Five Minutes A Day To Take Control Of Your Finances with Nicole Barham

If you’re a busy entrepreneur who doesn’t know how to make sense of your business profit and loss statement—let alone figure out how to create one for your accountant to review—well, you are definitely not alone. There are so many of us out there running six-figure businesses and yet we’re not actually on top of our finances. I have been guilty of this, and so has financial coach Nicole Barham, my guest on this week’s podcast. 

A few years ago, Nicole found herself in financial straits when revenue from her successful online business suddenly plummeted. Bouncing back from bankruptcy, she learned from her mistakes and created the 5 Minute Bookkeeper™, a painfully simple system to help fellow solopreneurs get up close and intimate with their own numbers. I’m a big fan—especially because five minutes a day is very doable for my ADHD brain.

Nicole and I are talking about money mindset and confronting financial shame head-on with preemptive action. Her inspiring story shows that it is possible to flip your financial situation, no matter how deep you think you’re in it. 

Tune in! 

Links & References

Time Stamps

[2:07] – Nicole’s bankruptcy was the catalyst to creating 5 Minute Bookkeeper™

[4:34] – Amber has paid the ADHD tax

[7:26] – Getting your hands dirty in your finances

[12:39] – Nicole’s Friday money dates provide support and accountability

[13:50] – Money shame related to not keeping up with your finances

[19:06] – The more you look at your money, the more you take care of it

[22:59] – Strategies emerge to achieve business goals when you pay attention to your finances

[25:18] – Can’t forget your silent partner

[27:00] – How Nicole regrouped with a positive mindset after bankruptcy

[31:45] – 5 minutes a day with your finances helps counteract ADHD impulsiveness

[34:07] – Reaching seven figures doesn’t necessarily mean you’re profitable

[35:30] – Where to find Nicole and 5 Minute Bookkeeper™


Amber Hawley  0:01  

Business owners are increasingly being pulled in so many directions, feeling like they aren’t reaching their full potential in business and life despite their type A ways. With my background as a therapist, entrepreneur, and as a dotcom dropout with ADHD, I interview and coach high achieving business owners like you who want to stop struggling for success by using psychological systems, strategies, and the occasional carefrontation. This is the easily distracted entrepreneur, your place to slay overwhelm, perfectionism, and shiny object syndrome so that you can get done what matters most to you. 


Amber Hawley  0:41  

Welcome back, listeners. Today, I have a really awesome special guest with me that I’m pretty excited about talking to. I have the lovely Nicole Barham who is a finance coach and the creator of 5 Minute Bookkeeper. And we are going to be talking all things money mindset and finance today. So welcome, Nicole.


Nicole Barham  1:03  

Thank you so much, Amber. Thank you for having me.


Amber Hawley  1:06  

Yes, I’m really excited about this one. I mean, you know, money is such a huge, important piece of our business. And for so many people, like, you know, whatever your business is, you are the expert in that. But somehow, we’re also supposed to be experts in finance, and all the other things. And I think money is a hard one, because it’s not just about, I always say it’s not about numbers, money, to me is a very emotional issue. Because we have a lot of things that we have learned growing up, we have our own, you know, resistance and blocks and kind of personality styles around money. And so that can make it really challenging at times. 


Amber Hawley  1:48  

And so whenever I meet somebody who is doing something really cool in the finance space, I thought, as soon as I saw what you were doing, and then I signed up for your program, I was like, I need to talk to her because people need to hear about what she is doing. I think it’s so amazing. But maybe first can you share with the listeners? Just a little bit more about yourself?


Nicole Barham  2:07  

Absolutely. Amber, thank you so much for having me. Yeah, it’s, money is such an emotional thing that sometimes it’s, it even can be debilitating, right. And so as you mentioned before, I’m Nicole Burnham, I am, I created a 5 Minute Bookkeeper™, because I saw where there were so many entrepreneurs like myself, who were running businesses, we were running, you know, close to six figures, or even six figure businesses, but we just were not on top of the finances, right. And I was one of those people who was not paying attention to the finances, and then had to file bankruptcy in my first business. Because it was just, you know, all over the place, my income went away with the company that I was an affiliate for. And then it kind of blew up, I had no income coming in, had all this debt, did not have any money to pay for it. 


