You’re listening to the Sigrun Show, episode number 412. In this episode, I talked to Ali Katz about how to make better financial decisions and cure your money dysmorphia.
Welcome to the Sigrun Show. I’m your host Sigrun, creator of SOMBA, the MBA program for online entrepreneurs. With each episode, I’ll share with you inspiring case studies and interviews to help you achieve your dreams and turn your passion into profits. Thank you for spending time with me today.
Building an online business takes time. I share with you proven strategies to help you get there faster. You’ll also learn how to master your mindset, uplevel your marketing and succeed with masterminds.
Today, I speak with Ali Katz. She is relational lawyer, and founder of two companies. One that teaches lawyers, how to serve families and business owners and another that supports her clients in becoming their own best financial advisor. In this episode, we talk about how to make better financial decisions and cure your money dysmorphia. Before we start though, I want to share with you that over 3000 people have signed up for the 12 days of masterclasses that I’m doing for the sixth year in a row, and always have fresh masterclasses.
These people will profit from 12 times 60 minutes of powerful training for their online business for free for 12 days. And if you haven’t signed up yet, this is your chance. There is still time to sign up because we start on December 25th and it goes all the way to January 5th. So if you want to learn about list building, how to get more one-on-one clients or how to create and sell high-end offers and so much more than these masterclasses are for you to see all the topics of the masterclasses and sign up for free. Go to the firstname.lastname@example.org/412. There, you will also find all the links to Ali Katz.
I am so excited to be in with Ali Katz and talk about curing your money-
Dysmorphia. I just learned new words. I’m always adding to my vocabulary in English and I am so curious to learn more about how I can cure my money dysmorphia and how you can as well, dear listeners. But welcome on the show, Ali.
Thank you, Sigrun so good to be here.
So we met in person, Ali just told me, probably Iconic with Ali Brown last November is one of the last events some of us went to. I’m honored to go a couple of [inaudible 00:03:08]… First week of March, it was really tight and then everything kind of closed down. So I don’t know when we’ll have an event like that again. Women like us.
Yeah. And you, at the time you were planning, I think a really huge event yourself. And so all of your plans were completely shifted and changed. I would say derailed, but I trust that life has provided you with even better possibilities than that.
I’ll have to catch up and hear what happened.
Yeah. It’s interesting that actually through this decision of having to postpone my event and not being able to travel, I have been able to do some other things, but that is the topic for another episode.
For another day. Yes. I’ll have to come out. I’ll have to interview you Sigrun and find out how did you make the shift and what even better things came as a result, because I know, I know you.
So Ali, this is about you and we want to learn from you how to cure our money dysmorphia, our money issues. But before we come to that, I want to know how and why are you doing what you’re doing today? Like what did you do before and why did you make this your topic?
Yeah. So thank you for asking that because it turns out that much of my life was actually run by my money dysmorphia, but I couldn’t see it because it’s really a hidden disease. And I say, disease that way because you know, it’s not a disease that’s diagnosed by a doctor, but it is a disease that is driving many of us and it drove me and it drove me to heights of great success. The reason that I was at Ali Brown’s iconic event is because Ali had been my mentor back in 2008, 2009, when I had really been at the height of the height of that external success and that I had achieved all of the things that I could possibly imagine achieving.
I had graduated first in my class from Georgetown Law. I had worked at one of the best law firms in the country. I started my own law practice and built that into a million dollar a year business. I had then started a second business and built that into a million dollar a year business. I had written a best-selling book on legal planning for families. I had appeared on TV is a family financial and legal expert. Then I had joined Ali Browns, A $100,000 diamond mastermind the very first time that she offered it. And that year that I was in Ali’s program, I cried at every mastermind meeting. I didn’t understand why I was crying, I didn’t know what was happening. All I knew is that my life needed to fall apart because what it was driven on, what I was motivated by was off. But I didn’t understand what that meant because it was really deeply buried.
