Episode 18: YouTube Mom Star Reinvents Her Career with Nekole Eaton
Nekole Eaton is a licensed pediatric occupational therapist and a parenting soul-alignment mentor.
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Emily: And I'm curious too, just like, as a black woman. And it sounds like growing up in a white community. Did you feel like there was additional, like conditioning or pressure around, like you gotta earn it, you got to prove it, you gotta work twice as hard kind of a thing?
Nekole: Yes. Most definitely. I especially like the twice as hard part. I feel like there was, and it's interesting because I'm trying to think back if there were like any, you know, specific conversations growing up or if it was more just implied and how my parents showed up and what they did, but there was certainly an energy of, you've got to work harder to be seen, to be appreciated, to be valued and to be respected. And I think that that was why then as a kid, there was so much emphasis around how I presented myself.
You know, the grades that I got, what others thought about me, you know, you think about like, how the teachers report back about the type of kid you are and this and that. It was like, there wasn't a whole lot of room for error. It's like you needed to be on the straight and narrow. And I feel like my parents felt like we couldn't afford it. To have a whole lot of wiggle room outside of, like the mainstream.
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Hey, Hey, I've got such a juicy episode for you today. Quickly before we dive in. Many of you have reached out to ask how we can work together. And I do have limited openings to work with me via one-on-one private coaching inside the rise mastermind, and I've actually even opened up a few spots for human design readings.
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Welcome back to the show. I am so excited to be here with Nekole Eaton, she's a parenting and soul alignment mentor who helps women build legacies for themselves and their families by showing them what's possible. When they no longer have to choose between the two, she's created a thriving business with her kiddos by her side, she also has a successful YouTube channel where her parenting focused content helps millions of women in their motherhood journey. And she continues to redefine what it means to be a conscious mom and a powerhouse. I love it so much. Nekole, welcome to the show.
Nekole: Thank you so much for having me. I'm so excited to be here.
Emily: Likewise. I mean, we already know each other. We're already in sisterhood inside of a mastermind together, but I feel like these podcast interviews are so fun.
Cause we just get to go so much deeper and I get to learn all about what makes you magical.
Nekole: I'm so excited. Let's do it.
Emily: And I think it's super fun too, because I also built my businesses while building my family and so I love having more examples of that when you need it.
Nekole: With you. Spend your paradigm, right?
Emily: It is and I'm curious, because for you to hear about your story, because for me, like motherhood sort of spurred the pivot. I was just going along happy as a clam in corporate America. Not thinking that anything was going to change, I'm going to have a kid, I'm going to be off on maternity leave and that's all good. And then I'm going to go back to work and that's going to just work out great. And
Nekole: We'll get you down.
Emily: What a twist?
Emily: So tell me about you because am I right? That you used to be an occupational therapist?
Nekole: Yes. So I still am a licensed occupational therapist and that's where all of this kind of came to be. So I was working in an outpatient clinic setting, so I was seeing kiddos. Zero to 21. A lot of them had physical disabilities.
So like spina bifida, cerebral palsy is huge. And working with a family unit to help kiddos become more independent and it is very fulfilling work, but the model I was in, unfortunately we didn't see a whole lot of progress with kiddos. It was kind of maintaining the status quo. So there came to be a point where it's like, I have this burning desire to have a bigger impact.
Do you know, like I realized that there are so many families in my community and even around the world who don't have access to therapists, to knowledge who really want to help their kiddos and their development, and becoming independent. And so it was like, how can I do this? So I had this burning desire. And then also kind of like you came the time where I got pregnant. And I thought, you know, I'm in this clutch position, you know, retirement was being set up. I thought that, that was it. I was like, I'm working like 20 hours a week. What more could I ask for? So with the burning impact and then becoming pregnant, I took my maternity leave and you know, it was time to come back after three months and I really felt like I was not ready, but it was like, I still want to be here with Kai.
I don't feel like it's time for me to return back to work just yet, like. Just this intuitive, like not yet. And so I asked, I asked for more time and long story short, they kind of went through HR and like, gave me this veiled threat of like. I'm gonna let you take the time off, but you could lose your job. And also it's your job as a mom to figure this out. We're all moms and you need to figure out how to have this stuff lined up so you can come back to work and it, not affect our book. So already I was kind of like, I don't want to love this. You know, this is not, this is not the vibe and what gave me the actual push to leave my comfort zone was a really messed up situation, actually, where I found out I had a brand new hire. I had been working for this company for about five years and a brand hire came in and I had trained her in her clinical rotation. She was making about $9 more than me to start. And it was very interesting. And so, you know, I just got to a place where I was like, I'm very undervalued. This isn't feeling in alignment with me anymore. I, I've got to go take this elsewhere. I want to have the big impact. So I was like, let me just start a YouTube channel. I had my baby. I'm doing all the activities at home. I was like, let me see how I can help parents who have an internet connection and are on YouTube.
