“It has to be your flag […]. So, being able to do that internal work and say, ‘Oh, what is it that I want to be? What is it that I want to look like? And how do I want to present myself?’ and letting that be okay, keeping your flag the one that’s flying rather than trying to be somebody else, no matter what it is.” ~Brian Thompson

In the right hands, financial planning is a healing art. Wait, don’t tune out! I go cross-eyed, too, thinking about indexes and funds and allocations! Just hang with me a sec. I promise you’ll fall in love with my amazing guest Brian Thompson, tax attorney, certified financial planner™, registered life planner™, Forbes features writer, and podcaster. He’s also a super friend and my Al-Anon pal. 

But wait, Brian occupies many intersections (Black, gay, spreadsheet geek), and all of them inform his approach to socially responsible investing (or ESG). You’ll leave here wiser and psyched about putting your values before your returns.

I anticipate some whining. ‘But Sarah, if I put my values before my returns, I won’t have anything to live on!

Y’all, that’s just capitalism’s vice-like grip. It’s time to integrate conversations about what we want to do with our money into our healing practices. 

So, cue the discomfort and lean in as Brian helps us move through it. “Financial planning is about the art of financial planning, which deals with the emotional aspects of money. We all have emotional baggage around money, and to pretend like we don’t is foolish because it affects the way that we act with money.” Boom. Thank you, Brian. 

We’re not into your average stocks and bonds convo here; this is money well-being. A financial yes, and. Yes, you’re allowed to make a good living, and you can institute fiscal strategies that reflect your core principles. The two are not mutually exclusive.

Brian’s holistic approach empowers clients to find their own antidotes to capitalism’s Kool-Aid. “I’m not a therapist; I’m not qualified to be a therapist. But I know how to hold space, and I know how to validate. And I learned so much from my personal therapy. I’ve learned so much from people like you on how to do that and learned from Al-Anon how to show up authentically. And that’s what it’s about for me.”

And I’m over here just trying to imagine a world where all financial planners show up the way Brian does. What a wonderful world that would be.



Brian Thompson Financial

BT FInancial podcast





Brian E. Thompson. As both a tax attorney and CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, Brian provides comprehensive financial planning to LGBTQ entrepreneurs who run mission-driven businesses. Entrepreneurs hold a special place in his heart. He spent a decade defending them against the IRS as a tax attorney and has become one himself as an advisor.

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