And what’s really interesting is that the exact same work that I’m doing today. So I serve lawyers and I train them on a new law business model that I created when I was in private practice. That’s the exact same thing that I was doing then. I never could have imagined that I would have stuck with it because my… what I’ve now discovered is this disease of money dysmorphia was causing me to not be able to see the true value of what I was doing. It was causing me to suffer greatly from comparison despair, you know where you look outside of yourself and compare yourself to everybody else and judge yourself. And it had me really doubt the value of my work. It had me really doubt whether my work had any meaning or was it just a way to make money? It had me really question everything and it had me really hate building a team around me because, well, I didn’t really know.
Sigrun really, I couldn’t tell are people in my life just because I’m paying them a lot of money? Or do they actually really like me? I constantly wondered, are they really working or are they just taking advantage of me? I constantly wondered, how can I get more for less. How can I get more for less?
These are some of the patterns of my variety of money dysmorphia. Others have a different variety of money dysmorphia. Others have a variety of money dysmorphia that looks like perhaps them saying, “Oh, money doesn’t matter to me. That’s not, what’s important to me,” but then not making enough of it to actually be able to show up in the world and bring their work forward in the world. And so, so all of this actually led me into bankruptcy.
How did that happen if you’re doing so well? Did you sabotage yourself? Basically?
Yeah. My money dysmorphia gave me no other place to go because I had achieved at all Sigrun. I had achieved it all and yet inside of me, it was really painful. I couldn’t make good decisions. I couldn’t make… there was no way I could make good decisions because even though I had learned to make a lot of money, I was looking through like a film. I call it eyes wide shut, decision-making. So in contrast to eyes wide open decision-making, it was eyes wide shut because my eyes appeared to be open. I thought they were open. I thought I was so successful. I thought I was doing so great. It looked like I was doing so great. And yet it’s kind of the worst kind of blindness because we think we’re awake. And yet I was totally blind. I couldn’t actually see what was true.
So for me, the only way to see at that time was actually to indulge my escape fantasy. Now, if you’ve had a great deal of success, you might know about this escape fantasy. It’s the one that when we get overwhelmed and we’re having a hard time making decisions, we start to fantasize about running away a simpler life, perhaps, letting go of everything that we’ve created. I think everybody who has achieved a measure of success has some level, some degree of this escape fantasy. Mine was to move to a farm and not need to make any money. Now, this escape fantasy was challenging for me because there was this other escape fantasy, which told me that I needed to make $40 million in order to be free. Because then if I had $40 million, then I would be free because here’s how my thinking went.
My businesses require $2 million a year to run. I want to do my businesses because I like them, but I want to do them without the pressure to earn any money, which is a flood thinking in and of itself, but I didn’t know this at the time. And so based on what the financial services industry is telling me, I need to have $40 million in the bank, earning 5% interest, throwing off $2 million a year, and then I’ll be free because my business is won’t have to earn any money in order to pay everybody on my team. And that is what’s going to make me free. That was one version of my escape fantasy looked like.
The other version of my escape fantasy looked like walk away from everything, move to a farm, money doesn’t matter. I don’t need to earn any money because I’m actually able to earn enough just based on what I’ve already created in order to pay my bills. If I’m living on a farm with no help whatsoever. Driving my kids to school, doing my own laundry, cleaning my own house, all the things that I had paid people to do, but then resented the people I was paying to do those things. So let go of all of that, moved to this farm. This little two bedroom farmhouse that when I bought that farm, I signed the papers. On the day I signed the papers I said to myself, “Mark my words.” I said it out loud even, “Mark my words, I will never live here.”
But life knew. Life knew that I was actually buying that farm so that I would be able to live there as I needed to go through this process because I thought I was buying the farm for my kids’ dad so that he could grow medical marijuana and make money but it turns out the whole series of events made it. So he wasn’t able to do that. And actually the truth was is that I was going to need to move to that farm and lived there for a year. So I could discover who I was if I wasn’t making all of my decisions through this lens of this money dysmorphia.
But first I would have to see it. And so when I got to the farm, I read the book, The Soul of Money. Have you read that by Lynne Twist?
I haven’t, I’ve heard of it.