Anyways. I'm just going to start putting out videos on tummy time, rolling over all the things that our kiddos are doing. And I started building an audience. One of my videos went viral on tummy time. And before I knew it, I had a relatively large audience that was asking for more information. They're like, can we get a course? Can we get X, Y, and Z? And so the business kind of just came to me. It was like, well, all right, I'll figure out how to do this. You know, I'll create a landing page. I'll start collecting emails. Let me figure out how to use the proper equipment to film X, Y, and Z. And so that's where the online business was born, but of course it's always perfect and divine how it happens. And I'm like, I get to be at home now and raise my babies the way I always intended to and have an impact. So that's how it started. And then as my business grew, I really had this. This desire to help other women, like you're saying other mamas who are like, there's gotta be a better way than me going back to work, doing something I don't want to do. What happens when I follow my soul? What happens when I go out and on myself and I don't have to sacrifice my family life and who I want to be as a mom. While building a business. So, that's who I walk with now.
Emily: Okay. I love that backstory because I've always felt like when we're pregnant and when we have these babies, like it's such a portal to the divine and there's such an open channel. And so the babies just bring all of this abundance and magic and they shake shit up for sure. But like in the best possible ways, because there is just this intense reshuffling of priorities that it's impossible to expect. And I mean, like other people told me that and I was sort of like, yeah, yeah, yeah, sure. The good thing is. Is that my career, I already have a lot of work-life balance. So this is just going to work out just fine for me.
Emily: I already have motherhood planned out before I became a mom.
Nekole: Oh my gosh. It's the best, isn't it? We think we know. That's right.
Emily: And it's like, could you ever have put a plan in place for like, okay, cool.
I'm just going to quit my job and I'm going to start a YouTube channel and it's going to go viral and no, never, no.
Nekole: Never, but in, that has been like the peace to come home to whenever like I get in my head is like, that's exactly it. I could not have made this up in my wildest dreams. And yet it was like every step of trust in the soul led direction, you know, and learning that the universe always has my back and that if I am just courageous enough to take that next step support is going to come in and find me, you know, and I'm sure you can attest to that because here we are, you know.
Emily: And you're right. We do need that evidence because we've all had those moments. When we were in our feminine energy, right? When we received a moment of inspiration. We decided to trust. We decided to surrender to be courageous and then flipped into the masculine for that inspired action. But then sometimes it's like the toggle gets stuck and we get stuck in masculine. And then we're, like, trying to strategize and plan out the next step and like, create the whole roadmap.
Nekole: Choke holds all of that. Right?,You're like, wait, I took that courageous step, but like, no, I don't know. We need to keep, I want it like this, you know? And it gets to be an unfolding of, nope, surrender a bit more, you know, take the steps, but also you don't get to control how you end up where you ultimately want to go. You know, there's a co-creation happening.
Emily: So I'm curious at that point in time, did you already have, kind of this metaphysical perspective on the world or did that come later?
Nekole: You know, it actually, it's funny because you started this podcast off just like, I don't know if there was intuitively or what, but it was like, the Cantos really were a catalyst for this. It had been in my life. I had a practice. I didn't understand the power of this though. And it was really through having, dramatic birth experience with my oldest son, Kai. That's what put me on my path with spirituality and trusting in all of this and understanding the energies because, you know, it got to the point, as you said, it's like, you have this idea for motherhood.
You think we're all gonna walk off into the forest together. It's like Bambi, and then you're hit with this new reality. And there's a huge adjustment, like emotionally in the marriage, physically with the healing. And, and even that took longer than what I expected, and then there's sleep deprivation, which is also real, you know, and I had this breaking point and it came later.
So it took me by surprise because I had been, must've been surviving off of adrenaline and whatever else, and then come around 14, 15 months or so was like my breaking point. And it's so interesting. So I will say this because we could talk about all the things, right? We're just, we're going off. We, my husband, actually said, "Hey, what do you think about microdosing"? I was like the most, like anti, like, no, I don't want to, I don't like it. It's like, I think you should just try it. It can really help. I don't, you know, this may help bring you back to center. So, I did a little bit of micro-dosing. I was done breastfeeding at that point. But,
Emily: Microdosing of what? Cause I feel like, a.
