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#199: Legacy Series: My Money Story
Episode 19916th August 2023 • Money Boss Parent • Anna Sergunina
00:00:00 00:34:20

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Welcome to a special milestone episode of the Money Boss Podcast! Today, I'm stepping into the guest's shoes and sharing my very own money story. Join me as my husband, Yuri, takes on the role of the interviewer, delving into my personal journey and insights in the realm of personal finance.

Originally aired when the podcast hit the 100th-episode mark, this milestone felt significant enough to reshare with you again today as my final legacy episode.

As you consider the legacy, you're crafting for yourself and the world, remember the significance of your money story. It's a constant thread that weaves through the fabric of your life. Tune in to this episode to explore my personal money journey and together, let's continue building our money stories and celebrating each step toward financial empowerment.

Anna's Takeaways:

  • Pursuing Finance Career (3:04)
  • Misconceptions About Financial Planning (8:29)
  • Making Money Mistakes (11:31)
  • Spending Your Discretionary Income (14:35)
  • Favorite Self Care Practice. (21:58)
  • What Do You Value The Most? (24:19)

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 Money Boss Parents! Welcome to Anna's Money Boss Parent podcast, your go-to resource for mastering money management while raising a family. Join me as we explore practical tips, expert insights, and inspiring stories to help you achieve financial success and create a brighter future for your loved ones. Don't forget to subscribe, rate, and review the show to support our mission of empowering parents like you to take charge of their finances and build a prosperous life for their families. Let's thrive together on this incredible journey!

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Transcripts

Anna Sergunina:

You and I know that making smart financial decisions can be challenging. But it's 21st century, financial freedom is no longer just for the 1%. It is for you. And the question is, how do we find time, avoid making painful mistakes, and find the best resources to help us reach our financial goals. Join me on my journey helping busy families figure out how they can gain financial confidence and clarity, get actionable tips, and learn from the best experts on how to stop trading time for money. It is now the time you started living your best financial life. My name is Anna Sergunina. And welcome to the money boss. My new story, we all have one. And today I'm excited to share mine. I thought for Episode 100, I would do something different. I've had guests on this podcast. And I decided that perhaps I can be my own guest. And so here you go, I invited my significant other my husband of 16 years, Yuri Sergunina to have a conversation with me so that we can chat about some of the things that I may have not shared with you yet. So tune in into our conversation and let's have some fun. Hey, money bosses. So excited to be back Anna from the money boss podcast, excited for this conversation today. For a couple of reasons. Number one is I've got my significant other my hubby hooray. But we almost are at 16 years wedding anniversary coming up. So I wanted to invite him to join me for a conversation but but the focus of today's conversation is not me interviewing him, but him interviewing me. And I've wanted to kind of dive into the topic of a Money Story. And I couldn't think of a better person to have that conversation. Because Because why not so and you know, another reason is, we're at a hundreds episode for this podcast. And so I think it's something to celebrate. So with all of these reasons. Yuri, I'm so excited to have you over here.

Yuri Sergunina:

Likewise, thank you for inviting me.

Anna Sergunina:

Well, let's talk pretend nobody's here. Let's have a conversation. But I am actually kind of thinking that you probably should know the answers to most of these questions, because we've been together for so long. So

Yuri Sergunina:

I hope so. I hope Yeah, I'm looking for this questions, I put together some really interesting questions. So I hope your audience would, would appreciate this. Let's do this. Let me just go back to I guess, the most important question, and it's about your career, and why did you become a financial planner? I know that this was not the first choice of yours. But why? Why financial planning? What drove you?

