Tiana Clewis: Hey Dreamers, welcome back to my channel where we break down all things money so we can stop being an obstacle and start being what it is: a tool to help you pull the life that you truly find worth living.
Now, for the last few weeks, things have been really super duper intense on the channel. Look, I'm a serious girl, but coronavirus has us to the point where like everything around you is intense. The conversations on Facebook are intense. Um, the business shutdowns are intense. Your financial situations are intense. The way your businesses are flowing are intense. The way that your children are really disrespectful coworkers is intense. Like it's just a really intense season.
And on top of that, people are reevaluating their lives right now, like their whole life. Like they're rethinking everything about their life, the way they handle money, the way they handle business, the way they handled their career, the way they handle their families. Like people are reevaluating some of everything. And if I'm going to be real about it, I can't blame people for reevaluating these things because if there's one thing that the coronavirus has made abundantly clear, is that the normal, what we know as normal, it really wasn't working.
It was an illusion. We had the illusion of safety, the illusion of security, the illusion that we had our shit together. Yeah, I said it. But it wasn't real. It was an illusion. We...
So the way that we are trained, if you really think about it, the way that our society has been trained in the last few decades is you say, "Go to college. Get a degree. Find you a good job with the benefits. And then you keep pushing forward and you work hard and you work your butt off and you work through the ranks, or at least you get to middle management or something along those lines, and that job is going to take care of you."
Now the reality is that millennials were already a little cynical about that plan. I'm a millennial. I own the fact that we are cynical about that plan. When we came into the job market after going to college and getting all of that student loan debt... okay, not me, but most of us... but after going to college and getting all that student loan debt, a lot of us were cynical because we came out during the great recession, which if we're going to be real about it, the job market now for graduates today - so was that a generation Z - their job market is worse than ours wasn't when we were graduating.
Like, I'm sorry guys, I don't know what to tell you. I wish I could help you more.
But like, it's a hot raggedy mess. And so us millennials, we were already cynical because we're like, "Everything that we were taught and everything that our parents did has shown itself not to be safe and secure."
But then everything got back on track and we kind of started to feel fall back into that same mode. You go to college, you get your degree, you, um, or you go to like one of those private colleges, you get that certificate, you get that trainin. And then you go and get this good job and it's going to be a safe situation and you're going to be okay.
But you had... Normal, even in the midst of that were people doing all that, normal was people were living paycheck to paycheck. Normal was the average family had less than $500 to take care of an emergency. Normal was a pandemic that shuts you down for what, six weeks? Let's be real about this most quarantines that have been happening, those shelter and place orders have been for about six to eight weeks. And the reality is most of us getting shut down, not even a hundred percent shut down because a lot of us still have some sort of income coming in - but being shut down, losing 50% of our income or 30% of our income, it completely turned our lives up side down.
So what it meant was that it was an illusion. You were... people were working their butts off and some people were working their butts off at two or three jobs because the truth of the matter is we had a really low unemployment rate, but part of the reason why we had such a low unemployment rate is because people were working jobs that were not paying enough.
It's really difficult to make ends meet with many of the jobs that had been opening up in the last few years. Yes, there are some in very nice industries that paid very well that have been opening up. My husband has found his way into one of them. However, that is not the norm.
The norm was a lot of the jobs that were being created within the last three, four, five years were actually low paying jobs. So even though unemployment was at an extremely low rate, a lot of it had to do with the fact that people were actually employed in multiple jobs. It was not uncommon for people to be working two or three jobs, and for the people who had what were considered a "good full-time jobs," a lot of them had some sort of side hustle or side business that they were doing to help make ends meet.
What the coronavirus has revealed is that normal in the United States of America was an illusion of safety and illusion of security and an illusion of prosperity.
Yeah, that is tough. That's tough to accept. That's tough to realize.
So that means that what I want to talk about in this video is I want to break down seven things that you should now be reevaluating about your life as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
Now, before we start diving i,to these areas, I want to first introduce myself to all the newbies on the channel, especially if you're wondering who is this chick. Why am I listening to her and wait, do I know her, because she looks really different right now. All right, so I am Tiana B Clewis, a Financial Lifestyle Coach and Start-up Strategists with my labor of love, Selah Financial Coaching. All that means is I spend my time helping women entrepreneurs to break that- break themselves out of the nine to five grind, build the business that they want to build or transition to a new career that they want to transition into. And then we use the money that they're making from the dream businesses and these dream careers to start hitting the financial goals that they set for their families, so that then the life that their family lives, start looking the way that they've always envisioned in their mind.
