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What’s your money goal for 2021?

Recently, we outlined what it looks like to set resolutions that mean a happy life both now and later. These resolutions are meant to help you achieve your authentic goals without sacrificing your happiness today, tomorrow, or ever. And the examples we gave focus on both immediate and long-term impact: purchasing wisely, making career progress, and spending on your health.

If planned and executed well, these resolutions can help you reach your money goals in addition to your long-term happiness. Think saving, earning, and building credit. When you lay out your 2021 resolutions, you should also lay out the money goals you’re looking to reach in conjunction with them.

Need some inspiration for your 2021 money goals? We thought brainstorming together as a community could help! Take a moment to consider your money goal for 2021 and how your resolutions can help you get there, then share below and join in on the conversation with your Daylight peers.

What is your money goal for 2021?

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Ask the community #1 : Investing tips from Elon Musk?

 

Confused about managing money? The Daylight community is here to help. Each week we’ll be posting a question from a Daylight member about their finances and giving the community a chance to share their thoughts and experiences. We’ll round up the best answers each week and one of our Financial Coaches will give an expert’s view.

This week’s question is:

“I’m seeing a lot of people on Twitter talk about Gamestop after Elon Musk tweeted about it. Is it sensible to buy stocks in Gamestop if my goal is a quick profit?”

Help a Daylight Member out by commenting below with your thoughts on this week’s question. You can also submit questions for next week in the comments section too.

NB: Comments and advice through our Ask the Community posts are provided for general information purposes only and do not constitute accounting, legal, tax, or other professional advice. Visitors should not act upon the content or information found here without first seeking appropriate advice from an accountant, financial planner, lawyer or other professional.

https://www.joindaylight.com 

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Resolutions that mean a happy life both now and later

The LGBTQ+ community faces financial differences, and it’s long been assumed by many institutions that the longer term consequences of those differences are just part of the deal. To want to live authentically and envision a prosperous future? They say that’s having your cake and eating it too. And we say… why not? Living in the moment and long term planning aren’t — and shouldn’t be — exclusive options.

Starting a new year is the perfect time to both have and eat cake, and it’s also a moment for adjusting and envisioning. Better known as: setting resolutions. The more specific and personal you make your resolutions, the better you can achieve your authentic goals without sacrificing happiness now or later.

For inspiration, here are three New Year’s Resolutions that can help set you up for a life where you don’t compromise yourself or your future financial wellbeing. With plenty of room to get more individually specific, resolve to:

  1. Spend only on high-quality luxuries.
    Even if you’re in need of an entirely new wardrobe to present more in line with how you identify, you’re not going on a fast fashion shopping spree. Instead, you’re using queer clothing swaps to hold you over while you save and spend discriminately on high-quality items you’ll keep for years. Future you will thank 2021 you. This also goes for food, films, and so much more — treats will be real treats and time will not be budgeted on The Prom or Happiest Season, unless specifically for Meryl Streep and Aubrey Plaza.
  2. Take steps forward in your career.
    So much factors into what a happy career means for you: the tasks, the culture, the compensation. Identifying what matters to your happiness and securing a job that fulfills them impacts both your day-to-day and long-term earning tremendously. In a time where the job market is so unpredictable, this could just be about making productive use of unemployed time, reframing your goals in your current role, or aiming for a promotion. This year, you’ll be ambitious in laying that out for yourself and going after it.
  3. Make gender-affirming health decisions.
    Drop the money — whether or not you have it — on the hormone treatments, surgeries, and anything else your mental and physical health requires. You should seek individual advice from our expert coaches on this, but generally, this is an instance where planned debt makes sense. Stress and dysphoria can incur their own long term costs, and responsibly paying down a loan can help you build credit. Resolve to take this leap toward a happier now and, with a good financial plan in place, unexpected credit benefits await.

A moment of reflection on your past year can bring tons of insight on what you require for a happy life both now and later. What big and small things made you happy in 2020, and what set you up for a happy 2021? Once you’ve identified the answers, you can resolve to align your now and later happiness for 2021 and beyond through both big and small goals and actions.