Nekole: That's a good question. So what's interesting is, I started microdosing with acid. So it's like, you can do mushrooms, but the first go was the paper, like assets, a small little bits. And, you know, I had my stories about all of that, but I was so desperate and I was in such a dark spot and motherhood and in my life that it was like, okay, let's try this.
I will say the beautiful thing that came from that experience, it was short-lived. But I just had the voice that said. "Get back in a yoga studio". Cause I used to have a pretty avid practice before getting soup before I was really pregnant and then gave birth. So I was like, okay, that seems simple enough.
Went to yoga. And I just remember lying down in Shavasana and Kariah like, everything came through to me. It was like, my soul was like, thank you for taking the time to reconnect me. And thank you for moving the energy through your body that you had been holding onto for over a year. Let me speak to you in a space where you don't have to think about anybody else. And when you can really, like hone in and focus on you and your body and connecting to soul. And so it was just this gateway in this portal to my healing and my evolution. So thank you kids, because without that, you know, we do, we'll just operate on fumes until we are forced to address. What's been going on. So.
Emily: That's so fascinating. And it's true. And you know, this got brought up inside of our mastermind the other day, which is that the womb holds so much trauma and generational trauma. And I knew none of that by the way, when I was having babies, but I did two home births and I had a midwife and, you know, a support team.
And I remember. My midwife asking, you know, at one point kind of later on in the pregnancy, like, you know, have you ever had any sexual trauma because sometimes that can be really activated in the birth process. And I hadn't, but it was so interesting to think about that. Right? And like, so you've got a birth event.
Which is physical trauma in and of itself. Let's be real. Potentially activating sexual trauma, potentially activating generational trauma, potentially stirring up all kinds of repressed emotions that have been stored in the energetic wound space. Since childhood. And as you say, then adding on top of that sleep deprivation and everything else, and it's like, holy smokes, no wonder it's a perfect storm for all kinds of crazy transformation.
Nekole: Exactly. And I think that that's like, it's so beautiful to speak that because it's a lot. And I don't think we talk about it as a society a lot, you know, we don't acknowledge all of these pieces and what we're holding and what we're birthing and, and how we're adapting. So, I think that's well put, Emily it's a lot.
Emily: It's a lot. So you decided not to go back to the OT gig, still using the skills. But using them, I'm used to building the audience, building the online business. So talk me through like what this looked like from a financial perspective, because I'm imagining there was some good safety insecurity that was left behind.
Nekole: You know, so I am so grateful to my husband because without his support, this would've looked so different, you know, and it would have been drawn out much longer. And I honestly don't know, you know, we talk about courage and of course there's varying levels of courage. And then there's also like, as a mom, you feel. That deep responsibility. I just had a child, you know, I've got to be able to support this child. And so how much risk is like, quote, unquote safe. And, you know, you, you run through all of this, but I'm grateful that I had his support. At the end of the day, he would be able to hold us down for the bills.
We would have food on the table, we would have a roof over our head. And for me, that was enough to be like, okay, let me make the moves, you know? And I'm so, so grateful to have had that. But, as you know, and as many people know who are building businesses, the early days it's money out, no money in, you know, it's a lot of money out.
It's a lot of time out and it was a lot of building, you know, once the kids were asleep and investing in the business and taking time away from relationships. So, you know, I will say being on YouTube, I did, do a lot of self-study. At first it was like, I'm going to Google how to do this. I'm going to watch a video on how to set up a landing page or all of this. And so my initial investment, investments were really small and I worked up to making larger investments once I was like, okay, let me catch my breath and acclimate to what it is I'm doing. Okay. Yes. I still believe in this next step. Let's go, you know?
Emily: That's interesting. And that was kind of me too. I'm always, actually pretty surprised at how many people now in the spaces that we play in are brand new to entrepreneurship and already have pretty high level coaches. I didn't even know that was a thing. I didn't even know this industry existed. I was like, I was like the bootstrap method, you know.
Nekole: You were on YouTube with me.
Emily: Absolutely. And I mean, I say this all the time, but I'm so happy to be alive in this time when we have such easy access to information.
Nekole: It's a gift.
Emily: With motherhood too. I just think about like, oh my goodness, my mom and my grandma's generation, like. No wonder there were, like some wacky things that happened then. Because, what were you gonna do? Who'd you get your information from?
Nekole: It's so true. It's so true. I tip my hat to them. I did it too, from a completely different world.
Emily: I did it, too. It was so much. So much harder.
Nekole: So much harder.
Emily: So thank God for access to information also includes how to build a business, how to build a landing page.
Sound to monetize YouTube views.
Emily: So how did you start monetizing?
