45. Side Hustle 101 with Jannese Torres (Yo Quiero Dinero)

September 27, 2022

The following article may contain affiliate links or sponsored content. This doesn't cost you anything, and shopping or using our affiliate partners is a way to support our mission. I will never work with a brand or showcase a product that I don't personally use or believe in.

The following article may contain affiliate links or sponsored content. This doesn’t cost you anything, and shopping or using our affiliate partners is a way to support our mission. I will never work with a brand or showcase a product that I don’t personally use or believe in.

Are you daydreaming of owning a small business from your window-less cubicle?

What about looking to make some extra cash to put towards debt or a European vacation? 

Unless you’ve been under a rock, you’ve heard the phrase “side hustle” in the last few years. With the growth of the internet and social media, Side Hustles (small businesses that you might run on the side of your full-time job) are becoming more and more the norm. This might be a traditional brick-and-mortar, a service-based business, or another form of gig work that you do to make money on the side.

Today, Tori and special guest, Jannese Torres of Yo Quiero Dinero, sit down to answer the community’s questions on everything side hustle. They get into their own stories of starting their side hustles and turning them into global brands.

You’ll learn:

  • How Jannese and Tori built their business from side hustles to their full-time careers

  • How they shifted their mindset to get over their imposter syndrome

  • The 3 “T’s” of side hustles


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LINKEDIN: https://www.linkedin.com/company/yo-quiero-dinero/


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Meet Jannese


Jannese Torres is an award-winning Latina Money Expert. She became an accidental entrepreneur after a job loss inspired her to turn her food blog into a six-figure business. She is an expert in the areas of digital entrepreneurship, content creation, financial independence, creating multiple income streams and passive income. With 9 years of experience as a content-based entrepreneur, she is now a highly sought-after coach who helps her clients monetize their skills and pursue financial independence.

Jannese is on a mission to educate marginalized communities on topics like entrepreneurship, investing, and financial independence through her 3X award-winning personal finance podcast & platform, “Yo Quiero Dinero.”

Her forthcoming book, The Financially Lit Latina, will be published by Grand Central Publishing in early 2024.


Tori Dunlap (00:00:00):

Welcome back financial feminists. Welcome back. Welcome back. We are so excited you are here. Thank you for joining us for yet another week at the podcast.


We have been releasing new episodes of the show for six months now in season two. It’s absolutely crazy that we’ve been releasing six months of new episodes, which in contrast season one was six weeks. We are so excited that you’re continuing to love the show. As of this recording, we have hit over 6 million lifetime downloads of the show and we get new listeners constantly. So we are just so thankful for you coming back and listening, re-listening, sharing the show. I don’t think we imagined when we launched it back in May 2021 how successful it would become and how valuable it would be to so many folks in our community. So we just so appreciate your support of the show.


If you are new to the podcast, please make sure you’re subscribed. It’s the best way to continually find the show and feel free to leave us at review. Reviews are a huge deal to us. We love reading them as a team and when you subscribe, rate and review, it really helps us grow our podcast and it assists us and be available to get really great guests for you all.


So without further ado, today’s guest is no exception, Jannese Torres, which hold on one second, we had this whole sidebar. My mother’s name is also named Jannese. It’s spelled differently, but it’s such a unique name that when I found out her name was pronounced Jannese I was so, so excited. I have met maybe one other Jannese other than my mom. And so it was very exciting.


Jannese Torres is an award-winning Latina money expert. She became an accidental entrepreneur. After a job loss led her to create a successful Latin food blog Delish D’Lites. Now she helps her clients and listeners build successful online businesses that allow them to pursue financial independence and freedom.


Jannese is on a mission to educate marginalized communities on topics like entrepreneurship, investing and financial independence through her personal finance podcast and platform. Yo Quiero Dinero. Her forthcoming book, “The Financially Lit Latina” will be published by Grand Central Publishing in early 2024.


Jannese and I sat down and interviewed each other, and then we put our heads together to answer questions sourced from our communities on everything from owning a small business to your biggest personal finance questions. This is a great episode if you want to learn something new about entrepreneurship or about those frequently asked personal finance questions and Jannese is a total badass and just an incredible financial creator and educator. You’ll love this conversation between us.


So without further ado, let’s get into it.


I would say thank you for being here, but also we’re trading things. So it’s like, it’s a mutual, we’re excited that both of us are on each other’s shows.

Jannese Torres (00:02:52):

I know this is so cool. So we are doing a joint podcast recording and just talking about side hustles, passive income. The thing that people want to know, I think about us, more than anything is how the hell did y’all turn this into this empire, if you will. And so I’m so excited to chat with you and connect with you and talk about this today.

Tori Dunlap (00:03:15):

I’m excited too. So tell us about your journey. Tell us about what was the catalyst for getting started? Was it always okay, I’m going to take this full-time. Like walk me through the full business journey of growing a side hustle into now your full-time hustle.

Jannese Torres (00:03:30):

Absolutely. So this was not part of the plan. I always like to preface that and say I had a very specific list of things that I was supposed to do according to my Latino parents. So they said graduate from school with good grades, preferably grades high enough to get a full scholarship so we don’t have to pay for school because we can’t pay for school anyway. So there’s that. And then go and get a good job, preferably one that has a pension and go live your life. Go do the thing.


Go work for 45 years, buy a house, get married, live the American white picket fence dream. And so for a long time into my mid twenties, I was on that t
rajectory. I graduated from college, got a full scholarship for that. Got my master’s degree in Biotech so I went into the STEM field because my father was an engineer. So I said, I’m going to do that because that sounds like it makes a lot of money. And then by the time I was 27, I was ready to drive my car off a bridge metaphorically because I just hated my entire life. And I’m like, wait a minute.

Tori Dunlap (00:04:34):

What was it about it that you really hated? Was it working corporate? What for you was like, God, I’m getting up in the morning and I hate doing X?