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How (and why) to give good feedback

Hey Daylight Builders! It’s me, Rob.

Firstly, on behalf of the entire Daylight team, thanks for being a Builder. When we say that Daylight is built for the LGBT+ community by the LGBT+ community, we’re talking about y’all!

We’re building a bank that we’re proud to call our own. A uniquely queer take on banking that’s designed to help our community have fulfilling futures faster.

Let’s talk about how to do that most effectively.

Why give feedback? 

We’re a community and we can do more together. When you share your feedback with the Daylight Builder community, or directly with the Daylight team, you help us to:

  • Have more empathy for different people’s feelings and experiences using Daylight.
  • Spot bugs and overlooked needs.
  • Understand your expectations, often based off of other products you love that have worked differently elsewhere.

Most importantly, your feedback helps us authentically build a product designed by the LGBT+ community.

Good vs bad feedback

Not all feedback is created equally and it’s important to know that feedback and opinions aren’t (necessarily) the same thing. The goal of feedback is to help the Builder Community to empathize with you and to motivate us all to prioritize and implement your changes.

Not everyone in the Builder community works in tech, or has given product feedback before. We get it! It’s easy to accidentally give bad feedback and when that happens, other people might feel like you’re trying to:

  • Speak on behalf of the whole world / community / “all queer women”.
  • Show how smart you are.
  • Elicit humor at the expense of other Builders and the Daylight team.

Bad feedback makes the product team (and other Daylight Builders that have contributed) defensive instead of more empathetic. No one wants that, because when people feel defensive, they are less likely to listen to you and less likely to make the changes you’re suggesting.

But since we’re all passionate about making Daylight a great product for the LGBT+ community, here’s some tips on how to provide good feedback.

The Daylight team’s tips for giving feedback that makes an impact

1. Speak for yourself (and give us the context)

The LGBT+ community is really diverse and it’s always surprising what things people find very easy that others find more difficult. So we find it’s better not to assume that other people are sharing your experience.

As objectively as you can, describe what you expected and what actually happened. We’ll be able to empathize with you better if we know what you’re trying to achieve, what device you’re using etc.

“I got confused setting up a goal on my iPhone” is better than “Goals are confusing” or “This will confuse users”. This will help us to empathize with you more.

Not every new feature to appeal to every person, so try to avoid over-dramatic statements like “Nobody will like/use this”. Remember that lots of feedback is provided in digital spaces, so tone is hard to appreciate and since the goal of providing feedback is to create empathy, a generalized “people will hate this” won’t help with that.

If you’re having trouble understanding what we’re trying to do, it’s ok to ask “What value is this providing to the Daylight community?” and just leave it there. We’ll get back to you to explain (and will understand that we need to explain something a little more, or tweak the design).

2. It’s okay to have (or not have) suggestions

While we want to keep things positive, statements like “don’t give feedback unless you’re being constructive” aren’t as helpful as they sound.

Just because you’re not a designer or an engineer, it doesn’t mean your feedback is any less valuable. Don’t be afraid to tell us what’s not working, even if you don’t have a suggestion. It’s the Daylight team’s job to figure out some options, and if you’re sharing in a public space other Builders will have ideas too.

And don’t be afraid to give specific suggestions because you don’t want to tell the team how to do their job. We love suggestions! We’ll find it easier to empathize with your idea if you also help us understand how your suggestion solves the particular problem.

“I’d suggest moving the goals onto the main page so that I can see it next to my balance” is better than “move the goals to the main page”.

3. The best suggestions give us the goal too

We think that the best suggestions don’t just articulate the solution.

“Give us a way to make it easier to comment on an article” is better than “Make the button bigger”. We’re obsessed about getting the experience right, so we’ll take it from there, and if not we’ll reach out and ask.

4. Lean into your queerness!

We’re building a bank that’s uniquely our own so don’t be afraid to offer us suggestions about how we can redecorate! Just because your current bank doesn’t do it, doesn’t mean that we can’t. While managing your money is serious, there’s no reason it can’t be fun too. This can include:

  • A fun or playful way of describing a feature (“A savings purse instead of a savings goal” Anyone? )
  • Some queer iconography or pop culture reference you’d like our designers to integrate somehow
  • A tool that you’d love but haven’t seen before – “I’d love to know which restaurants other queer people are eating at”.

