029 - Building Money Wellness So That You Can Leave Your Legacy & Do Good in The World with Financial Freedom Coach, Cindy Shaw


Money goes beyond just the dollars and cents. 

We kinda know this in our heads, but do we live and apply this knowledge in our everyday lives?

Especially when we’re pressed a little bit financially?

As someone whose instinctive knee-jerk reaction to any kind of news that seemed to threaten my financial well-being was fear, worry and anxiety, I can tell you that unless you make a conscious effort to stay aware of how life is making you feel especially around money, it’s easy to let money worries completely take over.

So how can we live with more conscious awareness when it comes to something as practical and tangible to money?

This week’s podcast episode goes into greater detail to look at the spiritual and energetic side of money with financial freedom coach, Cindy Shaw. With over 30 years of corporate experience in financial services, Cindy now teaches you how to get your mind straight with money. Cindy empowers driven women to upgrade their money wellness so they can build their legacy and do good in the world. 

Key Takeaways from this episode:

  • Taking practical actions with your money is important, but so is looking at money from a spiritual and energetic side, and how you’re using money to leave your legacy. Cindy calls it a marriage between financial literacy and understanding who we are.
  • What blocks us from achieving the financial results we want in our lives.
  • 8 sacred money archetypes and how knowing what yours is can help you achieve the vision you have for your financial life.
  • Exercises you can do to help you develop money wellness
  • And more!

Listen to the episode for even more great ideas on how you can start experiencing money wellness today.



Sharon Sidhu: 0:04

Hi, and welcome to the financially free woman podcast. I'm Sharon and I'm the creator of this non financial financial podcast about money and how money affects the work we do, the relationships we have, and our ideas about freedom. Most people don't realize that the path to financial freedom doesn't begin with gaining more knowledge or making more money. In this podcast, you will learn how to embrace and accept yourself as a fully whole, albeit imperfect person so that you can become the highest and best version of yourself. And this, my friend is the key ingredient missing from typical lessons about money and personal finance. In this podcast, you'll learn about your own psychology and relationship with money. how money is more than just the dollars and cents, and practical actions that are grounded so you can transform your dreams into reality. Thanks for joining me on this exciting journey. Let's get started. Cindy Shaw, also known as the aware millionaire, is a financial freedom coach who empowers driven women to upgrade their money wellness so they can build their legacy and do good in the world. She is the creator of the Money Mastery series video interviews, where top experts share their strategies to go from drowning in debt to designing your legacy. The vision of her work can transform generations through financial literacy, personal leadership, inspired action, and community giving. Cindy brings three decades of experience in financial services at a fortune 100 Global insurance company where she served in a variety of roles, including her current role as a director in an international strategy and operations capacity. Cindy has a wife and proud mom of her two young adult sons who loves faith family, big ideas, skiing and road trips across the great Washington State and is a lifelong giver to various nonprofits, including yoga behind bars.sg. So without further ado, let's get to the interview. Hey, Cindy, welcome to the financially free woman podcast. I'm so glad to have you on my show today. And I just want to give a really quick intro. And I know that we've talked about I mean, I would have introduced yourself to everyone in the front of the interview, but just a quick kind of story behind how we connected. So that's really I think it's quite cool. But so I met Cindy through one of my people follow the work that I'm doing. And she referred me to talk to you because I think she was sharing about what you're doing now, which we'll I'll get you to talk about in a minute. And I think it's a really interesting place that both of us are kind of at similar juncture of our journeys, in terms of trying to start something on the side, Cindy is obviously very successful in her corporate job. And I'm going to get to need to share a little bit more about that as well. So that's really how we connect it. So Cindy, would you like to give our listeners an idea and introduction about yourself what you do, what you're doing and how you ended up doing what you're doing?

Cindy Shaw: 3:20

You bet. Thank you, Sharon, it's been so fun to connect with you. And I'm really happy to be on your show. So thanks again for including me. So my background is 30 years, almost 30 years in the corporate world. And I've done all kinds of roles in the financial services world. So my current employer is Fortune 100 Global Insurance company. And I've done all the roles from underwriting to marketing to a lot of work in operations. And now I'm currently leading a couple of teams, one that does strategic consulting with internal to support our senior leaders with their strategies and executing on those strategies. And then another team that does sort of international global bond placement. So we're in the surety bonding sector of financial services. And I'm currently also a Money Mastermind coach. And so what does that mean? What it means is looking at ways to get your mindset straight around money. One of the piece is certainly financial education and financial literacy, but more so around really educating ourselves about who we are, and what our money history is and how we relate to money and then marrying those two things up to have you be most successful. I did that because I really wanted to help driven women and they often don't have a lot of experience with financial success or they're afraid to ask or they're just maybe a little bit on educated right on what to do next and how best to manage their money. So now, Not only do I want them to be come educated, I also want them to have that big vision and to build really what I call a legacy. And we can maybe talk about that a little bit later, I want them to be able to build a legacy, which includes doing good in the world. So I came up with a phrase called the aware millionaire. And what I mean by that is not just aware about how to manage money in those sort of tactical practical pieces, but also to be aware of consciously How do I build my wealth in such a way that I'm not just building it for myself, I'm either benefiting my family or extended generations and or contributing to a cause that I care about. And that can mean a lot of different things to different people. And probably doesn't matter what your cause is, as long as you feel that you've, your cup will have run it over. And we'll be able to seed more more wealth and more beneficial abundance to the world, including helping nonprofits where you can.

