I never knew how important community was until I moved away from my hometown almost 3 years ago. Up until then I had a very strong network of family and friends who I’d known my entire life.  Giving all that up to start a new life somewhere was a big change, and it forced me to do something that scared the hell out of me — build a new community from scratch.

It’s not easy making friends in a new city in your late 20s. I was at least lucky to have my husband right there with me, but that first year was tough to say the least. I go into a bit more detail about that first year in this podcast episode.

As hard as it was to court new friends and open up to them, 3 years later I can look back at the whole experience grateful for how much it changed me. Without a doubt, I am the most confident I have ever been in my life. And I know for a fact that had I not gone through all that, I would have never had the confidence to start the Mo’ Money Podcast and interview big guests like Rob Carrick, Christopher Smith or Preet Banerjee.

How Community Can Help You Reach Your Financial Goals

This got me thinking about how having a strong community has also helped my finances over the years. I’ve been blogging for over 4 years now, and being part of a community of people who also want to talk about their personal finances — their struggles and their successes — has been incredibly motivating to me.

I know that if I didn’t have people to talk to about money so openly with, I probably wouldn’t have taken my finances and goals as seriously as I do now.

As a recent example, my friend Jaclyn Phillips and I launched the Rich & Fit 21-Day Challenge this past January to form a new community of like-minded people. We’d never done anything like it before, but we wanted to see if we could create a community that was just as passionate about fitness and finance as we were.

With almost 500 participants, we were absolutely floored at the response we got. And not only did we help our program participants reach their fitness and finance goals, we were in turn motivated to kick butt at our own goals too.

And even though the program is over (though we hope to launch another one in the near future!), the private Facebook group is still going strong with participants continuing to share their journeys and uplifting each other.

I Know It’s Easier to Keep It to Yourself, But Don’t

As much as I can promote the importance of community when it comes to your personal finances, I can appreciate how terrifying the idea of talking about your money to a group of people can be. I still remember the first time I brought up the topic with some of my close friends. Some of them were receptive, some of them had no idea what I was talking about, and some of them immediately changed the subject.

That being said, since I am pretty vocal about personal finance, I’ve actually been able to introduce the world of personal finance to a number acquaintances and friends (and of course blog readers and podcast listeners like you) over the years. I can’t tell you how fulfilling it is to inspire, educate and help people just by letting them know it’s okay to talk about money with me.

Every single one of us deals with money on a day-to-day basis, and it still boggles my mind that so many of us have never felt safe to talk about it without receiving criticism or judgement in return. This whole idea that talking about money is taboo needs to change now.

Need Help Taking that First Step? I Got You

This leads me into forming a new community where talking about money is not only okay, it’s encouraged and praised! I’ve been toying with the idea of starting my own Facebook group after the Rich & Fit Challenge Facebook group took off, and today I am officially opening the doors to you. This Facebook group is centered around my new mantra — Money. Life. Balance.

I want us to share our journeys together so we can live more financially stable, healthy and balanced lives. I’ll post a topic for discussion every Monday based on the topic of that day’s blog post. I’m hoping this will give us a jumping off point to discuss what’s most important to us and ask questions that we’d like a second opinion on.

So make sure to join my Facebook group so we can all chat more about our money, lives, hopes and aspirations together! Looking forward to seeing you in there.

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