empathy around money because we all grew up with like, money problems or money issues, even if you were quote unquote, wealthy, that doesn’t mean that you didn’t have any awkwardness and or a lack of our relationship with money. I know plenty of kids who grew up with resources and means but they’re terrible at managing their own money because it doesn’t mean anything if you grew up getting having everything handed to you and then you become an adult and you don’t know how to spend it within a budget total. So yeah, I think it’s important to get to the stories as quickly as possible.

Elizabeth Rider 38:01
Yeah, in my ad my two senses again, I like for new said I’m not a psychologist either, this is my own personal two cents. But if you are just casually dating somebody then of course you don’t have to know what their bank balances but if you were have the intention to build a life with someone you have decided to move in and cohabitate or get married or become life partners, whatever, whatever you call it for you but you have an intention to build a life with someone and you ask about the money and they are very defensive. You are not being you are not prying, it’s you are not you are fully within your rights to know what is going on the other side if your intention is to build a life together, both of your intentions are to build a life together so it’s it’s not something that you should feel bad about. And in fact, it should be a big red flag if you have somebody has said that they intend to build a life with you and they will not say anything about finances. That is something to really look at.

Farnoosh Torabi 38:56
Yeah, and it’s not a deal breaker because we all have our our our trip ups around money but it is something to dig into.

Elizabeth Rider 39:06
Yeah, absolutely. Okay, furnish I always end with asking my guests What is the worst piece of advice you’ve ever received? And what is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received in either order?

Farnoosh Torabi 39:19
So the worst piece of advice was, which I didn’t follow but it was very triggering for me because you know, I grew up with a very with I’m Farnoosh It’s Nam then you hear all the time and growing up all I wanted to do was change my name. I experimented with many different white you know, white girl pretty white girl names like Ashley and Tina and Christina Nikki and nothing stuck. And so I was left with Farnoosh and I learned to love it and it was a journey okay to getting to a place where I was like totally embracing my, my quote unquote weirdness. And fast forward to me in New York pursuing a career in journalism At this point, I am at a news station in New York City. And I’m thinking maybe, maybe I should like, I would really like to be on camera. And so started to do some pieces for television. And my news manager or news director came over to my desk and he was like, You did a great job on that piece. But question for you. Have you ever thought of maybe changing your name? I thought he was joking, but he kind of wasn’t. And you know, it was just such an awesome, it’s such a hit to him, you probably thought he was being funny, and I wouldn’t care. But little did he know. And for me, it was like, really, I’ve come this far. Can you can the work just speak for itself. And there are plenty people in our world that have that aren’t name, you know, Jill and Bob who have gone on to be very successful. Like, I don’t think a name has to be a handy a barrier for somebody, I think and then if anything, it can be what makes you special and sets you apart and why people ultimately, like you.

Elizabeth Rider 41:03
So that’s my my bolter, you wouldn’t be anything about varnish to me.