Sharon Sidhu: 6:01

Wow, that's amazing. And you're clearly very accomplished in terms of the 30 years in the corporate world, in this whole financial services, financial sector kind of industry. I'm curious to know what was was there? Was there something was a trigger point, was there a pivotal event or something that led you to want to explore this other part, which I love the name of aware millionaire, by the way, I just like the whole idea of awareness, which I mean, I I certainly for one was not very aware. I mean, I was only aware in so far as to be financially secure, and safe and responsible. There was just a very obvious path, which is, get a job, climb the corporate ladder, earn more, and until it came to a point where everything kind of fell apart a little bit. But yeah, so I'm really curious to hear what was it for you that got you clearly very successful in the corporate life? Why not just continue doing that? Why do aware Millionaire?

Cindy Shaw: 7:05

Yeah, I think what's interesting is, there's a lot of information out there about how to manage your money. And two thoughts of what inspired me one is most people don't teach this in school. So they are they weren't taught this in school. And because of that, there's sort of this mystery shrouded around money and people not wanting to talk about it. And it's a big secret. And some people view it very private, kind of almost like their inner emotions around how they feel about money. So tapping into kind of what I had learned about money over my time, and just sort of stepping back and realizing there's so many people that honestly just don't know some of the basics. And it doesn't matter if you're very, very successful. Or if you're maybe struggling financially, there's a lot of people that just don't have those basics. So I really wanted to get that out there in the world so that women could feel confident and sort of take charge. The second motivating factor really was when you think about where I'm at in my career, I've followed all the rules, we've saved all the money, I've been able to build a very sizeable net worth. And even still, it's probably not quite there that I'm still got some shortfall of when I'm ready to retire. And so what I would like to do is educate these women and maybe even younger generations to plan ahead to look for how they can start saving and leveraging things like compound interest, when they've got a lot of runway. And so little small actions can build over time. And if you're patient and want to leave your money, where it sits for a bit, obviously, you want to be smart with where that is, but but even small little actions over time can both one empower you and feel like you're, you're confident and then two, you can kind of compartmentalize that money so that you've got multiple tracks going and what that will enable you to do is save for things like an emergency fund. And then you want to save for things that have extra income on the side in case something happens with we learned from COVID several people were impacted in their jobs and or they were temporarily out of work. And that will enable them to have some money set aside for those things. And then you can be ready to start looking at how should I leverage my money so that I can invest it into a asset that doesn't depreciate, but that actually appreciates.

Sharon Sidhu: 9:31

Hmm. And so can I just ask you a little bit more about I hear you said a few times about how you really wanted to help women I heard you say you wanted to help women gain the confidence in terms of how they're going to manage their money, and often it's very driven and even maybe even quite successful women. And yet when it comes to the money, they may or may not have it packed away somewhere, but sometimes we don't even really know what to do with it, right? So that's one is there any reason why you are looking at working with this group, specifically.

Cindy Shaw: 10:06

I think it's just time. So a lot of relationships are maybe stereotypical, yet, we see still so often where women abdicate the money management to their husband, not always, or their spouse or their partner. And that's not always the case. But in many cases it is. And so by women empowering themselves and learning themselves, women are very good with money, they know how to make smart investments, and they are good at sort of managing the bigger picture. So it's not as though there's some sort of inherent reason why we can't be good with money, it's that maybe traditionally, or again, left due to lack of education and lack of confidence, they've abdicated that role to a spouse or a partner. And so I just think women really are in the role now to step up and kind of help lead in the world, they can a lead their families, and also women are very generous with their money. And so that was the other reason I wanted to tap into women, because they're more likely to take their money and share it and share it with the community so that we can grow and everything grows more exponentially.

Sharon Sidhu: 11:17

Hmm, how interesting and how, how are you doing that? So okay, so just just so we're clear, you're still in the corporate role that you talked about?

Cindy Shaw: 11:26


Sharon Sidhu: 11:27

And you're building I mean, that this program? Is it a program? Or is it a course or something called aware Millionaire? Is that how you help women to do this? How do you go about doing that?

Cindy Shaw: 11:38

Yeah, so first, where I started was with the Money Mastery series. So if folks want to check that out, it's available at the moneymasteryseries.net. And I say .net for net worth. So you can remember, and that was.

Sharon Sidhu: 11:52

I'll put that in show notes as well, by the way, just so it's easy for people to locate. Yeah,

Cindy Shaw: 11:56

Wonderful, thank you. And people can check that out. For only like $37, you can go and purchase the entire series. And it was just a wealth of information I interviewed 22 financial experts, many of them women, a couple of men in there as well, who really just poured out generously a lot of information about their own personal stories about ways that they've learned how to manage money, and a lot of tips and money mindset pieces for women to consider including some spiritual perspectives of the more esoteric side of money being energy and money being you can bring abundance in your life through more of a positive energy than you can through sort of a negative energy, or that sense of lack, if you will. So yes, then migrating over to aware millionaire, it's a coaching program where I work with people individually. And it starts with an assessment that I have called sacred money archetypes. And what that does is it allows you to get your own personal insights into what archetype you align with the most and their secrets hidden in there. So you can find out whether you've got some gifts around money and what your inner strengths are, as well as maybe some of the pieces that you want to look into that you can correct or work around so that you don't have those inhibitors that that might be impacting your ability to work with money or bring in abundance. So that starts with the archetypes. And there's a lot of exercises and tools that we would go through so that people can build their their roadmap. So work, start working on yourself, and then you can start also looking at your finances at the same time.

