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S2 EP2: Asset-Rich but Cash-Poor: Navigating Cash Flow Challenges

Are you struggling to manage your cash flow? In this episode, guest and Money Coach Adam discusses practical insights, tools, and strategies to increase your cash flow and achieve your financial goals. Coach Adam has over five years of experience working with individuals, teams, businesses, and C-suite executives to improve their money mindset. Discover how to identify blind spots, set achievable limits, and be honest with yourself to create a more abundant financial future. This episode promises to be easy to follow and helpful for anyone looking to improve their cash flow.

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Victoria: Hello and welcome to season two of Hello CoachCast. I’m Victoria Mills, and today my guest and I will be discussing a very common financial challenge that many people are currently facing, struggling with managing cash flow, and in some cases being asset-rich yet, very cash poor. With the current economic climate, it’s certainly becoming increasingly important to have accurate cash flow to avoid the big issues such as insolvency, both in business and personal life.

But don’t worry, we are here to help in this episode with our Money Mindset Coach Adam. He’ll be sharing some practical insights, tools, and strategies to help you increase your cash flow and identify any blind spots that you may not be aware of to really start to achieve some of your financial goals.

And we absolutely promise to keep things very simple and easy to follow, no matter whether you’re a business owner or an individual looking to create a more abundant financial future. So today I am joined by Coach Adam, who has previously worked as a chartered accountant in the business world for many years, and he was approached to become a coach and now has over five years of professional coaching experience working with individuals, teams, businesses, and C-suite executives to really help them develop their own action plans and improve their money mindset. So, I’m very excited to welcome Coach Adam here today to start to unpack how we can create a really positive mindset to manage our cash flow. So welcome Adam.

Adam: Thanks, Victoria.

Victoria: Victoria. It’s wonderful to have you here. So, look, this is a topic that impacts so many people… I don’t know anyone who hasn’t struggled with cash flow over, you know, in the course of their life, I’d love to, you know, hear from you. What can be sometimes the biggest blocker that people come across when they are struggling with managing their cash flow and it. I suppose another way to ask this is what’s the number one question that you have got asked as a coach, and obviously as an accountant before that, that people are struggling with, that they come to you looking for an answer to help them manage their cash flow better?

Adam: I think it starts with them firstly not having a cash flow… is they’re experiencing outflows, and the inflows are insufficient to meet those. So it’s interesting, because often it’s people who are in business who prepared cash flows for their businesses. Yet when you ask them do they have one for their own purposes, they look at you blankly or say, well, what do you mean?

So you say, well you’ve done a strategic plan for the business, which includes projections and cash flows, yet you’re not doing that for yourself. So it’s about getting that mindset. What do you need to achieve to be able to survive firstly, but secondly, to achieve your various goals, whether it’s education for your children or holidays?

Then we start from that premise that they need to knuckle down, get that cash flow in the basic format, and then look at areas where we can improve it.

Victoria: So, I’m curious, I sometimes like to start with the end in mind.

What would you like our listeners to be able to walk away with from today’s conversations? And then from there we can reverse engineer our chat today.

Adam: Well, I think it’s just realising what you can achieve rather than just looking blankly at the wall and say, I don’t think I can survive. You know, we are really interesting at the moment with the increased interest rates. How many people are sitting there and saying, ‘I don’t know how I’m going to cope’? But yet, if we can go through this process, they can see, wow, actually I can achieve a lot more.

I can meet my outgoings and actually, I’ll probably have some extra cash.

Victoria: So, do you think the number one place to start is sometimes moving out of denial of one’s financial cash flow situation? To be able to have a truthful and honest conversation with someone who can unpack some of their blockers that they might not have been willing to look at before they go into complete doom and disaster.

Adam: Absolutely. And I think all of us are guilty of setting those boundaries, those limitations of what we can achieve. With clients that I’ve worked with, it’s been amazing once they’ve started to work with the cash flow of possibility and they’ve exceeded that.

Victoria: I always find sometimes, I mean, I’m certainly not an accountant and don’t have your background, Adam, but sometimes our mindset, no matter what we are wanting to tackle, is such a huge component and a really valuable ingredient to put into our back pocket to look at firstly, what are some of our beliefs around money and finances that we are now seeing show up as patterns as we grow into adulthood. And a lot of us have been influenced by parental patterns and behaviours and it’s always, I always find it a very interesting journey to take clients on.