Nicole Barham  3:03  

And so that kind of was the catalyst for me starting, creating 5 Minute Bookkeeper, because I just knew that if I could get a handle on my finances, that everything else would fall into place. Right. And so that’s my, my background is that I started this business, because I just knew that I had to help other entrepreneurs like myself, who were probably not paying attention to, attention to the finances, didn’t know they were making a profit or loss. Were always scrambling at tax time to get their numbers together. And so I wanted to get out in front of that. So that they, I could help them to keep on top of the numbers, but also make decisions around finances that they would not be able to make if they’re like, waiting until next year to look at this year’s numbers.


Amber Hawley  3:55  

Right. No, I think it’s such a compelling story. Because, you know, I know a lot of people are in that same place. Being somebody I guess, as a therapist who gets to see behind the scenes a lot. There are so many people who are living at poverty level as entrepreneurs, and they feel a lot of shame about it. But again, like we expect ourselves to have this understanding of all the things and in reality, you know, we’re juggling a lot, but that that story is common, you know, where people, you know, you go through something, yeah, like one, you know, your stream of income dries up and then all of a sudden, it’s like, okay, now I have to regroup and figure out what’s next. 


Amber Hawley  4:34  

I think this is common for all entrepreneurs, but especially my peeps, like myself who have ADHD, you know, we call it kind of the ADHD tax, there can be so many ways in which those traits can kind of show up and impact you know, our finances. And I’ve I’ve shared I’m a pretty open book myself, and I’ve shared all, I mean, I have made every financial, I feel like I’ve made every financial mistake there really is. And when I was in like times of extreme stress, I mean, there were even points where I was doing the work and not billing people. So and I never got that money because after a certain period of time, I thought, okay, it’s too late to bill, right.


Nicole Barham  5:17  



Amber Hawley  5:17  

And so but but my husband would, you know, joke and say, like, you love to do the work, you just hate getting paid. I’m like, I need to change this narrative. This is not okay. And like you said, I mean, I, I had a multiple six figure business, you know, and I still was feeling like I have, I don’t have a handle of my finances. I had a bookkeeper, which I realized after, you know, a certain period of time, I was like, I have to have a bookkeeper, there’s no way that I can be the person who, who has to go through all the time, because I would see my friends who didn’t. And I was like, Oh, my God, that’s so overwhelming. I don’t have time for that. 


Amber Hawley  5:56  

But that’s why I was so fascinated to learn because I realized after years of having a bookkeeper, because I’ve had my business, I’ve been in business for 10 years. And like I said, getting to like a half million dollars, and still feeling out of control, even with the bookkeeper, even with a CPA, and not not looking at my numbers or not being close enough to them. And so, and part of me did that on purpose, because I was like, I don’t want to be told no, like, I don’t want somebody telling me I can’t invest in that thing. And that’s my thing, like, I’m a spender and I love to invest in stuff. But again, was I doing it in a thoughtful way? No.


Nicole Barham  6:35  

Right. And that’s the thing too, like with, even though a lot of entrepreneurs do have bookkeepers, I remember, someone had reached out to me, she was like, I have a bookkeeper, but I want to be close to my money. Because it’s also kind of like a hands off approach. Okay, that person is taking care of the finances. We meet once a month in the future. And we figure out, okay, this is what happened last month, right. But there’s no, there’s no financial decisions being made while you’re, while you’re keeping track, while you’re in the middle of the financial, you know, situation or whatever is happening. You know, it’s not like, it’s like, you’re always going back and looking and be like, okay, I spent this money I made, I made this amount, I made a profit, or I made a loss. And then you move on. So it’s really a hands off approach, I believe. 


Nicole Barham  7:26  

And I am a huge proponent of getting your hands dirty, for want of a better phrase, in your finances, right to be in there, seeing what’s happening with the day to day, and just not getting a summary and be like, Okay, that’s what the number is. And I find that when my clients tell me that they feel so great, because they’re seeing what’s happening while they’re going through and they’re tracking and they’re looking at the numbers. It’s like, they see what’s happening with their money, as opposed to just having a team of people saying, This is what happened and just explain to you, and sometimes you don’t understand the reports, anyway.