Sharon Sidhu: 13:44

Well, there's so many things in there I want to go into right now and ask about so could you tell us like an idea? Because some of us might not really understand what do you mean by an archetype? And do you have like maybe the major ones or common ones that you see? Would you be able to give us an idea of what no those archetypes might be?

Cindy Shaw: 14:02

Certainly, there's eight archetypes and they're essentially similar to a personality test, if you will. So a lot of people are into things like Enya Graham's or in the workplace. They have things like disc profiles, or Myers Briggs, there's a lot of different ways to look at our own personalities and in our mental inner workings, if you will. And this is really some profiles that have run across, they found her have run across a lot of cultures. And so it's very consistent in the fact that there's these eight archetypes. So my number one archetype is the ruler, which means I like to bring out through leadership to bring out people to be their very best, which is so aligned with my vision and my mission for the work that I want to do to help other people build their empire. So I'm essentially an Empire Builder. And the gifts around that are really inspiring people to think bigger and to dream big. Her dream and know that with confidence and some coaching perhaps that they can achieve that because it's it's not just a fairy tale. So that's one example, there's one called the nurturer, there's one called the connector. And the names that kind of conjure up images that you would typically imagine would be there. And they all have strengths. So there's not one that's better than the other. And I want people to be really clear with that. Because if you're, you feel like oh, I'm not good with money, well, you have these other strengths. And if you can apply those strengths to the way that you think or approach money, then you can actually succeed as well. So one of the other ones is something that my husband is is the accumulator. So he loves to just build, build money and stored away because that's stored money means freedom to him in his mind. And so that's what gets him excited about money, for example. And that might not be the same for somebody else. There's also one called the celebrity, which you can just imagine what that entails, which is a sort of spending money to shine in the world, and also possibly get that positive feedback, then they have some pros and cons to that style as well. So the different archetypes have have different strengths and gifts. And so we would go through that the people will start with an assessment would understand their sacred money archetypes or their again, money styles or money mindset styles. And then we start digging in with so what does that mean for you? And if you could change some of the things that might be holding you back are blocks, then what would that unlock for them? What would that enable them to do? And then you can start thinking that, wow, this vision I have might actually have a chance to come true.

Sharon Sidhu: 16:44

Wow, it's nice that you said that because that was actually going to be the blocks because that was going to be my next question. Because immediately I'm thinking, have you noticed any kind of like very common blocks that we might not even be aware of conscious of that can hold us back or limit us, right? Like we say in terms of us being able to achieve the goals and the dreams that we have?

Cindy Shaw: 17:07

Absolutely Sharon. What people really need to think about is how did we learn our money rules? How did we learn about money. So most often, as we touched on before, it wasn't taught to anyone, but we observed, right? So we, the people around us the way we grew up the way our families talked about money or didn't talk about money, or the way they manage their money. If you're a sponge, when you're growing up, and you see and observe all of that, and consciously or not those patterns and approaches to money get ingrained in your mind. And so we call that the subconscious. So there's a lot of subconscious beliefs that people have just absorbed from, again, family or friends or people that they observed, manage their money, and they can be real limitations. And one of them could be something like money is the root of all evil. And sometimes that's religious base. But but that's if we weren't going to go off on that track. I know the Bible doesn't really mean that the money is evil, what it means is money can cause people to use it in the wrong ways or for dark purposes. Yet, that as a belief is really automatically going to repel money from you, because you fear it, or there's some fear based element that's speeding one or more of those blocks. Another one might be something like money doesn't grow on trees. So when we really step back and look at that, a money's made out of paper, so it does grow on trees and everyone. But number two, it's a sense of lack, right. So if you keep saying that over and over again, what you say kind of comes true. And at least for your, for your belief system and the filters that you apply to how you navigate the world. If you believe that there's such a degree of lack, then you're going to experience more lack. Those are some of the the top ones. Another one is, I wouldn't phrase this this way, but suspicious of people with money or that people with money are bad people or they got there in a way that they lied, cheated and sealed and stepped on people in the process when I know very many people with a lot of money, and they're quite benevolent, and they actually share that money with the world. So that's one way another way to look at it. And then other people have these impressions around. If I do have money, it's gonna make other people uncomfortable, or someone's gonna want to take it away from me. And so that is a safety issue or somehow rooted in the fact that people believe that money is so temporary, and that somebody is going to be after them. So instead of viewing the opposite of that, which is I am wealthy, I don't mind sharing that with people. And if it inspires them to kind of go out and do the same. That's wonderful, right? Instead of, I don't want to share because then somebody's going to come after me, well, how often does that actually really happen in real life so so it's sort of a false belief, if you will, that there's a safety issue around money, I lock it away, we store it in the safe, you know, we keep it under mattresses, and all of those things that people do for fear of some potential, somebody that's going to take it away, which means you don't, sometimes that can be a root cause of feeling like I don't deserve.

