Money-WISE: Krisstina Wise’s Life-Changing Financial Questions
Krisstina Wise is one of the #Stoutest people we know. From poverty to wealth to poverty again – and now a real estate mogul, Millionaire Coach, creator of several multi-million dollar businesses and author of Falling for Money, her journey is both inspiring and educational.
Following a near-death experience and her successful health and financial rebound, Krisstina has made it her life’s mission to help millions of people become financially free and live a good life – including Stout’s readers. According to the Wealthy Wellthy money expert, improving your finances is not so much about increasing your income, but more about “planning, and leveraging what you’ve got”.
You can start your journey to a better relationship with money right now, by answering the seven questions that Wealthy Wellthy money expert Krisstina Wise asks all her clients:
- What does it cost to live my good life? Note that Krisstina says “my” good life, not “a” good life. What the “good life” is will vary from person to person. But you need to have a solid idea of what you want and need to be able to make a plan.
- What is my total monthly living expense? Krisstina is talking “must-pays” on this one – and that daily venti mocha doesn’t count. This number is so important, according to Wise, because “you [need to] know how much to save up in case you lose your income.” Her recommendation? Bank six months of living expenses at a minimum.
- What is my net worth? Wise looks at things slightly differently than the typical assets-minus-liabilities equation. Her interpretation of net worth is “the income-producing assets (i.e. stocks, bonds, real estate) you’ll use to support yourself if you lose your income.”
- How much money do I want to have each year upon self-actualization (retirement)? Time to pull out that calculator and get busy. Wise recommends thinking about your retirement needs in terms of how much you will need per year. Her go-to example for illustrating living on assets alone? “Most experts recommend pulling about 4% to 5% from these income-producing assets each year after you retire,” she points out. “So, if you have that $1,000,000, you can pull an income of about $50,000 per year. If that’s not enough per year, you’ll need to have more than $1,000,000 invested.”
- Where is my money going each month? Wise uses a bucket system with her clients to categorize their expenses: Taxes (if you’re an entrepreneur), Wealth (investments), Wellth (preventative self care), Living/Luxury, Rainy Day, Education, and Dreams. The bulk of her work, though? According to Wise, “A huge part of what I teach people is to understand how their money is currently being allocated to these expense buckets, and how it SHOULD be allocated to ensure their long-term financial freedom (and livelihood!).”
- How much debt do I have? The golden rule when it comes to debt, says Wise, is that “it is impossible to achieve financial freedom if you are in debt.” She works with her clients to understand how they got into debt, how to pay it off, and how to avoid that trap in the future.
- Am I prepared for the unexpected? “Being prepared for the unexpected”, explains Wise, “is what protects us from financial ruin and lets us live a good life without the stress of uncertainty.” Car accidents, sudden illness, job loss, big-ticket house damage/repairs – these are the kind of things that can ruin your finances overnight if you don’t have insurance or a rainy-day fund to back you up.
#Stout Takeaways from Krisstina’s Story
You Can’t Be an Ostrich: It’s imperative that you lay all your cards on the table. No matter what financial shape you are in, there IS a way to achieve your goals But it requires an honest assessment and facing any troubles head on. Burying your head in the sand can have disastrous consequences for both your wealth and health.
Setbacks Happen: Krisstina Wise propelled herself from a trailer-park upbringing to a six-figure income with all the trappings. Then, between marital and health crises, she lost it all. That’s where being #Stout comes in. Krisstina got back up, learned from her fall, and rebuilt her life into something even better, using her new understanding of what “the good life” really means. Don’t let setbacks become roadblocks – get back up, capture the lessons, and carry on.
Take the Long View: Short-term pain is sometimes required for long-term gain. Wise stresses the importance of truly living within your means to get control of your finances. The temporary unhappiness of forgoing budget-busting, momentary treats will eventually be replaced by the lasting peace and pleasure that come with financial security and achieving meaningful life goals.
Want more #Stout advice about a Fresh Start for your finances?
Visit Krisstina’s website, Wealthy Wellthy. And for another look at the health-wealth connection, check out The Importance of Always Living with Health, from Stout guest contributor (and founder of the website, Living With Health), Elizabeth Quintanilla.