Amber Hawley  8:03  

Right. Or a lot of times, you know, depending on what level of bookkeeping, and I love bookkeepers, so I’m not anti-booking here. But, but what level like, there wasn’t even a conversation, it was more like, here are your numbers. And you know, again, for somebody who is running multiple businesses and really busy, it was more like, check. Okay, that’s been checked off. And then I didn’t really delve into it and look into, which is on me, that was on me, not on her, right. 


Nicole Barham  8:30  

Of course.


Amber Hawley  8:31  

But yeah, I agree. I think that’s the hard thing is, you know, and I even do it every Monday, I go and do my finances, like I would go and look at stuff. But it was more like checking off the box and making sure like, Okay, this has been paid, you know, that kind of thing, but not really, like you said, understanding or looking at it in a different, like using it for information, just more like checking that box. 


Nicole Barham  8:56  

Right. And so that’s the thing with because, and to go back to your point about bookkeepers, I actually do people’s books, like I have clients who they’re like, I don’t want to do the numbers, you take care of it. But they also are really hands off, right? And so I see the difference between someone who has 5 Minute Bookkeeper™, and they’re doing their own finances, as opposed to someone who says, you know, you take care of it, I’ll you know, I’ll, we’ll meet once a month or once every three months and go over stuff. And I also see people having bookkeepers, but they also have their own finance system as well, just because they want to keep on top of it. And that’s really how sometimes they’re able to make those those like immediate finance, financial decisions in their businesses. Instead of like waiting, you know, you can make that, you know, sound financial decisions, I call them, because you’re on top of the numbers and you know exactly what’s going on. 


Nicole Barham  9:52  

And it’s also funny that you mentioned ADHD and you know, thinking that, okay, I don’t want to be in the finances. I might pay attention to it for a little bit. And then I will go, you know, not go back to it for like months or whatever. But I have people who are my clients who say to me, I have ADHD and this is amazing. Like they’ve written testimonials about it, right. 


Amber Hawley  10:16  



Nicole Barham  10:16  

So I’m like, well I, first of all, I have no clue how to, you know, how to create anything for people with ADHD. But it’s, and there’s someone who’s actually certified and she’s like, Yeah, this is, I have ADHD, I’m certified in it. I’m telling you that this is a system that is really good for people like me, right? So that’s the other piece too is like, maybe somebody in your audience is like, oh, my gosh, the numbers, I don’t want to think about that. I don’t want to do them. But if there’s something that’s really simple, that doesn’t like cause me overwhelm, then that might be something that will help me.


Amber Hawley  10:52  

Yeah, and, you know, saying as somebody who like works with people who have ADHD, you know, I like I said, I got the program. And so now I’m doing it. And it is super straightforward. It’s very simple. I happen to love Excel, like so the spreadsheet thing is like, a spreadsheet is just like, you know–


Nicole Barham  11:13  

Love it.


Amber Hawley  11:13  

It’s up there with, right after organization it’s my porn, like, I love a good spreadsheet. And I think it’s so fantastic. But I do love, and that’s the thing as I have like a budget in Excel, right? That’s part of that financial thing that I would do. And it’s amazing to me, even how many entrepreneurs don’t even have a budget. 


Amber Hawley  11:33  

But what I love is, it’s so straightforward. Like even you have, like, you need to change the dates, here’s what you do. Like you, Everything is so broken up so easy that if you’re somebody who is like afraid of numbers, or dealing with spreadsheets, and they find it overwhelming, it’s, I do agree, I think it is really simple. And I think once you make that decision of like, okay, this is what I’m going to do. And I think what’s really helpful is, you know, your Friday money dates that you host.


Nicole Barham  11:58  



Amber Hawley  11:58  

To me, that’s part of what is so helpful for people with ADHD, it’s that coworking, body doubling. I do the same thing. We have coworking sessions every month in my membership. And it’s that thing, where I know, it’s like, why does that work, but it does, like having somebody else there, there’s a level of accountability, there’s support if you feel stuck. And so I definitely think that this is something, you know, if you’re somebody who feels like intimidated by spreadsheets and numbers and you don’t, it’s not your porn, it could, it could become your porn, it could be really, really good. So I totally agree with that.