It’s so good. In the book, she talks about this idea of sufficiency. And I loved it. She said, you want to make all your choices about money through this sufficiency. And that’s where everything needs to come from. And I loved the energy of it. And I loved what I felt when I read it, but I realized I had no idea what sufficiency was for me. I couldn’t just flip a switch in my brain and say, “Okay, I’m going to make all my decisions from a place of sufficiency,” because my wiring was not actually rooted in sufficiency, it was rooted in more, more, more, and more and more. And I didn’t even know what sufficiency was for me.
I had to create some left brain on the right and left brain kind of gal. I have a lot of creativity, but I’m a lawyer. So I had to create some very clear left brain structures and systems for me to understand what sufficiency was in my life, what enough was in my life. Because the truth was is that even though I had built these million dollar businesses, I did not know how to manage my money. I didn’t know how to look at my money. My answer to dealing with making money decisions was more, make more. And then you won’t really have to worry about it, but that was part of the money dysmorphia.
So then I met this man who I call the hundred million dollar man. And it was such a gift that I met when I did, he’s passed now, actually he’s died. And he actually changed things at the end of his life. But when I met him, I thought, okay, this guy is going to be the most free man ever, because he’s got a hundred million dollars. So he’s way past my 40 million that I thought I needed. He’s for sure going to be the most free man I’ve ever met.
And he was the most trapped human, ever. All he could talk about was his money, where it was, how much he had, how he could access it, what forms of currency it was in. And he had this deep down terror, probably true at the time that people were only in relationship with him for his money. And he didn’t know. And he was in the midst of a divorce that seemed pretty clear that this woman that he had married really had just married him for the money and was now taking him for everything and he was really terribly hurt.
And so being able to see life through his lens and that, that a hundred million dollars to not free him, it actually just trapped him further. And then reading Lynne Twist book, The Soul of Money, and then being here on this farm, where I had let go of everything that I had created, my brand, my image, my ego to discover who am I really, if money doesn’t matter. Not if money doesn’t matter, that’s actually not it. If I’m not making every decision through the distortion of money and money is in its rightful place in my life. And I actually understand what I actually need and what I actually have and then I can make my decisions, eyes wide, open through a clear lens. Then I filed bankruptcy, which was like the thing I had been most terrified of, Sigrun, like that’s the ultimate failure, the ultimate shame, but I faced it. I did it.
So how actually did it happen, the bankruptcy, did you just self-sabotage or-?
It was a combination of both, I would say self sabotage, but also self liberation. Because that fear of bankruptcy in some ways had been driving and motivating me to all of the success that I had. There’s no question that I had to go through it because it allowed me to see what was true about money. And it freed me. The reality is now I have as much debt today as I did then, it’s 10 years later.
Now I filed bankruptcy in August 2012. So we’re, now eight years, eight years later now. And I love credit. I love that. It is an incredible resource when we understand how to use it wisely. But I didn’t understand how to use it wisely and so back then, because I didn’t understand how to use it wisely and I was suffering from this money dysmorphia that I couldn’t even see and I was making these eyes wide shut decisions, I couldn’t get into right relationship with my resources. And so I was collapsing under the weight of all of this. Whereas today, because I’ve freed myself of that… I wouldn’t even say that I freed myself of the disease. Like if I’m not using the tools that I created to heal, then I can still fall right back into it. It’s was just a crushing weight. And I thought that I was trapped by it. I couldn’t see an income model. And I couldn’t actually even really, truly believe in myself or my work from that place.
So the bankruptcy, it was funny. I don’t know if you know who James Altucher is. So I called him because you know, we were friendly at the time and I was like, “James, can I really do this? Can I, can I just file bankruptcy?” I needed his permission. And he was like, “Yeah you can just let it all go.” And I just kept getting these signs from life from the universe, just let it all go, Alexis, my name was Alexis back then. Just let it all go Alexis, just let it all go. Find out who you really are. Find out what really matters. So I did. So, that was August 2012. And then coming back out the other side of that, what I learned is like, Oh, I could just live on this farm, forever.