Anna Sergunina:

Yeah, no, totally, totally a valid question, especially on the financial planning podcast. But I always think of myself as is an accidental financial planner. It's true. That was not my intent to begin with, especially when I started college, and was really heavily focused on taking a lot of biology and chemistry classes. And the reason is because I wanted to become a doctor. And so that was, at least in my mind, at the time and ideal career for a woman that, you know, comes from an immigrant family. And so you sort of have these ideals about, you know, what are you supposed to do with your life, right, or what your parents have taught you, you're supposed to do with your life. So I was on that track, I was really happy with, with that I loved I left taking all of those courses. But about halfway into college, I started to be more interested in the business arena for a variety of reasons. And I Yeah, and then I decided that that was what I wanted to end up with, you know, in terms of college education. So I switched majors. One of the other reasons is because I realized I didn't want to be in school for so long, if you know if it was gonna go the route of becoming a doctor. So I, you know, when to switch my majors and I decided that in the business school they had, what do they have, like three, I think are three options. You could focus on accounting, you can focus on finance, and you can focus on marketing. So I knew anything like that counting, that's your thing. You that's what you did. So like, all right, marketing, you know, back then this was 2003. I think 2002. And I can't I didn't really quite understand what the marketing thing was. It's different now. So I was like, Okay, I'll do finance. And it just sounded really big, really exciting. And so that's what I did. But as I got into it, and time came to graduate, I was taking one of my last courses I had to take was an investment course. And that's really where where I got my feet wet into the space of investments in general, but also personal finances. I didn't know any of that. It didn't exist in my world. origin. So that's it. That's where I was 17 years ago. And that's how I kind of got into into the topic of personal finances. And then all the sudden, I sort of had this epiphany, my kind of wish for becoming a doctor. And then, you know, the track and career and financial planning sort of, you know, married to an IQ, well, I can still help people. So I can be their financial doctor. And so that's the reason why.

Yuri Sergunina:

Yeah, pretty cool. And I don't know if you remember, my initial major in college was actually finance. And then I switched from finance to accounting, because at that time, I thought that finances are just too broad of a major to go into. I chose accounting, because it was more specific, more and more narrow.

Anna Sergunina:

No, that's true. I forgot that I have, I've always thought of your as a kind of pursuing that path for their accounting to begin with. Yeah, no, thanks for reminding me. Long ago?

Yuri Sergunina:

Well, I can tell you that financial planning has definitely been, you know, on the, everyone's here lately, and it's definitely a huge push for financial planning, you know, corporate and private world. And that leads me to the next question, can you tell us what type of financial planning do you do within the financial planning real?

Anna Sergunina:

Sure, I can. First of all, when I started in this on this path with learning about the financial planning process, and oh, by the way, for the listeners, because I know you guys don't know, but you're a urine, I went to the same college, the last two years, we went to the same university. So that's how I tend to same same courses. But as far as business goal goes, so in the financial planning space, and it's really broad, I've learned about it pretty early in my career. So I'm really, I guess, I got really lucky, I wanted to focus on the actual planning piece of really working with clients one on one in terms of like, what are their goals, what they're trying to accomplish? So there's a space for that, when I started to look into this career is like, on a serious note, saying, Okay, what am I going to do? How am I going to be a financial planner, because there's this other space, that wasn't as attractive to me in terms of like having to sell products and, you know, kind of do door to door knocking, which is, which is still okay, it's very much needed. But that's not what I was interested in as, as a as always, as a, you know, a doctor sort of mentality that I had, I found this little corner of the marketplace where you could do that, and just called fee only financial planning. So in this kind of realm, we're still talking about your portfolio. And there's, you know, obviously conversations around how to do that. But it's heavily focused on helping clients create a roadmap, and over the years, so I started to call them money roadmap, because it not only helps you see, where are you going, you know, have a path, but also know like, why are you doing certain things? Why are you saving for certain goals? Why are you investing not only the house, because the house is, is what I get to help you figure it out. But the why. And that really was what really got me excited about this whole process. So like, connecting the how, and the why, because the biggest disconnect I see with clients is it's doing all these things, because somebody told you, you have to save or somebody told you you like supposed to pay the debts off? Or if you're, you know, kind of at the end of your career and like, Okay, well, how do I make all of this work? So I'm excited about the y part. And that's where that roadmap money roadmap really helps you do that?