Sharon Sidhu: 20:21

You know what, as you're saying that I, I completely can relate with that. And as you're saying it, I just want our listeners to know sometimes that these things don't come up very obviously, right? I mean, it's not obvious, which is that is in the subconscious. And just to share a little bit of my own experience, I also recently Well, you're probably in the last year or so recently discovered that that the last one that you just talked about. And it's funny how you mentioned the word, because safety kept coming up for me recently, and I realized that my story around money has always been the exactly this, like, if I made more money, people will take it away from me, or somehow someone's going to come and take it away from me. And the irony is, and the funny thing is, because you talked about how either you attract or repel, right, and that's exactly what happened, right? So because I was so for me, I realized I've learned now that my big values are safety, security family, so and wrapped around, all of that is like I want the safety and security because I want to protect my family, right? I want to give them the best and all of that. And then hearing you say this, now everything's kind of clicking, because I always fear that if I had more, and I want to make it for my family, first, our loved ones first, but then someone's gonna take it away from me. And that's gonna jeopardize my sense of safety and security. But the irony, like I was gonna say is that the more I did that, actually that in fact, that happened. That's how we ended up in that business that none of that. And so it was really tough. But then now, as I've learned to, like you say, like it, to share it more generously, and to understand that it is precisely this thing of wanting to cling on to it that's causing me to lose it. And when I let that goal, actually, I allow more in and more flows in. So I like that you said that. And suddenly everything clicked. So that's, that's amazing. So thank you for sharing that, Cindy. And you're talking about something as well, which you were mentioning was on your money mastery series, I wanted to go a little bit more into that which you talked about the spiritual side and energy side and abundance. Can you explain for us because sometimes people don't really get it the link between money and spirituality and energy and abundance? And what is abundance? We hear this word a lot. Now, what does all of that actually mean?

Cindy Shaw: 22:42

So I think it's a really great place to explore, because I think it's the missing link, right? We've been told certain things about money, whether we see it on TV or in movies. And there's this sort of cold, hard truth that people view money as. And then there's sort of the esoteric, spiritual side. Well, when you bring those two together, it's almost like the perfect marriage in the sense that spirituality, when you are feeling like there's a higher power, you feel that safety and security that you were just talking about. And you also believe that source God universe, or the source is, is the source for you, not something that is tangible. So So what I mean by that is sort of the energy that's out there in the universe is really out there conspiring for our good, and the more we put that out there, we'll start to see it. So if you truly believe that the universe is there for your good and trying to lay things in your path that are that your next step to your success, or to what you dream about or desire. And it's going to lay those steps out there for you. But if you believe that money's this sort of numbers, and pluses and minuses, and that's all there is, then there's going to be a big disconnect or a gap, if you will. And so when you think about what money really is, it's just a means of exchange. It's just an energetic means of exchange, somebody traded their time to earn this money. And it's really just energy in motion, right? So So you've turned your human capital into a method of payment. And that method of payment has agreed upon significance, but in reality, it's simply paper. And we could get into whether that's backed by gold and all those other market considerations. But at the essence, money is just energy and it's very neutral. It doesn't, it doesn't care what you want to use it for, it's going to be used for whatever somebody puts the energy towards, right. So if you start with an intention that I want to create X, Y and Z, and you focus on that and you put your money or sorry, your mind and your body around that, then the money kind of comes because it has a purpose. It has a purpose to flow. Through, and I touched on the marriage earlier. And really I like to equate money and your mindset to dating. And so if you think of money as bad, or some people feel like I don't want to talk about money I, you know, I don't want to ever think about it, it scares me, I'd rather just ignore it. Well think about if that was a real relationship, what would money do? It's going to be like, Well, okay, I guess I guess they're not interested in me. And so they're gonna go find someone else. So So if it's if it's flowing kind of like a river, and you don't create a channel that directs it to you sort of by having that flow, and that positive energy, and a place for it to go, because that's the other thing. And I not to get too far off on a tangent yet. People don't get very specific, and you really want it, you can't just say I want to make a million dollars, that that's great. But what for? And by when? And what would you do with that? And who would you become in that process of having that, let's say a million dollars. So the secret really, there is to kind of embody Okay, who am I when I have a million dollars, how would I feel? How would I act, and I need to start acting that way right now. Because then that aligns with the energy of what it is I want to see and realize in the future. And so the only way to get there is to enact that in the present moment. And by instant bonding, that then the money has a place to go, it has a home and it has a direct application and a real purpose, right. And hopefully, that purpose is a benevolent one, or one that can help people live and thrive. Or, like you said, share that with your family and give them a future, all of those things, right. So so the more specific we are, the better we're going to be at attracting what it is we want. And if we don't address those limiting beliefs that we were touching on earlier, those might actually get in the way. Or if you think of it like a like a screen or something that stops the flow of a river, and then those limiting beliefs are going to stop that flow, it might lessen it, it might stop it altogether. Or you're going to get a trickle instead of a full, full blown flowing river. So those are some of the things that I like to think about. And then that spirituality aspect, again, is really, the universe is abundant, you really need to start with that belief in that fundamental acceptance, that the universe is abundant, and it's there for your good. And so if that's really true, then you can attract money, money, there's enough money to go around, there's enough abundance to go around. And just by holding that belief in that energy, you can already sense and feel that that's sort of a shift, right? So it's saying, money is like, Oh, hey, you're ready for a date. You've accepted and you've put out there in the universe, that you're interested in more money, and you have a happy attitude about it. Yeah, wow. You know, I like I really like the analogy of the flowing river and then channeling it for a purpose. And I guess sometimes that purpose, sometimes it's like, we just know, we just want to make a lot of money, because that brings securities I mean, for me, like security and safety, and I can have all these things and experiences. And well, I was gonna say travel, but maybe not right now. But you know, let you be able to have the sense of freedom, I think like the accumulator, you were talking about your husband now that for me, as that's also one of the things like is a sense of freedom, right, and options and choices, and all of that, for someone who is maybe not in that state, like maybe in a lot of limitation, and maybe just really just getting by, right? And is finding it so difficult to then even imagine, right? And believing that the universe is abundant in all of that, would you have any suggestions how they might even just how they can start, what practical thing they can do to start changing that when you're talking about changing that belief. And I think number one, if you're really in a state where you feel like you've been there in a low spot for quite some time, I would recommend people seek support and to the degree that you have that from friends or somebody that you know, or a mentor or a coach, right, that can help sort of guide you quickly out of that. Because if you've been in that low spot for a long time, your thinking isn't going to get you out of there is something you've got to do differently to change sort of that definition of insanity is keeping to do the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. And so if you can get the support or the help or reach out to someone just to move you forward and a little bit, the number one thing that you could do immediately, is really focus on gratitude. And so what one of the things that we did in a mentoring group that I helped co lead, in my current work, we did this thing called a river of reflection. And what that was, is going back through the timeline of your life, it could be your career, it could be just from college and onward, and just taking stock and reflecting on who was there for you that showed you support along the way, whether it was a nudge or a leap, or they actually helped you and drag you along, to get to the other side and see through to success or through a dark time as well. And so whether it's a mentor, a coach, or a school counselor, or a parent, there's always somebody there that has been there for you. And just me doing that, for my own self, I almost started crying, because I was just so overwhelmed with this deep, deep sense of gratitude of all these, I call them the posse of characters that were so generous, and they gifted me their time or their advice, or a leg up or an opportunity. And they did so just because they were kind hearted people. And so that kind of helps you get oriented around, okay, there's evidence here that I have been supportive in the past, why wouldn't I be able to be supported in the future? So then it gets you thinking in that moment of gratitude, you're like, wow, you know, I feel grateful, I actually feel abundant because all of this generosity had come to me. And now I can say, maybe see a little more clearly, and say, who might be able to help me with my next step? Or who in my support system could help me even for the next six months, or what have you. So I think starting with things that you can be grateful for? Well, sometimes if you're in a space where you don't see anything, you can start with something simple as I have a pen, and I have some paper, and I can write down a goal. And that's just gives you something else to focus on besides everything that's going on.

