What’s this about?

Hi, I’m Jen. My spouse and I are raising our modern family in San Francisco, the most expensive city in the US.

I’m a breadwinner mom with two beautiful kids under the age of 3 and a corporate career in tech and finance. In a few months, I’ll be leaving that career to work out my next life.

But before I say more about me, let’s talk about you. I’m guessing you and I have a lot in common.

You wish you could afford more time to enjoy and be present to the people you love most.

You want the freedom to choose your work based on purpose over paycheck.

You have some big dreams, and you’re ready to take command of building your ideal life.

But maybe…

  • You are overwhelmed with all the financial advice out there, and you don’t know where to start.
  • You know you could be doing more with your money, but it’s always the first thing that falls off your to-do list.
  • You want to make some changes in your life, but you just can’t see how you’d make the money work.

 

No matter where you are with your finances, you can get more out of your money.

Let’s go deep for a minute. Here’s what I believe about money:

Your most important work is figuring out what you want. I’m not talking about figuring out what you’d buy if you had all the money in the world, but the whys behind them. These whys are your values.

Instead of letting money determine our value, we have the opportunity to use money to express our values – to enable a fulfilling and awesome life.

A thoughtful financial plan and money management system is THE ANSWER to turning that idea of an awesome life into reality.

If I’m honest, more money is nice. 

But what’s even nicer is knowing in your soul that you have enough, do enough, and are enough.

 

How this became my life:

As a business director in a big tech company, there was a lot I valued about my work. I had autonomy. I was good at what I did. Most importantly, I had colleagues that were smart, thoughtful, and collaborative.

However, the work came at a cost. I lost 2-3 hours every day commuting. I spent the day rushing from one meeting to the next, often barely managing to find time to use the bathroom. I’d come home each night exhausted, only to have to log back into work after putting the kids to bed.

I blamed myself, thinking I was just doing a poor job of managing life. But then I came across an NYT article titled Stressed, Rushed, and Tired: Portrait of the Modern Family. That’s when I realized that my experience was the norm.

 

I needed to find another way. I began imagining a life where…

  • I would have the time to enjoy and be present to the people I love most.
  • I could work only in a way that is energizing and fulfilling.
  • I would have the leisure to play, explore, and rest as my heart desires.
 

 

But of course, there was a big question: How would we make the money work?

That was when I discovered the power of a financial plan. Not just a few tips and tricks thrown together after reading a money magazine. But a comprehensive financial plan and money management system that aligns your money with your deepest values and biggest goals.

My spouse and I sat down and articulated what we wanted most for our family. We wrote it all down in a “Family Freedom Manifesto,” and we began developing a long-term financial plan to support our vision of an ideal life:

We looked at how we spent our money and cut out what wasn’t meeting a need or bringing us joy. 

I put an end to my flip-flopping investment approach and established a systematic investing plan.

I started to think out-of-the-box about what was possible as a wage-earning employee, taking a sabbatical to pursue a once-in-a-lifetime trip around the world, then another and another to enjoy time with our children.

We moved internationally for a new job, in part for the adventure and in part for a cost of living adjustment that would boost my earnings.

We found easy ways to earn a little side money here and there, which when added up, could afford a few pretty spectacular vacations a year.

I recently negotiated my exit from my job with a payout that could fund 4-5 years of expenses.

 

 

Where has that financial plan gotten us?

It’s allowing me to leave the security of a salaried job to experiment with entrepreneurial pursuits doing the things I love (of which Modern Family Finance is a big part).

It’s enabling my spouse to stay at home as a full-time parent while our kids are still young.

It’s freeing us to spend the next year traveling around Europe and Asia for a family adventure of a lifetime.

It’s letting us afford the big things we want to provide for our family as well as the regular luxuries that bring us consistent happiness.

It’s enabling us to go home and raise our family in the city that we love, despite how darn expensive that city happens to be.

It’s giving us the time and space to actually enjoy what we already have in our lives instead of needing to pursue more.

 

 

And now, I want to help you create your own financial plan to live a life you love.

For reasons that my spouse still does not understand, personal finance is my jam. I love talking, writing, and reading about personal finance. And I love helping awesome, intentional individuals like yourself make the most of your money. How do I help here?

  • Simplify the overwhelming world of financial information and point you to the 20% of stuff that will make 80% of the impact.
  • Show you step-by-step how to implement a financial plan and money system that will enable you to achieve your biggest goals.
  • Give you tactical tips on how to earn, save, invest and protect your money.
  • Help you go “out-of-the-box” to consider creative ways to afford your best life.

 

Need more help than a website can give? 

Having done this for my own family, I can coach you through building a financial plan that will free you to a spend time doing what you love.

If we’re talking about me, part of what I love is helping people take control of their money and showing them that they can afford to live their best lives. If you’re interested in working with me, contact me at jen at modernfamilyfinance.com.

And hey, I’m also on this journey with you. 

I don’t have it all figured out (not even close), but I’m burning the ships behind me and going all in on working out how to live my best life.

I’m glad you’re here. Thanks for following along.

 

Notes:

1 My beliefs on money are inspired by Lynne Twist’s ideas in her book “The Soul of Money: Transforming Your Relationship with Money and Life.”

2 Pareto’s rule states that 80% of the effects comes from 20% of the causes. Applied to personal finance, this means that only a sliver of the financial advice out there will really make a difference to your financial health.