EP:002 Empowered by Budgets w/ YNAB Certified Budget Coach Jen Fuhler

EP:002 Empowered by Budgets w/ YNAB Certified Budget Coach Jen Fuhler

Recently I sat down with Jen Fuhler to talk about everyone's favorite topic, Budgeting. Jen is a YNAB.com certified budget coach and a full time college professor. She holds a certificate in Financial Therapy and has received a masters degree in Financial Planning from Kansas State University.

If you'd prefer an audio version, here is a link to the episode on Spotify, but you can find it most anywhere you listen to podcasts.


  • We talked about the lessons learned from growing up in a frugal family and how these lessons shaped how Jen thinks about money today.
  • Jen explained how her education in Financial Therapy has helped her understand who she is as a person and how that helps her navigate her Financial Journey better.
  • She brought to my attention the "Money Genogram" exercise. It's like a family tree but for your finances. Here is an example and explanation on The Hartford Funds Website. Basically what you do first is plot out a family tree. Then you seek out family members and quiz them about their financial beliefs, behaviors and experiences with money. With a better understanding of where you came from, you can start to think about whether or not your own beliefs and behaviors are helping or hurting, make sense for the life you are living today, are worth keeping or what might need changing.
  • Jen also shared a personal story about her divorce and how that was the time when using YNAB.com and seeing how helpful it could be truly "clicked".
  • She explained how being able to use her budget to plan, gave her a sense of Control in her life (Coincidentally, Control is one of the 4C's of Contentment that I wrote about in my last post. If you missed it, check it out here).
  • Another C that came up in conversation was Conscious. Using a budget to become more aware of our spending helps us make more conscious, thoughtful decisions about what to do with our money and that can lead to improved wellbeing.


  • The concepts or "Four Rules™️" that YNAB.com built upon:
  • "Give Every Dollar a Job"
  • "Embrace Your True Expenses"
  • "Roll With The Punches"
  • "Age Your Money" which sounded related to the concept that Derek Hagen taught us, "The Pain of Paying".
  • Jen also taught us how budgeting can be almost like a "quantitative journal" where the numbers tell us a story about our lives. She described it as a therapeutic exercise, especially during challenging times.


Your Money or Your Life Summary | Your Money or Your Life
Summarized (with care and dedication) by editor Clare Moss with Laurence Toltz to introduce people to the nine-step program in Your Money or Your Life.It is based on the original book so How this book came about This book is not based on theory, good ideas…


  • Journaling. As I mentioned before, Jen thinks about Budgeting as a form of Journaling and that putting numbers down on paper, just like words, can help us sort out what's going on in our lives and give us a sense of Control that so many of us could desperately use.