Nicole Barham  12:39  

I find that people who come to the money dates they are, they leave like, oh my gosh, thank you so much for the space, because I know that it’s there. And that’s the thing too, like with other, and I’m not ragging on other people’s, you know, products or whatever. But with other products, you just buy it and you go off and you sink or swim. Right? If you ask a question, you have to pay, you know, money for a consultant. And but what I built in, and I knew that this was missing, because it was missing for me and my clients told me, I didn’t want to go off with a tool that, you know, if I become overwhelmed, or if something happens, I cannot reach out to somebody to get help with that. And so when they come to the money dates, they can ask questions, they can just, you know, work on their finances. 


Nicole Barham  13:25  

Last Friday, we had our money date, and someone came in and she was like, I was able to do six months of my finances in this one hour. And so like, think about if she was not in the program, she probably would not have done, you know, until maybe next year, and then she’d be scrambling and stuff like that. So love money dates, and coworking sessions, anything for support and accountability, especially around finances. Because people just don’t love the finances because of the mindset or the overwhelm or a bad experience they had with somebody, you know, a bookkeeper or finance person who told them, who made them feel shame or embarrassed or something for not being on top of the numbers. 


Nicole Barham  14:04  

Because I do have people who come to me and they’re like, I was, you know, this person was just, you know, making me feel so badly for not being on top of my finances. And so they come in and they’re really timid and they’re like, you know, already have these preconceived ideas about what’s going to happen. And then when they come to find this really simple system plus a supportive environment, then that’s kind of the missing ingredient when it comes to helping, helping my my clients stay on top of their finances.


Amber Hawley  14:36  

Oh, and I agree, I think money shame is such a big thing. And yeah, you know, I see that with my clients that I’m working with too where, or even friends, where it’s like, okay, you really need to get a system, whether that’s a bookkeeper or something like 5 Minute Bookkeeper, you know, get something where you’re regularly looking at your finances, and they feel so much shame. It’s almost like, you know, the thing where I have to clean my house before the cleaner comes and it’s, they’re, I’m like, they’re a professional, they don’t care. 


Nicole Barham  15:05  



Amber Hawley  15:05  

They’re here to do that. They’re not judging you. And yeah, maybe people have had that experience. But I think for the most part, I’m like, they’re looking to support you. But I understand it too, as somebody who, you know, made, you know, again, I’ve made every money mistake, I swear, if you name a money mistake, I’ve made it. I have, I have pissed away a lot of money. And so I feel like I’ve learned from that and understanding, okay, but I can’t let my shame keep me stuck in this place I need, I need support of something, whether that’s, again, the spreadsheet or someone else, I really do encourage people, whatever that avenue is, you know, understanding, they’re not there to judge you, they’re there to support you. And that’s how you start making better money decisions, right, is getting it, you know, getting it out of the darkness, bringing it to the light, getting on top of it. So then you don’t feel that stress all the time. 


Amber Hawley  16:01  

And so, yeah, however, however you get to that, but I think it is really helpful when people find people like you, who are, you know, experts, but also super supportive, and just helping them like this, you know, the emotional part is with you. But at the end of the day, these are just numbers, they don’t say, oh, you’re a good business person, or you’re a bad business person. And that’s why I like that you share about, you know, filing bankruptcy, because that’s the thing where it’s like, that, again, this stuff happens in business, and people have those experiences, and they they either learn from them or they don’t. That doesn’t mean you’re a bad business person, it means that something happened, you know.


Amber Hawley  16:42  

And especially, I would say, with COVID, I know a lot of people have transitioned or shifted their businesses, but there have been many people whose businesses closed, and it wasn’t because they didn’t have a great product, or they weren’t great business people, it’s because you know, we had a radical shift in things. And you may have lost all your, your, you know, source of income, right. So I think it’s really important to kind of, for people to be looking at that and working through the shame and not let it be, like something about them. That’s right.


Nicole Barham  17:13  

And that’s the reason why I share the bankruptcy too. Because I want people to know that there is no shame when they, when they start working with me, right? Or use any of my products. Like, you know, this is someone who got to really the, I guess rock bottom, you would say, of the finances, because even though people think this is a Get Out of Jail Free card, the bankruptcy follows you around for 10 years. You still owe debt. So it’s not like zero at the end of the day. 


