Brown Girls Do Invest Takes Over Chicago

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When a room full of smart, ambitious, intelligent and inquisitive Black women convene, nothing but greatness follows.  There was nothing but greatness present at the Brown Girls Do Invest workshop on Saturday June 8, 2019.  Hosted by Brown Girls Do Invest founder Bahiyah Shabazz, the afternoon consisted of a panel of phenomenal Power Women who imparted knowledge and offered sage advice for those of us who want to invest but may not know how to or where to start.  Thanks to Black Bloggers Chicago for the opportunity to fellowship with my fellow bloggers but to also attend the event.

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Black Bloggers Chicago

The day began with a VIP mastermind, an opportunity to have an intimate experience with the panelist to gain a little more insight than what the workshop offered.  If the Mastermind was half as great as the workshop, then be on the lookout for the next wave of Black Female Millionaires.  In a climate where Black women are the fastest growing demographic of entrepreneurs, possibly due to the fact that the average Black woman makes 62 cents per dollar of her white, male counterparts. this workshop was timely, relevant and a great way to gain a wealth of information from seasoned and experienced financial professionals.

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Bahiyah Shabazz, MBA Moderator BGDI Founder

In addition to BGDI founder Shabazz, the panelist and speakers included Florence Hardy, ESQ, Cimone Casson, Delta Jones-Walker, Joanna Jane, Courtney Richardson and Danielle Pierce.  Each speaker offered attendees hearty food for thought and practical tips to jump start their investment portfolios and begin their road to generational wealth.

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From L-R Cimone Casson, Florence Hardy, Delta Jones Walker, Bahiyah Shabazz

One of the repeated themes for the day was the value of ‘multiple streams of income’.  With the recent announcements of the wealth building and business acumen of celebrities such as Beyonce, Serena Williams and Rihanna, it is obvious that one of the roads to wealth and financial stability is the ability to have several streams of income and the ability to make money in more than one arena.

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Photo Courtesy of Balleralert.com

Another important topic that was addresses was the cultural relationship we have with money.  Unfortunately, for many of us in the Black community, this is not nor has it been a happy, healthy relationship.  It is time to do the work to change the dynamic of this relationship and kill those generational curses that have held many in the Black community in a culture and love relationship with poverty and struggle.  This no longer has to be the paradigm.

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One of the most powerful take-aways from the day was that there are many ways to make money.  Many people feel that the stock market or traditional savings is the only way to build wealth.  This is not the case and the speakers and panelist did an excellent job in discussing various alternatives to the two traditional methods of gaining wealth.  There are many options, the key is to work with a financial advisor that has your best financial interest at heart, do the work, get comfortable with being uncomfortable, and just do it.

Another recurring theme from the workshop was the power of discipline.  Yes, we need discipline in our financial lives as well.  This can be as simple as honestly wrapping your mind around the concept of paying yourself first.  I am sure we have all heard that before, but do we do it.  I can honestly say that I don’t but it is something that I plan to put into place immediately.  Most things we do in life require hard work and discipline.  Why should our money be any different?  In the words of the late great Donna Summer, “We work hard for the money,” so why aren’t we more disciplined when it comes to what we do with the money?

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The ladies were also able to introduce complex financial terms in a manner that was easy to understand and unintimidating.  Concepts such as Financial Needs Analysis, 1031 Exchange Depreciation on Real Estate and Crowdfuding.  These were just some of the concepts that the panelists and speakers were able to discuss with the audience.

My take away from the workshop was that there is no time like the present to get started.  There are some safe and non-risky investment options out there for those (like me) who may be afraid of losing money in the stock market.  However, my truth is that I really do not understand the market, so I need to do some research and thing long term and smart about what I do with my money.  I have been working on my cultural relationship with money, and understand that there is more work for me to do in that area of my life.  I know that the saying ‘No Risk, No Reward’ is also true in the financial industry.  I left the workshop with some definite financial goals in mind, something that I cannot honestly say I was ready for Saturday morning.

