The Finance Therapist|Financial Therapy2024-04-09T19:14:27+00:00

Stop Stressing Over MoneyRelationshipsThe PastThe Future


Free Chapter + Bonus Content + 52 Weeks of Tips

  • Free Chapter + Bonus Book Study Kit Sneak Peek
  • A Year of Weekly Tips from the Book (no purchase necessary)

Discover a Different Path to Healing Finances and Emotions.

Where Real Life Meets Real Solutions.

The Podcast: We discuss feelings and finance every Friday at 8 a.m.

Available everywhere you listen to podcasts.
The Finance Therapist Podcast

“Money is a tool that should grow to serve your wellness and dreams.”

“Healing emotionally and financially is a free-spirited dance of self-discovery.”

If you’re here, you might wonder how to improve your emotional and financial well-being. Financial therapy is your compass on this journey. It isn’t just about getting out of debt, it’s so much more.

No one would be suffering if it were just about spreadsheets and budgets. Whether you’re an individual, a couple, or a family, it’s a welcoming space where we explore the emotional side of money, heal financial trauma, and empower you to make informed financial choices.

Anxiety, ADHD, Relationship Conflict, Trauma, etc., and financial struggles.

These conditions can both create and result from financial challenges. They can lead to impulsive spending or difficulty managing finances, causing financial stress. Conversely, financial struggles can trigger anxiety and worsen symptoms.

It’s a complex interplay, but individuals can find strategies to manage their mental health and finances effectively with support.

When searching for a qualified financial therapist, it’s crucial to consider specific criteria to address the multifaceted nature of financial discord. To find the ideal financial therapist, begin by exploring online directories and consulting professional associations. While reviewing potential candidates, prioritize those who hold qualifications in both financial therapy and trauma therapy. These dual qualifications are key to comprehensively addressing the various emotional and psychological variables that contribute to financial stress and conflict within relationships. With careful research and selection, couples and individuals can benefit from the expertise of a therapist who understands the intricate connections between financial well-being, emotional trauma, and personal financial behaviors.

It’s essential to be discerning when considering associations related to financial therapy. Many organizations in the financial therapy realm are not government or state-recognized entities; they may operate as non-profits but primarily function as listing depots for networking and marketing purposes.

Regarding professional recognition and credibility, it’s often more meaningful to prioritize associations recognized by government bodies and licensing agencies. The American Psychological Association (APA) is a reputable example. Being a well-established entity with recognized authority, APA holds higher weight when it comes to ensuring financial therapists’ qualifications, standards, and ethical practices.

This recognition can give individuals and couples greater confidence in the quality of services and expertise offered by the professionals associated with such authoritative organizations.

Seeking a financial therapist with substantial life experience is a wise choice when looking for a guide to navigate the complexities of your financial journey.

A seasoned financial therapist who has not only mastered the intricacies of money management but also successfully weathered life’s challenges brings a wealth of practical wisdom to the table.

Such a therapist can relate to your journey, having put children through college, navigated the highs and lows of marriage, and surmounted life’s hurdles.

This level of personal experience offers a unique blend of empathy and expertise, enabling you to feel heard and understood as you embark on your financial well-being journey.

They know the ins and outs of managing life transitions, including helping millennials thrive, as they’ve professionally guided others and supported their children’s journey into adulthood.

With their guidance, you can trust that you’re in capable hands, making financial therapy an enriching and transformative experience.

Childhood trauma or recent turbulent relationships can cast shadows that linger affecting our relationship with money.

Yesterday’s wounds can echo into our financial choices today, creating obstacles to prosperity.

But here, I recognize that healing these wounds is essential to economic liberation.

Your financial hardships are not just about numbers on a spreadsheet.

Financial therapy and a financial therapist play a pivotal role in premarital counseling for couples, offering insights beyond traditional financial guidance.

While these sessions involve discussions about budgeting, savings, and financial goals, they extend far beyond mere financial figures.

Financial therapy delves into a relationship’s emotional and psychological aspects of money management. A skilled financial therapist helps couples explore their individual beliefs, attitudes, and past experiences related to money, fostering open communication and empathy.