Jannese Torres (00:04:44):

You know what I think about it now and I feel like this idea of what corporate America is, where it’s just the majority of your working life of your adult life is dedicated to spending eight plus hours every single day working in a cubicle. I mean I had no windows. I couldn’t even see the sun. I didn’t know what time of day it was. I was always in environments where there was a lot of people who did not look like me, a lot of white men. And I always felt like the Latina who somehow tricked people into hiring me because there’s no fucking way I’m actually qualified to be here. There was a lot of imposter syndrome, a lot of microaggressions. I definitely found out I was being underpaid. And for me it just felt like, is this what I wanted to be an adult for? Because this is not what I signed up for.

Tori Dunlap (00:05:32):

Yeah. I mean, I’ll talk about it. But I had a very similar feeling.

Jannese Torres (00:05:36):

I would love to hear your story because I feel like I don’t know much about your corporate past before you made this business leap.

Tori Dunlap (00:05:44):

I mean, it was briefer than it felt. I look at it on paper and I was like, oh that wasn’t too many years, but yeah. Literally, and I’m sure people listening, it feels very similar where you’re getting up every day and you’re like, is this it? Is this what I’m doing for the next 30, 35, 40, 45 plus years of my entire life? Is this what we’re doing?


So I graduated college with degrees in Organizational Communication, which I like to say is marketing with less math and a degree in Theater. And I was like, okay, I’ll do social media. I’ll do marketing. And so got into my first job out of school. It was a great job in terms of experience and in terms of I was getting to fly certain places. I actually went to the Oscars one year, which was crazy, but the most toxic work environment. Very misogynistic, sexual harassment all of the time, blatant alcoholism, it was a really bad environment. And so I was there for about a year and nine months.


And I thought when I was getting into corporate, oh, I’m going to be climbing the corporate ladder. That’s the dream. 22 year old me was pencil skirt, coffee, briefcase, marching the city. And I know that’s a fantasy because I hate pencil skirts, I don’t drink coffee, I don’t carry a briefcase. It was so obvious now looking back, that was a complete and total the romcom version of what we think the corporate environment is.

Jannese Torres (00:07:18):

The Devil Wears Prada looks so glamorous on this big screen, but it’s not real.

Tori Dunlap (00:07:24):

It’s not real. I thought that that’s what I wanted. And then very quickly was like, I don’t making somebody I don’t respect rich. I don’t having to show up even when my work is done. I don’t like having to request to go on vacation. And also I only get 10 days off a year or something crazy. And so very quickly realized I want to be an entrepreneur. And I knew that even before, but I thought, okay, if I can do it by 30.


Got into another job, quit after 10 weeks because it was so toxic without another job lined up, shout out to emergency funds. I talk more about that in my book of just the importance of having money to leave situations you don’t want to be in anymore and then got into what will be my last corporate job, which was at a FinTech startup and was running social media, content marketing for them. And then growing Her First $100K on the side. And then it got to the point where Her First $100K was unfortunately perceived as a threat. And the success at HFK was perceived as threatening to some individuals at the corporation. And so it was like, okay, I need to quit. And by then I had momentum, I had money in the bank and I was still scared to quit. And I’m sure we’ll talk about this more, but I was terrified to quit my job. And then of course everything worked out so.

Jannese Torres (00:08:46):

Oh my gosh.

Tori Dunlap (00:08:47):

I’m feeling all right about it.

Jannese Torres (00:08:48):

You know, that’s incredible and I love the fact that both of our journey started with the frustration in our current lives. And I think it’s important for people to realize that when you feel that way, you should not ignore it. I think a lot of us, especially as women, we’re just like be grateful. You made it so far.

Tori Dunlap (00:09:07):

Because we’re told that right. And I can’t speak to an immigrant or a person of color standpoint, but from my conversations with friends of color, it’s double. And you can probably speak to that where it’s like, as a woman you should just be grateful for your opportunities or just be grateful you have a job. And then you have all of these expectations on you if you are a person of color from your ancestors, if your first gen that’s a whole other thing. I think that that’s all too common.

Jannese Torres (00:09:36):

Absolutely. Yeah. I mean, I can’t tell you the look on my parents’ face when I told them I was going to quit my corporate six figure job with the pension at a Fortune 50 company.

Tori Dunlap (00:09:47):

And benefits.

Jannese Torres (00:09:48):

And they’re Just like, are you fucking kidding me? Do you understand what we went through to get you here? Do you really get, and I’m just like, guys, isn’t this the point though? Isn’t the point to open the doors so that then we can do reckless shit like quit our job to do TikToks? Isn’t that the American dream?

Tori Dunlap (00:10:09):

Isn’t TikTok the American Chinese dream though? Because I think to your point it’s so beautifully stated of if you have this feeling, I think, one observe it. Don’t just bury it. But two, I think, again, we’re taught as women to sacrifice everything that we want for other people.


Maybe that’s for your kids, maybe that’s for your partner, maybe that’s for your family, maybe that’s for just society’s expectation of what and who you should be. And one of the most powerful things, I would argue the most powerful thing, that we can do as women is realize what is actually serving us and what do we actually want versus what do our parents want? What does our partner want? What is society expecting of me? Because often those things actually aren’t aligned, but you owe it to yourself to do the thing that you want to do. Even if, at least in the beginning, there might not be as much support.

Jannese Torres (00:11:14):

Absolutely. I think it’s important to just remember that it’s nobody else’s job to live your dream. And when you have the opportunity to explore what you actually want to do, I think that opportunity can come from putting yourself in a financial position where you are not struggling anymore. It’s hard to dream. It’s hard to imagine starting a business when you’re living paycheck to paycheck. So I think the first thing to do is really start setting up your money in a way that’s going to allow you that financial parachute to take that leap. And I know that’s something that we both did in our journeys.

Tori Dunlap (00:11:48):

So let’s talk a bit more about that and the nitty gritty logistics of that. For me, that looked like setting up an automatic transfer of even a small amount of money from my checking to my savings every single paycheck. And you can do this, I’ve talked about this so much on this podcast, but you can do this through your payroll platform at work typically. Or if that’s not offered, you can set it up through your bank. Maybe that’s 20 bucks or $100 or 5% of every paycheck because you want to build that emergency fund. That emergency fund is going to give you the ability to have, like you said, a parachute and that’s what I did and I’m sure that’s what you did as well or some element to that.

