Today we would like to introduce you to Beth Marshall.
Beth Marshall is the founder of financiallyauthentic.com. Her passion is to work with individuals, couples and entrepreneurs to help them heal and transform their relationships with money by teaching them how to use their money as a divine tool in an intentional, authentic, and proactive manner that allows them to maximize the amount of choice and freedom in their lives. As a CPA, an MBA, and a Certified Money Breakthrough Method Coach, Beth offers a uniquely-blended practical and spiritual approach to finances that is action-oriented, non-judgmental, and compassionate.
First let’s give our readers some background on what your life used to be like. Share with them where you started so they will have an appreciation of how far you have come and all that has changed for you.
What was a turning point or challenge in your life that made you decide it was time to take action and begin creating your Custom Built Life™?
I would have to say that my first step into challenging the “rules of life” was when I decided at 33 years old, after 12 years of pursuing a career, that it was time to take another path. The hours were long, and the nice-sized paycheck came with too many sacrifices to my personal life and my health. I woke up pretty much every morning dreading to get out of bed and head into work, and I felt like a part of my soul was dying. I also felt like I didn’t fit in where I was anymore, a bit like a square peg trying to jam myself into a round hole. It became painfully clear that it was time for some different choices, so I bravely leapt forward to begin recreating my professional identity and moving toward doing work that I love and that makes a true difference in the world (which was always a huge piece that was missing for me in the work that I did).
Tell us about the “before and after” of your Custom Built Life. (Describe what your life was like before your turning point and what it is like now? What one or two things do you get to do now that you thought would never be possible? What are some of the best benefits to living your Custom Built Life?)
Before I decided to live my life by design and not by default, I had a job that consumed me and that didn’t take advantage of some of my best skills. It was a job with a “good paycheck and benefits” so I stayed despite the fact that most days I was incredibly unhappy. I often felt lonely even though I had lots of people around me, and I just wanted someone to come and make things better. Until one day I realized that if something was going to change, the only person who could change it was me.
Now that I live life by design and very intentionally, I’m happier than I’ve ever been. I get to do work that I love, I get to constantly challenge myself to take myself and my business to the next level, and I get to make a massive difference in the lives of others in addition to be a part of healing and transforming our culture’s relationship with money.
I make conscious choices instead of simply going along with the flow because that’s what everyone else does. I allow other people to see that I’m not perfect and I live with my heart wide open and allow people to love me exactly for who I am – warts and all! I have so much support and love in my life sometimes I think I’m living in a dream. I know I don’t need to do it all alone and that the Universe and angels are by my side always rooting me on to succeed and that I simply need to ask for support or guidance when I need it.
What were some “rules” you used to follow, that you changed or released because they were not serving you well?
One of the key rules I used to follow as an employee was that hard work equaled success. As an entrepreneur, I now believe that smart work = success and that I can be rewarded abundantly for taking purposeful action as opposed to hours logged in. When I believed in the “hard work = success” model, I struggled with how many hours I worked – I was slowing losing myself in my work and getting burnt out quickly.
I also spent many years believing that to take risks meant potentially failing and falling flat on my face, so I very rarely took a risk. And while it is always a possibility to fail, I now know that taking risks can equally have the potential to lead to great success! When I avoided taking risks, I held myself small from what I was really capable of…and I knew deep down inside that I could be and do so much more.
I also used to believe that financial security came from a steady and abundant paycheck and other benefits (retirement, health insurance, etc.). I now believe that with my smart and targeted efforts that I can create my own abundance without a steady paycheck. While it was really scary to start my own business, I now think back and realize how restricted my life was because someone else (i.e. a corporation) was in charge of it.
What are two or three personal “rules” that now guide your Custom Built Life?
There are a few “rules” that I live by – I’d say first and foremost I live my life knowing that at all times (even when it’s hard to see it or remember) I am divinely guided. In essence, a higher power has its hand on my life. I simply just need to remember to surrender and see the signs placed in front of me. This is incredibly different than the “control things” model I used to operate from! I am the author of my own life, co-creating my life with the Universe (or God/Spirit).
Also, I now realize that while success does come as a result of what I do, that before I do anything in my life that I get to be loving, kind, and generous. I understand that the abundance in my life (financial and otherwise) is a result of how I show up in the world and the difference that I make with my heart, not just my head.
Lastly, I make choices consciously in my life and I get to do things instead of having to do them. Taking action is always a choice for me, and I don’t do things that I’m not aligned with generally speaking – or if I do something that’s not originally a choice, I shift at some point to it being a choice.
Advice & Perspective:
Our readers would love to hear some words of wisdom that will help them on their own journey of creating their Custom Built Life.
PAST: What is one piece of advice you would give to someone who has just started thinking about creating their Custom Built Life?
I would tell someone who is beginning to think about creating their Custom Built Life that it’s all about redefining things for themselves and breaking free from societal norms that may not serve them in their lives. For myself, I’ve redefined how I view success, abundance, and so many other things – and with each redefinition and conscious decision I’ve made for myself, my sense of freedom and peace has significantly increased.
