Debra Patterson was a single mom with three kids; she was a woman who was “looking for a way out.” She left an abusive relationship searching for a better life and a way to support her family. The words: “If you leave me, you’ll never make it,” drove her to succeed and ultimately to find her passion. While she was busy helping other people protect their futures, she reinvented her own. Here’s Debra, Managing Director, Summit Advisory Group, in her own words.
What’s your chair? Debra’s story is ultimately about financial freedom. She envisioned a future where she was financially stable, and ultimately her own boss. She saw a mahogany desk and leather chair and said: “I want your chair.” The leather chair was a visual manifestation of financial success. Think about what your leather chair is. What is financial success to you? Is it retiring early? Is it protecting the future of your family? Is it starting and growing a small business? Is it building a legacy to leave behind?
What’s holding you back? Debra more than leaned in…she jumped in with drive and passion that created the future she envisioned. She started out with nothing and pushed through her fear to build a new life. When you think of your own financial freedom, what’s holding you back? Is it debt? Is it lack of planning? Is it the fear that comes from projecting yourself into the future? Fear loses its power when you face it – the more you acknowledge it and confront it, the more it loses its hold over you.
What’s your passion? As Debra’s practice grew, so did her self-esteem. As she came into her own personal power, she found something else: her passion. As she helped other people with their financial futures, her own sense of purpose and fulfillment grew. When people hit their financial stride, it’s often the moment when passion and purpose collide. What would it look like for you if your passion and purpose were intertwined?
Own your future. Debra owned her future. She took hold of it with both hands and was hungry for change. When it comes to yours, you can be a passenger or a driver. Passengers are passively enjoying the ride, but often putting their destiny in the hands of another. Drivers take ahold of the wheel and map out a path to their destination. They also know they don’t have to go it alone. Today’s world is complicated…that’s why it’s okay to ask for directions. (This is a heartfelt, albeit shameless plug for financial professionals like Debra! We need ‘em!)
Toast your freedom. Stories like Debra’s are a celebration of financial freedom. She represents a modern version of the American dream: a single mom who conquers her fear and emerges as a confident, successful entrepreneur. Along the way, it became not just about her, but the world around her; helping other people achieve their own financial freedom. What about yours? Define it. Own it. Mark the milestones that bring you closer to what you envision as success. Here’s to your financial freedom!