Nicole Barham  17:46  

And you know, all the other things that come with it. And personally, we were embarrassed, right. And so I wanted to really share my story to say that I really came back from that, to now, to this, to creating something that really helped me when I was in, in going through bankruptcy and had no money and, you know, the money coming in wasn’t making the bills, and we had to like really be on top of every penny every single day. And then was able to create a business around, you know, helping you to take those baby steps, right, to being on top of the finances. So you don’t have to wait until it gets really bad, where you, it’s overwhelming, or you have to file bankruptcy or, you know, whatever it is.


Nicole Barham  18:32  

And I also want to help you build wealth, right? We’re in business, we’re entrepreneurs, we’re not here to just, you know, play around for 10, 20 30 years, we, you know, you want to create a business that’s making money, that’s, you know, paying for kids to go to college or, you know, leaving money for kids and their kids or for the, you know, if you don’t have kids, you can leave it for charities, or whatever it is, whatever it is you want to do, creating that wealth starts with that little spreadsheet, or that little tracking system, or whatever it is. 


Nicole Barham  19:06  

And that’s how you’re going to, so don’t wait until you, some people are like, but I’m not making any money. You know, I don’t know if I should be tracking my, my, my numbers because I’m not making any money. But I’m like, What are you investing in your business? Are you spending money, are you, you know, don’t wait until you’re making a lot of money. Sometimes you the tracking helps you to actually make more money. And I don’t know how to explain that. So maybe, maybe you know somebody else who has that kind of insight. But you know, the more you look at your money and the more you take care of it, the more you keep track of it, the money is like, Oh, she wants me, she wants more of me. And then more starts coming in.


Amber Hawley  19:44  

I know, I was gonna say it sounds a little woo. And I always say I’m woo. I’m not woowoo but I’m woo. I’m a singular woo. But I do think there’s something to that. Whatever we pay attention to expands, and that can be both positive and negative. Right? And that’s, I mean, I could give a million examples of that in many different areas. But I do agree that, you know, once, even for me, like, once I start focusing, I think what happens for me is I get into that place of complacency. And so it’s like, Oh, it’ll be fine, or, Oh, it’ll work out. Or even if I feel stressed about it, you know, there’s, there’s this, there’s this stress that comes into it. And it’s like this place of lack or complete complacency. 


Amber Hawley  20:25  

And when I’m paying attention, and feeling like on top of things, I noticed, like, I’m more likely to send that email, you know, letting people know about what I’m doing or, you know, put myself out there more so that people are like, Oh, hey, yeah, that’s right. Let me, let me look into this, you know, whether that’s coaching or the membership, or whatever, and I feel like, so that’s attracting more money. That’s, you know, if that isn’t even woo, that’s just like, obviously, the more you put it out there, the better the chances of making sales, right? That is straightforward. 


Amber Hawley  20:58  

But I do think there’s something to around, you know, like I’ll go through, and I would only do it like, twice a year. And then I realized, like, no, no, I need to stop that. Because I would go through my finances like twice a year, and do like a overhaul like check of things. Because again, I’m a joiner. So you know, at one point, I had like eight memberships I was a part of, and you know, all the things. But going through and say, Okay, I can get rid of this, this, this and this. And I know there are times where I’m like, Well, I just saved $1,000 a month. So that’s more income for me. 


Nicole Barham  21:31  



Amber Hawley  21:31  

That’s more, and again, it’s not that I can’t spend it on those things, especially if they’re valuable to me. But I think there are times where I realized, like, Oh, I’m not utilizing this, like, I want to be intentional about where I’m spending my time and money. And there are things that I still stay a part of that I’m not using, because you know, and there’s reasons where I can pop in and use it, or what I get out of it, you know, actually helps me exponentially. So it doesn’t mean that I have to be in there every single day. Right? But again, it’s about that, making, like you said, sound, you know, thoughtful decisions about where you’re investing your time and money.


Nicole Barham  22:08  

Absolutely. Yeah. And I love the fact that we are, as I said before, paying attention to the money. And making more money is another one of the things that I talk about, that I have so many testimonials of clients who are like, I started working with you, I was making $5,000 a month. And then I had a $50,000 launch. And then after that I had a $90,000 launch. And I said it’s because you’re paying attention to the money, right? And I wish I could have like, I wish I could you know, there’s could be a formula or something that I tell you, Oh, you start doing this, and you’re gonna do that. But it’s just a matter of being in being in control of the finances, it just gives you that peace of mind. Right? You know, that peace of mind around? Okay, I don’t have to worry about how much is coming in and how much is going out? I know exactly how much it is. 