PAST: What is the biggest thing you had to overcome to create the life you have today?
The biggest thing I’ve had to overcome to create the life I have today is a need for certainty and control. I’ve learned that life blissfully takes place in the space of uncertainty and that massive growth for me comes from the struggles and breakdowns. Each time I take a step forward in faith in the uncertain moments, I am rewarded in some way.
PRESENT: What are three things that people can do right now to start the process of creating their Custom Built Life?
First of all, I would encourage everyone to take an honest and truthful look at their lives – how truly happy and fulfilled are you? What areas of your life are working? What areas of your life are not working? Even if it’s not what you want to see and hear, it’s important to start with an authentic look at your life as it currently stands so that you can purposefully and intentionally make choices.
Second, I encourage people to spend some time thinking about what they really and truly want in their lives. So many people talk about what they don’t want and just end up attracting more of what they don’t want instead of what they do want. What are they passionate about? What do they want to create (for themselves and for others)? What difference will they make and/or what legacy will they leave? For me, this speaks to vision and purpose which have become such an important part of what keeps me going when I have a tough day (or week, or month)!
Third, I would also encourage people to examine their beliefs and be open to having support in doing that (i.e. training, therapy, etc.). It has been my experience several times that I’ve had beliefs running my life that I wasn’t even aware of until some experience showed me that I had a belief (or was operating under a particular rule) that was no longer serving me. In essence, be willing to acknowledge that there are things that you don’t know that you don’t know and proactively seek what’s holding you back or getting in your way of the life that you truly want!
FUTURE: What lies ahead for your Custom Built Life? What are you currently working toward?
My Custom Built Life includes an amazing husband and children in the near future, as well as being a leader in charting the course for financial healing in our world and a massive shift out of our culture’s scarcity mindset toward one of abundance. I’m so blessed to be in an amazing space that allows me to share my unique gifts with the world and make a difference in the quality of people’s lives…I am truly grateful.
Now for some fun, can you please tell us some of your favorite things?
Who have the most influential people been in your life? Why did they influence you so much?
There are many people who have influenced me in many ways throughout my life. First and foremost, my parents gave me a solid framework through love and structure to understand that I was capable and worthy of many things.
Secondly, I’ve been blessed to have many, many amazing mentors over the years – way too many to mention, I’d be typing for hours! These mentors took me under their wings to either share business advice or life advice (and sometimes both) that supported me in moving through a particular hurdle in my life. I’ve always found that when I’m willing to take myself on and seek answers to improve myself that the right mentor always “magically” shows up – I’ve been very fortunate in this way.
Also, I am blessed with amazing friends and colleagues who see the best in me and remind me of who I am in the moments when I am scared and unsure of what to do next – it’s awesome to have those friends when the chatter in my head is telling me that I can’t do it.
What is your favorite personal development book?
Oh goodness…where to even start with this question, there are SO many favorites!! I’ll provide my top 3 books since I can’t choose just one:
1) The Law of Divine Compensation (Marianne Williamson – about the universal laws of money);
2) Satan: An Autobiography (Yehuda Berg – all about the Ego and how it tricks us); and
3) The Gifts of Imperfection (Brene Brown – all about how we can live a wholehearted and joyful life when we’re willing to let go of the parts of us that don’t serve us to become who we’re truly meant to be).
What are your favorite tools or practices for staying motivated?
I am diligent about self-care…and at a fairly extreme level. When I’m operating at my best, it includes regular meditation, working out, spiritual reflection (journaling, oracle cards, etc.), reading (I’m a voracious learner!) and taking care of myself with treatments that have me feeling my best (massages, haircuts, etc.).
What is your favorite song for improving your mood?
I Lived – One Republic
What would people be surprised to learn about your Custom Built Life?
I’m not sure that people would necessarily be surprised, I think perhaps it might just be overlooked…that how I got here had a lot to do with me letting go and surrendering. Which for someone who likes order and structure was really hard! I find that my greatest growth comes from my willingness to be with a question about something in my life and trust and surrender that I can ask for guidance from higher powers and be led to the right answer that will serve others and myself for the greater good. So I’d say some people might be surprised to learn how heavily I rely on my faith and my intuition.
What question do you wish we had asked you?
“What’s the riskiest thing you’ve ever done in your life, and why did you do it?”
The riskiest thing that I’ve ever done is to start my own business in December 2011. After less than 2 years of working in someone else’s small business (and 14 years of corporate experience), I took the brave leap forward. It was breathtakingly scary, and yet when I look back now at the person I’ve become in just 3 short years I am eternally grateful for the courage that I had to take that leap.
In terms of why I started my own business, I felt a true drive to share my voice and build a body of work different from anything else out there that was talking about financial literacy. I have always desired to make a true difference with my work, and my vision is to live in a world where we live abundantly and without fear…and I believe that it starts with healing and transforming our relationships with money.
Thank you so much Beth for generously sharing your time with us!!
You can learn more about Beth and her work on her website: www.financiallyauthentic.com.