This week I received a beautiful email from a client who, helped with the tools and support we offered to her, managed to make a 180 degrees change in her life. I believe we can learn a lot from her story, from how she handled her divorce, and mainly, from the way she regained control of her life. Join me and enjoy Rachel’s story, from Financial Whoa to Wonder. 

Let’s get into it:



We want to feel safe [00:01:30]

The lessons we need to learn [00:03:00

What we should avoid during divorce [00:04:30]

The beginning of Rachel’s story [00:06:00]

The body talks [00:07:30]

The beauty of this woman [00:09:00]

Rachel’s critical situation [00:12:00]

The last straw [00:15:00]

The first step into a new life [00:16:30]

Some things never change [00:18:00]

Rachel’s email [00:19:00]


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Divorce Roadmap Session:

My book: The Jelly Bean Jar – Empowering Independence through Divorce

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Hey, everyone. And welcome back to this week’s podcast. Today I wanted to talk to you about something very near and dear to my heart. It is not only financial literacy for women, but also for men. It is also about the power plays that I see going on in a lot of relationships around money. Sometimes it’s a ploy, it’s a trap how the other person in the relationship controls what’s going on. But today I wanted to talk specifically about a client of mine who is now divorced. And this week I received an email from her that I will read at the end.

The email was so touching, given everything that she’s gone through, that I got tears in my eyes and got very emotional. 

When this client came and sat in my office, her situation was, the only word I can use is, dire. 

For all of us, when we are going through our relationship breakups, the most important thing we want is security. And security is perceived to come from finances. 

In other words,


knowing that you can pay your rent, that you can pay for your gas and your electricity, put food on the table, put petrol in your car, and pay the bills that you’ve always paid. Those are the things that the majority of us want the most. 

And there’s no doubt that the fight over finances when going through a divorce can be very bitter. And sometimes people think they deserve more for whatever reasons. 

But what I like to try and get across is when we are going through our divorce is to be sure that we get what is fair. Not what is perceived as I deserve this. I went through this, I put up with this, but what is fair. And the reason, the word fairness is so important is because I’m a big believer in Ani. And Ani is an ancient Indian word, and it means the reciprocity of life. 

And what I’ve witnessed, given the facts around divorce, I’ve spoken about them before. Still, it’s roughly 45% of first-time marriages fail. 70% of that 45% fails a second time. And then 90% of that 70% fail a third time again. Can you imagine? 

And this is my primary driver with my business. Not only to help people get through a divorce with my Five steps to a seamless divorce program. But also to understand if we do it the right way, the first time, and we learn the lessons, let me repeat that. We learn the lessons, so we don’t get what we are not entitled to. We don’t go and spend a fortune fighting for something that really was not asked. That we don’t prolong a war. We don’t become so emotionally distraught over the fight that it affects us via stress. 

And then as we all know, stress brings on all of these other medical conditions. Divorce is awful if you do not do it the right way. But when you do it my way, what happens is you’re not part of that 70%. You’re not part of that 90% because you’ve done it from a position of fairness. You’ve got what you deserve. You’ve learnt the lessons that many, many people are not learning. They’re just repeating the same mistake over and over again because they had this sense of entitlement. 

And this client that I’m about to talk to you about is a prime example of what good looks like given everything she went through.

And I think that’s why I am so emotionally connected to her because his story is sad. Still, she’s now one of the happiest people I’ve ever met. So let me tell you about her. She’s a woman who works in a school. She has two teenage children, and she’s married to a man that has his own business. Now, throughout the 20-year marriage, she’s worried about being the home carer. 

She makes sure that the house is respectable. She looked after the children because you know, her goal in life, their purpose is to help children with learning and literacy. So of course her own children are so vital to her and making sure she does the right thing and leads by example for her kids.

Her husband is in the building industry. And because of that, he has these grandiose ideas of the sort of property that they would live in. He had what’s known as an identity issue. His identity is tied to wealth because of the family that he comes from. 

His family is quite wealthy, and he was brought up with privileges that many of us didn’t have.

