This time of year, tends to be one of the most EXPENSIVE times of year for a lot of people.

It is when there are a ton of festivities happening all within a relatively short period of time and we often can get swept away with the fun, the tradition, the expectations of family or friends and ALSO tempted by all of the sales and amazing marketing that is about to be around every turn. 

We want YOU all to be prepared for it. Not only financially, but also from an emotional place, so you don't get swept up in the excitement of it all, only to regret it come January. 


  • A lot of the really big sales that are going to be promoted in the coming weeks will have advertising that makes you want to "ACT QUICKLY" because the deal will end soon, stock is limited, shipping times may be delayed. All of these reasons will be used to push you to BUY and BUY quickly. 
  • Spending money should actually feel very neutral. The excitement should come when you get to enjoy the thing you have purchased. NOT in the actual transaction itself. 
  • Plan ahead for the holidays by following these simple steps:
    • 1. Make a list
    • 2. Jot down the ideas you have for each person
    • 3. Get a price estimate for how much each of those items will cost 
    • 4. Total everything up. 
    • 5. Be prepared to cut things out
  • Don't forget to budget extra for additional food, decor, cards, family pictures, donations, and misc extras.


"I think a lot of people, when they meet a financial professional, assume that they’re someone who is just naturally good at money, that they have some sort of formal financial training or degree in finance, or that they’ve always made good decisions with their money. And that’s just not true. I became a financial coach because of how financially stressed I used to be and the transformation I experienced from working with a financial coach myself"

Jaclyn Wise, Financial Coach at Fiscal Fitness Phoenix


In this episode you will learn...

  • What the major catalyst was for Coach Jaclyn to finally make a change
  • How Jaclyn got her start in financial coaching
  • Why Jaclyn left her teaching career to coach full time

Additional tips for when changing careers:

  • Tip #1 - Before you make a big financial decision like buying a house, having a baby, making a big career change - hire a financial coach to help you navigate the day-to-day side of your finances and see the impact on your financial future
  • Tip #2 - Quit the traditional monthly budget template, and instead create a spending plan for each paycheck you receive.
  • Tip #3 - If you’re financially stressed, if you feel like you’re spinning your wheels and not gaining any traction on your financial goals, if you’re fighting with your partner about money - reach out to us to schedule a free call with us and see if financial coaching is a good fit for your situation. There is always hope!




Does it seem like learning to manage your money is just plain impossible? Do you keep trying to become better with your money, but then you find yourself giving up? In this episode, we dive in to the 4 stages of learning with money.

We provide key characteristics of each one so you can easily identify where on the journey of growth you are. We also give you specific steps to take to keep you moving along the 4 stages.


In this episode, Kelsa will help you understand and implement:

  1. The 4 stages of learning a new skill

  2. Characteristics of each stage

  3. Steps to continue progressing through the stages

  4. Questions to ask yourself that will boost your commitment to progress

See the image of the four steps Kelsa mentions in this episode here


In this episode Coach Jill walks you through how to assess whether a home project is worth the investment and if you decide to move forward, what are some of your options for deciding how to pay for the project.

There are so many options out there - from paying cash to credit to HELOC’s to loans.

Let’s talk about what option makes the most sense for YOU when deciding to move forward with a home improvement or renovation project.  


Questions answered in this episode:

  • How do you determine whether a home improvement project is “worth it”?
  • How do you decide the best financing option based on the size of the project? 
  • When's the best time to use a HELOC vs. home equity loan?
  • What we recommend for anyone considering home improvement projects this year


Additional tips and strategies:

  • Do your research! Spend time in the researching phase before you move into action. Doing this research and weighing your options will help you to save money in the long run and help you feel confident in your decision.
  • Get at least 3 quotes for from contractors for your home improvement projects
  • Consult a financial coach to help you figure out all of the moving pieces and things to consider!
  • Start saving now, even if you don’t have a project in mind yet. One of the certainties of home ownership is that home repairs and improvements WILL come and you want to be ready for them when they do. 

Most of the time a brand new client finds Fiscal Fitness, they find us by searching for a “financial advisor.” And most people don’t know what a financial coach even is. In this episode, Coach Jaclyn breaks down the differences between financial coaches and advisors, and help you decide which one you need on your money power team today.

It’s one of our favorite times of the month! It is time for the FC Beat.

That’s the Financial Coaches Beat, in case you didn’t know, where Jaclyn and Jill are giving you the inside scoop on what’s happening, all things in the Fiscal Fitness world.

And of course our favorite part which is tooting the horns of our amazing clients, sharing the great work that they are doing and celebrating their accomplishments.

You’ve got to tune in for this one!

Why is it that we want to shout from the rooftops when we hire a personal trainer to help us get in the best shape of our lives, but we want to keep it a secret when we want to hire a financial coach to help us get in the best financial shape of our lives? Coach Jill dives into the thoughts we have about money that are actually holding us back from becoming skilled in this incredibly important area of life. 

Have you ever thought “How are they doing that?” when you see friends going on vacation, renovating their house, taking a voluntary sabbatical from work, or driving their new dream car? Usually this thought is followed by another one that involves self-doubt, shame, or embarrassment because we believe we must be “doing it wrong”. 