Now, if you're wondering why I look different, just know that this is a situation where coronavirus required me to reevaluate some things like how I do my hair. So I'm going to be upfront, honest and real with you ladies, because I know there are some sisters who are watching. Yes, I got a wig and if you want to know who I got the wig from, because this is the first one I've ever owned and it's fabulous, and if it's perfect, and it's amazing - go ahead and look in the description and I'm linking you to the website of my girl Dondra Burton, who has her a website Hair Sew Gorgeous. And let me tell you that my hair is feeling so gorgeous right now. Like I'm kind of feeling myself today.
And the only reason I'm wearing it in this YouTube video is simply because I got it today. I put it on today and I was like, you know what? I'm not taking it off because I like it. Yes.
See, this is what happens when you have natural hair, but you don't want to get heat damage on your natural hair. So you're like, we gotta find another way to be long - long, and straight and don't care. Like...
Okay, let's get back to the lessons now that we've gone through that.
Hold... wait... scratch that. Okay? That tangent made me totally forget what I'm supposed to be doing, which was telling you to smash the like button for that good old YouTube algorithm on the video, because the more likes video gets, the better it does and the search results.
And I also want to make sure that you know you can subscribe to this channel to get new money tips and business strategies every Wednesday and Saturday. Don't forget to hit the bell, so you're notified every time I drop those new videos because the last thing you want to do is not find out when Congress has released the details on this latest bill.
I'm just saying.
Okay, have I covered... yes, I finally covered everything. So let's get down to these lessons, these things you need to be reevaluating about your life as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
The first thing you need to reevaluate is: how much are you willing to depend on the government to take care of you. Look, okay, this is not one of those Republican, Democrat conversations. This is a real talk, let's just reevaluate some sort of-, some things type of conversation.
So when you think- there were some things in the stimulus bills that were helpful. So you know I'm a huge fan of the Paycheck Protection Program, even though it was implemented in a really janky way, a lot of people got screwed over. However, I like the premise and the thought process behind it.
I also liked the premise and the thought process behind having stimulus checks that go out to people to help them to make ends meet in the midst of this crisis so that as they're being told to shelter at home, they can make it to the next month, to the next season, to survive. Okay? They can buy food and. Pay rent and things like that.
But the problem that you run into is that when you look at what the government did, what the government did for the average American - I'm not talking about what they did to billionaires. I'm not talking about what they did for the airline industry and these other big name industries. I'm just talking about what they did for me and you as individuals who's not making a million dollars a year. For people like us, they didn't do much.
Can I be real about it?
They gave us a little something to help us out. Now I'm blessed in that the help that they provided, I wasn't in dire straits, so that stuff has ended up being donated to other places, but for people who really needed it, who were really desperate for it, it wasn't enough.
That's one of the reasons why when people are talking about phase four of the stimulus package, several of the proposals actually talk about ongoing payments. Because the truth of the matter is receiving a onetime check of $1,200 isn't even enough for most people to take care of what they need to say care of for just a single month.
For a lot of people that's rent because rent prices are going up all over the place, especially here in the Dallas Fort worth area. I know that there are plenty of people out there who it's them and maybe they've got two kids and their apartment by itself is, you know, $1,000, $1,100 and they're not even staying in, like, the nicest part of town.
So $1,200, a one time payment of $1,200 that everyone hasn't even received, yet is not enough. It's not adequate. It doesn't get the job done.
So we have to put our, we have to understand that when something goes wrong, when something goes down, we need to do the best that we possibly can to put ourselves in the best position to take care of ourselves and our families. Because ultimately when it comes down to it, the government is not going to do it.
I'm not saying they don't want to, I'm not saying there aren't people on Capitol Hill and there aren't people in the White House. And there aren't people....
I'm sorry. I couldn't, I couldn't figure out to my face all the time. I'm sorry...
But I'm not saying that there aren't people in those places who care and who actually want to make actually want to help us through this. I'm not saying that, but what I'm saying is what they are currently capable of doing is not enough. Which means you have to be very focused. When you come into what some are calling America 2.0, when we walk out of this and walk into America 2.0, you have to remember that at no point in time should you, should you put yourself in a position where you're probably going to have to depend on the federal government to take care of you, especially from a financial or career standpoint.
So the best that you can possibly do is honestly reevaluate the other things I'm about to talk about on this list. So yeah, that was just a starting place.