Nicole Barham  22:59  

And guess what, if I don’t like how much I made last month, I’ll set a goal for this month and figure out ways and the strategies just come. And I’ve, you know, it’s happened to be in so many of my clients, the strategies come and I’m, like, Okay, I want to make an extra, you know, whatever amount this month, let me reach out to former clients or let me promote this thing, or whatever it is. And I think that just, we are you’ll be so surprised how many different strategies can just come out of you being able to look at your finances.


Amber Hawley  23:31  

Right. Well, it’s that creativity, when you feel like you’ve, kind of like, okay, I need this, or this is what I’m wanting, and then you open yourself up to like, How can I do that? So again, it’s not even woo, because it is. I’m paying attention. I’m taking action on it. And at the same time in that woo, sense, like, I do agree, though, that, that, you know, it’s when we have that positive mindset, and we’re open to things and I think it’s hard to do when you don’t have a clue what’s actually going on. 


Amber Hawley  24:01  

Yeah, and, you know, I’ve, I remember, even again, this is not a shame thing, but like talking to people who said, Okay, well, how much money do you need to make the month and they kind of make up a number. And I said, Well, what are you basing that on? Like, do you, do you even know, like, do you know your expenses? And then they talked about expenses. Or they said, oh, about this much. And I said, Well, how much do you need to live? Not just business expenses, but how much do you need to live your life? And like, again, we kind of make up numbers, and it might be like, Oh, you actually need far less than that. Or it might be, so it’s not as stressful, or it might be like that doesn’t even cover your personal expenses, let alone the business ones. Right. 


Amber Hawley  24:41  

So I do think it’s, you know, such an important thing and, and, you know, again, I’m not throwing shade to anybody because I remember in the very beginning, I had a girlfriend who did, who did books as well. She was a therapist and a bookkeeper. And because she was my friends, like, I felt safe with her because I was embarrassed about my lack of, like, understanding. And so it felt really good to have her in the beginning because she felt like that that ease in, you know, that a lot of us entrepreneurs have when we, when we hire our friend to be our assistant or something. Yes. You’re like maybe not the best idea, but she was fantastic at books. So.


Nicole Barham  25:17  



Amber Hawley  25:18  

But I remember what she said to me. She goes, she’s like, Oh, well, something about, oh well you’re putting money for taxes and savings, right? And I looked at her like, genuinely, and I go, taxes? 


Nicole Barham  25:33  

We do pay that still. 


Amber Hawley  25:36  

I know. I know. But it’s so bad. I was like, oh, yeah, right. Because I think I was so in that mindset of, well, I figure out taxes at the end of the year, during tax season, you know, that kind of thing. Where, like, Ah, yes. And as my husband calls it, your silent partner, Remember to pay your silent partner. 


Nicole Barham  26:00  

Yes. And we always seem to do that to like, forget that you have to pay taxes. So when you have a job, and your job takes your taxes, you get your net pay, but then when you have a business, it’s all you know, all income coming in. And you have to separate that out. And I got that feedback as well from my clients. And I did include kind of like a calculator, a little calculator in 5 Minute Bookkeeper™ to say, Okay, this is what you pay yourself, this is what you do for, put aside for taxes for savings, or profit. Profit, hello, we’re in business, we want to make profit. So, again, just I think, when I think about my systems it’s just this holistic approach to finances that is like, you don’t have to be going to different directions, to be on top of it, to know how much to pay yourself and, you know, put aside for taxes, all of that stuff. So yeah, we have to remember our silent partner, as you said.


Amber Hawley  26:57  

Our silent partner, exactly. Going back to your story, what I do, again, what I do appreciate is like you said, it can be such a shameful thing to say, Oh, I filed bankruptcy. But I love that you took the thing that you realized, like this is the struggle, this was the problem here ,and made that your focus. And we’re in a membership, or I guess it’s a membership. Yeah, it’s a membership. We’re in a group together. And I remember seeing some of your posts and being like, Oh, my God, that is, like such an amazing story. 


