Momma Motivation, Opioids, and Morehouse

I hope the last several weeks have been good to you.

I am now back to writing after my hiatus, in which I transitioned into motherhood after the birth of my daughter. Thank you for your support, encouragement, and kind words – the Charisse Says community has truly journeyed with me. As we’ve been discussing all year, it’s all about embracing change, and clearly I am experiencing change as well.

Motherhood has given me a new source of motivation – my child. I did not foresee how a 7-pound baby would fuel me in new and different ways. While I’m sure the depth of motivation will evolve over time, I’m leaning into this new normal. I am consumed by a precious being who has a strong grip on me.  


In addition to the everyday choices that are affected by my new motivation, I have been more motivated to take action on money decisions that impact her future well-being.  In the last month, I have done the following:

Navient student loan.PNG
  • Paid of the remaining balance on my business school student loan – Yes! See screenshot to the right.  If you’ve experienced paying off the last of portion of a student loan, you know the feeling of exhilaration.

  • Engaged our financial advisor to re-evaluate our family’s financial plan – You know how I feel about financial advisors. If you’ve forgotten, check out my video here. While you are CEO of your money, your financial advisor is the COO of your money.

  • Accepted the kindness of family and friends that have brought us meals or gifts – Sometimes, you just need to let others take care of you. Let the people who love you do so.


To be honest, I procrastinated in making decisions on the above. Yes, even us financial wealth experts procrastinate on important decisions sometimes – we’re all human. With my renewed motivation, however, I could procrastinate no longer. As I stated in our 14-day journey earlier this year, taking action is an important ingredient for embracing change.  


More importantly, what provides the motivation for you at this moment in time? Perhaps you need a new source of motivation that can propel you into action. Perhaps you already have a good level of motivation, and you are trying to figure out how to seize the moment.

Either way, the time is now.   

For me, I need to make many more financial decisions now that she’s actually here. Below are a few questions that we’ve pondered over the last few months:

  • What 529 plan should we enroll her in? Is this the best vehicle to save for her college education?  What if she doesn’t go to college (gulp – hey, our education system may be way different 18 years from now)?

  • What should we spend on childcare? What employee child benefits should I now enroll in to help ease the financial burden of childcare?

  • What are all the tax implications of having a child? What does my tax advisor say?

  • Do we have the right life insurance coverage with the changes to our family?


These questions have new meaning for me given my personal experience. If you have thoughts on the above questions based on your own experience or other questions you want answers to in your own journey, please leave a comment on my blog below I know others in the Charisse Says community could use your perspective and tips.


While I have been tending to diapers, feedings, and the joys of a newborn, there have been several events that have piqued my interest. I hope that these events spark a conversation about wealth amongst you and your circle of family and friends:

  • Robert Smith Pledges To Pay Off Student Loans For Morehouse College's Class Of 2019 – Yes, billionaire Robert Smith has pledged to assume the student loan burden, worth approximately $40 million, for Morehouse’s class of 2019. Considering that I just paid off my business school loan nine years post graduation, these grads are beyond fortunate. What would you do differently if someone paid off your student loans at graduation?

  • Opioid Makers Draw Scrutiny From Hedge Funds – Investors are closely watching the health care stocks that have caused (or are affected by) the opioid epidemic. Some investors are looking for stocks to short, while others see a buying opportunity. What’s your take?  

  • Warren Buffett’s Case for Capitalism – At your core, do you believe that the pursuit of capitalism is fundamentally moral? Does capitalism create and produce prosperity and progress even when there are immoral actors and even when it creates inequality? Dig deep here.


 It’s good to be back! I hope you have a fantastic Memorial Day weekend.