Self-Advocacy with Simone Griffin

Today, I’m speaking about self-advocacy with my friend, client Simone Griffin. I’ve invited Simone to come on the show today to tell us more about herself because we’re going to be having more conversations together about money, net worthiness, financial self-care, and so much more. Simone works in the financial services industry and today, we’re talking about this advocacy question – how can we take better care of ourselves? What does it look like? And, you’ll hear more about Simone and her story. I think you’ll be really inspired to think about your own relationship with money and so much more. Enjoy.

Simone shares with us her insights: 

  • …the ability to start her own business, and she was like you really need somebody in your corner saying – “You can do this! Go for it…” I mean everybody does, my dad did it and she did. And so, thank goodness, that she had him. And so as a result, I don’t know. I don’t remember my parents ever working for anybody else. That has been a wonderful ride for me as their kid. But I have also seen the downside of entrepreneurialism if I’m mansell downsize, the stress downside, the other downside as leading the upside. There are in there, a lot… But one thing I’ve realized is people over glamorized entrepreneurialism, number one. Number two, it is not for everybody. And I really think, it’s important to, that kind of goes with the over glamorization, we just say – “Well, I’m just going to go when you know start my own business.” You just don’t understand the nuances of starting a business, which is why working with people like Leisa and and other business coaches are so important. Because there’s so much we don’t know in starting a business. And then you’ve got things that just come up new opportunities, new tools, new this, new that. What happens when you don’t know something because we’re not good at everything…
  • And it gives you that opportunity to truly check out for five to six days. And I consider it a massive gift to myself. I don’t even consider it an option anymore, because the one year I didn’t do it 2020, of course, because of the pandemic, I was like – “Oh, this is something good.” It’s a reminder of know you really need to take that time and so Kirk started coming with me. And at first, he was like I don’t get why you do this every year, but he was like – “Oh, I get it now… I could do this. I could relax have a lot.” And so we, it is a great way to check out and to just enjoy time by myself. If he doesn’t go or with him if he does go. I’ll invite friends, but if they don’t go it’s fine. I will go by myself because the point is for me to have five days, where I can just chill out and not think of anything, and it has been everything. It is not every vacation, you know, we’re probably going to go to London and a couple of weeks and that’s going to be an active vacation. I’m not going to fit anywhere next to the water. We’re going to go and tour the site. But you do need that one time, where you can just say – “It’s just me and looking up at the sky and I truly appreciate that every year.”
  • I was taught to go after all your dreams. But I wasn’t necessarily taught that, and this is how much when you put a price tag on it, this is how much you want to figure out the worth and the value to tell you figured out. So I struggled with that, for years, and I think most women struggle with that. And now, it’s just a matter of okay “I’m learning my lessons. I’m growing as a result of it.” And how can we impart that to other women, especially. And I’m not going to only – I don’t want to only say women, because I think men have their own set of issues. I don’t want to make it seem like men are not a part of this kind of financial money struggle too. I do think that they approached it differently. So that’s why I’m not really speaking about me. I’m more than you know, but I think that I know I needed to learn a lot more about net worthiness. And why I need to go out and advocate for myself. And I’m still learning that lesson. But I’m growing and I’m getting more and more confident every day and I’m understanding the value that I provide in my workplace. And I think, that will only continue, and especially through these conversations, because I learned through as we talked about earlier, asking other people questions. And understanding how they did it.
  • …But, so I just perfectly content living her Solange’s life. She’s got this massive group of fans who love her; love her integrity; love her everything and it will be like I will follow the lines to hills and back. Is this beyond Beyonce’s saying level fandom? No, not in terms of numbers, but in terms of fierceness and devotion and love for her work and integrity that’s what Solange has. And so I always, I think about them, and I think about how they have champion each other. And I think about how different they are, even though they are the same genre which is music. And I always say you know what, my parents may – may be Beyonce maybe they are, but I can be a damn good Solange, okay, my own personal Solange. And that is a hell of a good life too. And it doesn’t mean that Beyonce’s life is the only life there is. And I think people think that that’s the only life there is. It is a life and it’s a good life. It’s just not the only life and maybe it’s not mine and maybe I’m neither Solange’s, nor Beyonce’s, completely not… I’m no longer competing. I’ve accepting myself as I am. That’s really the whole point and that’s what I admire about you.
  • Absolutely and especially because you know, going back to the principal topic of money being a tool, there are so many ways that we can utilize it and implement it in our lives, one way or the other. And it says, I hate to use or going into social issues. I do hate to use it. But it’s like a hammer, you know how people will talk about hammers and kill people like guns it’s not quite the same. But a hammer can be used to either build a house or tear it to shreds or hurt somebody. We choose. Money is very much the same way and we can figure out what we want to do with our money to support the world with which we want to see. And hopefully if we can do that, while also being understanding of what other people are experiencing in the world and understanding that there’s really nothing to fear…

Simone Griffin believes that everyone holds the power and capacity to become financially successful and sustainable.

Simone currently serves as Vice President of Affiliate Relations for HomeFree-USA, where she oversees compliance, federal and private funding, and Congressional advocacy for 53 affiliate organizations nationwide. She also implements federal government grants, as well as those from various funders and private banks. Throughout the housing crisis, Simone managed a program which acquired, renovated and sold foreclosed homes to low-to-moderate income families. During her tenure, the program placed over 412 first time homebuyers into newly refurbished homes.

Prior to becoming Vice President of Affiliate Relations, Simone served as Executive Director of the HomeFree-USA Homeownership Center in Atlanta, Georgia. In that role, she provided oversight and guidance to a team of Homeownership Advisors and Support Staff in general operations and the execution of foreclosure counseling, homebuyers’ education, downpayment qualification, and the acquisition, renovation, and sale of bank-owned homes in Metro Atlanta. She also headed all local marketing and advertising initiatives.

Prior to joining HomeFree-USA Simone served as Director of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation (CBCF, Inc) Student Homeownership Opportunity Program (SHOP) and SHOP For Wealth. Both programs were designed to encourage homeownership and wealth building opportunities among students at the nation’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). Over three years, Simone visited and worked with 60 colleges and universities. 10 students went on to purchase a home within one year of college graduation, and hundreds more took the first steps to repairing their credit and building wealth.

In her 20 year career in housing and financial services, Simone has seen what has worked, what hasn’t, and the best ways to ensure a win-win-win for the consumer, mortgage industry and government. She’s been on the ground serving Americans during incredibly pivotal times, and fully believes that we all win when we find the common ground.

Learn more about Simone:




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Financially Empowered with Naseema McElroy

The Millionaire Paradox with Leisa Peterson

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