Farnoosh Torabi 41:08
I mean, can’t we can any of us imagine being any other name, you know, it’s like that Shakespeare line? Because you do. And there’s studies that show that we become, you know, we sort of embody our names. And you think you know, who else could have my name? Nobody, you know, me people do, but in those people are very uniquely Farnoosh as well. And so that was unfortunate that I had to, you know, face that, but it wasn’t the first time and so I was a little bit, okay, here we go again, but I’m, I’m really, I’m an adult woman and like, the real world, and this is still a problem. These aren’t just kids on the schoolyard like teasing me. This is a professional who’s given me this. And there are a lot of people who do change their names, their everything to conform to what they think will make them more likable. But the only person you’re rejecting in that case, is yourself, the only person that’s rejecting you in that case, is you no one else. Right? So that was one thing that I the advice that I’m glad I never took. And then the best advice. Wow. Well, it was probably when I was married, I had a, I had my first child, I was starting this podcast. So money, I was the breadwinner. In my marriage, I had written a book about female breadwinners called when she makes more. And I felt very, you know, at peace financially with where we were. And I was talking to a money coach for the podcast. And I said, you know, I don’t think I ever really want to, like, make more money. And she said, why? I said, Well, I think we’re good. You know it because in my mind, I thought if I was going to pursue more money, that was going to mean a lot of trade offs in my life, I would never see my kids or I would have to get divorced, because who wants to be with a woman who just wants to make a lot of money. This is like the silly stuff. These are the stories right in my head. And so I was my worst critic, I was holding myself back from achieving my fullest financial potential, because I was afraid that if I became branded as a woman who wanted more, well, my priorities were messed up, you know, and that would come at a cost. Because you can’t have financial success, and a happy and successful family and a growing business and your health and your friendships. I just thought like, it wouldn’t be a zero sum game. If I just wanted to be financially successful. And that meant other things were going to come at a cost to me. And she said, listen, woman, woman, you know, who your your, your, how are you? It’s like, she set me aside and she said, I want you to think about money differently. And I want you to I want you to think about making more money differently. And think about this. And this is my advice to everybody too. This was life changing for me. She said, think about how much more power you will have when you have more money, and I haven’t no power or I don’t want power she goes into No, that’s because when you think of power, you think of masculine power, you think of like the dominating, you know, power that I’m going to take over and that may not be speaking to you. But I want to also remind you that power can mean power to help power to nurture power to grow. Money can make you powerful, more money can help you make more of an impact. So don’t just make more money to make more money. That doesn’t make sense. But if I were to challenge you Farnoosh and say what more in life do you want to help transform help heal? Are there things and then you having goes back to our earlier conversation Elizabeth right. More money allows you to make more influence and change in the world and happiness for others like you’re happy, but what about other people’s happiness like when you make more now you have an opportunity to like help your community more. And I said, Yeah, you’re right, I’ve been a little too focused on me, and what money can do for me and my family. Now, it’s time to think about how I can make an impact on the world with my money. And when I thought of that, and that power, it completely changed the way I looked at how I made money, it made me excited to go out there and get the bag. And within a couple of years from that conversation, I had doubled my income, well, you know, and things were happening, and I still had a family, I still had my health, I still had all the things that I thought I was going to have to give up or see sacrifice, because I was so focused on making money that I will admit, was something that I had to still work through. And I don’t think I was alone, I don’t think I am still alone, in that I think people do come to me all the time. Like, I’m worried that if I asked for more, even at work, you know that they’re not going to like me, I’m going to lose the job. Or if I get too rich, my family won’t talk to me, I have friends who say I make more money than my parents. It’s awkward, but your parents aren’t seeing it in the way they should they built, they helped you get to this point, and what I don’t understand that when parents get really, you know, sort of awkward when their kids make more than them. And they may not, you know, it may just be something that the kids are magining in their heads. But I mean, they should be so grateful, because if they ever need help, like you’re the one you’re gonna help them out, maybe hopefully, we harbor a lot of these irrational sometimes thoughts around money, and what having more may mean, and I want to just say to everybody that when especially women make more, the world becomes a better place. Studies have proven this, when we have more money in our hands, we are more likely than anybody else to go out there and make use that money for good helping a family member or helping a stranger donating. And that’s it. I’m not saying that you have to do that. There’s nothing that’s the only good virtuous way to use money. But I think it’s inspiring.

Elizabeth Rider 46:56
Yeah, absolutely. And a lot of that is just old societal narratives of, you know, people are greedy, making more money makes you a bad person. Right? That’s your money is new, though.

Farnoosh Torabi 47:06
You’re the oil billionaire at the top of the tower. And, you know, yes, and we can thank the media for this even Real Housewives, right, we see. And we these are these representations of wealth or what what Rich is in our culture, that may be our turn offs to us. And we think that that is going to be us if or that’s gonna be the perception of us, when we acquire wealth. And I’m here to say, like, no, like you having money, it’s just gonna be an aspect of who you are. And if anything, and this may be controversial to say, but I really believe it, that when you make more, you get to become more of who you are, and make the impact that you want now. So in for better or worse, like, money is greedy. People don’t become greedy when they just when they make money. Like they’ve been greedy their whole life with their time and their energy and their lack of help. And then when they get the money, they’re not sharing that either. So you know, I think that money can be a tool to expand your life and expand the impact that you want to make and be the most generous person you want to be the most helpful person you want to be in the best version of yourself. Yeah,

Elizabeth Rider 48:19
absolutely. It’s an amplifier for sure. Farnoosh thank you so much for being here. Where can everyone find you?

Farnoosh Torabi 48:24
Thank you for having me. This has been so much fun. I want to continue the conversation where three days a week, it’s so money, the so money podcast. And if you’d like to join my newsletter that’s at farnoosh.tv/newsletter. And I’ll be back in the following thing to talk about my next book. Yes, a healthy state of panic. You can go to hell, a healthy state of panic.com to learn all about that, but it’s about fear and how fear can be a superpower. Yeah, you said it if you’re gonna be a superpower in life.

Elizabeth Rider 48:58
I love it. We’ll put all of that in the show notes. Farnoosh. Thank you for being here. I look forward to having you back in the fall. Thank you so much for joining me on today’s episode of the Elizabeth rider show. I hope you caught something today that helped you uplevel your mind, body and or health. If you want more episodes, insider notes, recipes and resources, then make sure to subscribe to my weekly newsletter over at Elizabeth rider.com/list. Or simply go to the website and hit the subscribe button and enter your email address. You can also download a free recipe guide a meal plan or the top 10 Micro habits guide while you’re there. And if you are a person who likes to share things, make sure you share the show with a friend. And if you really liked the show, I would be so grateful for a five star review in the podcast app. Thanks for being here. I’ll talk to you next time.

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