His parents always bailed him out when things got a little bit hard. So as an adult, he would make decisions. And those decisions sometimes put the family in a very precarious financial position. Still, he tried to keep how bad it was from his wife until it got to an unbearable stage. 

One day she came into my office, she was referred to me by a financial advisor, and we sat down, and we did a deep dive into her situation. She told me for many, many years, she felt sick in the stomach, and doctors couldn’t tell her why she felt this way? Looking back now, 12 months after she left and now divorced her husband, she said, Tanya, I know what that feeling was. It was my body warning me that things weren’t right. 

Can you imagine right now inside of you, you have a warning signal? That he’s giving you information, that’s feeding you the truth, but if you don’t listen to it, it can’t help you. And that’s what happened to this client.

But now she understands what it was telling her. So here she is in her forties with her teenage children. And she knew that something wasn’t right. 

We sat down and went through some of her bills, her mortgage and how much the house was worth. And straight away it didn’t add up to me. The truth is always in the numbers. So when we were doing her divorce roadmap, I asked her to go away and get me some documents. 

Now, this is where this woman is so inspiring. She was working full time, getting an excellent wage, but pretty much had no money.

She knew she needed my help to find out exactly what was going on and get to the bottom of it. But she had no money to survive. How was she going to pay me? 

This was the beauty of this woman. She knew she had to go and do something because if she didn’t do anything, nothing was ever going to change. She would stay with this sick feeling all the time in her stomach.

Her ex-husband, he’d taken loans out in her name and forged her signature. He had rung the bank, and he’d done things like not paid specific mortgage instalments. Those sort of things just to try and move money around from here to there. Now I’m not saying this man did this on purpose, to be honest, I actually think he has some problems that he needs to address. I’m not placing blame here by any means. 

My client was a little bit of an enabler because she didn’t stand up to him. She didn’t ask questions. She didn’t want to know more because deep down she knew something wasn’t right. And she did not want to cause conflict. So she allowed it to happen. 

I often say it takes for a successful relationship both parties have to be committed, not 50%, but 100%. And neither of these parties in hindsight, we’re committed 100% to the success of their relationship. Lucky it had got so bad financially that there was little that either of them could do that was so committed to their struggles.

Both of them, him trying to hide the issues and her ignoring that they were even happening, that they just existed in this relationship.

We realized that they were so far in debt, that there was no doubt, after talking to the lawyers and the accountants, that at some stage in the near future, the bank would repossess the house. The cars would be repossessed. And there was no doubt because of of the precarious documents that we found, that she would eventually either be forced into bankruptcy or at least have to go into liquidation.

Can you imagine? This is a woman that got up every day, went to school, did a job, looked after her students, loved her children and cared about them. Like you wouldn’t believe. She also said later on. Her children pretty much were the reason that she stayed. 

She thought I’d just have to stay for the kids. They’re getting to an age now really when they’ll be ready to move out of the home. And when that happens, I can address this issue. 

So here she is with this terrible decision, she had to leave her husband, and make the decision whether to declare bankruptcy or wait for the hearing to happen. 

Now, she took control of her life, and that is what’s so amazing about this woman. She took control of her life, even though the picture in front of her was so dire. 

If we circle back the thing about security, she felt there was nothing secure in her life. Other than the love she had for her children and the ability to control their lives. She had no money whatsoever. If she didn’t go bankrupt, she would owe so much money that she would have to work for many years just to pay back the debt.

And there’s so much more here than I am not explaining to you.

She said, looking back, there were only lessons and no regret. She took on her shoulders. The part that she applied in allowing her ex-husband to get them to the physician at that ring. And she realized. That she was going to work and she was paying the majority of the bills. 

She was a pretty experienced teacher, so her wage was pretty substantial. [00:15:00] Her salary went to just keep everything as it was, they never got any better. They never got any further in life. And I think the last straw for her was when the local mechanic rang up and said to her, you owe me $4,000. And she said, what for? And he said, oh, well, because your car was serviced a few months ago and it needed all of these things done to it. And you guys still haven’t paid. And like these things day after day would keep being pushed in front of her. She had to address it, and she was not even aware.