Nekole: So, I started monetizing with YouTube. It was a simultaneous thing. You know, YouTube has their own parameters. You have to have a certain amount of subscribers and hours watched, and then you can put ads on your YouTube channel. So that's what it started happening, trickling in just a couple hundred dollars a month, you know, which I was so pumped for, you know, after so much money going out. Anything coming in. I was like, thank you, Holly, Lou, your praises for.
But the gift for me, one of my, my biggest things and it took me a while to do it. I built my first online course and it was on, it was actually. Having to do with transitioning from breast milk or formula to solid foods, it was a quick little offer and I placed it on one of my YouTube videos. And what's so beautiful about that platform is it's evergreen. You know, people are always searching. They're always going to find that video and it's like a robotic marketing machine where it's like, I provide value and Hey, also here's this offer. And so people literally, it was just very passive. I was just, you know, receiving payments for these little mini courses that I had done. And that was a bulk of how I started this business. And then as the audience grew, I started getting branded offers. So different brands would send emails to me and say, Hey, we love the content that you're putting out. Do you want a partner? And so, you know, and it all kind of depends on what your audience looks like.
You know, but first it was a few hundred dollars for an integration. Maybe you mentioned the product on one of your videos, or maybe in the beginning, it's just a trade. Here's this product. And it's like, I would use this product or I would purchase this product and sure. I'm happy to share it. And then you grow your audience and you're like, get to negotiate the prices.
So now I have a management team that comes in and does the negotiations for different brand deals. And, you know, it's beautiful. It adds like depending on the brand, let's just say. At this point, I've signed a six-figure brand deal. And then you can do one off things that are like a thousand dollars here or there, was stories.
So it's been this beautiful, just surprise of a business that I have built that has allowed so much freedom and flexibility and where it's like each project is its own creative genius, you know? Here's this brand, this is what they have in mind. And it's like, let's create together, you know? And I have freedom on my channel.
What do I want to put on there? And so it's unlike any other online business, you know, the influencer world or what habit, what have you. But, it's been everything for me because it has been the ground in which. I have now launched my coaching business because other moms have said like, I love this.
How did you do this? This is my dream. These videos I've watched your children grow up. You know, I've been watching your YouTube videos since Kai was like two or three. And you're like, how do I do this? I'm ready. I'm ready to leave my corporate job. I'm ready to leave the soul-sucking job. And so it's, it's a full circle moment and I love it. I love all the growth. I love the hard points. There have been dark days. You know, but I love it.
Emily: That's so cool. And I love that. I mean, I almost feel like I'm speaking to a celebrity, given that you have. You have a management team that handles the negotiations. That just sounds so next level, like this own that please.
Nekole: I will. It's fun. It's very nice. It's, it's nice. I'm not going to lie.
Emily: I'm just imagining, you know, like all of the sports stars. Right? It's like, talk to my agent. My agent's going to negotiate my deal for me.
Nekole: There's that. But also then being on both sides of like in the coaching world, it's like you have a team too. You have a beautiful team that handles so many aspects. So you could stay in your lane of genius. You know, it's like tomato, tomato, the same thing. They just called different things, you know, but ultimately this is the team and they just helped make my life easier. And I know, you know, that.
Emily: That's so rad. I love it. So the next kind of iteration or evolution to this is helping other mommas escape the nine to five.
Emily: Very cool.
Nekole: So it's, you know, all about building that soul aligned legacy while raising solo line kiddos, right? I just, I feel like there's been this unspoken, like expectation of either you are a good mother and you're not focused on work.
You're focused on your energies at home and to be a good mom, that means you've got to sacrifice everything and just be all attentive here. Or you could be building a business, but it kind of means that you're a shit mom. And so it's really about. Standing in this new paradigm where it's like, no, no, no, no, we don't have to choose.
We actually get to have it all. We could be great mothers and be building an incredible legacy side-by-side and I just happened to be so blessed where it's like, literally my children were the center of my business. The biggest brand deals I've had come in is because I'm a mom, you know, and they wanted content with my kiddos.
And so it was like, I got to document my life and the things that I'd be doing, whether or not the camera was on and get paid for it. And that's the part that I want people to hear is like, If that gets to be my reality, which I would have never dreamt of that being possible before, then it gets to be true for you too. And whichever way lights you up, you know? So, that's what I'm here to stand for and help other women create.
Emily: Yes. I love that you're standing for that. And having my kids be the center of my business. Sounds like my worst nightmare. So if anybody is listening I'm built that way, it's all. Okay. Well, I learned that even, you know, with our e-commerce business because it was baby clothing. And so for a while, like I was trying to do the photo shoots and stuff with Faye and it was so stressful.