I’m making plenty of money because of the way that I had structured things in my life. And I’m an asset protection lawyer. And part of the bankruptcy also was I wanted to test out some of these asset protection strategies that I had learned and was sharing with clients and like, see, do they really work? And yes they do.
So my company was able to keep operating and keep doing what it was doing in the world, just in a much smaller level because I couldn’t manage it at the level that I had created. And so it paid me a lot less money and I discovered, Oh, I’ve actually created enough in the world at this point where I could just live on this farm and not really work that hard.
And you didn’t need the 40 million anymore.
And I don’t need that 40 million. I actually am financially liberated. I’ve been chasing this financial freedom number that the financial services industry had falsely implanted into my brain, the media had falsely implanted into my brain. And in fact, I’m liberated. I have everything that I need right now. So now if I have everything I need, what do I want?
What happens when I start making my decisions from this place of what I want and I have right relationship in my resources. So what I realized that the money dysmorphia does is it distorts our ability to understand our resources and time, energy and attention are non-renewable resources. Money is actually infinitely renewable. I mean, you know that, I know I’ve seen you make your choices from that place of money is infinitely renewable when we know how to earn it, access it and use it wisely. But I didn’t, even though I knew how to earn a lot of it, I didn’t know how to use it wisely. And so from that place, money wasn’t infinitely renewable because I knew I wasn’t actually managing it while I wasn’t taking good care of it. I didn’t know how to do those things at that time.
So I was compromising my time, energy and attention. Those are our non-renewable resources. Once we use time, energy, and attention, we don’t get that back. You know, we’re all marching towards the same reality of no more time, energy, attention, we’re all going to die one day. And so that time, energy and attention is the real non-renewable resources. And so I learned, Oh, okay, I get to align my time, energy, attention, and money, my team resources not from this place of need because I know how to meet the need. And that’s really important by the way, that’s really, really, really an important step because a lot of us, because of this distortion and because of our distorted relationship with need are unwilling to look at what do we really need?
What do we really need? And for me, what I realized is, Oh, what I really need is $5,000 a month. That was my minimum to thrive. That’s part of what’s built into the model here. $5,000 a month, a piece of land, a car, and I’m good. I’m with my kids, I don’t actually need more than that. So knowing that, knowing that I can meet my needs, allowed me then to start to focus on what, okay, and what do I really want? What do I actually really want? Not because a million-dollar business means success, but because what I’m creating is actually going to fuel what I really want.
And from that place, I realized that I am actually meant to serve lawyers, which was shocking to me. Because, I thought I’d been running away from that. I thought I’d been running away from being a lawyer and serving lawyers because I wanted to be able to be all of myself. And I thought that if I was all of myself at that time, I was living with two names. I was Alexis Neely and Ali Shanti. I have these kinds of two personas and Alexis Neely was my lawyer persona and Ali Shanti was like my priestess persona. And I wanted to be able to do that. That was important part of my psychological and emotional development. And I thought, well, I’m not going to be able to be a lawyer and do that. And I’m not going to be able to serve lawyers and do that.
But once I was able to recognize that I could meet my needs and be both Alexis Neely and Ali Shanti, I didn’t have to run away anymore from being a lawyer or serving lawyers. And then I got to discover, Oh my gosh, my work for lawyers is actually really important in that and brings something to them as to the world that nobody else does. And I actually really love doing it, which I couldn’t see from the distortion, but actually, Oh, actually this is what I am meant to do. And this work really does truly serve the lawyers and the world. And I really do love it.
And so I was able to just restructure the foundations of everything that I had created and no longer becoming at it from this place of compromise. So what ended up happening from there is I built this business that serves lawyers that I had been doing in a different way from a different place before the bankruptcy. I built it into what it is today and we are making a huge impact in the lives of lawyers we serve so that they can make a huge impact in the lives of the clients that they serve.
And today my business makes $5 million a year of revenue, not just a million. I was stuck at a million for a long time million and a half was kind of where I could get to. And I kept getting stuck there by this reality of dysmorphia. So today the company does $5 million a year. It does that though, because it needs it not because I need it, not because I’m even making more money than I was when it was making a million and a half a year for myself personally, what I have done is I freed up my time, energy and attention. So now my time, energy and attention are able to be utilized from this liberated place because those are my non-renewable resources, so that I can write my books and share these concepts with the world.
