13 episodes

You’re a woman on the cusp of “retirement” naturally feeling some anxiety. We are two financial planners who take this subject seriously (but ourselves less so). We will help you feel more confident about your choices by cutting through the myths and mysteries. Through conversations and interviews with both subject-experts and women who have gone through what you are approaching, you will have the correct information and motivation to be in control of your future.

Take Back Retiremen‪t‬ Stephanie McCullough & Kevin Gaines

    • How To
    • 5.0 • 4 Ratings

You’re a woman on the cusp of “retirement” naturally feeling some anxiety. We are two financial planners who take this subject seriously (but ourselves less so). We will help you feel more confident about your choices by cutting through the myths and mysteries. Through conversations and interviews with both subject-experts and women who have gone through what you are approaching, you will have the correct information and motivation to be in control of your future.

    12: What Women Need to Know About IRA's, with Sarah Brenner

    12: What Women Need to Know About IRA's, with Sarah Brenner

    Today’s guest is Sarah Brenner. Sarah is the Director of Retirement Education at Ed Slott and Company. She truly is an expert in IRAs—Individual Retirement Accounts—which for so many of us form the crux of our plan to save for retirement. But best – she knows how to explain the complicated stuff clearly.
    Listen in and learn the key things women need to know, especially after widowhood and divorce. We’re talking best practices, long-term benefits, and common pitfalls regarding both traditional and Roth IRAs.
    Most of us think IRAs are pretty simple: you put money in and take money out. But in reality, the rules are very detailed and it’s easy to mess up. And the problem with IRAs is that if you get it wrong, the penalties can be steep.
    Key Topics:
    An introduction to Sarah and her work (3:34)
    Why IRAs are an “overlooked tool” and “a great strategy for saving for retirement” (5:05)
    The next step once you understand the type of account you have (09:40)
    Traditional versus Roth IRA (14:03)
    Clearing misconceptions around Required Minimum Distributions (21:01)
    How does a beneficiary IRA work? (25:27)
    Differences between a “transfer” and a “rollover” (31:36)
    What you need to know regarding IRAs and divorce (33:31)
    A real-life case of an IRA-related mishap (38:16)
    You can reach follow Sarah and read her wisdom on IRAs at www.irahelp.com.
     
    If you like what you’ve been hearing, we invite you to subscribe on your favorite platform and leave us a review. Tell us what you love about this episode! Or better yet, tell us what you want to hear more of in the future. stephanie@sofiafinancial.com
    You can find the transcript and more information about this episode at www.takebackretirement.com.
     
    Follow Stephanie on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and LinkedIn.
    Follow Kevin on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and LinkedIn.
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    • 47 min
    11: Why You Shouldn't Aim for Perfection in Investing

    11: Why You Shouldn't Aim for Perfection in Investing

    In this episode we speak of the issues and fears people, especially women, tend to have around investing and how often times that fear or uncertainty leads to a late or complete lack of action taken in investing. We believe that there’s no “perfect” time to enter the market and that “time in the market is more important than timing the market.”
    It’s important to look at investing as a long-game and know that even substantial dips in the market recover and yield overall great gains in the long run. This is apparent when looking back at the previous 20+ years of the S&P 500 and noting the early-2000s Dotcom crash followed by an even bigger stock market crash 7-8 years later, followed by COVID years later. In spite of these crashes and dips in the stock market, the overall trend is growth over time.
    Despite the natural human tendency to avoid uncertainty and risk, the best time to enter the stock market is usually now.
    Tune in for all the nitty gritty details.
    Key Topics:
    “Joe from Jersey” was hesitant to invest because he was always waiting for that “perfect moment” that may have never came. (4:14)
    The professional investors know that nobody will get every call right in this “game of numbers.” (5:42)
    “Time in the market is better than timing the market.” Money invested should be long term money. (7:15)
    Jeff Gundlach considers 70% a high success rate, even with an entire staff of researchers. (10:43)
    Even professionals know that it is impossible to call investments correct all the time. (13:00)
    The biggest barrier to being a good investor are the thoughts in our heads. (13:55)
    “Being right early, feels an awful lot like being wrong.” Leaving the stock market. (16:10)
    It is really almost impossible to time when to get out of the stock market. (17:10)
    Explaining the charts of the past years of the S&P 500. (18:39)
    CLICK HERE for a supplementary video explaining the charts.
    Just because you know something, it doesn’t mean that the investments are going in that direction. (20:38)
    DALBAR tracks investment performance including the average return of mutual funds, stocks, bonds, cash, hedge funds, and more. (21:14)
    Choosing the “right” investment. How fear of making the wrong choices causes people, especially women, to make no investment decision at all. (25:05)
    No matter how good or bad the decisions are that people make, there will always be a small segment of return that simply depends on luck. (28:12)
    Look at the expenses of the investments that you are in and focus on diversification. (31:42)
    If you like what you’ve been hearing, we invite you to subscribe on your favorite platform and leave us a review. Tell us what you love about this episode! Or better yet, tell us what you want to hear more of in the future. stephanie@sofiafinancial.com 
    You can find the transcript and more information about this episode at www.takebackretirement.com.
    Follow Stephanie on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Linkedin. 
    Follow Kevin on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Linkedin.