Sharon Sidhu: 32:00

Yeah, So I think that's really, really, really great advice. And something that anyone, no matter where you are, is something that everyone can start with, right? Just find the one simplest thing. And sometimes we take it so much for granted. But I've learned that even just when you wake up in the morning, that you actually woke up, you know, you know what I mean? Especially with a situation that it is now when some when when I heard that I was like, that's true. And yeah, I know, I'm gonna, I've just got these like voices in my head skeptics who are gonna say, Yeah, but what am i waking up to? Kind of like, and that's, that's the other thing, I recently realized how entrenched my negative thinking has been. And it's been like 40, over years right of programming. And I just also want to remind people like, like, what Cindy is saying, if you've been at a low point for such a long time, I think the other thing is also you've got to be patient with yourself, that is going to take time. I mean, wherever you are, if you're 20 years old, 30 5060, whatever it is, and you're listening to this today, and maybe it's the first time maybe it's not maybe heard it before, but it just clicked for you today, like it did for me, when you mentioned the word safety, it is kind of just to remember that you took all these years to learn all these things and program the beliefs and it takes time to kind of shift that. So I like that you should just whatever small thing to be grateful for. And you mentioned another keyword that I picked up on, which is the evidence. And that reminded me that was kind of when I was trying to get myself out of that hole, trying to climb myself out of that hole. That was the thing that also helped me that on top of start of with gratitude, and then start looking for evidence, because I think sometimes that's how we can then build belief in faith. And we can see that people have been there for us before. And sometimes it's people, sometimes it's events, sometimes it's one of it is but at least it's kind of like what you say it gives you something to focus your mind on, instead of looking at all the things that are wrong to actually to start looking for evidence of all the things that are right. And and that helps me to get that emotion, I think the feeling as well, is what keeps us going. Yeah, which kind of is bringing me to my next point about keeping going. So I really liked your story. Because you are in an industry that's very, like rational, logical left brain. It's one plus one. It's very mathematical, or at least when you tell me you're from financial services, kind of the image I conjure in my heads, like just it's offering logical and it all makes sense. And sometimes it's very complicated. But then you've got this other part when you talk about energy and spirituality and all of that. And I appreciate that you shared your journey, how you made this transition, how do you keep yourself kind of like going and building this thing that you're building because obviously it's I can imagine it's not easy doing the work that you do in your corporate role and then still there. Finding the energy and stamina to build this thing that you feel like you want to do.