Jannese Torres (00:12:28):

Yeah. So when I graduated from my Master’s program, I had about $30,000 worth of debt. And so I knew that I needed to get rid of this in order to feel comfortable with taking the leap. And so that’s honestly why I started side hustling. So I started my food blog in 2013 and I was like, I think this is something I could turn into a business. I saw other people doing it online. And so when I was able to start monetizing it, instead of using the money to buy designer bags or take trips to Cabo, I’m like maybe I should just use this money to pay off this debt because the faster that it’s gone, the more options that I have and student loans are one of those things that even when you die, somebody’s going to have to deal with them.


So I knew if I get rid of any debt, it’s going to be this. And so once I became debt free, I was able to use all of the money that I was getting from side hustling to fund my emergency fund, to fund an FU fund, which is separate from an emergency fund. And I also started to accelerate my investing because at that point I knew about financial independence and I’m like, this is exactly what they say to do. Take all the extra money you have, put it in investing accounts, build your fin
ancial parachute.


And so by the time I was ready to quit my job in early 2021, I decided to take one last diagnosis, if you will, of my finances by talking to a CFP. I was like, I just want to make sure somebody else is looking at this, right? I don’t want to perform the brain surgery without the qualifications. So let me get a professional in here. And she took a look at my investments, took a look at my emergency fund and she’s like, girl, you could have quit last year. But I love the conservatism.

Tori Dunlap (00:14:09):

I had the same thing where I wasn’t looking at my numbers because I was actually too afraid to quit. I told myself as soon as I was making enough money as much money, if not more money than I was making in my nine to five, I could quit my job. And I purposefully ignored my numbers because I knew that if I got honest with myself, I actually was making enough money and then I would’ve had to quit. I purposely didn’t look.

Jannese Torres (00:14:31):

Yeah, I don’t blame you. Accounting is scary. Especially as a solopreneur just like what is happening?

Tori Dunlap (00:14:37):

Well, and for me it was more like if I look at the numbers, then I’ve made the promise to myself and I will have to quit and I was terrified to quit. So yeah. Very similar. I could have quit long before I did.

Jannese Torres (00:14:50):

Can we talk about the quit story? Because I feel like that’s always such a juicy part of this.

Tori Dunlap (00:14:55):

I have a quit story I’ve actually never discussed.

Jannese Torres (00:14:58):

Oh my God, can you discuss it? Or is it like a non-disclosure?

Tori Dunlap (00:15:02):

There is no non-disclosure. Sure, I can talk about it and we can cut it later if we want.


But I do want to touch on something that you said before. You said, okay, I wasn’t buying designer bags. I wasn’t going to Cabo. I wanted to pay off my debt and you and I are not about deprivation. Not at all, but I think something key there is you’re like, yes, Cabo’s great. Yes, designer bags are great. I wanted this other thing more and it’s not deprivation. It’s actually I know that the other side of debt is this life I really want. So I’m going to focus on paying off my debt and temporarily sacrificing some of the things I might want, because I know that long term it’s going to be better.


It’s like, okay, I’m going to do the hard thing right now because in the future I’m going to be able to take as many fucking trips to Cabo as I want. Like cool.

Jannese Torres (00:15:52):

Absolutely. And I was still traveling while doing my debt payoff, but I would travel hack with credit cards. I would do staycations. I would do a local Airbnb where it wasn’t going to cost a ton of money. So you have to be creative too. You can be a tourist in your own town while you are achieving your financial goals too. And I think the value based spending that we both talk about, that’s what clicked for me because the consumerist capitalist environment that we live in just teaches you to acquire all the things as soon as you can.


But do we really need to be buying a house? Do we really need to be driving the Mercedes? Is that the mark of success or is the mark of success being able to walk away from your fucking job in your twenties or your thirties and have all the options in the world. I know what I want. I don’t give a shit about the Mercedes. I will drive my 2016 Acura until the fucking wheels fall off.

Tori Dunlap (00:16:42):

I have a 2014 RAV4, 2014 RAV4. Certified pre-owned. Love that car. Love that car. Quick quit stories. Do you want to go first?

Jannese Torres (00:16:52):

Sure. Because it was funny when you mentioned that your job found out about your side hustle, I had the same thing happen where my coworker outed me to my boss and then my boss set up a meeting and was like, “Hey, I heard you’re quitting your job on Instagram.” Hella awkward.


But it was about three days before I was planning to quit. So I already had my resignation letter written and was just literally waiting until the day of my birthday to give it to them. So this was three days before my birthday. And I said, okay, well, I mean, yeah, that’s accurate. I was planning to quit on Monday. So it’s Friday. So here’s my resignation letter. The most awkward fucking meeting you could have.

Tori Dunlap (00:17:33):

They didn’t know about it before?

Jannese Torres (00:17:35):

Well, I never told anybody directly, but I’m assuming some people just started to follow me because I wasn’t necessarily shy about promoting myself.

Tori Dunlap (00:17:45):

Or using a fake name or there’s plenty of people I think in the personal finance community who, I think less and less so now. I remember a couple years ago, a bunch of people had avatars and they blogged under a different name or something like that. Oh, wow. I didn’t know that that happened.

Jannese Torres (00:18:01):

Hashtag Awkward.

Tori Dunlap (00:18:03):

Well, and we’ll answer that question now.


We have a question from the community of, should I tell my job about my side hustle?

Jannese Torres (00:18:11):


Tori Dunlap (00:18:12):

Because my job actually knew. They knew from the get go, that’s actually part of why I was hired, which makes the story really shitty. But we’ll talk about it in a second. Yeah.


So I don’t know. What’s your opinion. Should your job know?

Jannese Torres (00:18:24):

I think if your side hustle is in direct competition or conflict with your industry, then you might have to tell them right? If you are a certified financial planner, licensed financial advisor and you are also trying to be a financial influencer, not going to happen. T.


