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Nicole Barham talks about how finances can be fun and why being in a relationship with money is key

May 11, 2022

I met Nicole Barham in the We Should All Be Millionaires (“Shmillies) Facebook group from Rachel Rodgers and I am soo happy that she said YES to be on my podcast. The result is a fabulous talk about money. Nicole is the founder of the finance business “Design Your Wealth'' and she articulates how important it is to talk about money. The other taboo topic besides sex. Why people don’t talk about money and the magical tool Nicole created to make finances uncomplicated, easy and fun, we discuss all that and much more in this eye-opening conversation. Enjoy!

Nicole created the “5 Minute Bookkeeper”, a tool that helps mainly female entrepreneurs track their finances.

“It helps you have more joy around your finances”, Nicole says and adds: “I can safely say that finances can be fun and you don’t have to leave it for last”.

We’ll talk more about Nicole’s stupendous creation, but first I want to know who Nicole is and how she creates joy in her everyday life.

Nicole says that she is usually a happy person, even as a kid people asked her why she’s always smiling. “I came out smiling”, Nicole answers laughing.

“It’s a privilege to always be happy and look at the bright side of life”, Nicole

“There are always gonna be worries and there are a lot of things that are beyond our control, but what we can control is how much joy and happiness we bring into our lives and what we focus on”, Nicole

There are so many things happening in the world that we could grieve over, but that doesn’t help anybody, in fact it’s the opposite! When we create joy in our lives, it emanates into the world and has an impact on our surroundings and the ripple effects can do its magic work.

Nicole not only talks about money, she makes the most funny reels in the world! If you’re on Instagram, you have to follow her! I celebrate Nicole for being such a  multi-talent, it brings joy into my life for sure. : )

Why don’t we want to talk about money? Money affects literally every single thing in our lives. That is why one of Nicole’s missions is to talk about money, talking about finances, talking about the importance of being in control of your finances.

So many people are starting businesses and a tiny fraction of them are focussing on finances first as a foundation.

“There is the myth of ‘I don’t want to start tracking because I’m not making any money yet’”, Nicole says. But are you investing in your business? Education, programs, coachings… It’s all an investment in your business and it all should be tracked.

I bought Nicole's 5 Minute Bookkeeper and I’m so looking forward to getting my finances on track. I’m so bad when it comes to budgeting, even as a cub scout’s leader I had a hard time getting the bookkeeping right with the 50 francs we got for ice creams… : )

Some tips from Nicole:

  • There is no correlation between money and math, it’s totally different
  • Nicole was horrible at math (isn’t that’s relieving to know)
  • No matter what skills you have, if your money mindset is shaky, you won’t think you're good at money, numbers, finances…
  • Nicole’s inability to manage her own finances landed her in bankruptcy court and she says it all comes down to the mindset. She switches her mindset to “I’m gonna be a good steward of my money”.

Nicole knows what can happen if you don’t pay attention to your money. While in bankruptcy court her lawyer mentioned that there are people who file bankruptcy more than once and that was when Nicole decided to change something: “That’s not going to be me, I’m one and done!”. 

Nicole started to apply the tools that she had successfully used when she started her career in accounting, in her personal life. She made a budget, she started being in her money every single day. “It’s a habit that you develop but after a while you feel weird if you’re not there every day taking a look”.

There is the saying “where focus goes energy flows”. If you focus on your money, it expands. If you focus on the positive, you’ll see more positivity in your life and in the world, if you focus on the negative, you’ll see more negativity.

“If you pay attention to your money, more money comes into your life”, Nicole

Nicole’s journey with “Design Your Wealth” started around the time when her son was diagnosed with autism. She realized that her 9 to 5 job won't make her enough money long term to provide for her son in case he can’t provide for himself later. Nicole started her own business and worked with clients one-on-one. Although she didn’t make a lot of money at the time, she saw great results with the few clients that she had. She started wondering how to provide this work that can have such a positive impact for more people and create a passive income for Nicole. That’s how “5 Minute Bookkeeper” was born.

“Some skills develop over time, use your skills to move your business forward and have a positive outlook on that”, Nicole

Nicole says that as she increased her income, she also increased her services, because she received more feedback. Seeing that some people bought the tool but didn’t use it, Nicole started a private facebook group and set up live money dates every Friday to help her clients with support and  accountability.

“Dating your money, being in a relationship with your money, will definitely help to expand it”, Nicole

I ask Nicole how people can make more money when they’re employed and they don’t have their own business.

  • You can negotiate a raise in your current job
  • You can apply for a new job where you earn more
  • You can start a business on the side if you don’t want to leave but know that the wage is limited

Nicole started her finance business while still being employed. She would work with clients in the evenings and steadily went from there.

Make sure to listen to the episode for all of Nicole’s helpful tips!

Being helpful is something that is super important to Nicole. She wanted to create a culture that really helps her clients, where they have a partner, where they feel like somebody is holding their hand, so that when they get to the other side, they're like “Oh my God, this tool is amazing, I feel like a pro in doing this”.

“I’m gonna be there, keeping you accountable, keeping you on your toes, holding your hand, motivating you through all this and then you might get to a point where you’re like “Let me now go off and do this on my own, I feel like I can manage it on my own''. I always say that I’m like a personal trainer for your finances just without the heavy lifting”, Nicole states laughing.

We talk about Nicole’s magic, how she maintains her happiness and joy.

Key answer: “I set boundaries”

Nicole sets boundaries around when to start and stop working and when to rest.

“Rest is one of the most important things that I have incorporated into my daily habits”, Nicole

During rest time Nicole takes a nap, meditates, does some deep breathing and puts away the electronics.

“Rest gives you the energy to keep going”, Nicole

Another thing that was a game-changer for Nicole is investing in a meal prep delivery. Nicole says that cooking took up so much of her time, so now her family has the meal kits that are quickly prepared and offer a great variety as well: “I have saved a lot of time and it brought so much joy in my life”.

So many people might ask themselves: “Can I afford this?” To Nicole a lot of it is perception and not necessarily going out and doing the research. If you compare for example a visit to the restaurant with a meal from the meal prep company you’ll quickly discover that the difference is not that big or that it’s actually even less expensive!
Nicole says that she has a block around the topic of having a personal chef in her house. She just assumes that it’s super expensive and that people are going to be like “she is so bougie, she hired a chef to come cook her meal”. That’s another thing about the perception of how expensive things are and how we think we can’t afford them without even knowing all the facts and getting all the details.

“If you’re an amazing boss to somebody and pay a good salary, it’s the ripple effect again, the abundance flows to the next person”, Ronja

I ask Nicole what dreams she has and she wonderfully answers: “I feel like I’m already living my dream”.

“I want to be a millionaire, I want to have the resources to buy whatever I want. I know some people think that’s selfish, but it is so amazing when you’re able to take care of yourself, take care of your family and then take care of others. Sometimes you can’t take care of others until you take care of yourself or those who are in your inner circle”, Nicole

“Why don’t we see money as an energy or a tool to have possibilities to support ourselves and our families?”, Ronja

“I totally believe that when women make more money, the world is a better place”, Nicole

Nicole has such a genial charisma, it was so much fun talking to her. Everything is connected and mindset is key. And boundaries! What are your key takeaways from this conversation? I’d love to know. Share them with me on IG @joyismycompass or in a review on itunes. I’ll see you there!




We mentioned Rachel Rodgers in the podcast: You should read her book “We should all be millionaires” and listen to her podcast!

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