Don’t be afraid of getting out of your comfort zone – the team will make sure things don’t get too naughty. 😉

5. We’re changing the world, together, so make your voice count

Be proud of being a Daylight Builder. There has never been a digital bank created specifically for the LGBT+ community in the USA, so your voice matters. Make the most of the opportunity, speak up and participate. You can give us feedback by:

  • Commenting on an article in the app
  • Chatting with us via the in-app support
  • Emailing the team at support@joindaylight.com

Parting thoughts

We’re a community of members and we’ll never stop learning about how to do better.

We’re all on this journey together, building an app that we’re proud to call our own.

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Welcome to the Daylight Builder Community!

What’s a Daylight Builder? (And do I get a hard hat and a tool belt?) 

As a Daylight Builder, you’re one of the first in a team of superstars that are helping us to build the first digital bank for the LGBT+ community in the USA. 

The Daylight Builder Mantra is this:

“We’re building a safe space for our money that we’re proud of – it’s unapologetically queer and uniquely ours.”

You’ll get plenty of opportunities to input, prioritize features and to try out things before anyone else. We’ll also be offering our Daylight Builders recognition and perks (but the hard hats will have to wait). 

As a bonus for our Daylight Builders your digital card is ready for you to use in the Daylight App to use online and with Apple Pay / Google Pay as soon as you sign up. We’ve also given you a small token of our appreciation (in the form of some free money!) in your account so you don’t have to wait for your ACH top-up to arrive.

What can I expect?

Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither is a digital bank. That means that while we’ve done our best to make sure you’ve got a polished experience, there will inevitably be some features that don’t behave as expected. There are three things we want you to remember:

  1. Your money is always safe – even if your balance is displayed weirdly on the app, our underlying banking platform will always keep track of your money. If something doesn’t seem right let us know and we’ll correct the bug so you’re never out of pocket.
  2. Be picky (but patient) – we’ll be releasing new features and making tweaks weekly and we need to know what you think. The best thing you can do is tell us when things don’t behave as you’d expect, or where we can improve. We’ll be actively tracking your feedback and working our way through the list. The patient part is important too – we’re going to try new things and sometimes we’ll get things wrong. So please be patient while we get things fixed.
  3. Daylight is your canvas – let’s queer it up! – we’re building Daylight our way which means that you get to help us turn our blank canvas into a vibrant, exciting queer space. As a Daylight Builder, you’re in the driving seat. We want to hear your suggestions and priorities for new features and tweaks. Don’t be afraid to ask for things you wouldn’t expect from a traditional bank!

What do I get out of it? 

You’re a Daylight Builder for life! Aside from the bragging rights of helping build the first LGBT+ digital bank in the USA, as we grow, we’ll be offering Builders unique discounts, limited edition Daylight cards, invites to events and recognition directly within the Daylight app. We’ll even be rolling out a Builder badge for your profile (hard hats included). 

 

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Inauguration 2021 and Your Finances

Let’s take a collective deep breath. Breathe in for four seconds–try to use your diaphragm, hold for four seconds, now let yourself exhale for six seconds. Now repeat. Alright, maybe you’re agitated by recent events on top of already long-standing tension. Maybe you’re excited about the possibilities. Maybe you’re shocked that insurrectionists stormed the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021. Maybe it’s par for the course as far as you’re concerned. You may feel however you feel, just don’t deny it. On January 20 of this year, Joe Biden is expected to take the oath of office for the Presidency of the United States. Whether you’re glad, relieved, dismayed, or disgruntled, the policies that will be enacted by the Biden/Harris administration and the now-Democrat controlled Congress will have an impact on you, your finances, and your employment.