The next two things I want to talk about are all about your career. Now, the first of those two is that whatever career path you are on, make sure that it's a career path that you actually enjoy. Now, this is going to seem like, "Wait, what?" But hear me out. Okay?
So many people, they found themselves in a position where they were working these jobs that they absolutely hated, that they were miserable in - Been there. Done that. Have the scars to prove it - but there are so many people who find themselves working in these jobs that they absolutely had... hate for years and years and years, but they do it because they feel like it's safe. It's secure.
Well, one thing that the coronavirus pandemic has made abundantly clear is the fact that "No Sis, you're not safe."
Even people who were considered essential workers found themselves without work, because think for example, about the Tyson food plants and the, um, was it Smithville, their food plants. They were considered essential workers. They were considered essential. However, so many people caught the coronavirus in those plants that those plants had to shut down. And now those people are not getting paid.
So in places where you feel like you're safe, you're not necessarily safe. Okay? These companies will look at you say, "Hey, I appreciate your time and your service, but we're going bankrupt." Or "Hey, in order to keep us from going bankrupt in the first place, I need to lay off a ton of people and you happen to be part of that list."
They will let you go and not look back.
And so you, if you are going to be in a position where there's the risk of that happening, the least you can do is make sure that the career that you're in is one that you actually enjoy.
What's the point of being miserable in a job, when that job does it actually provide the sort of security that you need?
So if I'm going to be in a position where... I... things could fall apart at any time, my career could go away at any time, this job could go away at any time, at least let's do the best that we can to find ourselves in a job and in a career that we actually like.
Now, if you want to... if you want... okay. How do I find that? Don't worry. I'm actually going to break that down on Saturdays. So I got you covered there. We'll talk about that on Saturday. So just be prepared for that.
Now, the second thing then related to the careers, but of course the third thing on our total list, is that I want you to take the risks necessary to get a job, get a career, that's going to pay you what you are actually worth.
Look- a-here, I am really.... okay... let me... let me take that back... let me adjust that. When you look at who's... who's listed as essential workers right now, most of them are individuals who are working minimum wage jobs. So these are people who they're making anywhere from what, $8, to $9, $10 $12 an hour. They're considered essential workers.
Yeah, if you're that essential, why are you barely, why are you being paid minimum wage? Why is minimum wage barely enough to pay for an apartment and to cover your food and your bills and to let you have a little bit of fun in life as well? If you're going to have to work a ton of hours, if you are going to be at risk of being laid off, not only should it be in a career that you actually enjoy, but you should also be seeking it in a career that's going to pay you what you're worth.
Now, it's going to be really difficult, of course, to be able to get paid what you're worth when you have a calling to teach in public schools, that's going to be something where the teachers and the schools are going to have to continue.To have their rallies and have their lock... their, um, their walkouts and their protests, and I'm so with them on that because these people are totally undervalued. To see what it is to teach teachers go through when I'm trying to do my work, with four kids at home and they're doing it with 30 in a classroom and some places, 35 40 in a classroom, these people are undervalued. So it's going to be difficult.
So I'm not saying that this is something that you are definitely going to be able to do, but if there's a way, if there's a risk you have to take to be able to shift your career, to take a position that's going to pay you what you're worth, to revamp your business so that you can make what you're worth to... um, I don't know... get that promotion, to move into that new department... whatever is necessary... to move into a whole new freaking company if you have to. It's important that you do what is necessary, to take the risks that are necessary so that you can get the jobs, get the positions, are built, the businesses that are going to pay you what you are worth because you deserve it.
And it's really that simple.
It's because you deserve it. You deserve to make a wage that is going to support you and give you a great quality of life, and it's going to let you build your future. You deserve that because you are a human being and it's really that simple.
So be willing to take the risk to get the job that's going to pay you what you're worth.
Number four is that I want you to prioritize the things that are going to bring you closer to your financial goals. Now, I guess. Okay, so with this one, I kind of have to also tack on number five and number six. Which says, get serious about your savings and get serious about paying off debt. So yeah, four or five and six go together.
I want you to prioritize the things that further your financial goals, which means you need to get serious about your savings and you need to get serious about paying off debt.
I'mma work this backwards. Okay?
Number six, your deb... your debt is creating risk. You're seeing that now. You're feeling it now, especially if you're under- unemployed or underemployed. Where some people who are not freaking out as much because they don't have to worry about, so all they have to do is pay for their housing, their utilities, and as the food those people are okay. But you have, you know, an extra $1,000, $1,500 in debt because you've got your student loans, you've got credit cards, you've got car notes, you've got all these different types of debt, and they're stretching your budget even more than those other people's budgets are being stretched. So you got to get serious about paying off your debt.