Cindy Shaw: 35:05

Yeah, thank you for that question in terms of going on, sometimes it's easy, and sometimes it's not so easy. So I want to be real about practical time and effort that it takes. But really what motivates me is, if I can enlighten even one person to think differently, or open their mind or their hearts to a new way of viewing their life and their future and their opportunity, to me, that's what really motivates me. So at work, I'm really motivated by helping my team and developing them and making a meaningful contribution in the work that we do. So that's very motivating, I always try to have sort of that servant leader or a service mindset, because it's a lot more fun to go to work every day if you know you're serving and that creating value for other people. So that's a big part of it. And then again, when I think of the lies that we could potentially change with education and a different pattern and a different approach, and over time, within as short as two to five years, somebody's financial picture can be dramatically different. And as we touched on earlier, there's so much emotion really tied up with money. And I wanted to go back to something that you said that was very insightful sharing around not having any judgment. And so that will be a limiting belief to that really stops us from moving forward. Because we've judged ourselves, we've judged ourselves, I don't I know how to do this, or I made a mistake, or, or this happened, I should have been able to anticipate that or I'm not worthy, all of those things. But if we go into judging ourselves, then you're going to go back to feeling sort of small, or create that limitation, if you will. So it's very, very important to just be as neutral as possible about whatever your situation is, because it's just a point in time. And then you can take that point in time and incrementally grow it and the speed at which you can grow it is based on your actions and your ability to take small steps and and move that forward. And the other thing that I would do, even I get stressed out, and even during COVID you know, there were some times where I was like, Hey, I'm a little bit down for longer than a week. And this is not my normal self. But what I'll often do is take a piece of paper and draw a line down the middle. And then at the top, I put a minus on the left, and I put a plus on the right. And so I write down all my worries, or my fears on the negative side. And then I write the opposite of that, on the plus side. And so like we touched on a little bit earlier, it's really knowing what you do want instead of being so fearful of what might happen, or beating yourself up again, for something that happened in the past, the past only exists in our mind. So it can't do anything for us, right, putting any energy and a time and attention on that does does nothing for us, and it won't create a different past. So that's, that's what I read the definition of forgiveness is really letting go of the hope that you could change the past. Because it will never be different. Right? It'll never be different. So how about instead saying, I'm afraid I'm not going to make rent next month or repurposing that and saying, I will find a way to make my rent the next month. And I call it flipping the script, you can take those sort of negative worries, and then say, Oh, well, this is what I really want to happen. So I'm going to focus my time and energy on what will happen. So we've been able to just so quickly identify with all of our fears and our worries, and then our doubts. And in reality, we should really be identifying with the possibility and the future and what could happen, that's more likely to happen. Because again, we go back to the universe is conspiring for our good. And it's more likely to reward a positive statement than it is to create sort of that, that negative feeling that you're creating, which again, will maybe show up as persistent lack.

Sharon Sidhu: 39:16

Yeah, I saw love that simple exercise you shared. And I like the way you put it down like so simply just put a plus and a minus, right. And if you're like me, if you guys listening like me, I tend to think in negative, okay. And so I've learned also that, yeah, and to even catch ourselves, which is why I like the whole the word aware. I love the word aware so much. Because this idea of having self awareness that really is the first step to true freedom. I always say that because you've got to be able to catch what you're doing what you're feeling what you're thinking first. If you're not even able to do that, then you cannot do anything differently because you're just kind of asleep, right? You're just unconscious, you're just kind of asleep and then you just let all the negative thinking and talk the way you talk the words you use. And I just want to give a very simple practical example of what actually I really did find myself doing would be like my, my son sleeps quite late at night, and here in Singapore school starts very early in the morning. So they usually need to be up by about six in the morning. And we're on the road

already by about 6:30 or 6: 40:19


Cindy Shaw: 40:22

That's early.

Sharon Sidhu: 40:23

Yeah, and they have long days, they don't finish until sometimes until up to six 6:30. So it's like a good 12 hour shift much longer than us working adults sometimes. And sometimes the kids asked me, Why is school so long? You guys work less than us. And I'm like, Yeah, that's true. But anyway, yes. So he typical teenager, he's on his computer and everything. And so I used to say to him, don't sleep so late, then I realize this don't sleep so late. It's really a negative way of looking at it. So now I've decided to change that script, like you say, and say, I'll see you in bed soon. You know, so it's like us to bed early. Right? Yeah. earlier. So this this kind of like, and another one I like so much is like I would I can't remember where I heard this, or I read this, or someone said this, about how sometimes we forget our keys, right? And then you come back in and then or if we see our kids, they forget something and they come back in the door and say, Oh, did you forget your water bottle? Do you forget your keys? and flip that again? Instead of focusing on the forget, say, oh, did you remember something?

Cindy Shaw: 41:24


Sharon Sidhu: 41:25

You know what I mean? Yeah. So it can be like really small, simple things. But I always believe simple is powerful. When it gets too complicated. No one understands that you don't get but some things are simple. Everyone can do it. So I really liked that exercise, just take a piece of paper, put a line down and middle plus and minus. And if you catch yourself saying the negative things, how about putting it in a more positive way. And so I mean, self talk is really powerful, isn't it, like the way we talk to ourselves is really so powerful.

Cindy Shaw: 41:59

And our do our kids do pick up on that, by the way, and that reminds me of one more key component, I forgot to share in the beginning of why I do this, because I think our women, as mothers or parents, or aunts or sisters, we are in a position to be teachers. And if I can share what I know, with my children, then they can hopefully create new money beliefs, or make new money habits that sets them up for success. And then hopefully, that's a gifted cycle that goes on for the next generation in the next generation. And so to me, women are in that position to sort of be that teacher and to demonstrate, like you said, flipping our language around. And one of the other ones that that reminded me of is, oh, instead of saying, drive safe, which we do my kids leave in their car all the time. And I might say have a good time. That implies safety. Right? If I'm having fun, I'm also safe for the most part. So I think it's something where we project so much fear of our parental instincts right onto our children. And we project that onto them. And so that unknowingly we're creating that sense of doubt or that sense of the world is a scary place or and it's not safe to go out.