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Brown Girls DO Invest is currently on tour.  I recommend if you are a Brown Girl and want to see your money work for you instead of only working for your money that you go to their Facebook page (link here) and see where they are going next.  Trust me, you will feel more inspired and ready to make some strategic changes to your financial portfolio.  And if you don’t currently have a portfolio, you will leave there with a plan to start working on yours immediately.

Until Next Time!

Be Blessed, Be Fabulous!

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Best Shopping Season

afterxmas saleThis is my favorite time of the year for Christmas shopping.  I know, I know, Christmas was a few days ago, but hear me out.  This is the time of year where things are so deeply discounted that you can stock up for all of your 2018 birthdays, celebrations and yes Christmas.  Most of your stores are trying to get rid of not only their Christmas inventory but their winter inventory as well.  So why not stock up now and save money on your 2018 Christmas budget.

Stores like Bath and Body Works and the Body Shop are my favorites.  The Body Shop has a seasonal scent, cranberry that is only available during this time of the year and I stock up on this scent EVERY year.  Last year I purchased several gift sets valued at $45 for $5.  They made great gifts this year.  Also at Bath and Body the holiday scented lotions are normally marked down to less than $5 so why not stock up.  Lotions last a long time and you don’t have to worry about them getting watered down or not lasting through the year.

Also stores like Walgreens and Walmart have gift sets that are drastically reduced during this time of year.  I remember hosting an event during this time of year and being able to provide all of the participants with great gifts because of the reduced rates during this time of year.  This is a great opportunity to purchase gifts for everyone on your list.  This is also a great time to shop if you have birthdays coming early in the year, buy a great gift without breaking the bank.  I know personally my dad’s birthday is in January and I can normally find great valet sets or cologne sets for a fraction of what they normally cost.

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This is also the best time of year to stock up on hats, scarves and gloves.  Most stores have these so deeply discounted that I purchase gloves in all colors and I purchase additional sets to give to local shelters or to people in need.  For those with kids, especially kids who always lose gloves, this is the perfect time to prepare for the rest of winter as well as next winter.  You can always find great sales on these items and if you live in a cold weather area like I do, hats, scarves and gloves are a necessity.

Additionally, this time of year is great for holiday decorations.  I love to switch up the color scheme on my trees each year (even though it has been awhile since I actually put up a tree).  This is the time where stores like Michael’s and Hobby Lobby discount their ornaments and other décor sometimes as much as 90%.  I have found some amazing deals on ornaments, tree skirts, baskets, wrapping paper and gift boxes.

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Another tip.  Valentines Day is around the corner.  If you make gift bags for schools or friends or send care packages, holiday candy is holiday candy.  You can always use the chocolates and other items that go on sale right after Christmas for your Valentines day goody bags.  And since red is a popular color for both Christmas and Valentines Day you are in a position to win either way.  The key is to think outside of the box and to find items that are holiday neutral.

After my after holiday shopping is complete, I simply store all of the items in a box or tote and everything is on hand once the holiday season returns.  It is really that simple.  Shop with the people that you gift in mind and you can sit back and relax next December because your holiday shopping is complete.  The only things you may have to buy is for kids because of new toys and changing sizes.

Holidays are a great time to give and show those you care that you are thinking about them.  The truth of the matter is far too often people find themselves stressed after Christmas because those Christmas bills begin to roll in.  Why not save yourself some frustration and some money by preparing (yes a year in advance)  and get use the money you save to donate to a great cause or add to your savings or vacation fund.

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I hope these tips helped you as much as they have helped me over the years.  I used to drive myself crazy attempting to shop for everyone and often ended up spending money I didn’t have.  Once I broke the habit of trying to please everyone and focused on how to get more for my money without going broke, I learned that it was quite easy to give great gives and not go broke attempting to do so.

Be Blessed!  Be Fabulous!

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