It doesn’t matter whether it’s around money, it could be around relationships, it could be around career wellbeing, anything, that it’s, our mindset is literally the computer room that has the ability to either help us thrive in an area or allow us to dive in an area.

So, tell me, what have you come across in some of your conversations with clients who have come to very much specifically working around how to help them understand what their blockers are? What are some of the limiting mindsets that you have come across with coaching clients?

Adam: I think it starts with a fear of numbers, a fear of facing, the reality of just dealing with cash. You get those that are very comfortable and very financially orientated, but my experiences for the most part, even with financial people, it’s like the mechanic with his cars, is that they’re not that comfortable looking at their selves in the mirror or their numbers in the mirror.

So it’s that blockage, firstly, and once you get them to massage those numbers, it’s amazing. It’s like opening a Pandora’s box. It’s like, why was I frightened of this? Why was I frightened to take myself out of my comfort zone and look at numbers in reality rather than run away from it?

Victoria: I’ve also found a technique that I’ve done over the years, I’m sure you’ve probably offered your client similar ones of being able to, I mean, there are lots of wonderful tips now to become more aware of the numbers and not be afraid of them.

And I know something that I personally did many years ago, in my early twenties where I would keep a money. Diary of every single thing that I spent across the week and then across the month, like it was such a profound experience on understanding the value of where you are, spending money right down from the newspaper to a coffee, um, and then being, instead of being able to say, well, I can’t afford something at the end of the month, it’s actually making very conscious decisions around, well, I just need to spend less here, and then I’ll have more sitting at the end of the month and it’s doing simple things such as adding up the numbers of a cup of coffee.

And depending on where you buy a coffee, it can be anywhere from $3 to $6, sometimes $7. So adding that up on a daily basis, all of a sudden you are left with a few hundred dollars at the end of each month, and then at the year, the end of the year, you’ve got a few thousand dollars.

So, I think to your point, really embracing the numbers of where you are spending and also determining the value of really what are the goals? And what is most important to you, to then be able to work backwards on where you are spending your, your money as well, I believe also has a huge impact on your cash flow.

Adam: Yeah, and it is, what I find really interesting with that is that so often it’s the focus on the spending. What I try and focus on is actually the income. So, if you need to achieve X in a month, let’s break it down into a week. Let’s break it down into a day. Let’s break it down to an hour. And often you get someone say, well that’s actually not hard.

If I can either save $5 every hour, which will achieve it, or I can make $10. And once you get that, it’s like taking that, they’re more relaxed and say, well actually, if I break it down into those pieces, so every day I need to earn x. Then I can achieve my goal. And what I try and do is focus on the income.

The expenditure is real, but it tends to be a negative conversation rather than a positive conversation. And it’s amazing how then once they’ve looked at how I can achieve more income-wise, they start to shave out the expenses they don’t need.

Victoria: Of course. And then that also ties in, I mean, it’s cash in, cash out, right? The more awareness you have on what you’re spending outward is going to also have an impact, uh, to what’s left at the end of the month, but also looking at strategies to how you can really increase what you are earning as well.

Adam: Yeah. Yep. And certainly with, I’ve got a good example where, uh, a business started up, it got some youngsters in, gave them a target. And they all went out and achieved the target. The next year, the CEO called them in and said, here’s your new target, but I’m going to double it and I’m gonna pay you double.

And these guys looked to them and said, that’s not possible. They said, well go out. And 85% of them achieved their new targets. Having started from, they ‘couldn’t do it’. And that’s the mindset that I keep telling clients is you set the limits. No one else is setting your limits. So we’ve gotta work with that, obviously within a sort of realities phase.

But it’s amazing how people go out and say, I never thought I could earn that in a month. And I have.

Victoria: So that comes back to you’ve raised coaching 101. Number one is having a goal and having an intention, right? To be able to work towards that is clearly the starting point, which I love that us as coaches, creating the space for our other journey of our clients and having that goal and clarity. And yes, we know the power of having a goal and being clear on that goal is that you’ve gotta triple, you know, the chance of actually being able to hit that goal if it’s actually written down somewhere, as opposed to floating around in your head.

What are some of the other ingredients that, apart from setting a goal, I love hearing that story of when you set the benchmark to a certain point, to your example, 85% of that case study hit, hit the mark. What other ingredients are important? To help shift your mindset apart from having a goal, what would be some other tips and strategies that you can share?