And that means that once we start coming out of this and we get to a better place, then that means part of your prioritizing - number four, prioritize what brings you close to your financial goals - part of your prioritizing is making sure that you are getting that debt paid off.
Number five, get serious about your savings.
Again, savings is that buffer between you and life. Imagine what would have happened if you had three to six months of savingsind your bank account right now. You wouldn't have been worried when they la- when they shut everything down, you'd be like, "I'm good. I'm kicking it." Especially if you have no debt on top of that.
Say what? "I'm kicking it. I have very few bills that are due."
So if you're not in that situation, savings needs to be prioritized.
I am of the opinion that you should have a thousand dollars in savings at a minimum, and then you get rid of your debt and then you go to three to six months of expenses. Now coronavirus makes you want to flip that on its head, and you might want to focus on 3 to 6 months of expenses first and then tackle your day. You know what? If you want to flip that, I'm not going to judge you.
Mathematically, it works a little better to do the debt first and then the savings, however, I'm just letting you know, if it gives you more comfort, do the savings first, then the debt: go ahead and do that. But the truth of the matter is whichever one you choose to do first, that needs to be your priority.
So if it means that you have to delay some vacations to do that, then do that. If it means that you have to reduce the number of vacations to do that, then do that. If it means that you no longer or getting your hair done all the time, but instead you have two or three trusty wigs that you use to get you through the season, Sis, that's what you gotta do.
And if it means you're not getting your nails done, if it means you're not buying the latest and greatest iPhone, if it made, you're not always buying the latest, greatest stuff for heck for your business, then you're just keeping your expenses as low as possible to increase your profits as high as you can and you're just using what you got to make it for right now - that's what you have to do.
We need to prioritize the things that are going to bring us closer to our financial goals. So if going to happy hour every night or three nights a week is not bringing us closer to a financial goals, then we can bring happy hour down to one night a week. Or one every other week because I was never big happy hour person anyway, and we can take the rest of that money and we can put it towards our goal.
Is that goal to buy a house then? That's a, that's a good one. That's a darn good one to prioritize. Let me tell you apartments, it's a black hole. At least with my house, I'm building equity when I'm paying on my house. Okay. I can sell the house and get money back. When you leave the apartment issues, you're out.
So prioritize what it is that furthers your financial goals. That's number four, which piggybacking off that you have five and six, which are to get serious about your savings and to get serious about paying off your debt.
The last thing that I want you to reevaluate to really think about as we go, as we were pulling ourselves out of this coronavirus pandemic - which, if I can give you my honest opinion, it's nowhere close to over. We're not even gonna pretend it's close over. It's not. Let's be real.
But as we're pulling ourselves out of it, one of the things I also want you to consider, to reevaluate, is I want you to reevaluate how much fun you actually have in your life. I want you to make sure that your fun - that your life has fun, but I also want to make sure that it's within reason.
So this is what that concept of balance comes in. And if you know anything about me, you know, I'm a huge fan of balance when it comes to pretty much everything in life, whether it comes to politics or finances or whatever. I tend to be a little more on the moderate side. So I have a couple of progressive ideas. I have a couple of conservative ideas, and it's just because I evaluate every single thing individually based on its merits - not based on what people will tell me. But based on its merits, and I see which one works. And so I tend to be kind of the middle of the road in a lot of things.
But for me, it's not about being middle of the road, not choosing sides, it's always about finding balance. Because the truth of the matter is, even as I am prioritizing the things that are, um, that are bringing me closer to my financial goal, I still have to balance that out by still having some sort of fun in my life.
And the reason why you have to do that is because there are 70,000 people that at the beginning of this year did not think that they were going to pass away because they had complications related to a virus that, what, originally existed in a bat somewhere. It's insanity. But there's 70,000 people in the United States of America vote who have lost their lives, who didn't think that was happening. And that doesn't include all the people who die of car accidents and all the people who die of just random life stuff. You know what I mean?
You never know when your last day is coming. You never know when your life is going to end. And so it's important that ,yeah, it's really tough to achieve work life balance. It's something you always are going to have to strive at, but it's vital that you have some sort of balance in your life.