Amber Hawley  27:28  

Because I think your transition, you may say it was like baby steps. And like you said, there’s still a long term impact. But the transition that you made, or like how quickly, you got back on track, and now have this super thriving business, I think it’s so inspiring for people to let them know, like, this doesn’t have to be your story forever. This doesn’t have to take you, you know, 5, 10 years to get back on track from something like this. You really, there’s really a lot that you can do, right?


Nicole Barham  28:00  

Yeah, absolutely. And I think that sometimes we have to turn that story, that, turn it around, you know, turn the negative story around and turn it into something positive, which, which is what I’ve done. I feel I’m a pretty positive person, I think. And so when I, and I’m also solution-oriented, like that’s my Virgo, like, okay?


Amber Hawley  28:23  

Me too! Virgos.


Nicole Barham  28:31  

So I’m like, Okay, this, what’s the solution? You know, we’re in this, we have this issue going on, what’s the solution to getting out of it or getting getting on top of it. And so I remember when I started to, you know, keep track of the finances, I’m like, Okay, if I keep track of every penny, and I had to, because we, my husband and I were not making enough money to support all the bills that we had, because now we had no credit cards to lean back on, nothing. So we had to live off what we earned. 


Amber Hawley  29:03  



Nicole Barham  29:03  

What a concept, right? So.


Amber Hawley  29:06  

That just sounds scary.


Nicole Barham  29:09  

So my, we had to, like, if I wasn’t keeping on top, then we would have been overdrafting our accounts, and we would, you know, have to be moving money around a little bit. Borrowing money from our family members. My mom and my sister, God bless them, they, you know, came in when we were able to be weren’t able to, you know, pay all the bills, they helped us, they loaned us money, all of that. So if we weren’t keeping track then we would not have known you know, when do I borrow money when do I you know, pay this thing, whatever. So I was kind of forced to stay on top of it. 


Nicole Barham  29:42  

But after a while, it became this habit that I did five minutes a day. And it just became this habit that I’m like, Okay, this is how, if I can teach people how to do this, then they will never get to the point where they’re in bankruptcy or have all this debt or owe all this money, because they will be, they’ll know what’s coming, and they’ll be able to mitigate that, right. So that’s what, that’s how I kind of turned it around and turned that negative thing into a positive. Because of my, you know, the solution-oriented person that I am, and I’m like, I have these skills, I love Excel, I have an accounting background, let me just use these skills, and see if I can help other people to, to stay on top of their finances. 


Nicole Barham  30:25  

Because we, there’s so many budgeting tools, Amber, and there’s so many things out there, and people are still not getting a handle on this thing. So I knew that there was a missing ingredient. And that’s what I set out to do, to kind of fill that gap. And it’s been, it’s been an amazing journey.


Amber Hawley  30:41  

Yeah, I know, again, your story is so inspiring. And just seeing all the success you’ve had in the last year has been amazing. And, you know, I do think you really tapped into one, that accountability piece with the money dates. But also the, you know, psychologically speaking, like having that five minutes a day feels super manageable, but it keeps you in touch with things. Because again, like, I’ll, I’ll like, especially if I’m stressed, I’ll spend a long time like going through my spreadsheets, updating everything, figuring everything out, kind of mapping everything out. And then, and I’ll feel that and I’ll stay on top of it for a little bit. 


Amber Hawley  31:18  

But if I don’t do it frequently enough, then I start to forget, again that complacency sets in, which is very human, right. And then you’re like, Oh, that’s right, I can you know, do this thing. Oh, that’s only $100. So I’m like, Oh, no brainer, that’s 100 bucks. But it’s like $100, $100, it all adds up. And then you know, it gets to that point where it’s like, oh, okay, wait a minute, I need to pay attention to this again. And so I think being in touch with it. It, you know, especially for people with ADHD, there’s, you know, not not everyone has this trait, but most people there’s like an impulsiveness, right. 


Nicole Barham  31:54  



Amber Hawley  31:54  

And so there’s, there’s this feeling where even there are times where I look at something, oh, I just want to shop and it’s like, I don’t need anything. I don’t need to shop, that doesn’t have to happen. I have to do the self talk, like walk myself off an edge or off the ledge and come back and realize like, oh, okay, that’s just like there’s this impulsiveness in me. But it wasn’t, it wasn’t actually because I needed to do that thing. It wasn’t, I didn’t need to buy it. I didn’t need to XYZ, whatever it was. And when you’re really in touch with that, you’re like, No, no, no, that, you know, you’re making the smart decisions. But the further you get away from it, I do think it’s, it’s harder to say no to yourself, if you are, if you’re, if you’re my type of person.