So I can help people make their aligned decisions and see money as, Oh, money isn’t what I thought it was. Money is not a symbol of my success, it is a fuel for my creative dream. Money is not limited. It’s not a thing that needs to limit my ability to do what I am meant to do here in the world. It’s the thing that I can learn about, earn it, access it, use it wisely and be in right relationship to it. It’s like the gas at the gas station, or the sun that’s shining through the solar panels to make the energy. Like when people would tell me it’s just energy. I was like, “Oh, okay. I hear that. It’s just energy, but how do I actually work with that energy?” Oh, we just need to learn how to work with the energy.
So what do you say to someone who’s listening and thinking like, well, I definitely have some issues with money. What is the first step for them to fix this or cure as you say, the money dysmorphia.
Yeah. So the first step is to see it. So if you are hearing this and you’re relating to this in any way and recognizing that your relationship with money might be coming through a distorted lens and then it might be keeping you from showing up fully for your life, for your work, keeping you from being all of who you are doing, all of what you’re here to do and living from that right, why? That’s step one. Congratulations.
So once you see it, then what you want to do is get into right relationship with money in your life. And that begins by really knowing what you need, really knowing what you need and beginning to separate out those needs and those wants. Your wants are beautiful, your wants are welcome. But if you are driving towards those wants without actually having your needs met, what will happen is that either you will never get there to those wants and then you’ll always feel like a failure and always feel like you don’t have enough and always be making your decisions from that place of enough. And you can never have what you want from there. You just can’t have what you want from there. Or you will achieve those wants and discover that they weren’t the right ones because they were coming from the wrong place.
And so that’s… I experienced both of those realities. From the time of graduating college until 2009 being an analysis program, I achieved all the wants, but every time I would get to that next level of achievement, it was never the thing because it was an absolute driven and motivated by the right internal motivation. And then on as well, the flip side, I had even bigger wants, this $40 million, which was coming through the distortion and then there was never enough. So I was, I was making my decisions from this never enough place because the truth was, I was never going to get to that $40 million, from there.
So when you, when you get into this right relationship of what do you actually need, and I look at need in two levels, minimum to thrive and minimum to be of service, those are the metrics of need. Then we get into wants, preferred if I could afford it and no limits. These are want levels. So when we can see the truth of these levels and we can know where we are now, honestly assess where we are now, because that’s the other thing that is a big distortion. A lot of us don’t know where we actually are now.
So this consistently surprises me, Sigrun, when I go to support somebody in this process, or to look at their own investment decisions in their life. Again and again and again, I see, oh, people don’t even know what they have. They do not know what they have. So if you don’t know what you have, and you don’t know what you need, and you don’t know what you want, what is motivating your choices? What is driving you? Oh, it must be some sort of distortion field because it’s not based in reality, not based in reality. And so that’s why we always, we always, always, always need to start with, what do I have. What do I have? Let me see it clearly.
And by the way as an estate planning lawyer and that… you know, my background estate planning and asset protection lawyer. Now I train estate and asset protection lawyers and business lawyers across the United States, and that, eventually across the world, the very first step in the process of planning for what happens in the event of your incapacity or your death, is to look at what you have.
And invariably people would come in to meet with me and they’re shocked to see what they have. They’re surprised to see what they have. They’re surprised to look at, Oh, if I became incapacitated or I died, my family would have no idea what I have, where it is, how they could find it. Because, I don’t even know what I have. So I had to develop practical tools for myself to be able to get clear on what I have, what I need, what I want. And then from that place to be able to structure my income model, to utilize my time, energy, attention, and money in right relationship so that I was building towards the next step with my eyes wide open, seeing the big vision of where I want to go.