That you have these moments when you're having fun with your kids. Like when I'm just sitting on the couch with my kids and we're watching Jurassic Park for the 50th time or Frozen Two for the 10th time because we like dinosaurs and we like Frozen. Okay? It ...and I really liked Frozen Two. It just hit a little different now. But... you have to have those moments when it's like, "You know, we're just gonna take the dog and we're just going to go on a walk."
Or, you know, "We are going to save money. We're going to save money for the next two years and we're going to take a big vacation instead of taking five little vacations." You know what I mean? Like we are, we're going to have some fun.
"I am going to go to happy hour every so often. I'm not going to go three or four times a week, but I'm going to go, you know, a couple of times just to kick it with, with fellow employees."
" am going to meet my homegirl for brunch, you know, once every... once... I dunno... once or twice a month. You need to have that balance in there. You need to enjoy life.
So if you don't have fun in your budget - you've heard me say this before - if you don't have fun in your budget, put it in your budget. If you are working so many hours that you don't have time to enjoy life, that you don't have time to hang out with your Boo-thang, to hang out with your kids, to hang out with your friends, to go see your family - you need to re-evaluate some things.
And honestly, if you're working those sort of hours, it either means that your job is insane or you're probably working a job or jobs that's not even paying you what you're worth in the first place. And so now you're working all these hours so that you can get that hourly rate.
But you need to pursue balance. You need to find joy in your life. There's a lot of people who I've listened to who said that because of coronavirus, it's forced them to slow down and they're starting to realize all of the things that they were missing.
And it shouldn't take a global pandemic for you to notice that you're missing a lot of things in life. You should be looking at your life regularly, evaluating it and seeing, "Am I having a good quality of life? Yeah, things might be tough and things might be tight right now, but am I still having fun?' Maybe you just sit around with the family and you guys get a couple of cheap bottles of wine and a... a pack of Phase 10 cards, and that's just how you guys hang out and kick it. Actually, I had a group of friends that we used to do that every Sunday.
So just make sure... yes, I want you to prioritize your financial goals and get your savings up and get your debt gone. I want you to get that career that pays what you're worth and get that career that you truly enjoy so that you're, you're not back in a position when you have to depend on the federal government to send you checks. But at the same time, I want you to also find that balance so that you're enjoying life, because you never, ever know when your last day is going to be.
Okay, so I know I just put a lot on your mental. That's a lot of stuff that you really have to look back at with your money, with your finances, with the balance that you have in your life, with the dependence that you have on the federal government to take care of you.
It's a lot to think about. It's a lot to think through, but it's really important that you do so.
Now with that in mind, I mentioned to you guys that I've been reevaluating some things as well, and part of that is - with the way that this coronavirus pendant has been going, there's been lots of questions that have been coming up and it makes me want to re-evaluate how I can best serve all of you.
So what I've done is I've created a short survey that if you could help me out, I would totally appreciate it if you would go and fill it out.
Now wait, hold on. You're not just doing me a favor. You're also going to be entered for a chance to win a $50 Amazon gift card. So come on. You should have known you were going to get something out of this.
So for your chance at that $50 Amazon gift card - which is super important right now, in the midst of all this craziness - go ahead and head to my website at tianabclewis.com/research. Fill out the survey and just let me know because this is my way of understanding how I can better serve each and every one of you in the midst of this crisis and as you step into a new way of thinking and a new way of living in what many are calling America 2.0.
Now, before you go, let me know that you found this list of things to re-evaluate now during this coronavirus pandemic - let me know you found it valuable by liking this video and subscribing to my channel. Make sure that you hit the bell so you're notified every time I drop new money tips and business strategies every Wednesday and Saturday... you know, like the tips I'm going to give you about finding your way towards a career in a business that you actually want to work, not one that you have to work. You know, like we talked about today.
Finally, if you are looking for more information that's going to help you to conquer your finances, get them in order so you're not depending on the government because you got this - I have two videos right here that are gonna help you get in that position. So you started watching those videos, evaluating your life, and I will see you on Saturday.
I’m wearing the Joy wig by my girl Dondra Burton at Hair Sew Gorgeous. Check it out: https://www.hairsewgorgeous.com/product-page/straight-1
Want a chance to win a $50 Amazon gift card? Just answer 10 questions that will help me service women entrepreneurs just you like as you step out of the coronavirus craziness into America 2.0. We’ll raffle the gift card live on my YouTube channel on Wed., May 20th at 1:00pm CST: https://www.tianabclewis.com/research
Get more tips and on creating a stellar budget here: https://www.tianabclewis.com/learn-to-budget
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