I know what it’s like to desperately want a better life. In this blog, I want to share with you how I went from a high school dropout to a successful financial advisor who qualified twice for The Million Dollar Round Table.
My dad passed away accidentally when he was 29, I was 6.
I grew up with a single mom with mental health issues. She married a raging alcoholic when I was 8. He used to take me and my sister to the liquor store every other Saturday to buy a case of whiskey – yep, 12 – 26oz bottles every 14 days. He was cruel and vicious in his emotional abuse. I often wished he would have just hit me; I think the scars would have healed quicker.
To say I was angry was an understatement, and I expressed that anger with severe rebellion that put me in dangerous situations. This started in my early teens and continued for several years.
I quit high school at 16.
I’ll never forget the principal calling me into the office the first week of September (I had just turned 16 the week before) and said I had two options. I could quit or they could ask me to leave. “I can leave?! Where do I sign!?!” and with that, I signed the paperwork and happily left school. Upon arriving home to tell my mother I’d quit, she told me if I’m not going to school, I have to pay rent. I said if I was paying rent, it wouldn’t be to her, so I packed my stuff and left.
I can’t remember where I went or how I ended up with my first place, much of that time of my life is blank. I suppose its my brain protecting me from all the pain and anger I felt.
I spent the next several years working multiple crappy part-time jobs making minimum wage. I pumped gas, worked at a tanning salon, was a receptionist at a motorcycle insurance company, and worked in the bars.
Regularly having more months than money I knew this wasn’t the life I wanted. My mother wouldn’t help me, so there was no Plan B. I was on my own, sink or swim. I decided to swim.
I had no idea what the big picture was, but whatever I was going to do, the first thing I had to do was graduate from High School. At the time here in Calgary, there was a high school for adult students. I ended up graduating (I think I was about 20) with my advanced diploma. The one piece of good advice my mother gave me was to get a job where I would always be able to work. She suggested being a secretary, but I knew that wasn’t the path I wanted.
In my first year at Mount Royal College, I realized accounting came easily to me, so that’s where my focus was – a business diploma in accounting. Mount Royal had a Co-op program that allowed me to get some work experience – and I got paid while I worked! A huge help when I was working in the bars and living on student loans to survive. That work experience helped me get a job with one of the companies I worked for. That company supported me to get my degree by letting me work PT and go to school part-time. From the time I went back to high school to finish my Economics degree was about 15 years. Small steps that accumulated to success over time.
Each step I made was a result of something blocking my way to what I wanted. And each time, I had to decide to stand up and ask for what I wanted. It wasn’t easy, but it was worth it! I learned and grew so much along the way.
Then, in 2009 I decided I wanted to hang out my own shingle as a Financial Advisor.
It took both my and my husband’s income to run our home, so I spent 4 years working part-time on my business, part-time as a Corporate Finance Manager, and part-time finishing my accounting designation. In 2014 I had a conversation with my husband, sharing with him I wasn’t all in anywhere, that I had managed to save 6 months of expenses from the work I had done as an advisor and that I wanted to give my business a real shot. If it didn’t work out, I could get a job again. The first two years of being full-time in my business, I qualified for The Million Dollar Round Table which is an income-based Association.
That was almost 10 years ago.
Then Cancer hit, and then covid. But those are stories for another day!
And now I’m growing again! I have added Business and Money Coach to my offerings as a Certified Flourishing Coach to empower women to transform their lives. As a Financial Advisor, coaching is a fundamental part of how I help my clients, now it is a stand-alone package. Flourishing has given me the tools to put my knowledge to work and a community to support my dreams and goals.
What I know for sure is that you can have whatever you want if you take consistent small steps towards it. It’s not always easy, and there will be things that kick your feet out from underneath you, but it is worth it!
Anyone can turn their life into one that thrives, you just need to decide and take the first step to start your journey.
Let’s take that journey together.
How to work with me:
- Speak at your organization
- Facilitate a workshop
- Book a call, and let’s explore how I can support you!
About the Author
A plan without action is just a dream – adapted from Joel Arthur Barker
A big part of the journey of actioning that plan is coaching you to be make fully conscious and empowering decisions about your money, figuring out what’s most important to you and supporting you in not just getting there but enjoying the process.
Christine Lang helps women find more money, more freedom and more happiness by changing their relationship with their money with a simple 4 step process:
- Take a quiz to find out what your money mindset is.
- Document your numbers so we can get a clear picture of where you are starting.
- Reset your current financial picture into the CISS formula (yep, KISS with a C 😉)
- Committed expenses
- Investment (long-term)
- Savings (Short Term)
- Spending! (yep, spending on whatever you want!)
- 3 coaching sessions one month apart to help you get back on your feet when you fall, because you will fall and falling is part of growing.