I’ve always known that I wanted to write books and have a radio show, today that would be a podcast, but you know what you’re doing. I’ve always known that I wanted to do that, but I wanted to do it from the right place with the right foundation. And you know, the truth is, is that writing books and having a radio show, these are big investments. And I hear a lot of people who they want to write a book and they want to have a radio show, but then they’re disappointed with how well the book does or how well the radio show does. And the truth is that they don’t actually have the time, energy and attention and money to put into being able to create that and sustain what it takes to get that out into the world, because it takes a lot.
It takes a lot and maybe they’re spending time on making money, whereas they can’t spend time on being creative that ultimately will help you make more.
Right. And maybe the way they’re spending time on making their money is not in full alignment. Maybe they are spending time on making more money than they need to. Maybe they actually already have what they need. And if they just restructured their reality, they could put their time, energy, and attention into the radio show or the book. But they’re making all of those decisions very likely from the distortion field, that money dysmorphia reveals, is that when we can see the money dysmorphia, it can reveal it.
How does it feel though to grow from that place of, I have all the success that I wanted to have. I’m making the money. I guess I’m driving the car I wanted to drive. I’m buying the clothes I wanted to buy and suddenly you’re down to $5,000 a month and nobody helped you in the household. What did it do to your self confidence or, or-
Oh man, I spent that year praying a lot. Praying a lot because I was really confused back then. It all makes sense now, Sigrun, but back then I was still in it. I was still in it and I was so confused. So one part of my mind was saying, you asked it all up, you asked it all up, you’ve ruined your life, Alexis, you were on the path to all the success.
I mean, there’s a certain amount of something that drives a person to graduate first from Georgetown Law. That doesn’t happen just because I’m super smart. It happens because I studied more than anybody else. There’s a certain something that drives somebody to build a million dollar a year law practice in just three years. It’s a level of drive and motivation that few people have. There’s a certain something that drives somebody to write a best-selling book, go on TV. All of that lived inside of me. That motivation turns out by the way that that motivation was like a proving energy that was like, I needed to prove something. But mostly, probably the people in high school who like had outcast me.
We’re always proving, maybe to our parents or somebody else.
[inaudible 00:37:17] of course, right, this is the ancestral stuff. It turns out it’s not high school, it’s not even necessarily just my parents it’s generations. So that part, that part that had been motivated and driven to do all of those things was like, “What are you doing? You ruined your life.” But there was this other part, this other part that as I prayed, began to come through. I guess at the time this was this Ali Shanti part. I was just getting to know it then.
But there was this much more feminine part. I wasn’t very in touch with my feminine before that, other than as a sexual being. But it was actually this much softer, much more tender part of myself that I just was coming to get to know at that time that was reminding me, Oh, actually you can trust. You can trust life. Life knows. This is a critically important part of your path. I had a partner at the time who would say to me, so he called me Ali, “Be here now because you’re not going to be back here again.” It’s really important that you be here with all of these feelings that I had never allowed myself to feel before.
I learned to cry during that time. I learned to cry during that time, I’d always been somebody who never cried was so driven by my mind. And what I discovered, Sigrun, is that my mind and my heart were disconnected. So I was beginning to come into contact with my heart. And I was beginning to come into contact again. I had been in contact with these parts before, but as beginning to come into contact with the part of myself that I know is always connected to source.
And these were both new and familiar concepts. I had learned the concepts at the mental level prior to this time, but I had never had the opportunity to just actually live than in my own life. So when I was at the farm that year with nobody helping me and I shouldn’t… it’s actually not true that nobody helps me. The help came from unexpected places. Oh, I don’t have to pay people to help me, that was a surprising thing. Or I can pay people in different ways. Here’s a really funny story.
During that time, actually, I went to speak at Lightning in a Bottle, which is a festival here. It used to be maybe one day, we’ll get back there again. But I went to speak at this festival, Lightning in a Bottle. And when I got there, there was this incredibly beautiful dress. I mean, I had never seen a dress that gorgeous in my life, by one of the artists, Superior Fierce is her name. And she’s displaying this incredibly beautiful dress. And it turns out that right after the festival, I was supposed to go to a photo shoot with Christina [Marasi 00:40:30] and I had prepaid for this photo shoot. And Christina had messaged me and she said, “Okay, Ali, you got to use this photo shoot now, or it’s going to expire because I’m not going to be doing photo shoots anymore.” And I was like, “Wait, no, I can’t. I can’t do this photo shoot. Now I have no clothes. I have no money to buy clothes. I’m like in the worst part of my life ever. And I can’t.” And she said, “No, you have to. You have to do it now.” And I was like, “Okay, well, I don’t want to lose the money I paid for the photo shoot. So, okay, I’ll do it.”