    • 35 min
    10: She Did It! Real Retirement Stories with Sheila Netti

    10: She Did It! Real Retirement Stories with Sheila Netti

    Today’s guest is Wealth Empowerment Coach Sheila Netti. Sheila is an amazing source of knowledge on all things money management and financial education. In this conversation, she goes down memory lane to talk about her personal retirement journey.
    Having grown up in the projects in 1960s Harlem, the environment where Sheila spent her childhood was far from the safest and most prestigious. Couple that with a father who, despite toiling day after day to provide for his family, was unable to move the needle on his family’s socioeconomic status.
    Sheila realized, from the ripe young age of eight, that something had to change. She recounts her path to retirement, from her initial dream of becoming a nuclear physicist as a child, to joining the Navy in order to pay for college, to making the decision that she would retire by the age of 55.
    Listen in and learn how Sheila changed her behaviors and beliefs to achieve financial freedom and, later on, how she found a passion for helping other women do the same.
    Key Topics:
    Sheila’s journey to retirement (1:49)
    I retired at 55! ...Now what? (7:30)
    Setting up the business (12:22)
    Sheila’s plan for putting away money over time (16:44)
    How Sheila approached investing (22:19)
    “Money and emotions don’t mix.” (25:36)
    “I didn’t need to pay myself with things. I shifted to experiences.” (29:18)
    What was harder: saving or not spending? (31:29)
    Why Sheila became a wealth coach (35:43)
    Teaching your kids how to manage money (38:07)
    How investing in real estate played a role in Sheila’s plan (40:09)
    The biggest challenge that Sheila’s coaching clients are facing around money mindset (45:18)
    “Be confident in your ability to be powerful with money.” (47:20)
    Reach out to Sheila to learn how to take control of your financial destiny. Visit her website at www.sheilanetti.com.
    If you like what you’ve been hearing, we invite you to subscribe on your favorite platform and leave us a review. Tell us what you love about this episode! Or better yet, tell us what you want to hear more of in the future. stephanie@sofiafinancial.com 
    You can find the transcript and more information about this episode at www.takebackretirement.com.
    Follow Stephanie on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Linkedin. 
    Follow Kevin on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Linkedin.

    • 51 min
    09: New Year's Money Resolutions

    09: New Year's Money Resolutions

    A common topic for this time of year is New Year’s Resolutions. From what we’ve seen, a lot of people’s New Year’s Resolutions often involve money, and the stuff regarding our finances that we know we should do and feels simple. But it never really is easy, is it?
    The sad thing is, it’s not so much the resolutions themselves that are hard, but keeping our mindset on track to follow through with them as the months go by. It’s easy to say, “Starting January 1, I’m going to spend less money.” You might be able to fight against that first shiny object, and maybe even the second and third one. But eventually, as it happens, life catches up and we let our temptations get the best of us.
    One great way to start gaining a sense of control around your spending is to do an analysis of your credit card statements and find out which “holes” you need to plug. Don’t begin with a prescribed budget or a spending regimen—simply find out how you’re spending your money.
    Then control the flow. Almost done with a car payment? Plan to redirect that money in the future to your savings to avoid wasted funds down the road. Control your environment as well. For example, clean out your email inbox and unsubscribe from sale alerts; or set up a new email entirely dedicated to communications involving said sales and offers.
    When it comes to eliminating debt, start small and don’t make things too rigid. Don’t underestimate the psychology of small wins. For this (and any money-related resolutions, for that matter), it helps to give yourself visual goal posts or even an accountability partner as you pay down your debts. You’re more likely to stay motivated if you can see your progress in real time.
     