Nekole: It's so stressful.
Emily: Then I started just working with influencers and just sending them free products and getting back the most incredible photos. And I was like, this is so much better. And then I roped myself into doing it after a long period of time, of not using my kids. And even dressed JJ up like a little girl. I put pigtails in this care, went to these birthdays, dressed them and went to take pictures. And I was like, I'm reminded again.
Nekole: Just how stressful is this
Emily: It's like the Pinterest fails, you know, like you have this idea in your head of what it's going to look like and the actuality. And you're like, oh, this is nothing like what I imagined.
Nekole: This wasn't what I wanted at all. I will say for me anyways, I feel like video and pictures are two different BS and trying to get a kid to just be in a photo. A still photo is like herding cats. So I feel you want of that.
Emily: No, I think you're actually right.
I agree. I feel like video actually is more forgiving.
Nekole: It is, a thousand percent and you just keep it running for however many minutes and you can edit out that one little clip that you need, but when you have an hour to be in front of a camera and you need people to sit and have him look and angles, that's a lot.
Emily: Okay. So talk to me about how we made the transition from making a couple hundred bucks here and there too. I don't even know how much you make right now, but you're going to tell me, I know, I know, just based on the dollar amount of the mastermind that we're in, that you've got to be making some money.
Nekole: Making some money, but I will also. Okay. So here's what we said. So now we're averaging. You may be surprised though, because it's like reinvesting all of my money back into business. I'm averaging about $15,000 a month, currently. And so it is a big investment being in the hyper mind, because like, and again, I have so much love and support for my husband because before the hyper mind it was like, cool.
Look at the surplus. All of these years. I spent, in the red, I can really make up for some time. And my husband just said like, but you know, you want this? This is, this is your next step. Are you here to be a multimillionaire? Or aren't you making the move? And with that blessing, it was like, let's go again.
Here we go. Reinvesting all the money, but it's been profound. I wouldn't trade it for anything meeting you and the sisters in there. It's been everything. So, Here we are reinvesting most and not all basically all because then you have like my team and thankfully with the YouTube management team, they just take a percentage of the deals we do.
So it's not like I'm paying per month. To have someone, like on my team, but I do have a support role. She's amazing. And so I have her and then just like system stuff that I'm paying for. So at this point I'm basically reinvesting almost all of that 15,000 back into the business, which I'm okay with. I'm like.
Emily: So you're not really taking a standard draw. It's not hitting the personal bank account.
Nekole: Right. I will have to, because I decided to incorporate, so I will have to be paying myself a salary, but it'll be small. It will be, it'll be nice and humble to start, but right now re-investing and hoping to scale this thing. So,
Emily: Absolutely. And I appreciate you sharing tha so transparently. Because, you know, it's like, not only do we not talk about the numbers a lot, but then when we do, it tends to be such a highlight reel, or we're not talking about, we're talking about top line and not bottom line.
Emily: And which is all fine. It's not that there's necessarily intent behind it. But what I've noticed that my mind does, is compare someone else's top line to my bottom line.
Emily: And it's like, you start feeling like you're behind. You're not as good. What's wrong with me? Why can't I get this together? And it's like, well, here you've got 15,000 a month on average top-line revenue, which is great. So many businesses never even get to that point. And it's all being reinvested. And then it's like, that's really interesting to know too. It's not going to be like that forever.
Emily: But, you know, sometimes you have people coming at you too, acting like you're, like you're rich and famous and you're like.
Nekole: No, not actually.
Emily: That it counts doesn't quick to feel that way yet.
Emily: Can just be like, talk to my agents.
Nekole: Exactly. It's so true. The top line and bottom line though, because it is, it's like social media is the highlight reel, you know, and I think we're starting to see a bit of a shift where it's like, people can stand in the power of where they are and know that that's enough. And instead of trying to prove something and just going back to like my mission and just the gratitude I hold to have even been in this place to have gotten to this place where. I have so much freedom, which was ultimately my goal, you know, like money. I wouldn't trade any amount of money for the level of freedom I have.
I get to pick my kids up from school mid day, drop them off, play, you know, it's a random Wednesday and we go hang out in OHI because we want to get smoothies and lunch. That was the ultimate dream for me. And while my dream has expanded and gotten bigger, and yes, I desire more things like I'm holding onto this with such gratitude because I wouldn't trade this freedom for any amount of money. So if it means I have to grow a little bit slower and maintain this flexibility and this freedom, so be it. You know, it's like keeping in the forefront, what it is. You're actually desiring.