Sharon Sidhu: 43:23

You know you're right.

Cindy Shaw: 43:24

To enjoy yourself, have a great trip, have a great drive, what have you.

Sharon Sidhu: 43:28

I liked that you brought that up, and I'm so glad we got it in because that's that's really, really important. And I've realized that as moms, you don't realize how influential you are to your kids, and how whether they consciously or unconsciously pick it up, it stays with them for life. I think back now and I know a lot of this is kind of also coming from well meaning parents who grew up post war, right very little. And so they live in a world of scarcity and lack and it's always it was a different world. And now we know better we have access to resources and technology and advancement and medicine and all of that, that that they never did. And you know and so we have to recognize that those were the old beliefs of a different era. And now if we're conscious then we can take what all the good things that we have and the things we say the things we do the things we don't do Don't say I realized that because sometimes my daughter would come up to me and say yeah, mommy says that I should just do whatever makes me happy and so if this makes me happy I'm gonna do it my oh my goodness, you remember that? And I just said it casually right? Like I would just say something like I don't even remember when I said it. I just say you know, just do it do what makes you happy. It's got to feel good for you and and they pick up on that which means they also picking up on all the other negative stuff as well. Right. So But then I also think also like we as parents as moms, we are also daughters and wives and sisters and aunts and all of that and so sometimes I do get the self doubt like with what I'm doing, like, Who am I who's gonna talk to me who's gonna want to talk to me on the podcast, I'm nobody. And then. And then I realize we're not alone. We are always there's always interdependencies all around us. I mean, none of us were very few of us actually live all by ourselves up in the cave somewhere. And so there's always someone, a colleague, a friend, someone at the grocery store, or some somebody that you may not even know that you've kind of left an impact or impression sometimes with the smallest thing that you don't even realize. So I like that you brought that up. So I'm so glad we got that in the part about being the mom and the role model that we want to be here

Cindy Shaw: 45:39

Think about what you're creating all that's the beauty that you're creating, sharing with your podcast. So you're creating community, and that sense of connection and things that you and I might have in common as parents or parents of teenagers and, and you've created that connection. And so by people just listening to your interviews, they're going to learn all the wisdom that you have to share and the people that you bring on, and you're Touching Lives that, like you said, you may never meet. ,so think about that.

Sharon Sidhu: 46:10

Wow, this is the doing this podcast really is one of the best things I've done. I feel because look, look at us. I mean, you're where you now is, I know somewhere in America,

Cindy Shaw: 46:21

Just north of Seattle, Washington.

Sharon Sidhu: 46:24

Okay, so that would be the West Coast,

Cindy Shaw: 46:27


Sharon Sidhu: 46:28

And I'm here in Singapore. And that's the thing about COVID. I mean, there's good there's bad I think the good thing is that it's become so normal now for people to just get on virtually people can see this, we're actually talking face to face on video, even though you're probably only listen to the audio. But this is the amazing thing. And I've learned one thing, Cindy, that we were strangers just I don't know a few emails ago, right. But then now just getting even on a zoom call. And just talking, I realized we have so much common ground as moms as corporate working women, right things that we believe in that we want to do that we're doing outside of work, all these things, there's so much common ground and and ultimately, no matter where people are, whatever station in life you're at, actually, if you think about it, we're also more alike, we all want happiness, we want to be Yeah, we want to be happy, we we want our loved ones to be happy. And we just want to know that we'll be okay that we are worthy. I mean, all of these are very universal. And that's why they call it universal, universal truths, I guess. And that's the great thing about the podcast as I love so much. And I realize actually, there's so many generous people out there and alone, like you didn't have to spend time talking to me and but you do and and that's I'm so grateful to speak out gratitude. I'm really so grateful for that. And so grateful for you for coming on the show to share your insights, your experience and your time.

Cindy Shaw: 47:55

I'm really grateful to be here. So I think you share and I think we both benefit from this conversation and the opportunity. So thank you.

Sharon Sidhu: 48:04

Yeah, so I'm looking also at time, I know we booked about an hour. So can I just ask you if there's anything else that you think that you you want to leave our listeners with? Make sure that we cover it before we kind of count this interview is complete?

Cindy Shaw: 48:19

Yeah, I think if I were to leave some parting thoughts for people to just really step back and, and believe that they are empowered. And that is from you make choices, right, we all have choices, every point in our life. That led us to where we are right now, we're all made up of choices. And so that means you had the power to choose, and you have the power to get yourself to where you are today, which means you have the power to get yourself to where you want to be in the future. And so just realizing they call it having agency, I have agency over my life. And I can do that through getting organized or doing that exercise that we talked about what the pluses and minuses, there are steps that I can take to improve my own situation. And part of that also could be getting help and not being afraid to ask for help. But just really looking at, okay, this is the situation that I've arrived at. And here where I am, it was based on my choices. It's not based off something outside of me. It's based on something that's inside of me. And so if that's true, then I can change my insights and my attitude and my energy so that I can move forward. And so I think people just need to remember you're you're sort of stronger than you think. And you're smarter than you think. And you're more blessed than you know.