Here are laws, the SEC regulations, all types of stuff that will prohibit you from giving financial advice outside of your job. So in that case, I think it makes sense if you’re doing something completely different where I started off as a food blogger and I was working in pharmaceuticals. Not in any way related, if that’s the case, then you know, don’t necessarily have to disclose. I think it’s also important to read anything that you signed when you got employed. If there’s any thing that says that you can’t have a second job, that you can’t have your own business, just make sure to read before you sign.

Tori Dunlap (00:19:16):

Yeah. And I think for me, my last job knew because they were in FinTech and I had a bunch of personal finance contacts. So actually I think that was part of the reason I got hired was I presented, Hey, I have all this traditional nine to five work experience. But also I know this industry really well and I have contacts and I have been able to hit these sorts of milestones with my business that I can duplicate or help duplicate in this. So in that way it worked great obviously until it didn’t.


So I think it is a case by case, situation by situation basis. Again, my background’s marketing. If you work in marketing and you do freelance marketing on the side, I think you’re probably fine. I think that actually helps you boost your resume. I have a ton of friends who work in their nine to five and then they do consulting for whatever they do in their nine to five. I don’t think that’s a huge issue. However, you have to be very careful about how it interacts with your nine to five and being really clear because unfortunately a lot of these bosses still are not pro side hustle. They’re very anti side hustle. So while you are there, you need to at least perform the act of you working.

Jannese Torres (00:20:30):


Tori Dunlap (00:20:31):

And I say perform because there are sometimes I was not working on my thing that I should have been working on. So at least put on a very good performance, make sure you’re doing your work because the last thing you want is a performance review where they’re like, actually I don’t feel like you’re proving yourself or doing your work. And then the side hustle becomes the issue.

Jannese Torres (00:20:53):

Or you get fired and then you got to make this shit profitable ASAP because now you got no choice.

Tori Dunlap (00:20:58):

And that’s a lot harder.


Okay. My quit story. So like I said, my nine to five knew about my side hustle. That was part of the reason I was hired, but I was hired in early 2018. It was March of 2018. So HFK didn’t really take off to 2019 when we rebranded. At the time, it was more of a blog focus. Had maybe 4,000 followers on Instagram. We were tiny. And then I rebranded in early 2019 to Her First $100K and things started taking off. So I was featured in Market Watch and CNBC and a bunch of these different places. And one of the things that I really tried to do, which I did not have to do was incorporate my job into these interviews in order to get them press.


Which again, I’m still bitter clearly about this. Something I did not have to do, but I wanted to do as kind of my good faith. Actually, this thing is benefiting you as well because it was my trying to convince them that the side hustle is not a threat to you. So I got them all these back links, all of this web traffic from my press and my direct boss still is a huge supporter of me and a huge supporter of what I do and was very pro all of this. The other two, there were three co-founders. The other two founders did not like it and saw it as a threat to their business. These are two straight white men in their forties and I a 23, 24 year old am seen as a threat, which I think hysterical.

Jannese Torres (00:22:38):


Tori Dunlap (00:22:39):

So it keeps growing, it keeps growing, it’s gaining momentum and it gets to the point where I can’t bring it up in the office because it’s pissing a lot of people off and I’m going to my boss and I’m like, I’m trying to mend this relationship. You know I do good work. And he’s like, I think just the perception is that you care more about this other thing, which was a hundred percent accurate. But the perception from the other two co-founders was that I had one foot out the door, which wasn’t entirely inaccurate, but also I was doing good work. It wasn’t like I was neglecting my work.


So I hit my $100K. The origin story of Her First $100K was me saving $100K at 25. Hit my $100K goal, announced it very quietly in the office to friends, went on vacation to celebrate and I got the call for Good Morning America while I was on vacation. Came back, did GMA, it was great.


Then I have a coworker pull me aside. This literally feels like an interrogation. This coworker takes me to a coffee shop and is like, so I heard from someone that you have been stealing our PR contacts for your own business. One, 100% not true. Two, insulting because the assumption was, oh, the only reason she’s getting this press is our resources. And three, super HR shitty because this did not come to my boss to discuss, or this did not come to me directly. It was this coworker and one of the co-founders getting drunk at a weekend retreat and him saying too much.

Jannese Torres (00:24:28):

Lord Jesus.

Tori Dunlap (00:24:30):

I am in complete panic. I don’t like being in trouble. I’m going, did I, I don’t remember, I don’t think I did because I was managing the PR team for the startup and I am in complete and utter crisis. I’m just so stressed out. I’m not sleeping. My boss is actually on vacation. And I’m wondering when he gets back, is there going to be a whole conversation? So I head it off, I ask him for his time, I’m thinking he’s going to be like, we’re firing you or some sort of thing.


I go in. He has not heard any of this. Has not hurt about any of it. Because again, it’s like rumor mill, grapevine shit. No HR processes, no any of that. And I go, Hey, well, here’s what I’ve heard. And I was like, I didn’t do that. That’s not what happened. And we had a really honest conversation for an hour where he was like, what do you want to do? And I was like, I don’t see this getting any better. I have gone above and beyond to prove myself. I’ve gone above and beyond to leverage my work for the company. And I don’t know how it gets better.


And he’s like, are you saying you want to quit? And I was like, I jus
t don’t know. I like it here, but I don’t know. And he beautifully, so helpful, was like, okay, entrepreneur to entrepreneur. You have money in the bank. You have momentum in your business. And you’re profitable. Now is the time. And that was the permission slip I needed to quit. And turned in my resignation the next day. He got me three weeks of severance, which was amazing. And then the co-founder who made up a bunch of lies about me messaged me on Slack. And he was like, Hey, I’m really proud of you for going for it, good for you.

Jannese Torres (00:26:13):

Oh my God.

Tori Dunlap (00:26:16):

I was like, fuck you dude. But I was just like, thanks. I appreciate it. Thanks so much.

Jannese Torres (00:26:22):


Tori Dunlap (00:26:23):

The funny thing about this company is they’re now requesting to work with us.

