On her way home from a session with her personal trainer, Eve Turner had an epiphany. Eve, trained in financial management, had the thought – if they can do this for physical fitness, why not for fiscal fitness? And the game of Fun and Finances was born.
Eve initiated her Game In The World about a year ago in her participation in Team 1 of the Team Management and Leadership Program. She played the game for a while and then let it drop. “I didn’t put attention to it; didn’t generate participants. I was not enlivened by it,” Eve explains. Now in her third quarter of Team 2 she is playing full out providing integrity, possibility and freedom for many people who were otherwise feeling lost. The outcome of her game is that people are related to their money and being powerful in their choices.
These possibilities and the outcome are a result of series of Skype or conference calls with a group of up to 5 participants. As a group they look with fun, relatedness and vulnerability, at the nitty-gritty behind what and how they spend their money.
Eve shares her shame, blame and anger that she experiences in looking at her own finances. When she finally confronted the numbers, she thought, “If I’m having these feelings, what is someone else feeling who’s in a similar or worse situation, who has never had my training, and has nothing to fall back on?” Eve chose to offer her skills to others in such a way that through helping herself she was also helping others.
Participants are interviewed. If they’re willing to do the work, if they are willing to participate full out, they are welcome to express themselves by putting aside their shame, blame and anger, and get to work on creating ease and fun financially.
The series is made up of four three hour calls with a 5 minute break each hour.
In the first call in the series, the participants talk and get related. They get to see they are not the only ones facing these issues that they: don’t do the work around staying related to their money, have no money management, and have no way that allows them to make different choices. When they see that others are in similar situations, they start to laugh, feel at ease; don’t get so serious, significance is lost. Many of the participants in the Fun and Finances game have come to realize that the situation they are in is dire, and unless they do something different they will continue down the same path. By the end of the first class, the participants are engaged and enlivened.
“This is an experimental group with a positive approach. Definitely a “beta case” a test case,” Eve explains laughing.
The first three classes are two weeks apart, and the fourth class is 3 months later. This allows the participants to go out in the world and apply the skills and learn as they go. When they come back to the call they look at what worked and what didn’t work, relearn and reapply.
What sets this game apart is the camaraderie of the participants. It’s a small group; they do the work, hands on – right there. The work is the small stuff. They take three months bank and credit card statements and put the information into a spread sheet. In this format, they can look at how they spend their money and discover the simple yet scary things that are necessary for financial freedom.
Eve said she completely understands how scary this work is to do. However, she forces herself to do it, because she knows what it provides. This is the work that is done on the calls, along with looking at skill-sets. The participants examine the answers to the questions: “How to make money work better for you”; “What do you currently do to earn money?”; “How can the skills be used more effectively, or differently?” We all have many different skills. The participants examine what other skills can be used to generate income. Participants are encouraged to take one of these skills, go out and look to see if and how they can generate money from it. It’s about creativity and movement.
During the next quarter on Team Management and Leadership Program, Eve plans to include someone on her team who will listen in on the calls to advise her on how to be more effective in facilitating the group so the information and skills can be passed on for others to provide this service. She sees this type of series also being offered to young people, to teenagers, in schools, etc.
Eve Turner’s team is made up of people who have heard of her game during the year and have been spreading the word for her. She is grateful to all these team members who are from different groups that she belongs to that pass on the word. In many cases the participants sought her out. One person saw information about her game on TMLP Space and called to get involved.
One participant, an interior designer, felt she was unable to pay her bills. As a result of the calls she did an interior design job in China with all expenses paid. When we feel empowered we find all sorts of possibilities and are able to step up in our lives.
A woman was close to giving up her home and saw herself having to live in her car before she joined Fun and Finances. By the second session she created interviews and found a part-time job in her main field. Then she began to offer consulting services through a different skill-set to fill in the additional hours. Eve exclaimed, “Within three months she’ll have a small nest egg!”
At this time these invaluable classes are available for free. Eve is considering charging a fee next year after seeing results that will show her how she can be even more effective. One of Eve’s team members is working on a website so more people will be able to play Fun and Finances.
Written by Shash Broxson. Edited by Belinda Cogburn.