Meet Jaclyn Wise

Money Coach at Fiscal Fitness

“I’m having a blast with money, and John? Well, he’s still just as chill about it today as he was when money was tight.”

Meet Jaclyn

You would think a former math teacher would be a natural budgeter. I taught middle school math for 11 years, but was a mess when it came to budgeting and balancing my own checkbook.

It was a math problem I couldn’t quite solve.

As a teenager, I remember Dad sitting me down and telling me how I should manage my money.

Then my best friend had a way she would do it, and I thought, “We’re pretty similar, maybe that’s how I should do it too.”

I even signed up for Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University and thought maybe I should do it his way. (Honestly, I can’t stand his approach now … but at the time, I told myself I needed the tough love.)

I tried multiple systems, multiple times. I’d try one method for a month and then another, but I just couldn’t stay interested in doing any of them for long.

plan ahead method

It always felt overwhelming looking at things from a month ago and trying to remember what I had spent my money on.

Through all of this trial and error and not really knowing what the heck I was doing, my husband John was pretty chill. Somehow, he never felt stressed about our money. He really just trusted that we were fine.

I remember our premarital counselor asking us if we were “on the same page financially,” and I remember shrugging to myself and thinking, “Yeah, there’s no page.”

So when I got the idea to buy a too-big-for-us house, John went along with the plan. He didn’t care, so long as I was handling it.

That too-big-for-us house forced me to try my hand at budgeting again. (We really wanted that house!) And if having that house meant we would have to live on a budget, I was determined to figure it out.

And for the next two years, the budget we lived on was this:

Income minus expenses = NO MONEY LEFT!

There was no wiggle room at all.

When we bought the house I remember thinking, “If life goes perfectly, we can do this.” And actually feeling excited about it! (What on earth was I thinking?!?)

Needless to say, I quickly discovered life rarely goes perfectly.

With the too-big-for-us house, we had very little (a.k.a. NOTHING) left for the other things we valued. One of our greatest joys was traveling together, and now that was impossible without debt. We had robbed ourselves of one of our greatest joys, or we had to use credit cards to do it, and that felt absolutely horrible.

So once again, I found myself seeking out some sort of strategy to get more out of our money.

I didn’t want to “just budget” anymore. I was sick of so much restriction and sacrifice.

Then, in a very roundabout way, I stumbled into Jill Emanuel in 2018. She was hosting a 5-day Facebook challenge on money and I devoured her content everyday. It all just clicked!

I started questioning everything I had been doing up until that point. I wanted to start managing our money differently and really planning for our future. When I told John, he said, “If you want to change up the way we’re managing our money, that’s fine by me.”

Kelsa & Jaclyn (1)

That’s when budgeting became fun.

I was starting to geek out over our money and really lean into the ease and simplicity of the new concepts I had learned. I was finding more money in our budget, and things didn’t feel so tight anymore. Of course, that made it even more fun!

I began teaching other people how to manage their own money using the same framework that made so much sense to me. Then I discovered how coaching, more than teaching, is really transformative. I invested in courses and programs to master my coaching skills, and I feel blessed to work as a financial coach for the company that made it all click for me.

Jaclyn (2)

I’m having a blast with money, and John? Well, he’s still just as chill about it today as he was when money was tight. He doesn’t really see most of the weekly or monthly parts of our money, I maintain most of it.

But we enjoy talking about where we want to go, what we want for our family, what we’re willing to do to achieve our goals, and then I’m the one that goes about clicking all the buttons.

What used to be purely a means to an end has become my passion. I did not see that coming.

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