Jannese Torres (00:26:28):

Oh my God. The karma, the ultimate fucking karma.

Tori Dunlap (00:26:32):

And again, I love my boss very much. I don’t think they’ll ever listen to this, but I loved my direct contact. I loved my boss. Just the rest of it was a startup. That was just like, there was no HR. There was no anything. And the fact that a 25 year old woman was seen as a threat, I was like, yeah, sounds about right. You should. If that’s how you feel like great. Okay. I’ll rise to that occasion. That took a while. But that was my quit story. It was a lot.

Jannese Torres (00:26:58):

Oh my God. That’s an incredible story. And it’s funny because they do say if your best marketing tactic is having a shit on somebody else, how solid is your product anyway?


So there’s that. Incredible.

Tori Dunlap (00:27:18):

And it was just so interesting because the only reason you think I got this opportunity is because of your resources. It couldn’t be my own prowess, it couldn’t be my own intelligence, it couldn’t be my own hard work. In their universe, or at least this person’s universe, his only perspective was, oh, she got this opportunity because of our labor.

Jannese Torres (00:27:44):

Oh God.

Tori Dunlap (00:27:44):

Crazy. Madness.

Jannese Torres (00:27:54):

I’m so glad you got out of there. I’m so glad we both figured out that we are capable of so much more. And I think it’s time for us to give folks some tips for them to also figure out what their secret sauce is going to be.


So let’s talk about that. Let’s talk about how did you figure out how to actually make money? Right? Cause we have a lot of cool ideas, but not all of them are going to make money. What was your first striking of gold in your business?

Tori Dunlap (00:28:24):

I walk people through what I call the three Ts when you’re side hustling or when you’re deciding a side hustle. Because this is a question that I get all the time, which is, I want a side hustle, but I don’t know what I should pick. I have a bunch of passions.


First is time. How much time do you realistically have to give to this thing in a way that doesn’t completely deprive yourself of everything good in life? The term side hustle is a very marketing term. I’m not a grind till you die hustle your ass off person. That’s not it. And I don’t think you are either. Time is really important. How much time are you willing to dedicate to this thing and not how much time are you willing, but also how much time do you realistically have?


So one of my practices that I do with folks is literally take your calendar, take a random week and be like, o
kay, if I were to put a side hustle into this current calendar, where would it go? And maybe you have 10 hours, maybe you have two hours. So you have to figure out realistically, what does this look like? And in addition, is this the sort of side hustle where you work at a gym and you have to show up at a specific time, you’re a barista and you have to show up at this specific time. Or is it if you run your own business, if you’re a freelancer, okay, I have more flexibility on when I can work on this as long as I turn it in on time. So I think time is the first one.


Second is treasure. Do you want to make money? I’m assuming you do. Some people just want a hobby on the side, if that’s it, cool. No worries. But with treasure too, how quickly do you want to see money? Because for me, I didn’t see substantial money for at least two years. And that was a specific decision.

Jannese Torres (00:30:05):

Oh my God, thank you. I had the same exact experience. And I’m like, what the fuck is with these Instagram gurus that are talking about million dollar businesses in two weeks? Because the shit ain’t, it’s not real.

Tori Dunlap (00:30:16):

No, that’s a scam. It’s a fucking scam. Again, I didn’t make money for a while. At least substantial money. And so for me it was, okay, I’m willing to pace myself in order to see hopefully stratospheric growth later, which is what happened. If you’re starting a business, that’s probably what’s going to happen is you’re going to have a period of time where you’re not either going to make any money or at least good money. So also if you’re the person out here, who’s just like, I’m going to start a business and I’m going to quit my job. Please, God, don’t do that. Bad idea. If you’re somebody who’s like, I need to make money now, I have debt to pay off, a side hustle isn’t a privilege for you and a side hustle is a second job, that’s going to be a different decision than I have a little more time to grow.


And the third thing for me is talent. That’s your third T. What sort of talent do you already have? What can you leverage? For me, I was a social media marketer. It made sense to do something related to social media on the side because I was good at that. If I was like, I’m going to go teach ice skating, bad idea. Can’t do that. So you have to decide, is this something that I want to do in my side hustle? Is this something that I want to do more of? Or do I want to teach myself this other thing in order to do it on the side hustle? So I think for me, when I started making money, I got really clear about my vision for the company. I got really clear about who I wanted to talk to. And in addition, I was able to, again, leverage those skills I already had as opposed to going out there and trying to teach myself a bunch of new things that I had never done before.

Jannese Torres (00:31:55):

I love that advice. I always tell people to think about what is the problem that you are equipped to solve? Because when we think about a business, that’s literally what they do. I mean, Amazon is the business that keeps me from having to leave my house and interact with human beings. That’s the problem that they’re solving for me. Instacart allows me to just get groceries delivered to my house so I don’t have to go out and spend hours every week doing that. So it can be something as mundane as like who’s going to take care of my dog while I’m on vacation or how can I start investing or how do I start a blog or how do I open a restaurant?


There’s so many different things, skills that we acquire both personally and professionally throughout our lives. That can be the thing. You’re already exchanging your skills to an employer for X amount of money. What if you just cut the employer out and go and give the skills to someone directly? That’s what you’re doing as an entrepreneur. So it’s important to just think about your personal and professional skillset and see what can you solve for people and then just try shit. Because I’m pretty sure not everything worked out for you. We didn’t always strike gold in business and anybody who tells you that everything they’ve fucking done was like a million dollar business. No, you’re not always going to get it right.

Tori Dunlap (00:33:19):

No. And you figure out what you’re doing by doing it.

Jannese Torres (00:33:23):

Ooh, yes.


I want to say that again. You figure out what you’re doing by actually doing it. Liz Gilbert, who is like my idol. Wrote “Eat, Pray, Love,” “Big Magic,” among other things. She talks about perfectionism being a horrible, terrible thing. Perfectionism is not a prize that you should wear on your sleeve. You should not be proud of perfectionism. She says perfectionism is fear in stilettos. It is the fear of getting started. Because what if it’s not good enough? What if I don’t know what I’m doing? I don’t know how to make a website. Oh my gosh. What if I build all these other things?


