From Side Hustle to Full Time- My Biggest Business Challenge + A Plan of Attack)

Side Hustle to Full Time Business

As part of an ongoing collaboration with Office Depot, I’m sharing my biggest business challenge that I’ve faced in the last 3 months since I began working for myself full time. This is part of a sponsored post series I’m doing with Socialstars.

Want to join in the fun? Use the hashtag #GearLove. 

It has been an eye opening three months since I started working for myself full time. I’ve had more fun, more free time, tried to spend more time relaxing than hustling, and have admittedly enjoyed the freedom that comes with owning a digital business.

But that’s not to say there hasn’t been stumbling blocks: I’ve struggled with productivity, acquiring new clients, and with a new-yet-familiar money stress that comes with uneven cashflow.

But my biggest business challenge…. (more…)

7 Money Mistakes You’ll Make In Your 20’s

money mistakes you'll make in your 20's

Your 20’s are going to be rife with exploration, fun times, and lessons well-learned. Unfortunately (or perhaps fortunately, I haven’t decided which!) most of our lessons come from when we mistakes. Your 20’s are the decade where you go from your parents house and bankroll to managing your own financial household, to planning for families and retirement and tackling your college debt; with all that change going on it can get pretty dicey.

Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Here are 7 money mistakes (almost) everyone makes in their 20’s.


Update: 21 Days to Better Finances (+ Two Savings Rules to Live By!)

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Man, time flies. It seems like just yesterday I was a newbie blogger trying to find my groove. A few months into blogging, I got offered the opportunity to be a part of an e-book with some of my other favorite bloggers (including Paula from Afford Anything, Greg and Holly from Club Thrifty, and Tonya from Budget and the Beach.) Featuring fantastic financial advice about everything from budgeting basics, to paying down debt, to simple shifts in your money mindset, my day (#18) focused on opening a savings account.

The content for the e-book was derived from this post, Two Savings Rules to Live By, which, after a much needed purge and content re-vamp, is one of my oldest existing posts and still one of my most popular.

But that was three years ago. Even though the principles in the post certainly aren’t outdated, I’m both older and (money) wiser. So, when asked me if I’d like to feature my advice and add to it for a three years celebration of my first (and so far only) e-book, I said SURE.

Let’s take a moment, and jump in L. Bee’s time machine…. (more…)

Summer Reading for Your Finances & Your Soul (2015)

Summer reading

The Fourth of July usually marks the midpoint of the traditional summer season (Memorial Day to Labor Day), even though it feels as if summer is just starting to ramp up! For whatever reason, I also ramp up my ‘fun” reading during the summer months–which I think reminds me of my “summer reading” and “DAR program” days.

There is nothing like curling up with a good book! Here’s what I’m loving so far this summer. (To see what I read for Summer 2014, click here.)


What Comes Next..After You’ve Mastered the Money Basics


There comes a point in everyone’s life when you realize you’ve moved beyond the money basics. (My post on 30 financial milestones under 30 is a great place to start!) I’ve got a solid budgeting method, emergency fund, I’m out of credit card debt, and I’ve even bought a house. The first post in the series talked about what inspires me to be financially empowered and to ensure I have financial stability in my life. Now we’re going to talk about what that means and how I’d like to continue being financially stable in the future. As part of my latest collaboration with Prudential, I wanted to detail a few of the financial goals and priorities I want to focus on as I prepare to enter the next decade of my life.

Get Rid of Even More Debt

I was lucky enough to not have student loans (thanks Mom and Dad,) and I recently got rid of all my credit card debt because it’s the most expensive kind of debt. This doesn’t mean I’m completely debt-free. I still owe about $12,000 on the car I bought in November, and I have my mortgage. While mortgages are typically viewed as good debt, I’d love to pay down enough to get to 20% equity in my mortgage so I can stop paying PMI every month and reduce the monthly amount I owe. Given that I have tenants who rent rooms from me, I should be contributing that money to my mortgage to pay it off even faster, but I don’t because I’m currently using tenant income to smooth out the cash flow issues when waiting on checks from clients.

Start Hyper Saving for Retirement

As I wrote in this post, based on saving the “recommended” 6% of my annual income since I entered the workforce at 23, I should be on track to save $87k by the time I’m 35. Except I’m nowhere near that, not even close. In that same post I calculated needing around $14k by the end of 2014 and I didn’t get there either. Purchasing a home in my mid-twenties definitely put me behind on retirement savings. Given that I write and read about money every day, I know more than most how important it is to save for retirement, and how much further your retirement dollars go when you contribute in your 20’s as opposed to your 30’s, so this is definitely an area where I’d like to improve and make one of my highest priorities. Click here to find out how much you need to save for retirement.  