Nicole Barham  32:35  

The other thing too is that sometimes it’s also helping you to make the decision to get the thing. Right?


Amber Hawley  32:41  

Right, right. 


Nicole Barham  32:42  

So if you’re like, Oh, I know my finances, I have this extra, you know, I can get this thing for $100 or 500, or whatever it is. Then you’re like, I have the wiggle room instead of like, let me buy the thing, but I’m not sure if I have the money, then there’s, that’s another kind of stress. Right?


Amber Hawley  32:59  

Yes. Buyer’s remorse or just stress. 


Nicole Barham  33:02  



Amber Hawley  33:02  

Like, yeah, can I really afford this? 


Nicole Barham  33:04  

Yeah. Exactly. So it works both ways. 


Amber Hawley  33:08  

Yeah. I love that. Well, this is really great. And I think, you know, this week right now we’re recording, your opposite will be coming out in a few weeks. This week, an episode is coming out where I talked to Julie Frey, where she talks about, we kind of talk about people shifting gears. And sometimes the idea of like, I’ve seen this a lot in this last year and a half where people are contemplating like, should I get a job somewhere because they’re financially, like, they’re feeling the strain. And so I do like, the idea of like, putting it out there for people. Sometimes that may be the right decision. Sometimes it’s about regrouping and figuring out what you need to do. 


Amber Hawley  33:49  

But I think like being in touch with your finances on such a, you know, like, intimate, close level, so that you you’re able to make these decisions. And there is no shame if you decide to get a job, so many people have, and they really love that or it’s been a great experience for them. But I think again, we’re there’s so much shame that we are passing around in this in the entrepreneurial world, like your success has to look a certain way, and you have to, you know, reach seven figures in this timeframe, or this is what it all has to look like and that’s what makes you a good business person. And I think that’s not the reality for so many people.


Nicole Barham  34:25  

Absolutely not, because you have to think about, reach seven figures, but what’s your like, how much is going out? 


Amber Hawley  34:32  



Nicole Barham  34:35  

Some people, so I’m like, if you make $200,000 and you keep $100,000, you keep 50%. That’s amazing. And over somebody who makes 7 million and puts out 7.1 million because they’re still in debt kind of thing. Right? 


Amber Hawley  34:48  



Nicole Barham  34:49  

So that’s also you’re looking at your profit, right? And saying, how can I make sure I’m making profit or even if there’s a loss, it’s not like a, over an extended period of time. And that’s being close to your money and knowing exactly what’s going on, on a daily, weekly, monthly basis.


Amber Hawley  35:08  

I love it. I love it. Well, I will say that not only am I a member but I am also an affiliate for your program because I feel so passionate about it. And you know, it’s, to me, when I find something that works so well and especially like you said for people who have ADHD and just really makes it so simple. I’m pretty excited about it. So we will have the link in the show notes to my affiliate link if you are looking to join, but where else can people find you or where can they find out more information about you and your, and the program, 5 Minute Bookkeeper™?


Nicole Barham  35:45  

Well, they can go to my Instagram, I post you know, over there. It’s @nicolebarham2. And I also have a page on Facebook, Facebook Business Page, 5 Minute Bookkeeper™, where they can also get more information. And if they go through your link as well, they can go to the 5 Minute Bookkeeper™website and see all the things that’s there. There’s testimonials. There’s demo videos, all kinds of you know, there’s some hilarious testimonials on there, let me tell you.


Amber Hawley  36:17  

Yeah, you do get a plethora of testimonials I will say, and you do have the, the demo videos I think are really great for people who want to visualize and kind of see it. I remember you asked me like oh, did you, did you watch the demo? I was like no, that’s again, that’s not how I do it. I’m like, I want this, this is my thing, and I bought it. But, but it is great for those, again, not everybody’s like that and nor should they be. But yeah, go check it all out there. Thank you so much again, Nicole for coming on today and  talking about your story and everything that you’re doing. 


Nicole Barham  36:55  

Awesome. Thank you so much, Amber, for having me. This was great. 


Amber Hawley  36:57  

Thank you.


Transcribed by

The Inner Circle

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