Gwen Serrotti: I was raised with an abundant mindset, that there will always be enough.

by - August 29, 2016

Gwen Serrotti resigned from a very successful corporate career of 19 years to pursue her own dream of being an entrepreneur and living out her purpose. She went to start, Xtraordinary Women to create a community and platform for Xtraordinary Women, doing eXtraordinary things. She is passionate about inspiring women to live their lives on purpose and she is passionate about women and helping them turn their dreams into reality. In this interview, she talks to me about her money habits.

Are you feeling the impact of the rand? How? 

Yes, the cost of petrol has impacted me personally as I do a lot of travelling. The rising cost of living has impacted my business as there is less disposable income for entrepreneurs to attend our events.

How do you remain positive about money during these tough times? 

There is one thing I know about South African entrepreneurs,  we always find the positive in any situation and turn it into our advantage. The Entrepreneurial Spirit is alive and well and as long as you look at how you can use the current economic challenges to enhance your customers’ lives, we will be ok! I see challenges as a way to enhance my current service offering to add value to others.

How did your childhood influence your attitude towards money? 

I was extremely fortunate. I had a single mom and grandparents that ensured that I got everything I ever wanted. I was raised with an abundant mindset, that there will always be enough. I still have that mindset today. I do not operate from a space of “lack”. I believe money is an energy which you need invite into your life. If you worry about it too much, you block the flow.

Are you good with money or irresponsible? 

I would say that “it depends”. When I really want something, no matter the cost, I will find a way. Even though it might not be the right thing to do at the moment, if I want it, I will make a plan! When it comes to paying the monthly bills, I do not compromise as it is important to maintain a positive credit record. A bad credit record follows you for the rest of your life so it remains a priority for me to maintain a good credit record.

How do you define financial independence? 

You are financially free when you have enough assets that can maintain your chosen lifestyle, should you wish not to work anymore. Your assets needs to work for you, when you no longer can, or want to work.

If you have the choice between buying a home or investing in shares, which would you choose and why? 

I would invest in shares as a home is not an asset. If you have a bond on your home it is a liability. It cannot generate an income for you. Unless you have many properties that generate an income for you.

What are you doing to ensure your family's financial well being? 

I invest and ensure that I have policies, like disability, that will ensure that we will be taken care of should I not be able to work anymore.

Have you ever been broke and how did you bounce back? 

I am very fortunate to have never been in that situation.

What's been your best and your worst decision about money? 

The best thing I have ever done is to invest in my financial education, to learn how to work with money and attract it into my life. My worst decision was to delve into Multi-Level- Marketing Companies. It is not a model that works for me.

How do you encourage yourself to think about your financial future without feeling overwhelmed? 

It takes time to become financially independent, but as long as I know I am taking the steps, every day, to get there, I don’t feel so overwhelmed. I also surround myself with women that have achieved financial independence and I reach out to them should I need reassurance. Surrounding yourself with mentors is crucial!

What’s your biggest personal indulgence? 

Biltong!! I love love love Biltong! I could not live without it!

What are your rules for lending money to friends or family? 

I don’t! Full stop! It complicates things. If they want money it is best to just give it to them as expecting it back just creates problems! Friendships have gone sour in the past.

Have there been times where you’ve experienced money blocks and conflicting feelings about money? 

Yes, but then I remember that money is an energy that needs to constantly flow, in and out of your life and that it is not healthy panicking when it flows out! It will flow back in again, as that is the natural flow of money.

What are some of the smart financial advice you can share with us? 

Get help! You can’t do this on your own. Get a mentor. Educate yourself on the subject NOW! Don’t wait until you are in your 30’s or 40’s. The younger you start the better. Find out more about the fascinating world of compound interest! The sooner you start, the happier you and your bank balance will be.

Follow Gwen on Twitter.

Photo Credit: Martin Van Niekerk Photography

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