Yuri Sergunina:

Yeah. Now that makes sense. And when I think about financial planning, I usually think about large institutions, you know, like Bank of America, Merrill Lynch, Schwab, right, large brokerage houses that essentially manage money for their clients, and they do financial planning as for the service, and I think that's been probably one of my biggest revelations is that the financial planning field is still vast, and there's so many services within financial planning. And it's not just accessible to ultra wealthy or, you know, rich people, but it's, it's accessible to anyone who is looking for foreign advice on an hourly basis or any other type of arrangement. But what other myths you can debunk? What other ideas do you think people have in their minds about financial planning? That's just not true? Yeah, sure.

Anna Sergunina:

You're right. And it's interesting, because in my career, or for the last 17 years, and even in the space of the fee, only financial planning and really working with making it available to everyone, I've really seen quite a bit of shift not only like what technology and how it allowed us even like in times, like, you know, we're still going through the pandemic to work remotely, but also, you know, in that space where you can make it more available to everyone. So, one of the things that I've been passionate about, is to show right and even kind of the team that I have have, you know, that I've been able to put together here at Main Street is that financial planning, in its own in the career in financial planning is is a really awesome runway for women to consider. Because with a lot of flexibility, you can create that balanced life that you want, you can raise a family, right, because I'm doing that myself. Now you can have the free time, you know, in the balance of all the things to to pursue other interests. And I'm extremely proud of what Main Street Team has come to be. And we're 90% Female this year. So far, our founder, Jim Ludwig is still still with us. And this is his last year until it hits retirement, but having to come from where it is kind of the opposite, right? And where women are not even thought of is an option really made me proud to see this kind of evolution on its own. Makes sense.

Yuri Sergunina:

Yeah, pretty interesting. And I think you're definitely right is that the financial planning as a career provides a lot of different choices and flexibility for people, especially in today's day and age, when you can use a lot of different tools to streamline your business and to streamline the way you help clients. It's definitely a cool career that, you know, I would definitely recommend to anyone, but tell us more about your biggest mistakes. So I know, and let's just maybe keep it specifically to the world of business and finance. What biggest money mistakes have you made, if any at all?

Anna Sergunina:

Right? Well, I should say, I haven't made any money mistakes. I'm a financial planner, right? No, that would not be true. But I think the just like any, you know, just like anyone else, there are things that I've done that I'm not proud, but one in particular. And you can attest to that as well. This was pre financial planning days. And I want to use this as an example for others. So this was when I was a freshman in college, early two that are in 2004. And I remember, both of us went to Towson University, so So second largest school in Maryland. And so there's a huge campus, you'll like have to take a bus to go from one building to another, right? So I remember walking across as a freshman, right? You're like, excited about life and things that you're planning to do. And so there were these sales man, right? Standing on every corner possible with a little clipboards finding up all the older students for credit cards, and like, oh, free credit card, you know, you can, you can do whatever you want. I mean, what what else can you offer to a freshman in college, right, who has a part time job and wants to have a couple extra? I don't know, $100 of spending money. So well, I thought to myself, like, wow, wouldn't it be cool to have a credit card. And so I did sign up. And I know, the first one that I got was I got a whipping $500 limit. So I thought I hit the jackpot. I'm having a $500 that I could borrow, right and then pay back. And so I mean, after one credit card, there was another credit card. And so you kind of went from there, where all of a sudden, when I graduated, I realized that not only I had student loans that I had to pay off, right as part of my responsibility, but also I had a credit card pile that going into the world of a graduate was not the most proud decision. But had I known more about personal finances, and you know, some of the basic things. And that's actually one of the things that I've been frustrated, the most, kind of going through that experience and thinking back, I graduated with a business administration degree concentration, finance, and like, personal management of money one on one was not a requirement for anyone to take. So I just looking back at that I probably would have been in a much better position. And had I had an understanding of like, how to use a credit card. And when is it appropriate? When is it not? And you know, I think this is the one the one mistake that I'm the most vocal about. Yeah, to