So what I think a lot of business owners do or potential business owners is they put so many hoops in front of themselves as they’re like, oh, well I can’t get started until I have a logo. I can’t get started until I have a website. I can’t get started until I have brand colors and all of
the intention behind that is good. Oh, I want a brand. I want it to look great. I want it to people to be able to find me. But really what you’re doing is you’re putting barriers in front of yourself so that you can take the leap later. It’s kind of like what I did of, I’m not going to look at my money that I’m making in my side hustle, because then I don’t have to quit. You kind of just have to do it. Her First $100K was not Her First $100K. Victory Media was the original name of Her First $100K. That tells you nothing about what I do. It was like a play on my name that has no relation to finances.


I learned over time that like, oh, I wanted to talk about money. So I learned that by doing it. So if you’re the person out there, who’s like, okay, I want to start a business, but I have to do all these things. You make a logo on Canva that takes you five minutes. It’s going to look like shit. That’s okay. It doesn’t matter. You’ll be able to do this great logo in five years when you have money. Okay. Website, literally I launched HFK on a random December night because I had three blog posts. I threw them up on Squarespace and I was like, cool. My business is launched. That’s it. You have to get started.


You really do. And I think it’s also important to let go of the idea that you need a guaranteed return on your investment.

Tori Dunlap (00:35:28):

Ooh. Yeah.

Jannese Torres (00:35:29):

Because if you think that any effort, any money that you spend on your business that maybe doesn’t pop off right away is a waste of time. That’s a really terrible perspective to have. The first couple of years is honestly experimentation. It is trial and error. It is figuring out who you are. What are you talking about? How are you going to package your services? What is your price point going to be? Who is attracted to your messaging? If you don’t give yourself a chance to figure all that shit out, you’re going to set yourself up for disappointment I think.

Tori Dunlap (00:36:06):

Yeah. And we’re talking, of course, about running a business. If you are the person who wants to side hustle, and again, it’s like freelancing, I mean technically running your own business if you’re freelancing, but something that is truly a side hustle might be a little different than what we’re talking about.


Literally, if you’re listening to this and you’re biking or jogging, I need you to stop and write it down. This is the best business advice I can give you. There’s a thing called a value proposition. And it is the thing that you do better than anyone else. You were saying it’s your secret sauce. It’s the same thing. Is your product better than anybody else? The Scrub Daddy had a better product than any other product that was in no way new or novel, but he created a sponge that was better than every other sponge on the market. That was his value proposition. For me, my value proposition is really my advice isn’t anything new, truly it isn’t right. You can Google Roth IRA or you can Google how to budget. My value proposition is I’m giving it to you in an unabashedly feminist way to use money as a form of protest.


What’s your value proposition? I’m going to put you on the spot, your value proposition, your secret sauce?

Jannese Torres (00:37:23):

Yes. Oh, I love this question. So for me, it’s all about giving women of color, specifically Latinas permission to say fuck you to the struggle. Honestly that’s just what we’ve become so accustomed to that it’s the default operating setting for so many of us. And so my whole mission here is to introduce folks to the idea that we are worthy of building wealth and I’m going to give you the tools to get there because other communities have been using these same exact tools for generations. There is no damn reason why we can’t be doing the exact same thing.

Tori Dunlap (00:37:58):


Jannese Torres (00:37:59):

That’s it.

Tori Dunlap (00:37:59):

So the value proposition, I think, for both you and I is not necessarily new info. We didn’t create a better sponge, but what we’re doing is we’re packaging it in a different way or we’re specifying the audience we’re going to talk to and the way we’re going to talk to them. For both of us, it’s a lot of yelling the word fuck a lot. It’s feminist, it’s specific to the community we’re talking to.


So if you don’t know your value proposition, one, maybe start and find it and it will evolve over time. But be really clear as to who you’re selling to, what is unique about you and yes, there are a bunch of people out there already doing what you’re doing. That’s the other question I get all the time where they
‘re like, but there’s so many fashion influencers. There were so many personal finance experts. However, you and I have both found success because we figured out what our value proposition is. We figured out who our audience is. So figuring out what makes you different, what is going to elevate you? Is it your product’s better? Is it your branding is really on point. Is it your talking to this specific audience? Figuring that out is going to be incredibly helpful.

Jannese Torres (00:39:08):

Absolutely. I always told my students just go to the supermarket and walk around the bread aisle and see how many fucking brands of bread there are and tell me that market saturation is a thing. It’s bullshit.

Tori Dunlap (00:39:19):

And English muffins and French bread and bagels and seven different kinds of bagels. Yeah.

Jannese Torres (00:39:25):


Tori Dunlap (00:39:27):

Okay. One of the most common questions I get taxes as someone who side hustles. I think this is yet another barrier people put they’re like, I don’t understand the taxes. I don’t know. Talk to me about taxes.

Jannese Torres (00:39:41):

Okay. So first off the biggest myth that I hear from people is I don’t want to make extra money because I’m going to pay more in taxes. That triggers the fuck out of me, because I’m just like, wait, that’s like saying I’m not going to lose any weight because then I got to go and buy new clothes. I’m sorry, what? Cut it out. Okay. That’s number one.


What I need y’all to know is that the minute that you open a business, you have unlocked a secret portal into the IRS tax code that W2 employees do not get. And I’m going to give you a very, very specific example of how I am hacking the shit out of this tax system every single day. My business reimburses me for a portion of my rent, water, electricity, gas, housekeeping, maintenance, and then some. Whose fucking job is reimbursing, you know those people that are listening to this right now that are working from home? I want to know is your boss paying for your internet? Is your boss paying a portion of your rent? Are they reimbursing you tax free? I don’t think so, but my business is doing that. So let’s get out of this bullshit narrative of like, oh my God, more money, more problems. No honey. More money, More options. That’s it.

Tori Dunlap (00:41:01):

I spent $500 at the plant store the other day because these plants are going in my home office.

Jannese Torres (00:41:05):

There ya go.