Emily: Yes. Amen. Freedom is like top for me as well. And I feel like there's two interesting things that kids do. One is that from the practical side as mothers, if we're going to go back to work, we're going to, in Southern California, we're going to pay someone probably two grand a month to watch our child.
So just because of that dynamic alone, it makes it a more interesting proposition to say, Could I be home with my child and launch a soul aligned business with the help of Nicole. And it doesn't have to bring in the same amount of money as my corporate job did. Because I'd be paying for daycare.
Emily: So there's that. And then the other thing that kiddos do is they're so good at bringing us back to the present moment. So good at it. And I mean, don't get me wrong. There's a million times a day where I'm like, can someone else just please take care of my kids right now once they go back to school next week and I'm so ready for it.
But, also, it's like you see the passing of time and there are so many times when it's like, do I want to look back on this season? And remember the pressure that I put on myself to have my business be in a certain place and to have made the money. And then, now I have the money, but I also have older kids. And like that season is gone.
Nekole: It's so true.
Emily: Can I just take a breath? Let the business be where it is. Let the money be where it is. Continue to take inspired action and also really soak in this season.
Nekole: Okay. I have to tell you the fact that you just look there just are no coincidences. And I literally had this conversation with my husband. Did it because as you know, being in the hyper mind, it's easy to get triggered sometimes. You see in the best way we love our sisters. We're always celebrating, each other. It's easy to get stuck in comparison sometimes. You see people moving at certain pieces and you're like, what is happening? I, you know, you, you start thinking like, maybe I should be here. And so I was having one of those moments this morning and I really had to bring myself back to exactly that. I'm like, Nicole, you have a 10 month old and you just sent your five and a half year old.
Off to kindergarten for the first time. Let this be the season and let this be enough where it's like, you have more, you have, you still have so much, your business is still growing. It's still thriving. And you get to really soak this in and be here in this moment. There will be a time where they're older and they're off with their friends and they can't hardly stand to be around you. And wouldn't that be great if that aligned with the timing where things were a little bit more chaotic or busy in the business or whatever else, but can you just enjoy this moment right here? So I feel you thank you for saying that.
Emily: You're welcome. And it is, it's so true. The comparison game and feeling ahead or behind and just like weaponizing time against ourselves weaponizing other people's results against ourselves. And then also, you know, there are women in the hyper mind that would give anything to have the babies that we have.
Emily: You know?
Nekole: Exactly. So what are we doing to ourselves at the end of, you know what I'm saying? It's crazy.
Emily: I'm so grateful, you know, for you and the other mamas that are in there, and that we're really able to take a stance for. The both and, of parenting and being in this season when family requires a lot. And even with incredible partners, even with financial resources, even with having house cleaners come, you know, often Jeff and I will look at each other and be like, wow! It feels so fall. We feel like we could have, like a mother's helper here every evening to help. And maybe the house still wouldn't look clean. How does this happen?
Nekole: You have two kiddos, right? Emily?
Emily: Six year old and two year old.
Nekole: Okay. So yes, I know every night, I mean, and you're out of the phase now where the food is all over the floor. Every night still it's still, I feel you.
Emily: That's like the critical time. I feel like, to have a dog passed away like a year and a half ago. And we really realized, wow! Massey was really eating a lot of food. All of a sudden we have to sweep it all up and clean it. And like there's a lot here.
Nekole: Oh my God. It's so true. I've been to all the time or two now's the time to invest in a dog.
Emily: It's just, it's constant messages. It's constant. The competing priorities, time.
Nekole: Oh my God. I feel you. I feel you. And yet, like you said, it goes like that, you know?
Emily: Exactly. And so yes, just real motherhood. This is the way it is. We love it. And there are days when it's like, oh, my cup feels so empty.
Nekole: Exactly, exactly. Bone dry. Yes.
Emily: So I'm curious, talk to me a little bit about any, like money mindset issues, so to speak, or like money wounds that kind of came up for you. I'm imagining that they came up once you became an entrepreneur, but you tell me.
Nekole: So, you know, what's really interesting. And there were definitely stories as a child. And here's the interesting thing. So my dad was the spender. He was fun. We were the kids who had freaking go-karts, the only ones in the neighborhood at age six, rolling around like my dad loved to show us a good time.
My mom was the opposite. She was the thrifty, just like you've got to save there's rainy days coming. You, you're not going to have anything. And so it's really interesting being pulled between the two, but then you pan out and we grew up in a middle-class neighborhood and we were like one of very few people of color in our neighborhood. And I feel like for my parents, it was like a stretch to be in this neighborhood. We did, we had an amazing childhood. We always had everything we needed, but when I started going to school, I'd see the other kids doing X, Y, and Z, or their kids, or their parents were gifting them cars. And my parents were like, we can't do that.