Sharon Sidhu: 49:47

Wow, that's that's amazing. Yeah, it's a good reminder for all of us and I asked all my guests this on the podcast just because it's called the financially free woman podcast. So I like to have an idea of what your definition of financial freedom?

Cindy Shaw: 50:02

Whoo, that's a great question. There's two ways to view it. One is the ability to create wealth, which isn't the ability to create a lot of money. And what I mean by that as well, wealth is more than dollars in a bank account. So wealth means you've lived an abundant life, and money will help fuel that. So people, if they're motivated by their purpose, and they've been able to live that purpose, the money will follow and support that purpose. And so freedom means I'm able to do the things I want to do and the way that I want to do them, and when I want to do them, and that's really what the financial freedom means. That doesn't mean you have to retire and do nothing, or not work anymore, because work helps us grow mentally. And we have that sort of growth mindset, because we're learning things that are new, and then learning new skills. So you'll never be done, you're not going to just live sedentary. Because you you've got financial freedom, but it does give you choice. And so when I think of wealth and abundance, it's to the point to where not only am I able to thrive where I am, I'm able to share that with my family or friends or whomever, and then again, go out there and contribute to the community so that there's this ever growing ripple effect of one individual's life that's able to sort of share that fountain of, of joy and blessings, right through money or through their time and their actions and their care. And so that will help sort of create that ripple effect. So financial freedom is the ability to do more of that.

Sharon Sidhu: 51:42

Yeah. And I think going back to what you said early on, just kind of remember the words that's popping in my head now is kind of really your legacy, right? And the impact that you create in the world, your immediate world with your yourself and your loved ones, and then rippling out into your community, which is part of the world really, and then that's really your legacy. Wow, that's such a great way to end, Cindy, what would be the best place for people to connect with you or find a little bit more about what you're doing?

Cindy Shaw: 52:12

Yeah, I would start with the moneymasteryseries.net, that's available. Now you can get on my email list. That way you can, you'll get some three free videos that were some of the highlighted interviews from the series, you'll also get some tips, I call them rich tips from the knowledge, it's the sort of cheat sheet as the essence of what we learned from the whole series. And then also, you'll be kept informed of upcoming events. There may be a webinar here in our future, and I'm going to be doing more with aware millionaire. So that will be available soon, a new site will be coming up called awaremillionaire.com.

Sharon Sidhu: 52:47

Cool, Wow, that's great. And we'll have all the links in the show notes, guys. So you don't have to worry about scribbling them down if you're driving or doing your gardening or whatever now. So just click on the links. Thank you so much, Cindy, for your time, I really appreciate you sharing lots of good practical tips. And I like always to hear it from someone who's got the industry background. And then also plus the part about the work you're doing with women and the spiritual side of it. So a really nice kind of ethic, holistic view about money, and you know, our financial life. So thank you so much, Cindy, for joining us today.

Cindy Shaw: 53:23

Oh, thank you, Sharon. It's been my pleasure and a real joy to talk with you today. So thank you, and I can't wait for us to work on some things in the future.

Sharon Sidhu: 53:31

Yeah, we'll definitely be staying in touch virtually. Or maybe one day I'll come visit you when we can fly again.

Cindy Shaw: 53:37

You're welcome.

Sharon Sidhu: 53:39

Seattle is one of those places I've been wanting to take my kids to, Did you say Seattle or New Seattle? Yeah, yeah, so Exactly. We'll plan something in the future, I'm sure. So thanks, Cindy. Bye Bye now. Take care.

Cindy Shaw: 53:54

Thank you.

Sharon Sidhu: 53:55

I'm so excited to be pre selling my online course. RISE. RISE is a step by step program to help you master your relationship with money so that you can be financially free doing what you love. In this four module, self paced online course you'll get to learn how to recognize and let go of the self defeating money stories and rules you've been living your life from, which is likely the very thing keeping you imprisoned by the fear of not having enough money. You'll learn how to master your head and your heart when it comes to money so that you don't have to let money controlling you or make you feel stressed or anxious or burdened. For more information about the cost, visit twopointzero.me/rise that's R I S E. Once again, it's twopointzero.me/rise. Thanks for listening, and I hope to see you in the program. Thanks for listening. If you like what you heard, please leave a review on whichever podcast player you were listening on. It really helps me further my mission of helping more people realize their highest potential and live rich, fulfilling lives. Don't forget to hit subscribe to be notified when a new episode is released each week. Finally, download the worksheets and check out the resources for the episode. And most importantly, practice what you learned so you can transform your life. I'll see you in the next episode.


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The Financially Free Woman Podcast was launched in November 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic to share the stories of everyday people making a living doing what they love. While training her students in leadership and mental resilience, Sharon noticed the rising level of financial stress and anxiety experienced by many of her students. It dawn on Sharon that this was an opportunity for her to share how she overcame her own financial anxieties triggered by her personal experience with a 6-figure business debt and being let go from her job as the family's primary breadwinner. She began sharing everything she learned about mastering not just the practical side of money but also her mindset around money. Through this work, Sharon began meeting and building a community of women creating and living their dream lives. The Financially Free Woman Podcast is a collection of stories, practical tips and strategies to help you discover your passions, and use them to make a lucrative living. Imagine a life where you spend your time doing what you love and getting paid well for it! That's exactly what these women featured on the podcast are doing and they tell you how! Get inspired and start creating your own your dream life!


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