This is just an example of how life really does have our backs when we surrender beyond the mind into like really deep listening. So my mind was telling me that life was horrible and life is bad and all these bad things and yet, life is actually showing up because life knows. And I had actually done this very smart thing where before the bankruptcy, I properly aligned to my resources, my company had bought an RV because the RV was necessary for me to go out and do the thing that I do, which is speaking.
So I’m in the RV. And in my mind I have no money at this time, but I had aligned my resources well, so I’m supported. And every time I go to the gas station to fill up the RV, I have to use my debit card. Can’t use a credit card anymore because I don’t have any more credit. Can’t use credit anymore, I have to learn to live on cash, which I had never done before. It was really scary. Oh God, is the credit card going… Is the debit card going to work? Everytime, right terrified that it worked.
So I get to the festival and I know that after the festival, I’m going to do this photo shoot and I don’t have the clothes for the photo shoot, I have my own clothes that are whatever clothes I have. And I see this incredibly beautiful dress and it’s $3,800 and I don’t have $3,800. In the past, I would have just used my credit to buy it. But I can’t do that now because I don’t have credit anymore to use. And I went and I talked to the artist and I said, “[Sephora 00:42:50], I have this photo shoot coming up. And I want to wear this dress in my photo shoot, and I don’t have $3,800.” And I said, “Would you allow me to borrow the dress for the photo shoot?” And she said, “Yes.”
I never would have ever asked anything like that in the past I would have just paid. I would have just bought it. I would have just paid. But now from this vulnerable place, I was inspired to make ask that I never would have otherwise made. And to be met in that vulnerability with a yes, “Yes, Sally, I would love to support you in this way. I’d love for you to take this dress with you. And I trust you to send it back to me afterwards,” which I did. I did end up buying the dress later. Once I started making money again, I really wanted to honor her. Her yes to me, it was such a gift to me in that moment to see that, Oh, I can ask. I can ask for help in ways that when I was making all this money, I couldn’t, I didn’t need to.
So how does this translate to now, you are making all the money you need today and even more than you did before the bankruptcy. How do you feel? Are you still asking people or does it feel like… what is the difference?
Yeah, so today I have this company, that’s making $5 million a year in revenue. We hit the Inc 5,000 list, three years in a row. Now, which shows that we can have sustained growth. But then I also have a startup. I’m in startup mode again with live that eyes wide open, which is work that I had actually put on hiatus four years ago when my daughter started going through her teenage years, high school, sex, drugs, and rock and roll. And I realized, Oh, I can’t run two businesses and raise my teenagers. And so my daughter is 20 now almost 21, my son is 17. I needed to actually put eyes wide open on pause.
And I was able to do that because of this work, because of the work of what I call the money map. I did the work of the money map on myself, recognized the truth, put eyes wide open on hold, could all of my energy into new law business model, which is my business for training the lawyers and my children and my relationships and doing my own next level of feeling work and growing up actually, turns out growing up from a teenager to an adult.
And so in that time as new law business model was growing, if I didn’t have this work, I don’t think that I would have been able to make the investment choices in my business, that I was making each step of the way with the expanded ability to see that what was needed in that business. And to be able to be really generous with what I was paying, with what I am paying people. And also with the time it would take for us to reach our goals. So in the past, because of this these false distorted views, I would put unnecessary time pressure on things that would actually make things go slower. And I wouldn’t be generous with the money because my own needs, I didn’t know that my own needs were met. It turns out they were, but I didn’t know that. So as a result of all of that, I was able to create spaciousness that actually allowed us to go much faster.