So I let’s fast forward 12 months, she left her husband and took her children. She rented a property. Now, this was the key. If she’d stayed where she was, she wouldn’t have been able to get a rental property because they do a credit check on you and they want to understand what sort of debts you have.

So by leaving before she went bankrupt, this woman was able to get a property for her and her children to live in an area that she wanted to stay in and she could pay her rent. 

And then, after she’d set herself up with our assistance and we got it relocated, she went and had a chat to her husband and explained to him what she’d done.

So she said, “Our marriage isn’t working”, and she went through why she was leaving. Then she told her ex-husband that she’d gone into bankruptcy and why. 

He was so perplexed. Because he’d been living in such ignorance for so long and he thinks this perpetual circle of robbing Peter to pay Paul, just to keep afloat is a great idea. 

He could not believe that she would and take into consideration none of this. She was continually down to work and paying the bills. And yet she was with the courage of their convictions to stand up and say enough is enough. I need to do something about my life.

Because if I don’t, I’m not going to move on any further. 

Her ex-husband was flawed by what she did. He never did it.

He continued to do the same thing. Six months after she moved out, he took in a new woman with her children. He’s just still living the same life.

She’s still getting letters from the bank saying that mortgages haven’t been paid. He’s so out of control that it’s going to hit him like a sledgehammer. But she’s already moved on with her life.

So she’s moved to new rental accommodation. She’s got her children with her, her children are happy, and she said, I ignored the signs because I thought I was doing the right things for the kids.

Now I look back, and I realize I should have done it so much sooner because what was I teaching my children?

I was teaching them to ignore what was going on in front of them instead of addressing it. 

Now I want to read you the email that I got from her this week. Good morning, Tanya. As I sit on the beach, looking over the bay, reflecting on all kinds of stuff. My mind wandered to you. 

And I wanted to say, thank you, thank you for providing a stable and clear platform for which I could begin my much-needed separation journey. And what a journey it has been.

Goodness. Being so generous and caring for my financial situation, directing me to other professionals who have acted with such integrity, care and thoughtfulness as you. Helping me to begin gathering my life back together again and finding a more normal- normal. Showing such empathy and understanding and encouraging and empowering me to look forward and starting, not just another chapter of my life so far, but a sequel, a new adventure with my beautiful big kids, family and ever so cherished friends.

You had an impact on people, tenure and provide strength and possibility. You are an angel as your business name suggests. Sometimes they cross your path. And I was one of the lucky ones for such an experience. Thank you again, darling, with a big smile on my face and much love. 

So, can you imagine me opening this email and reading this, given the strength that this woman has shown?

Not just that. I also got a beautiful text message from her mom. I’ve got a text message from her mom telling me that I’d made a difference to their life. 

Now, I did nothing. All I did was provide the tools. I gave her the support, and I let her know that it would be okay. There’s no doubt in my mind that she’s one of the strongest women that I’ve ever met. And she is without a doubt, one of my genuinely brilliant success stories. Simply because she wasn’t fighting over money. There was no money to get. She was fighting for a better her, and she was fighting to show her children with tenacity and strength and courage that everything will be okay. 

So my darling friends. Can you imagine the life that she now has?

She’s paying her rent. She’s doing everything else. But for seven years, when you’re bankrupt, you can’t buy, you can’t get financed. So she can’t buy another house, but she has a clear picture in her mind of what her future looks like. And she’s doing such a great job. And you probably already know if you are in a similar situation and your [00:22:30] body is telling you something.

The truth is that it is inevitable that at some stage, something has to happen. So ask yourself, how long are you prepared to wait until you actually address what’s going on? Yeah, because no one will do it, but you. And if you need my help and support, just know I’m here for you. And we’ve got the tools, the support and everything else that you will need to get through this dire situation.

Okay. My darlings, I will talk to you again next week. Bye. For now.

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