Yuri Sergunina:

your point. Regarding financial planning. I, as far as I understand there's a huge movement right now to include financial planning at least some parts of the into the university curriculum and offer classes make it a mandatory essentially. And I agree, I think this is it's definitely one of the things that's missing right now in our society where people come out of college, they're, you know, in their early 20s. And they have no idea you know, how to balance a checkbook or using the modern terms how to, you know, go online and check their balance, right. Yeah. So I've been able to do that. And I do remember, remember your little understand your

Anna Sergunina:

Yeah, that's the that's the part that's the most embarrassing, not so much the credit card debt, but your and I also were, I guess, young and silly. I don't know. We were in love. And so we got married while we're both so we're in college. And so, yeah, that's the part that I'm most embarrassed about. But anyway, that's been gone. We done better than that.

Yuri Sergunina:

So let's see. So on that note, so if you'd have, say $1,000 in discretionary income, so it sounds as someone who would give you $1,000 Right now, how would you spend it? And why?

Anna Sergunina:

Yeah, that's a good question. And I think this definitely has evolved in my head, as I grew not only personally from the mistakes I've made, but also professionally, I've seen what other people do. I think the most recent kind of development release the is the face of motherhood for me and, and how it shifted the values of what I what I'm focused on and, and where I want to spend my time. And now that we've settled into our new home, we finished the remodel. So like all these big things that seem to be on the on the agenda for a while, or sort of, they're done in there. And so getting and then even like thinking about this year, after the pandemic, I really want to focus more with whatever free money we have on a budget is on creating memories. And that is it, can we have a family getaway weekend? And we can tend to do those free fairly frequently. But can we go? Can we do that more? Can we have family trips, where you know, we get to take Liam with us? So really focusing on on those memories as opposed to accumulating stuff. So that's, that's the face, maybe it will change at some point. But I'm sticking to it.

Yuri Sergunina:

Okay, so couple more questions. Who do you think are the three people who've been the most influential to you when it comes to your personal finances?

Anna Sergunina:

Yeah, I think definitely my parents, if I had to think back, and it really comes down to having to come from an immigrant family who really instilled in me at a very young age that the best position for the best place for a woman to be is it's really focused on you know, the hard work, have that work ethic and be independent. And so that definitely shaped the understanding I have about money. Yeah, of course, we talked about my mistakes I've made. But that's not that's not having the actual tools to work with. But I also think that a lot of what I learned about personal finance has really come from my profession. And so I give a lot of credit to that. So mentors I had along the way. And then, of course, the work that I've done with clients over the years to make sense.

Yuri Sergunina:

Yep. What's your favorite source of information to stay up to speed about money, personal finance business? Do you? Do you read any magazines? Do you follow anyone's Twitter accounts? How do you stay up to speed within your industry?

Anna Sergunina:

Yeah, totally. That's one thing that I do a lot of, especially reading, you know, various professional publications when it comes to personal finances, because there's the you know, the consumer sort of version, and then stuff that I have to know, as a professional, I have to stay with a lot of continuing education credits, in order to maintain my license, the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNING license. So there's definitely that part of, of education that I have to do but more on kind of a fun side, you know, when I scroll through my phone, or I have a break, so I do like Wall Street Journal as a publication, Money Magazine, Kiplinger's, or go to sources for me, because that gives me an idea and exposure into things that are, everyone else is reading, right, and questions that our clients are asking. And so I love those for that idea. A couple of my favorite blogs are mint.com. I've been following him for a long time. For those who and I've talked a lot about this on the podcast already. We use mint.com as a platform for tracking or expensive passively. So they've really have a cool blog on lots of various topics. So check that out. A couple more bankrate.com I love Bankrate use that a lot in my day to day work to check on what the current savings rates are on various accounts, what mortgage rates are, and they also have just lots of different layers and tools around personal finance. So I've been quoted quite a bit by these publications. So I'm a loyal follower. nerdwallet.com It's a cool site that started as a search tool for folks to figure out what's the best credit card and you know, where you can find the the best rate or you know, the cheapest, or the best rewards, they kind of evolved over the years to into, you know, more robust platform for reading. So I enjoy that very much. Now, since we're here on a podcast platform, you probably thinking well, if she does she only she only consume written word. No, not so much. I very much enjoy listening to podcasts, especially on my short drive from my house to Liam's daycare and on the way back when I drop him, drop him off. So I one of my favorites is kind of lately have been a podcast by agenda Culture called the gold digger. She talks a lot about business motherhood, kind of it's not so much for personal finance, but I get a lot of ideas from her and then a few money related podcasts, or like for news to Robbie's so money and then Millennial Money by Shana Gage, she has been a guest on this podcast as well. So I'm really big supporter but yeah, that's those are the places that I get most of my ideas from.