On the surface, there is some expectation that millions of Americans currently facing economic upheaval due to the pandemic will see some form of relief. There’s been talk that we should not expect Biden to be another FDR (that’s Franklin D. Roosevelt, the president who took the reins during the Great Depression, passed the beginnings of Social Security with the New Deal, and was elected to an unprecedented fourth term before dying during WWII), but instead expect him to be more like LBJ (that’s Lyndon B. Johnson who assumed the presidency after JFK’s assasination, and who came of age politically during FDR’s tenure). LBJ went on to enact the Great Society and ushered in a continuation of Roosevelt-esque programs such as Medicare for those 65 and older. FDR was a political showman and skilled manipulator of the press, but he had limits. He was unable to bring himself to support the feeble civil rights legislation of the time period, and a generation or so later, LBJ used his decades of experience and private pressure to push his agenda through but at the cost of supposedly alienating other white Southerners (he himself was Texan and proud). Even with publicly exciting figures like Clinton and Obama following in his footsteps, no Democrat in recent generations has come close to having the sway of these two men. That the press would encourage us to reach for Roosevelt and expect Johnson at best says a lot, and at worst expects little. Johnson got legislation passed during his term that impacted how we pay into our retirement, and what sort of additional care we can expect into old age. But that was almost 60 years ago.

If you’re a millennial or younger, you may not expect Social Security to be fully funded by the time you retire–if you retire. Previous savings options like company-funded pensions are a thing of the past, and while Medicare for all is a valid thought, I’d be just as surprised as you if we see it within our working lifetimes. But the pandemic has exposed a lot of tremendous gaps in the safety net. The legislative branch has tried to address things like the Fight for $15, the on-going effort to raise the Federal minimum wage especially in light of essential workers often being the least-paid with the highest hazard these days. There’s also been strong efforts to shore up issues like paid sick leave and access to FMLA (Family Medical Leave Act) during the height of the crisis, but many measures in the CARES Act expired on December 31st, including extended unemployment benefits. While Congress passed additional funding and has started sending another stimulus check ($600 for the time being) directly to impacted Americans, there is a lack of consensus about how to move forward.

Even if you had six months or more saved in emergency savings, if you lost your job during the pandemic, or had your work significantly curtailed, you’d still be looking at a budget shortfall through the end of the year and into 2021. One thing you can do, besides grit your teeth, is start thinking ahead to the next shake up. While the stock market has been seemingly undeterred by last year’s events, average Americans of all backgrounds were impacted deeply by the pandemic, whether by unanticipated expenses, newfound disabilities in recovery, medical bills, the sudden death of a loved one, or on the flip side, months and months spent at home. Access to mental health treatment being as uneven as it is, plenty of folx need reassurances and that’s hard to come by.

So, knowing that life is mercurial, first remember to practice gratitude as you’ve literally survived a global pandemic and keep in mind we will get through this. Our community here at Daylight is here for you. Our coaches, such as Kenny Davis, are ready to talk with you to help manage not just the uncertainties of today but also plan for the promises of tomorrow. You may have been caught off guard this past year, but you can plan ahead for the next bend in the road. So, instead of stopping at six months of savings, plan on a runway of 1-2 years. Remain consistent with your investments, don’t panic sell. And remember, the next four years, whatever lies in store, will not be like the last four.

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Blue Monday: how to care for your mental health while pursuing your money goals

Whether you’re a fan of New Order’s 80s original, or jammed to Orgy’s 90s update as a teen like I did, how you’re treated – and especially how you treat yourself – is key to the outcomes you desire, especially if you’re trying to change your money habits. Let’s look  at three self-care options that can contribute to a more contented you: Meditation, Podcasts, and Reading.

Meditation – I was introduced to meditation in the business community several years ago and have refined my approach over time. Some folx prefer in-person practice, some tie their mindfulness to a religious or spiritual capacity, and still others participate because of the community that comes with group practice. Whatever your motivation, the Mayo Clinic states that the benefits of meditation can include but are not limited to:

  • Gaining a new perspective on stressful situations.
  • Building skills to manage your stress.
  • Increasing self-awareness.
  • Focusing on the present.
  • Reducing negative emotions.
  • Increasing imagination and creativity.
  • Increasing patience and tolerance.