I think that that's when the story started setting in, you know, or it was like, there's not enough. Or, you know, there's a cap to what we can do, or it's not accessible for people like us. And so it was an, as I got older, I realized it was the most beautiful gift that my parents could give me stretching to be in a neighborhood and surrounded by people who had more than us, but that it was visible to me because it showed me what was possible, what was around me and really put a desire in my heart to figure out how to get the things that I wanted. You know, and I didn't have it. So I had to unwind a lot of stories about not enough. I feel like that was always there or just enough, you know? And so the frivolous spending or wanting to do things just for fun, it was like, no, you have to work really hard for your money. And you also had to have money to save. Otherwise you're dumb. If you just spend money and you aren't saving money, you're setting yourself up for failure. Which was very interesting for me because when I first started bringing in money, my soul was like, let's play.
I know you have the story that you need to save, but like I had this desire to play, to have fun, to spend, to make memories. And so it's interesting because I feel like I'm coming out of that season where it's like, I've gone to all the most amazing restaurants around me. We've done family vacations, we've done X, Y, and Z. It's been amazing. And now I feel like I'm entering a season of wanting to stack. So as my business starts to evolve, what feels really good in the long line for me is starting to put money away, invest more money. All of these things. So it's been interesting watching me undo past stories or limiting beliefs and recreate my money story.
Emily: That is interesting. Well, and I'm curious too, like when having that dynamic between your parents, did you find yourself in your marriage kind of adopting one of those personas or the other?
Nekole: That's such a great question. So I want to say that Mike, my husband, definitely had more of my dad's vibe. You know, he was always like, okay, well you want to do this? Let's go do this. And it was fun for me at first. I was always like, yes. Okay, cool. There's no one saying we got to put on, and let's just go have fun. But then I realized, because Mike has always, he comes from a family of entrepreneurs. So this was very much in line for him, is like the risk, the investments, the everything. And then there's the part of me who was new to this world. He was like, whoa, this is too much of a risk. I think we need to pull it back here. You know? So I found myself. Trying to balance the scales here and pull back. And I don't think that that was really good for me because it had me looking for a lack everywhere.
You want to spend this, but we need to do this over here, or, you know what I'm saying? And so put me in the state where. I was always seeing where there wasn't enough or where the rug may have been pulled out from underneath us and set up being in a space of abundance and understanding that we're having fun. We're taking aligned actions and we're always supported. And that's, that was really my work because it did cause friction between us for a while, where I was trying to pull back so hard on the other end. So that's an interesting question.
Emily: I can totally relate to that, right? And it makes sense when you look at masculine and feminine energetics. Right? Because my husband was more in his feminine, it was like, let's play, let's have fun, let's experience things. And so I wanted that. And it did feel fun and it felt like a contrast to me, but then it's like, then my masculine energy wanted to control it so that I could feel safe. And so I really ended up painting him as being irresponsible and untrustworthy. Because of my own like unhealed relationships with money and like masculine and feminine energy.
Nekole: I feel you so hard on this. Just the mere right here. Same. And then it's funny because then it's like, we do the work and they're still the same. They're still having fun and playing and everything else. And now we get to join them and there's no bad person. It's like understanding the balance and how to infuse both energies and feel safe and held and abundance, you know?
Emily: Totally. It's like, that counterweight that we thought was so needed, maybe it's not actually needed. Maybe our husbands actually do care about there being a roof over our head.
Nekole: Feeding their family, all the things.
They're not trying to bankrupt us.
Emily: I love that. Okay. So the other kind of wound that you brought up a little bit, I think was like this idea of like, having to work hard for it?
Nekole: Most definitely. I mean, I think for me, we didn't see any examples of people outside of your nine to five, you know, put in 25, 30, 40 years, then you get your retirement and then maybe you can have some fun, but then don't have too much fun because, you know, there's health issues that can come up and all the rest. And so it was very much like, and you just even think about this conditioning as a child and like school, you know, like, so rewarded for the A's and the A pluses and being at the top of, you know, and how much time we're putting in for studying.
And, the time equals good grades and, the good grades equals good college. And that equals more money and safety and stability. So this very long formula that we've been conditioned to understand the successful, needed to be broken for me and in so many different ways. And I'm so grateful to Mike, just marrying in to a family of business owners showed me a completely.