Yuri Sergunina:

Very cool. Well, switching gears let's have some fireside fun questions gonna speak. I have five like probably 10 questions that I want to hear your your answers to. These are not related to financial planning is a more personal questions to you if that's okay. Yeah,

Anna Sergunina:

I'd love to.

Yuri Sergunina:

All right, let's see. What are you reading this place?

Anna Sergunina:

Yeah. When you asked me that question, the first thing comes to mind are llama llama red pajama. And that's, that's the every night book that I tend to read these days. But we have a almost two and a half year old Liam who loves books. So a lot of my time, or our time spent on reading kids books, which I very much enjoy, just because I mean, they're cool, fun things for me to spend that precious time with Liam. But you know, most recently, in terms of reading, I've been focusing more on business books, particularly marketing books, that's a topic that's always trying to find new and interesting ways of doing things. And then personal development. So right now what I have on my night stand are actually two books. I don't know if you're going to be excited about those. But one is traffic secrets by Russell Brunson. That's the book kind of focusing on how to drive traffic right or into into your sales funnels, and really more on to your website and things like that. And the second one is.com secrets by the same person. That's the current phase of my reading.

Yuri Sergunina:

Very cool. Okay. Let's see. Next question. favorite drink?

Anna Sergunina:

I would say definitely coffee. That's the one of the first things I want to have in the morning and wine. Of course, we live in a wonderful area where we can we can have access to Napa Valley of Sonoma Valley within like an hour and a half driving distance. So I would love to say wine.

Yuri Sergunina:

Yeah, and I know your cook. I can attest to that. So what's your favorite dish?

Anna Sergunina:

So most of the times, it's kind of a, you know, quick and dirty. But I want to say pasta. That's, that's something that I can always come back to and really be happy about.

Yuri Sergunina:

Yeah, I agree. Okay, let's see. Next question. Favorite self care practice?

Anna Sergunina:

Massage? I've, I have you should have known an answer to that. But that's something to it just a bit of a kind of a story on that. But I have evolved quite a bit with that. Because early in my year years in my 20s and early 30s, that sort of sort of seemed to me like a very unattainable kind of, you know, luxury thing. But once for those of you who are not doing it regularly, once you get get into getting massages, that is something that is really really good health practice, too. So yeah, massage anytime.

Yuri Sergunina:

Let's see Apple or BC.

Anna Sergunina:

So Apple, Apple anytime all day long. What Apple product? Do we not have? Liam? He knows what iPad is on what a you know what iPhone is too. So yeah. Yeah,

Yuri Sergunina:

That's next question is iPhone. Or Samsung?

Anna Sergunina:

No iPhone. Yeah, that sounds Yeah, no, you're

Yuri Sergunina:

Apple girl. Perfect. Okay, so a little bit more complicated. So personal moto you live by?

Anna Sergunina:

Yeah, this one I love I love a lot and I anytime I sort of encounter a challenge it regardless whether it's a personal challenge Business Challenge, just the challenge in life, I just remind this to myself is that maybe time it is hard. But going through it is a one way and always kind of thinking that if I don't give up and so this is a famous quote by Winston Churchill, but never, never, never give up. So that seems to kind of get me through during those times.

