#FridayFollow – “The Pursuit of Happyness”
June 15, 2018
Interview with Stephen Newland, AFC® and AFCPE ® Member
Stephen Newland is an AFC® in the Atlanta, GA area with a passion for helping people set and achieve their financial goals. He started volunteering as a money coach in 2010 and now works full time running the financial education programs at churches in Buckhead & Alpharetta, Georgia.
AFCPE: When people ask what you do, how do you respond?
Stephen: My tagline is “It’s hard to stay on track with money. We’ll help make it easier”. After that I usually say that I help people who want to create a budget, work on paying down debt or build savings.
AFCPE: What inspired you to enter this field?
Stephen: My own personal story. I made a lot of financial mistakes because I didn’t know better. I came out of college with $55,000 in student and consumer debt making $42,000 a year. I thought it’d take me forever to pay that off. As I started studying personal finance and applying that to my own life I realized I didn’t need to be saddled with debt for 10, 15, 20 years. I paid off my debt in four years and haven’t looked back. I strive to help someone every day to remove some of that same stress that I felt about money.
AFCPE: Tell us about your podcast, “Find Your Money Path”.
Stephen: Twice a week, I try to put a quick thought on the audience’s mind just to challenge them or get them thinking about money through a different lens. I interview people in other industries (like insurance, estate planning, even home organizers) and provide motivation and practical tips on how to save money. I focus a lot on the emotional and mindset side of money.
AFCPE: Amazing! We love your creativity and innovation! What’s up next for you? What has you excited?
Stephen: Thanks so much - that truly means a lot! Currently, I’ve been focusing on working with individual clients, but I am really getting excited about approaching small businesses about ways that they can help their employees through financial counseling. It’s such a worry and distraction to workers all over America and I truly believe financial counseling is the answer! Also, there’s an awesome app out there called Olivia AI. It helps its users understand their spending patterns and even suggests ways for them to save money on things like groceries by analyzing when someone grocery shops then checking out sales at stores near where the user shops and lives. It’s pretty awesome!
Stephen Answers the Friday 5:
- My Why: So, few people seem to really feel confident about money and making financial decisions. It breaks my heart to see people who continue to work in their 70’s and 80’s when they don’t want to, but it’s out of necessity. I want to help my generation drastically reduce the % of people who have to do that.
- My Favorite Quote: "When people can't do something themselves, they want to tell you, you can't do it. You want something, go get it. Period” from the Pursuit of Happyness (The movie)
- My Hero: My grandpa. He always led by action and was a man of few words.
- My Favorite Personal Finance Resource: Ray Linder’s “money personalities”. It’s been so eye opening when this concept is introduced!
- My best advice:
- For someone starting the journey to financial well-ness: Don’t give up after a month or two. It gets hard but - push through it. There are so many others here to support you on your journey when you feel stuck or feel like you are swimming upstream against culture/family/friends. You’ve got this!
- For a new professional entering this field: If you have a passion for personal finance and love helping people I can’t think of a more rewarding way to spend a career. There’s so much need out there for you to use your passion and you just never know how by you saying “yes” to this how you’ll change someone’s life.
Follow Stephen at:
Search “Find Your Money Path Show” on iTunes or Google Play. I’m also on YouTube under the same name. If you’d like to be a guest on the show, please reach out! You can e-mail at email@example.com