They guide teams in understanding the complex interplay between emotions and financial decisions, holistically preparing them to navigate marriage’s inevitable ups and downs, combining feelings and logical thinking.

This comprehensive perspective ensures that couples are financially secure and emotionally resilient, ready to face financial challenges together.


Financial therapy can be a profoundly transformative approach for those grappling with the relentless cycle of living paycheck to paycheck or being mired in debt.

In such trying circumstances, the financial challenges often intertwine with deep-rooted psychological and emotional complexities.

While a trained financial coach may provide practical guidance, a seasoned and licensed therapist possesses the nuanced understanding and psychological expertise to delve into the core of these issues.

Drawing from my work and the wisdom of Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, a pioneer in the field of positive psychology, it’s evident that financial therapy can unlock the door to flow, that state of mind where one’s actions align seamlessly with one’s goals, even in the face of economic adversity.

A seasoned therapist, well-versed in these principles, can facilitate this alignment. They assist individuals in unraveling the psychological barriers rooted in self-worth, compulsive spending, or fear of financial failure. Such therapists employ strategies to rewire thought patterns, foster resilience, and help individuals regain control over their financial narrative.

It is not merely about budgeting or debt management; it’s about untangling the web of emotions and habits that perpetuate financial struggle.

When guided by a seasoned therapist, the journey toward financial well-being transcends the mere economic realm, offering a path to true transformation and lasting financial freedom.

In the realm of financial therapy, even individuals of substantial wealth and diverse investments, akin to a seasoned financial therapist, may discover the profound insights of Carl Jung, a pioneer in psychoanalysis, echoing through their financial journey. The complexities of wealth often mirror the intricacies of the human psyche, as wealth’s emotional dynamics can lead to unique challenges within one’s personal and family life. Just as Jung explored the depths of the unconscious mind, financial therapy delves into the uncharted territories of wealth’s psychological impact.

This approach serves as a gateway to self-discovery and understanding the profound interplay between the wealth amassed and the emotional intricacies it brings forth.

Much like Jungian individuation, wealth management requires us to acknowledge and integrate various aspects of our financial selves. It offers individuals a platform for deeper exploration of the psyche behind their investments, the narratives they’ve constructed about wealth, and the relational aspects of managing resources, even transcending borders and continents.

In the spirit of Jungian psychology, financial therapy paves the way to wholeness in wealth, helping individuals and couples resolve their emotional conflicts, foster healthier relationships, and attain a harmonious balance in the complex world of financial well-being.

At The Finance Therapist, we prioritize partnerships with organizations that align with our diversity, inclusivity, and non-discrimination values. We collaborate with entities that actively promote a respectful and open environment for all individuals.

Additionally, we do not engage in partnerships with organizations that support cruelty to animals or people, are affiliated with fast fashion, or endorse unsavory business models.

We commit to creating a positive and inclusive working relationship with those who share these values.

I appreciate your understanding.

Welcome to The Finance Therapist. I, Michele Paiva, proudly embrace my multiracial identity as a woman over 50. This platform reflects diverse perspectives and experiences.

At The Finance Therapist, I value inclusivity. This space celebrates differences, and I hope every visitor feels seen and heard. Your feedback on enhancing inclusivity is appreciated.

Thank you for being part of my community.

This website’s purpose, and mine, is educational, not to replace your psychologist, therapist, or other medical or financial professional. Licenses and certifications aside, my role is that of a coach or mentor.  This extends to any social media, and I am not responsible for third-party comments, assumptions, or communications.

I do not provide 1:1 therapy at this juncture.

I plan my year and do not take on free clients, outreach, free public speaking, panels, or other endeavors. I plan all of my outreach ahead of time.

You may use my contact form for any paid or outreach inquiry.

The Weekly Portfolio

The newsletter where we discuss all things finance & feelings

Financial Therapist, Michele Paiva The Finance Therapist

Michele Paiva, Financial Therapist/Licensed Therapist

Licensed Therapist, Certified Financial Educator, Author, and The Finance Therapist podcast host.

  • Member of the American Psychological Association
  • Founder, Viper Public Relations
  • Speaker at various conferences, colleges, and organizations, including the American Marketing Association.