Tori Dunlap (00:41:06):

We joke at HFK that business money, anything that goes on the business credit card, isn’t real money because we get to write it off. I took my team, my core full-time team, I took them to Disneyland, VIP Disneyland for team retreat.

Jannese Torres (00:41:21):

Oh my gosh.

Tori Dunlap (00:41:22):

I don’t even want to tell you how much this costs. It was so expensive. However, it was a team bonding experience and also something personally that I have always wanted to do and it’s my own company so I decided we’re going to Disneyland on team retreat and we’re doing VIP Disneyland.

Jannese Torres (00:41:38):


Tori Dunlap (00:41:40):

And it was fantastic. We skipped all the lines. Steven, our lovely tour guy guided us through all of it and we wrote it off as a business expense.

Jannese Torres (00:41:47):

Yo. I can’t, I mean, I don’t know what to tell y’all, but I will say I made a huge mistake as a side hustler for many years, because for some reason I didn’t interpret the fact that this was actual money that I would have to pay taxes on. And so I did not pay my estimated taxes. I would get hit with huge tax bills every year and after five years of doing that, I was like, Hmm, I think I’m not doing this right. And I finally got a CPA. She told me about paying your quarterly taxes. And so now I set aside at least 15% of all of my revenue for taxes. There are ways you can optimize too.

Tori Dunlap (00:42:24):

I would even recommend 30. I would recommend even more for folks listening. We do 30 to 40. It depends on how much you’re making, but set aside money for taxes every single month before you pay anything. I did the same thing. First time I ever side hustled, I was like, oh my God, I made $30,000. That’s so much money. And then it came to be April and I was like, oh, I made 70% of 30, which is still lot of money, but that was a lot less. So set aside in a separate high yield savings account than all of your other high yield savings accounts, specifically money for your taxes.

Jannese Torres (00:43:02):

And you live in Washington state. So you’re getting taxed out the ass. This is why I moved to Florida. I’m like, you know what? There’s no state income tax here so I get a little bit of a break.

Tori Dunlap (00:43:10):

I know, I know. Many, many things I’m looking into currently about adjusting that. I would say the other thing with taxes is if you do run your own business, you are a business owner. So you are now not operating under a W2. A W2 is the tax document for a nine to five employee.


If you’re a freelancer, you’re probably doing some contracting work, you’re like a 1099. You probably do need a business license. A business license takes two seconds guys, truly takes two seconds. You just go to your state Department of Revenue website and it’s so easy. So again, a lot of people think like, oh, I need a business license. I’m like, yeah, that’ll take you two seconds and $200. And that’s a business expense you get to write off. If getting a business license, setting that up is the barriers you’re putting in front of yourself, I promise you so easy.

Jannese Torres (00:44:04):

Yeah. Absolutely. I think it’s just important to find a professional that can help you in your state, right? Because the laws are going to be different depending on where you’re incorporating. And so when all else fails call up your Secretary of State’s department, call up the Small Business Association for your state. Your taxpayer dollars are funding those departments. So use them for what they’re worth. I had a situation when I was changing my business operating location from New Jersey to Florida, I got a bunch of paperwork from the state and they’re like, you have to pay sales tax. And I’m like, wait, what? I’m not even selling actual physical stuff. So I called them up and they said, no, they just sent that to you by accident. You don’t have to collect sales tax because of your specific business model. So ask the questions. There’s no such thing as a dumb question, especially when you’re doing something as novel as starting a business.

Tori Dunlap (00:44:54):

I love it.


Okay. One last question I think before we move into some rapid fire. It is for the people out there who are like, okay, I think I’m on the precipice of quitting my job. What is the quick and dirty to-do list of things that you went through and then I’ll share mine of the things I needed to feel secure before I quit.

Jannese Torres (00:45:22):

Number one, becoming debt free. That might not be a realistic possibility for folks. Especially if you have a mortgage, if you have a lot of student loans. But for me, I knew that I could not comfortably take the leap without being debt free because I’m like, I don’t have someone I can go and rely on. I can’t have my parents go and start paying my rent. And so for me, becoming debt free, funding my emergency fund up to 12 months, because as an entrepreneur, that steady paycheck ain’t coming no more. At least for the beginning parts of things and even still to this day, I still have peaks and valleys with my income, but I’ve been able to create enough of a cash cushion that that stuff doesn’t stress me out anymore.


Another thing too, figuring out what you’re going to do for health insurance. The fact that this country is so damn ghetto that we tie health insurance benefits to employment makes it hard for a lot of folks to make that decision especially if you’re a single person, you’re not married, you can’t leverage a partner’s insurance plan. So thinking about that.

Tori Dunlap (00:46:23):

I love it. I talk about what I call the ramen noodle number. I would echo everything you just said. That was my thing. I actually still had a car loan, but it was like nothing in interest and I almost paid it off before. I quit my job in November, I was done paying it off by February. So it was quick.


Okay. Ramen noodle number. It is like your bare bones, living on ramen noodle, what is the number that you need to be making in your business in order to afford your life? Now, this ramen noodle number is twofold. Personal ramen noodle number and your business ramen noodle number. What is the bare amount of money you need to be making in order to cover your own personal, your rent, your insurance, whatever, your daycare.


Second, what is your business ramen noodle number? What do you need to be making to afford your business, your Canva subscription. Maybe you’re paying somebody else as well, hosting website fees and if you are consistently making at least as much money in both of those, that might be a sign you’re ready to go. And that’s consistent. That does assume this is not sushi number. This is your ramen noodle number.


This assumes you’re not spending a bunch of money on the fun things in life or that you’re not able to grow your business necessarily. This is more just like what is the bare amount of money that I need to make in order to afford my life and keep the lights on. And so if you haven’t done those numbers, that’s your next step as well is figuring out, okay, what am I making? What is my life expenses? Am I willing to actually, to your point earlier, cut down on some of the luxuries in my life to hit my goal sooner. If you’re not, no worries, but for a lot of people, I’m like, I don’t want to stay in this shit show for another minute. Okay, cool. Then make temporary sacrifices in order for you to live the life that you want later.