Planning For the Future

I know plenty of women saving for a wedding or their hypothetical children’s college funds. I hope one day I get there too, but for now when I say “plan for the future,” I’m talking about planning for the success of my business.

Since I just started working for myself full time, my finances have shifted. I’m no longer paid bi-weekly, and I’m investing a lot of capital back into growing and scaling what I do so I can take on more and more clients. Ideally I’d like to loop in more insurance – disability for me, and more insurance on my home now that I have staff coming to work with me from my home office. I’d also like to start a small savings account exclusively for my business that isn’t tied to my personal emergency fund for me and my home.

What are your aspirations and inspirations? Share your vision by joining the growing community of women inspired in the comments below, or on Twitter using the hashtag #womeninspired. Also–With your long-term goals in mind, do you have any financial challenges that you want to tackle?


6 Summer Productivity Hacks for Small Business Owners & Solopreneurs


In my most recent newsletter I wrote about the productivity issues I’m battling now that summer is here and the pool is calling my name. As such, it’s a perfect time to share some of my favorite productivity hacks in collaboration with the Office Depot. This is part of a sponsored post series I’m doing with Socialstars.

Want to join in the fun? Use the hashtag #GearLove. 

If there is one thing I’d do over about my leap to full time self employment it;s that I wish I’d made the transition during the colder months. I mean, look at what I was able to do by keeping my head down and staying indoors working extra hours (I paid off $8k in 90 days..#humblebrag) this past winter. I can’t help but think that same wintertime focus would serve me well now that I’m a solopreneur and small business owner.

Instead, my newfound freedom came at a time when the weather couldn’t be more gorgeous and all I want to do is go outside. Outside. Or stay inside during the heat of the day and  take cool naps while drinking iced tea and binge watching Friends on Netflix.

Productivity is something all self-employed folks struggle with, but I bet money  it gets worse for everyone during the summer. Here are six tips I’m loving right now that help keep me on track.  (more…)

Energy Drains & About L. Bee (June 2015)


Another month, another edition of “About L. Bee.” I swear, life leapt into warp speed the minute I started doing these monthly recaps of what is going on in my personal life, but I like having the monthly wrap ups. They’re great for reflecting and benchmarking my progress/the events of my life, and sometimes it is nice to take a break from finance content.

So…June! Here’s where I soared this month, as well as where I crashed and burned. (more…)

The Financial Costs of a DUI -Awkward Money Chat Season 2 Finale:

I’ve always wondered how much it actually cost someone to get a DUI. Honestly, they’ve happened so frequently to the people I know I they seemed cheap or commonplace.

But DUI’s are actually a big deal–whether someone gets hurt in the accident/arrest or not–which is why everyone should exercise caution and never drive while under the influence.

Thankfully, my VERY BRAVE friend G. came on the site to talk about his mistakes and how much it cost him. Even though we make light, he’s very embarrassed by his story but wanted to share in the hopes that talking about financial costs would help someone think twice before driving drunk.

Clearly, even if you think you can’t afford a cab, you definitely can’t afford the reported $13k G. spent on his arrests.

Also in this video we have a lot of fun playing flip cup, which was a silly way to end a great second season.

As I say, until next time!

Credit Curious…My Time on the Budgeting Panel with Experian for I <3 Radio

While at FinCon14 in New Orleans last year I had the pleasure of meeting the amazing crew at Experian, including Becky Frost and Ellen Sirull. Making those important connections at the conference led to a guest spot on Experian’s popular podcast, Credit Curious.

While this podcast was many months in the making, I’m finally glad to announce that it is here!

In the beginnings of this blog I used to write a lot about budgeting and money management best practices. Now that I’ve mastered the money basics and am aging into topics around growing money, it did feel nice to get back to the basics and discuss with the other panelists: Becky Frost, Experian Brand Ambassador Extraordinaire and Bobby Lee of As a fellow video blogger, I appreciate his quick and informative videos. You should check them out!

The discussion was moderated by Experian’s Social Media Director, Will Chamberlain.

On the podcast we discuss ways to get started budgeting, how to budget for big expenses and large goals, common obstacles to budgeting, the envelope budgeting method, how I make budgeting easier on myself and the important moment when I realized budgets are necessary.

Even though my budget has evolved as I’ve increased my income, bought a home, and diversified my income streams, I still firmly believe everyone needs a budget. Click below to listen to the podcast.


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