I have been analyzing since orange velour was groovy.

My family, filled with entrepreneurs, nurtured my curious nature.  I opened my first business at 20 and have been self-employed or in the role of a consultant/contractor ever since. 

It wasn’t always easy; my family, like many, also had generational pain and financial wounds. 

I also endured trauma at 21 when I was left for dead.

That trauma took me from a curious, free spirit to coping with overspending and accumulating debt. Here’s a picture of my inner child. 🙂

At this juncture, I am living in Philadelphia, barely scraping by in my small apartment, trying to make it in the media as a journalist.

I am in debt. I am trying to prove my worth by buying clothes and shoes to impress others. Meanwhile, I often could not afford food or heat. My heat was turned off numerous times; I was too proud- too filled with shame, actually- to tell my parents.

I was invited to a party of a prominent person who owned a sports team in the city. He told me his friend would pick me up in a green Jaguar vehicle. That was my dream car. When the much older man, a cardiologist, picked me up, he was kind, and I felt safe. I started quizzing him on his life and apparent success.

He advised me, “You have just to know you are worthy with or without the things, the cars, the clothes, vacations, and everything else.” He went on with more details but for whatever reason, that was the time and place that I needed that wake-up call.

We were not at the party long; he had to work in the morning, and I was out of my element- he dropped me off. I don’t recall his name, but he was an inspiration. That was the first time I realized that a money wound can be worn like a mask- and taking the mask off was the best thing I ever did.

The next day, I told my parents about my struggle and began to change my life around. Being vulnerable and supported emotionally felt like a weight lifted off of me. They didn’t give me handouts, but they taught me; they acknowledged that they had not talked to any of us kids about money and wished they had.

Fun fact: years later, I ended up owning a green Jaguar – purchased with cash- just like the one I was a passenger in that night, as a symbol of my journey.

There isn’t an end to healing or self-enrichment, but after feeling broken and broken, I had to make a change.

I switched gears from working in media and marketing to working in self-help, and from there, the natural transition was bringing it all together with financial therapy.

After a couple of relationships that didn’t pan out, I met my husband, and we raised two children. There were camps, soccer games, dance classes, tennis lessons, museums and youth groups, vacations, and more. Sometimes, early on, we scrimped.

Later, I started my hobby of investing and had a knack for it; it’s been a cornerstone of my life.

In addition to years of therapy and support groups to help me heal and thrive, I found that finance was a passion.

My client sessions usually began with someone feeling stuck, traumatized, or unloved and ended with connection, empowerment, and finding a tactile way to represent that healing, always with finance. Investing. Freedom.

I wanted every client to experience what I had- going from broken  (and broke) to empowered and free.

I am a Financial Therapist based in Pennsylvania, though I have clients in every state; my podcast has listeners in several countries.

Sometimes I wonder how that broke kid ended up here, I remember it was through having mentors, inspiring conversations, and “ah-ha” moments.

With over three decades of experience, I focus on financial therapy, trauma healing, and financial literacy. I offer personalized 1:1 sessions, group programs, and a weekday podcast, ‘The Finance Therapist.’

Welcome to this space where financial well-being and emotional healing merge. My style is laid-back and light-hearted because I believe therapy doesn’t have to be morose, and financial wellness shouldn’t be shrouded with shame, blame, or taboo.

My late parents felt money was taboo but had they not, I might have been more equipped to handle my life and not have years climbing out of debt.

If my podcast, session, or course can create an “ah-ha” or inspirational moment that helps someone to pivot like I had, a wake-up call of sorts, that means my work isn’t in naught. 

In addition to my therapy practice, I own a public relations agency dedicated to helping clients enter the spotlight. It’s a platform for those ready to be seen and heard by the media and the public if they so wish.

There’s a lot more to my story; but the general nexus here is that I am here to serve you, to help you feel whole and financially free. To help you heal your feelings and finances.

Take control of your happiness, money and future.

Disclaimer: While licensed, I work under the umbrella of coaching and financial literacy via financial counseling and financial therapy. I may offer products or services that contain affiliate links in my emails or on social networking. This links, at no extra cost to you- usually at a discount- do sometimes offer me a small commission.

Go to Top