Yuri Sergunina:

Yeah, and I love that, quote. What do you value the most in life? You can mention really? Anything from material world or spiritual world? Or what's the highest value that you put them something?

Anna Sergunina:

I think honestly, if I had to come up with one word, that would be more I would focus because I think at the end of the day, you can see that in in the relationships, whether it's personal relationships, you can see that at a workplace. So I think for me, that's definitely top of the list.

Yuri Sergunina:

Yeah, I agree. I think same same for me. I think honesty and and loyalty, which I want to see. What's the vision you have? I know that this podcasts been your your baby so to speak. What's the vision for this podcast for money boss podcast? And congrats. I know it's it's a milestone over 100 episodes so far, like, where do you see this thing going? And what do you want to achieve with this?

Anna Sergunina:

Yeah, I noticed. Thank you so much, I 100 episodes seems like almost done nothing but a lot of a lot of conversations and a lot of episodes recorded, which, actually, I'm still very much enjoyed doing. I think the focus going forward, I've been exploring a lot of different topics, a lot of different ideas. And one of the things that I've done with my team at Mainstreet earlier this year, and just kind of really more personally for myself, is that we declared a theme a theme of what do we like really want to be doing? And kind of, you know, what do we have sort of at hand? And where are we going? And so the theme is focus. And so with kind of thinking about that? If, if it's the time spent at work, you know, what am I doing my daily activities, and even kind of like when I sit down to think about topics to talk on this podcast, and who is it that I really want to connect with and so I've been focusing, you know, a lot on families, families like yours and mine URI, right, who are going through a lot in their life right now running businesses, climbing the career ladder, raising kids, and just having crazy crazy lives. And so I hope that the the topics and conversations that I you know, envision having for the podcasts with future guests, is going to help you know only amplify, you know, the decisions you make about your personal finances and really help you thrive in the life that you want. So my, my focus is bringing the best I can because I am honestly truly interested myself to find all the answers. And so I'm looking forward to the next phase of this.

Yuri Sergunina:

Very cool. And tell us where can listeners connect with you online? Where can people find you? I know you are on social media. Where can people go to find you?

Anna Sergunina:

Well, definitely tune in here three times per week here on the money boss podcast. So Monday, Wednesday, Friday, you should expect to really connect with us and get a new episode. Notification, make sure you subscribe. And then Instagram probably would be the best place for me right now where I have the time and the energy at the end of the day to check in and connect with you. And my handle is first name Anna number eight. And then my last name, sir guna ser Gu and i na.

Yuri Sergunina:

That's all I had. So thank you. This is very cool. I think it was very different from other podcasts that you had. That's pretty much it. So thank you.

Anna Sergunina:

Thanks. Yes, thank you, you're so much it's it's very much of a different experience to be a guest on a podcast. But it's a whole lot of different experience to be a guest on your own podcast. So I appreciate you taking the time, you should have asked me a question that I may have not been thinking about, but maybe that's for the next time. So next time. Exactly, everyone. Thanks so much for tuning in. And please don't forget to subscribe. And until next time, remember, you are the bosses of your own money. Hey, money boss. Thanks for tuning in today. If this episode did help you, then please be sure to share it with someone else you think will benefit from it too. After all smart financial decisions are for everyone. So don't be greedy. I hope I can help you even further by sharing with you how 1000s of clients I worked with in my career over the last 16 years. They're very successful financial lives on their terms. It's hard for me to do this over an audio and if you are ready for the next chapter of your life, then be sure to go to Main Street dash money.com To get your free resource guide. To help you begin correcting top six financial mistakes I see people make all the time, such as not having clear financial goals, not having a handle on spending or saving for the future. Not knowing how to get rid of all the debts and of course not having a clear strategy or plan on how to protect your hard earned money. Until next time, remember you are the boss

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