I remember, we were like, because we met young. So I was 20. He was 19. And we used to cruise down PCH, Pacific Coast Highway for anyone who's like outside of California, listening to this, or isn't familiar. And we would, like, look at all of those houses on the beach and we would just dream and we'd say. "Oh, you know, I'm going to be a millionaire", when he used to talk to me, like I used to be a mill. I want to be a millionaire and I want to retire in my mid thirties. And I would look at him like he was out of his mind, like, we'd be talking about a millionaire. You climb the corporate ladder. If you hit six figures in your career, here's my hat. I tip it to you. This is amazing. You know? And so he really pushed me to see this world for all of that is available to all of us, you know, and I wouldn't be who I am or where I am today without him expanding me. So I'm just so grateful for that.
Emily: That's amazing. That's so cool. And I'm curious too, just like, as a black woman, and it sounds like growing up in a white community. Did you feel like there was additional, like conditioning or pressure around, like you gotta earn it, you got to prove it. You gotta work twice as hard, kind of a thing?
Nekole: Yes. Most definitely. I especially like the twice as hard part, I feel like. There was, and it's interesting because I'm trying to think back if there were like any, you know, specific conversations growing up, or if it was more just implied and how my parents showed up and what they did, but there was certainly an energy of, you've got to work harder to be seen, to be appreciated, to be valued and to be respected. And I think that that was why then as a kid, there was so much emphasis around. How I presented myself. Do you know the grades that I got, what others thought about me? You know, you think about ,like how the teachers report back about the type of kid you are and this and that. It was like, there wasn't a whole lot of room for error.
It's like you need it to be on the straight and narrow. And I feel like my parents felt like we couldn't afford. To have a whole lot of wiggle room outside of like the main street, you know? So it was like, the expectation is you're on your best behavior. You get the good grades, you work your butt off to get to the top because otherwise, you know, there's not a safety net for you over here.
No, one's going to take care of you if you mess this up. So it's very interesting because as I'm speaking, I'm like, I don't remember. The specific conversation. It was just more of how things were internalized and the expectations that were put on us growing up.
Emily: And that's always the sense that I've gotten too, right? Some people overtly in the black community will say that, but it's also just kind of this. No one thing. We're going to have to, out hustle, out work, out prove because we're black in America.
Nekole: Exactly. A thousand percent.
Emily: But it feels like that might be a hard thing to take into entrepreneurship where like failing is just part of it. But if you're, if your standard is like, nope, gotta be perfect.
Nekole: Oh my God. So you see this right? And then the stories of working twice as hard to be seen in everything else, it's like, boy, it gets magnified. Then when you come out on your own and you start your own business, I'm like, I have a lot to unravel and there's a lot of depths, you know?
It's like, I think that I'm untangled. That's not over here, but then I see how far down it goes. And it, on some days you're like, well, that's overwhelming, you know, but I know that in each step and just like a commitment to always do this work, it's like, and this is the legacy with my children, right? Or it's like, they're just getting a whole new operating system. And just my commitment to being aware.
Even though I'm not perfect in this. And I still have healing to do. My awareness is like the leg up because it's going to shift how I speak to my kids, the expectations I hold for my children and being the mirror for them and how they see themselves. So this is the beautiful thing about this work.
We get to shift the legacy and the narrative and the trajectory of our lineage.
Emily: Yes. Changing family trees.
Emily: I love it. Thank you so much for sharing your genius with us. And I know that everyone listening is going to want to connect with you and follow along and maybe join your program. So tell us where to find you.
Nekole: Yay. Thank you so much for having me. And this has been such a joy. I love chatting with you and do this again, just so you know. You're right. I am, an all the places, so I'm on Facebook. I'm on Instagram and you can also find me on YouTube, Nekole Amber. And my name is spelled a little differently. It's an N E K O L E. So, on Insta I'm Nekole dot Amber. On Facebook, Nicole Amber, and on YouTube. If you search, Nicole Amber, you will find me.
Emily: Beautiful. Well, thank you so much for being on the show and sharing your gifts with us and everyone listening. Thank you so much for being a part of this community as you're listening, tag Nekole and I let us know what was most impactful for you. And we'll talk to you soon.
Emily: Thank you so much for listening to today's show. Changing the way we think, feel and talk about money will change the world, I truly believe that. It starts with you tuning in and it spreads when you share this show on Instagram and Facebook and tag me at Em Makes Money. And you know, what moves the needle the most. Taking just a minute to leave a five-star review on iTunes.
The show isn't free to produce. So let's multiply those dollars invested to help the show reach a bigger audience each week. Thank you so much for your help. I really appreciate it. And lastly, if you want more connection, more EM Makes Money style, riffs, and a safe place on the internet to talk about money, jump into my free Facebook group, the money club it's linked in the show notes. Until next time, I'm wishing you health, happiness, and boatloads of money.