I was first introduced to money meditations while listening to the Color Full Lives podcast, a great listen that was led by three women of color and featuring many guests of color (though not LGBT or queer specific). At the end of every episode in season 5, they asked us to picture and process questions like:

  • What was your first concept of money growing up? Did you know what it was?
  • How do you see yourself celebrating meeting a money milestone or goal?

Taking time to picture yourself achieving what you’re aiming for, especially when it may take many days, months, or even years, is an important way to keep your heart humming along and not get bogged down in the occasional stress of waiting. Your mind may lie to you from time to time, and if you have emotional stressors, even more so. Being able to push back on negative thoughts telling you to discount your achievements or quit is absolutely key to getting where you want to be in life! And that leads us to our next mindful option:

Podcasts – Hearing and learning from people who are experienced in where you want to be, especially if you don’t have many role models in your personal life, is such a great tool of this current age. I make it a habit of listening to at least one or two podcasts or vlogs about different money topics every week. There is awesome LGBT-led content out there depending on what you’re looking for, but don’t be afraid to listen to some of the more mainstream options unless it  doesn’t match your values, or is antagonistic to your identity. If audio content isn’t necessarily appealing then there’s always the time-tested option of:

Reading – There are so many books on money and the best ones to read will depend on your needs, timeline, goals, and where you are on your life journey. Taking time to self-soothe from the visual vigors of social media by cracking open a book is underrated. Yes, sometimes the movie really is awesome, but the book will offer details, context, and more depth than can be squeezed into anything shorter. So dust off that library card or unused gift cards and give yourself some screen-free time at least once a week. Your eyes and mind will thank you.

Do you have other ways that you like to care for your well-being that weren’t listed here? Please don’t hesitate to share with us in the comments!

 

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Money Stories

Money Stories: T Moore (Quench Finance)

T Moore is the founder of Quench Finance. An androfemme blaq bicoastal writer, social entrepreneur, and activist deeply passionate about promoting diversity, inclusion and equity. She has been published in Womanly, ContemporaryAnd, Black Art in America, RECOGNIZE Design Anthology vol. 1, and Shameless Magazine.

When was the first time you thought about money?

The first time I thought about money was when I received a piggy bank as a child. I enjoyed collecting the change I found around the house and outside while playing.

What was your “aha” moment with money?

There was no big “aha” moment with me. I’m a person of faith (fully affirming) and I’ve been walking in recovery in multiple senses for some years now. I became conscious of wanting to change my habits with money through prayer and learning discipline in other areas of my life.

I grew up with some resources and access to business and real estate environments due to my grandmother’s interests but the day-to-day basics were missing. I could handle investing and making long-term commitments but I lacked the discipline and emotional resources to sustain them in the short term.

So much of this year has been about hitting reset with reapproaching budgeting, working with a coach, and other mindset adjustments.

How has being LGBT+ impacted your relationship with money?

I have grown more comfortable with seeing queer folx in leadership and business roles which in turn enhanced my view of myself. While I succeeded repeatedly, I also failed forward repeatedly.

Seeing and joining entrepreneurship communities that were either LGBT-founded or driven helped stabilize my internal view that as a queer person I was only authorized to succeed in certain ways (creative only). Being able to befriend queer creatives as well as business leaders has expanded my mindset significantly. This gave me more confidence with financial planning. On one hand, I’ve relearned budgeting and personal habits, and on the other hand, I’ve learned about team building and long-term vision.

What are your financial goals for the future?

My goals are to create and sustain a legacy that draws from different areas, including developing and sharing community with other queer folx who often feel (and are) left out of the conversations surrounding life events.

In so many ways, queer folx, even within the wider LGBTQIA+ communities aren’t being considered when it comes to things like insurance, estate planning, partnerships, adoption, and business plans. We’re often too busy surviving brutal forms of capitalism and living underserved experiences.

Favorite LGBT+ business (online or ILR)?

I have had great experiences working with Q26 based here in greater LA. I also really love the Androgynous Fox brand and look forward to purchasing their fantastic gear.

On the faith side, I am an avid user of the OurBibleApp both their queer centric devotionals and curated panels are well worth exploring