Adam: It’s an interesting one because I think. With all of us, it’s going outside of yourself, in other words, thinking outside the box of what you can do, um, to either change your career, change your income stream. So, it’s, it’s looking at those blind spots that might have come through in your early childhood where someone said, you can’t do this, you can’t do that.

And exploring those and saying you can. And I found one particular client changed her career completely because where she was, it was, she wasn’t going to achieve her goals, so she moved out and realized that she actually had skills that she had not recognized and achieved her goals.

Victoria: So I would imagine that you, part of your coaching conversations and the role of being a coach is helping people understand the difference between having an aspirational goal and, and a real goal and what the gaps are to get there from point A to point B. So that was another great example. What other tools do you use in helping clients understand, in my language, I sometimes use them as shadow behaviours, uh, to be able to understand where some of their blockers set?

Adam: Well, it’s interesting I use the enneagram, but I think there are a number of similar tools where someone can look at themselves on paper, but something like the enneagram allows them to look at their blind slots in a way that’s not threatening and provides some insights into how they can overcome those blind spots, and I think that’s the first thing.

Recognizing the blind spots and putting up your hand and say, yes, I see that in myself and I’m happy to work on them.

Victoria: Tell me, what are some of the challenges that you have found in coaching clients when they’ve got different values around money, Adam?

Adam: Well, I think that’s a good one because what is money? Um, and I think that’s the whole challenge is what we need going into someone’s head and saying, are you doing this for you? Or are you doing it because you need to keep up with a peer group? Or do you need to have a fancy house because your friends have it?

And there’s a values conversation, which often takes up quite a bit of time because you’re searching into someone’s real soul to be honest to themselves and say, actually, I prefer to live in the country. I don’t really need the fancy house, but I’ve sort of been dragged along that for various reasons.

So it’s recognising where your values are and then taking that into a strategy, and it may change perspectives completely.

Victoria: It’s interesting, I’m sure that you’ve seen a lot happier relationships when individuals take responsibility for their own earning capacity.

Adam: Absolutely. But also, I think that the struggle I’m finding at the moment is with some clients, particularly partners, where they’ve committed to a mortgage, et cetera, and on both incomes. And now they want a family or they want to educate. And the challenge then is, we have to go to a suburb that’s not so expensive or a house that’s not, and that’s real conversations.

And it’s wonderful to see because it does challenge the relationship, but not always positively. But it can really, uh, change a mindset and improve cash flows and have a much more relaxed outcome.

Victoria: Well, we certainly want a more of a relaxed outcome and move away from any doom and disaster thinking.

So Adam, I’m curious, what would be some action steps that you could suggest for our listeners that have heard this conversation, for those who are wanting to have a truthful look at the numbers, where would they start?

Adam: A piece of paper in a pen or if they are Excel capable, is to pick up the chequebook, pick up the credit card. And put everything down on the expenses, look at the income, and then see what the net position is. That’s the first starting point. Then to take another piece of paper and very roughly put down the key aspirations, and then have a conversation with a partner or with yourself, you say, are those real?

Do I need a smart card? Do I need a that? Do I need a holiday every year? And look at what are essential and what are not essential, and then to try and marry that back to your cash flow.

Victoria: That’s really powerful. Any additional tips or insights for our listener? Because I’ve certainly heard the number one thing that you have said in our conversation is embrace the numbers. Do not be afraid or frightened of the numbers, and be very honest with yourself. So, are there any other insights that you’d like to share?

Adam: Yeah, just to underline, be honest with yourself. Because that’s the one particular thing that I find is that we are reliving, and I say we reservedly, we we’re all tending to be something that we haven’t faced ourselves. So, look in the mirror and be honest with yourself.

Victoria: So being honest, don’t be afraid of the numbers and knowing also that there are possibilities out there and you can, you can actually change your situation.

Adam, I think, is. The most important thing that we’re talking about here, that you’re actually not powerless. And by going on a discovery, obviously with yourself and having someone qualified in your corner, with someone like your experience, obviously is going to arm them with far more fuel to be able to create a positive solution.

So, thank you very much for joining us here today.

Adam: It’s a pleasure.

Victoria: Thank you for tuning into today’s episode of Hello Coach. If you enjoyed the content, we would love for you to subscribe, like, share, or leave a review on your favourite podcast platform.

Also, if you’d like to work with improving your mindset and improving your cash flow, or if there’s something else you’d like support with, you can get in touch and book an incredible coach such as Coach Adam by heading over to hello-coach.com. Thank you for listening today, and we look forward to catching up with you again next week.

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