When I look at how far we’ve come in three years, it’s kind of shocking, but in any moment in any one moment, it could have felt like I needed to squeeze my team or the money. So, I’ve been in this dance with it and as a result, I’ve been able to be generous. And so I’ve only increased my own pay as I’ve been able to see that the company is really ready for me to do that. But because I was getting paid, what I needed and I was in my relationship with that need, and I don’t mean need like at a minimum to thrive level. I mean need at a minimum to be of service level. I didn’t need to move into my wants until the company actually had what it needed to both thrive and to be of service.
So we’re just now getting to that place, actually with the company where it is with earning $5 million a year. With us having now the ability to scale with a C level executive team that I can really trust. That is getting paid really well. That now I can start to focus on more of my wants. Again, because I have that, that clarity between them.
And we’re actually about to have an exit in that business, but it’s not going to be a traditional exit. It’s what I call a share the wealth exit. What that looks like is that instead of selling to like a VC firm that would come in and probably ruin the company from a values’ perspective or instead of like trying to raise money. Like from private equity and all of that. And I’ve seen too many of my friends go through that over the years. And it creates an inordinate amount of stress and pressure to not actually do what’s in the best interest of the customers and the team.
I’m actually inviting my customers and my team to buy my shares at a discounted valuation. I will maintain an interest in the company, but I want all stakeholders to be participating in this next level of growth that we’re now prepared for. So since I haven’t focused on profit over the last several years, I’ve been driven, not by profit, but by creating an infrastructure that is really solid that now we can build and scale on, I want the customers and the team to be able to buy my shares at this discounted valuation. And then as we go from, let’s call it a $7 million valuation today, to the $20 million or the $100 million or whatever it is, the C-level team is going to decide what that next level is.
The next level is probably the $10 million, the 20% profit. This is kind of the traditional metrics. And then $20 million and to structure that so that every stakeholder, the clients, the team, we all win together. I call it, share the wealth. It all went together. It’s not just about me getting rich. It’s not just about the typical model where just the C-level executives get rich. It’s like, how do we create a structure where we all do it together?
So what is the final word around curing your money distortion? I see our time is coming up. What is that final wisdom sentence you want to give to my listeners?
Be willing to see what’s true. Be willing to see what’s true, and then make your decisions about your income model from that place of truth. So that each step of the way you are aligning your time, energy, attention, and money, we call those your team resources towards that what you really need and that what you really want. Seeing the big vision of where you’re going, but also knowing the exact next step to get there each step of the way, not based on just airy fairy thoughts and beliefs, and manifestation, which is all important, critical part of the process too, but then grounded, grounded in the practical tools and the seeing so that the choices you’re making about how you lead your own life and your family and your company is based in this grounded reality of truth.
Beautiful Ali, thank you for the summary. Thank you for sharing your story. Fascinating journey, very inspiring, how you’ve bounced back and are able to help other women see that there are some distortions that we all have. What is the best way to connect with you?
The best way is to go to eyeswideopenlife.com, unless you’re a lawyer. If you’re a lawyer, you can go to a newlawbusinessmodel.com. I love training the lawyers on these tools to use with their own clients. But if you want to use the tools yourself, you can go to eyeswideopenlife.com and you’ll get the free thing that we have there for you to be able to get started with this process of seeing during the distortions in your mind.
Thank you so much, Ali. Thank you for coming on the show. Thank you for sharing your story. It’s been wonderful.
Thank you, Sigrun. So good to be here with you.
For the sixth year in a row, I’m doing 12 days of masterclasses. Every year I pick 12 of my best masterclasses and 90% of them are brand new. So even if you have participated in previous years, there are new masterclasses this year for you to enjoy and learn from, go to the show notes at sigrun.com/412, where you can sign up for 12 days of masterclasses and there you will also find all the links to Ali Katz.
Thank you for listening to the Sigrun Show. Did you enjoy this episode? Let me know that you listened by tagging me in your Insta story or Instagram posts using my hashtag Sigruncom, well my handle Sigruncom and the hashtag Sigrun Show. See you in the next episode.