Asking for help to figure out how to “Do it right”, brings about an onslaught of emotions that often prevents us from taking steps to learn a better way. WHY do we feel shame asking for help in this area of life, but would never experience shame asking for help with our fitness, or in learning a new trade, or learning how to cook or even parent better? Let’s dive in to examining the thoughts that are holding us back and why we are having them in the first place. 


Here are some of the top reasons why people feel afraid to invest in their financial health:

  • It feels too vulnerable or embarrassing.
  • I fear judgement for my past mistakes or mishandling of money.
  • I worry that I will be told that I am beyond help. That there is nothing that can be done/it's too late.
  • I don't want to be told what to do with my money (This is likely UNTRUE. You likely DO want to be told what to do with your money - you just want it to be told you can do and have all the things you want.)
  • It is too expensive. I already worry about money, how will I add this additional expense? (Listen to find out what this thought is really all about.)


  • Jill mentions her good friend and cookie artist Jen. Check out her amazing talent on Instagram @jentasticsweets

The simplest description of the Diderot Effect is this: “The introduction of a new possession into a consumer’s existence will often result in a process of spiraling consumption.” 


What does this mean? You buy a new car and now you need a new tint job, new rims, a new phone charging cable, new sunshades, etc. That one purchase has resulted in a multitude of purchases that before the initial purchase, were not even on your radar. 


The Diderot Effect is a VERY common spending phenomenon that nearly everyone falls victim too. In this episode, Coach Jill gives examples of how the Diderot Effect might be showing up and she also gives you 7 tips to help you reduce its financial impact. 


Coach Jill's 7 tips to reduce the Diderot Effect

  • Awareness is key.
  • Imagine how the new item will fit in with the rest of your life.
  • Limit temptations.
  • Look for opportunities to borrow, trade, or rent before you buy.
  • Always budget for MORE than you anticipate needing.
  • Set Limits/Pace yourself. 
  • Make linear purchases if possible.



  • Use the app to help you easily unenroll in all of the emails you receive and limit temptation.
  • Read the book: Atomic Habits by James Clear, where he talks more about the Diderot Effect, along with so many other wonderful tips on how to build or break habits.

Did you know that the average American household spends over $200/month on their cable bill? For most of us, that makes cable our most expensive utility. Learn how to save money with streaming by cutting the cable cord in this episode.


Notes from episode:

  • Guest expert (and Jaclyn’s husband) John Wise shares different options for cutting the cable cord that can save you more money than you might have thought possible.
  • Cutting the cable cord does not have to mean that you lose access to sports, local TV, or DVR. In fact, John and Jaclyn have access to all of them.
  • One of the most inexpensive ways to cut the cable cord is to install a rooftop or wall antenna, which will enable you to pick up locally broadcast channels. You can completely eliminate your cable bill by doing that.
  • A more popular option is to use a streaming device (like a FireTV Stick, Roku Stick, Apple TV, Google Chromecast) or a Smart TV and install/subscribe different streaming services (like Netflix, Hulu, YouTube TV, etc.).
  • If you’re not ready to cut the cord, we have a few other suggestions you can try to lower the cost of your cable bill.

Additional tips:

  • If you’re going to install a rooftop antenna, make sure you’re not violating any HOA restrictions in your neighborhood, and you might need to pay someone to help install it for you. 
  • When signing up for streaming services, you can cancel at any time. Pause the ones you aren’t currently using and only pay for what you’re actually watching.
  • We really like YouTube TV for an all-inclusive service because it has unlimited DVR capabilities, and you can watch your recorded shows on all of your devices. Additionally, you can have multiple user accounts so that different users can record their own shows and watch them on separate devices at the same time.


Money is a LIFELONG journey. No matter where you are starting, there will always be something “Next” on the list. When we think about our financial lives, it’s as if we are climbing a mountain. We are always looking up and we can see the next step towards the goal we are working towards, but it’s like the top of the mountain is covered in clouds. Every time we think we must be JUST about to reach the peak, we get through the clouds and discover there is still so much more to go. 

There will ALWAYS be more we are striving for and if we aren’t careful this can lead to frustration It is easy to compare ourselves to others who we see as more successful and think - “they are so far ahead, I will never get there.” So to combat this, we need to manufacture some artificial peaks for ourselves. We need to have a way to measure our progress and recognize that while it still feels as though we are climbing a never ending mountain, we actually HAVE made so much progress and that makes it worthwhile to keep on going!


Notes from the episode:

  • Our brains want to keep us “safe” and “safe” = Familiar. This isn’t actually a good thing if the things we have been doing aren’t getting us the results we want.
  • In order to “retrain” our brains, we need to create positive memories and experiences that relate to our financial wins. 
  • Setting goals or milestones is the first step. We need to have something clearly defined that we are working towards, so we know when we can celebrate!
  • Visual cues and reminders can be extremely useful for positive reinforcement and training our brains to focus on what is most important to us (this is why vision boards are actually so powerful!).
  • Be intentional about using ordinary experiences and turning them into purposeful and intentional ways to celebrate and acknowledge your progress!

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