I love me some Lauren Greutman! This Syracuse, New York married mom of four was living the American dream … 3,500 square-foot custom house, two luxury cars parked in the driveway, new furniture, dinners out … and $40,000 in credit card debt.
Fast forward through slinging steaks at a local restaurant, selling off everything she and her husband owned, clipping coupons and budgeting like a mo-fo and relocating to a tiny condo in a community where she was shunned by moms who lived in big, newly furnished custom homes. All along this family has chronicled their journey out of debt, thanks to her platform for helping families live a fantastic life within their means — most famously for her slow-cooker Aldi meal plans (20 meals for $150 = mind blown).
What I love so much about Lauren, is that she is so freaking honest and real. Also, that she has parlayed her passion and authenticity into an incredible, profitable online business, and media appearances on TODAY, Fox & Friends, Rachel Ray Show, Steve Harvey … you name it.
In this episode, the hilariously delightful Lauren and I discuss:
- Her new book, The Recovering Spender: How To Live a Happy, Fulfilled, Debt-Free Life, is really a 12-step program for shopping addicts, like Lauren.
- How she pulls on her experience as a former drug counselor, as well as grieving the death of her brother to heroin overdose, to help herself and countless others address the very real issue of spending addiction.
- Those snotty, rich moms in her neighborhood? Turns out they were underwater on their homes and living in the hole — and judging Lauren and her family as they lived within their means (huge life lesson there!).
- The sad, sad day when her pink Cadillac was repo’d from her driveway … as a gaggle of teenage boys trailed the tow truck riding their skateboards.
- Why she still is wracked with anxiety at the thought of stepping into a Target.
- What it feels like to live each day knowing there is enough money to cover your basic needs, and reaching your goals.
Loving this? Check out her book on Amazon now:
Emma Johnson is a veteran money journalist, noted blogger, bestselling author and an host of the award-winning podcast, Like a Mother with Emma Johnson. A former Associated Press Financial Wire reporter and MSN Money columnist, Emma has written for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Glamour, Oprah.com, U.S. News, Parenting, USA Today and others. Her #1 bestseller, The Kickass Single Mom (Penguin), was named to the New York Post’s ‘Must Read” list.
Emma regularly comments on issues of modern families, gender equality, divorce, sex and motherhood for outlets like CNN, Headline News, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Fox & Friends, CNBC, NPR, TIME, MONEY, O, The Oprah Magazine and The Doctors. She was named Parents magazine’s “Best of the Web,” “Top 15 Personal Finance Podcasts” by U.S. News, and a “Most Eligible New Yorker” by New York Observer.
A popular speaker, Emma presented at the United Nations Summit for Gender Equality. Read more about Emma here.