    Key Topics:
    The typical half-life of New Year’s Resolutions (1:16)
    “Personal finance is more personal than it is finance.” (4:33)
    Make strong decisions around where you want your money to flow (7:58)
    Set up your environment for success (9:37)
    Paying down debt (11:28)
    What’s different now that you’re going to actually accomplish this resolution? (17:19)
    Why are you avoiding what you know you ought to do? (20:20)
    Making sure your financial advisor is the right fit for you (22:05)
    Happy New Year! (25:07)
     
    If you like what you’ve been hearing, we invite you to subscribe on your favorite platform and leave us a review. Tell us what you love about this episode! Or better yet, tell us what you want to hear more of in the future. stephanie@sofiafinancial.com 
    You can find the transcript and more information about this episode at www.takebackretirement.com.
    Follow Stephanie on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Linkedin. 
    Follow Kevin on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Linkedin.

    • 27 min
    08: Retirement is More than Money with Autumn Nessler

    08: Retirement is More than Money with Autumn Nessler

    “Who are you going to be without your business card? When everybody else is working Monday through Friday, what the heck is going to be taking up your time? How are you going to use your skills and talents?”
    There are millions of women, right now, who are wondering what their life could look like after leaving behind their successful and hard-won career. They know they want to retire, but with decades of life left to live, the fundamental question that’s ever-present as they get closer to that last day of work is, “What’s next?” In this episode, we cover how to navigate this crucial transition and design an exciting and purposeful post-career life.
    Today’s guest is Retirement Options Coach Autumn Nessler. She is the founder of An Intentional Life, LLC, which assists women in the creation of a lifestyle plan through educational workshops, research-based assessments, and one-to-one coaching. Autumn works with her clients to create a non-financial retirement plan by helping women in hard-won careers deal with what she calls the “choice overload” that comes when they leave that job, so that they have the full confidence to forge their path going forward and live life on their own terms.
    Key Topics:
    What Autumn does for work and who she works with (1:38)
    Autumn’s own “ah-hah” moment that led her down her current path (5:07)
    Answering “What lies ahead?” for high-powered women thinking of retirement (10:45)
    “Why does it have to be a crisis for us to take care of ourselves?” (16:12)
    How to be intentional (18:51)
    Why we’re living in one of the best periods of history (21:56)
    Rethinking retirement (26:58)
    An example of a client’s success story (28:28)
    The idea of a post-pandemic world should inspire you to be creative about your future (32:02)
    Reach out to Autumn for a “clarity session” on your potential post-career life via autumn@designretirement.org. Visit her website at www.designretirement.org.
    If you like what you’ve been hearing, we invite you to subscribe on your favorite platform and leave us a review. Tell us what you love about this episode! Or better yet, tell us what you want to hear more of in the future. stephanie@sofiafinancial.com 
    You can find the transcript and more information about this episode at www.takebackretirement.com.
    Follow Stephanie on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Linkedin. 
    Follow Kevin on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Linkedin.

    • 35 min
    07: Here's a Secret: We're Guessing, and That's OK

    07: Here's a Secret: We're Guessing, and That's OK

    As human beings, we crave certainty. We want to know what’s going to happen and to know that we’re going to be okay. When looking into the financial future, we have to realize that a key ingredient of any analysis is assumptions or, to be blunt, guesses. Stephanie and Kevin tell us, however, that guessing isn’t wrong. It serves a purpose. It’s an ongoing exercise that narrows down the cone of uncertainty from experience to experience, week after month after year.
    Planning is a living, breathing, ongoing thing. Do yourself a favor and relax, even if the path ahead is still a little foggy. An imperfect execution is better than waiting for the “perfect” plan to come together (hint: Don’t count on it!).
    Key Topics:
    Dealing with uncertainty while working with your financial planner (3:42)
    What planning a trip to Disney World can teach us about the value of making guesses (7:40)
    Thinking like a weatherman to narrow the cone of uncertainty (11:36)
    “Relax! Give yourself some latitude to change your mind.” (14:30)
    Overcoming paralysis by analysis (17:12)
    Lighten up, Francis (18:56)
    If you like what you’ve been hearing, we invite you to subscribe on your favorite platform and leave us a review. Tell us what you love about this episode! Or better yet, tell us what you want to hear more of in the future. stephanie@sofiafinancial.com 
     
    You can find the transcript and more information about this episode at www.takebackretirement.com.
     
    Follow Stephanie on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Linkedin. 
    Follow Kevin on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Linkedin.

    • 20 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
4 Ratings

4 Ratings

KT Friend ,

Great podcast!

Just listened to your senior living episode It really resonated with me and provided a very helpful framework to think through options. Well done!

LizL1111 ,

Fabulous

Thank you Stephanie! I so enjoyed this podcast and look forward to lots more listening in the future. Such a great resource for all of us looking to learn more about life and personal finance!
Liz L

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