Jannese Torres (00:48:18):

Absolutely. Yeah. This is not that top shelf ramen y’all this is the college ramen.

Tori Dunlap (00:48:23):

Yeah. This is ramen noodles in the package for, I don’t know, actually with inflation, what they cost now. I was about to say 49 cents.

Jannese Torres (00:48:29):


Tori Dunlap (00:48:31):

Are they really?

Jannese Torres (00:48:32):

I don’t know. I would not be surprised.

Tori Dunlap (00:48:34):

Ugh, I remember where you could get them like two for a buck. I don’t know if that’s still a thing. Jesus.


Okay. Let’s do some rapid fire questions about a variety of different financial topics. Sound all right?

Jannese Torres (00:48:47):

I Love it. All right. Let’s start off with some investing questions because I know you love investing and it’s one of those topics that I feel like still intimidates a lot of people.


And so for someone who has just left their job and has a 401k, what’s the best plan of action to handle it after you leaving your job?

Tori Dunlap (00:49:12):

Okay, you have two options. You can roll your 401k into a new job’s 401k if you are going from one job to another job, or you can roll it into an IRA. You have these different kind of tax like asterisks, right with a 401k or an IRA. So we talk more about this on the Financial Feminist Side on a couple previous episodes, but basically you have a traditional 401k or a Roth 401k, or a traditional IRA and a Roth IRA. It gets a little dicey if you have a traditional 401k and you’re trying to roll it into a Roth IRA. It’s not impossible. It just takes a like it’s another step because you’re going to now get taxed on that money as opposed to waiting to get taxed later.


We have a free tool again on the HFK Financial Feminist side called Capitalize that’s literally free that will help you roll this over and do the whole process for you and it’s completely free, which is great.


On the other side, again, takes a couple phone calls, make it part of your money date financial self care time of like, okay, I’m going to set aside a half hour, call some people, get it rolled over. I would recommend rolling it over as soon as possible because you will forget about it and then you’ll have potentially six different 401ks just hanging out in the ether. And that’s just not worth your time trying to manage all of that.

Jannese Torres (00:50:23):

No, absolutely. That is money. You would not abandon a bank account. So you have to treat your investing accounts the exact same way and a quick hack for entrepreneurs. If you are planning to quit your job and you want to take your 401k with you into your now individual 401k that you’re going to set up as a business owner, you can absolutely do that. So
when I quit, I rolled over my corporate 401k into an individual 401k and just redistributed the money that was in there into my own investment portfolio.

Tori Dunlap (00:50:51):

Amazing. All right. Another question.


If I have low expenses, is there such a thing as contributing too much to a 401k or to a brokerage account? A brokerage account is just a general investing account that’s not for retirement.

Jannese Torres (00:51:04):

Listen, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with just throwing all of your excess money in the market. Because with every dollar that you’re investing, you’re literally buying back your time. You are literally buying your freedom by investing. And so if you do exactly what this person has asked, keep your expenses low and invest the rest. Honey, you’ll be living your best rich auntie life on yacht somewhere way sooner than most people. So do it.

Tori Dunlap (00:51:32):

Yeah. I mean, if you have high interest debt, a hundred percent pay that off first, right? If you have credit card debt, yes that is your priority. If you don’t have an emergency on that is your first priority. But beyond that, I mean, that is what I do. I don’t have debt. I keep my expenses relatively low. I make a high amount of money compared to my expenses and any money that I’m not reinvesting back into my business that becomes mine gets immediately put into my tax advantage retirement accounts, my IRA, my 401k, I do everything I can to max those out. And then if I max those out, I move to a brokerage. Brokerage has no restrictions. You can throw millions of dollars a year into a brokerage account if you have it and want to. So yeah, I think if you’ve got it and you don’t have any other goals that you’re saving for? 100%, just go crazy.

Jannese Torres (00:52:20):

So what would you say to women who feel like they’re never going to reach their first $100K?

Tori Dunlap (00:52:28):

Her First $100K, the very name is meant to be flexible. The $100K could be very similar to mine where it was $100K saved slash invested. The $100K could be $100K net worth, which is typically a lot easier for people to get to. Could be a $100K debt paid off, could be $100K earned in your business. The $100K can be whatever you want it to be. And the reason, besides my own story, why we named it Her First $100K is because there’s the joke that the $100K is the hardest. You start seeing incredible compounding returns in something like an investing account when you have that first $100K.

Jannese Torres (00:53:05):

It’s so true.

Tori Dunlap (00:53:06):

That’s when you start not having to muscle your way through it and it’s like somebody grabbing the weight that you’re lifting and pulling it up a little bit for you. And so I think if you are in that point where you’re like, oh gosh, this sucks. I’m paying off debt, but I don’t feel like it’s moving the needle and I’m trying to invest, but it seems scary and the stock market’s like shit right now. I totally get it. The thing is to create small habits that will build over time. Again, if it’s $20 a month, that is better than nothing. $20 a month set aside in something like a Roth IRA or a 401k or a high yield savings account is better than you being like, well, this is never going to happen. So I’m just going to say, fuck it and not try. That’s not the solution.


And continue to allow yourself grace, give yourself grace and kindness. Just like learning anything else, it takes time. Again, I was doing a shit example of learning how to ice skate before. I’m not getting out of there and immediately looking like Kristi Yamaguchi right? If I’m learning something new, it’s going to take months, if not years, to get good at this thing. And it’s going to take some time, it a hundred percent is, and it’s going to take a lot of grace for yourself, but we’re looking for progress over perfection.

Jannese Torres (00:54:21):

I love that.

Tori Dunlap (00:54:22):

Okay. One of our last questions from our community.


Any self sabotaging message that you have had to overcome in your journey with money?

Jannese Torres (00:54:31):

Yeah. I definitely want to hear your answer on this too, because I feel like the mindset work that is required to master money, master entrepreneurship, just master life. I mean, it’s an ongoing journey for me. I don’t thin
k I realized how much I was going to confront about my own limiting beliefs in this journey into entrepreneurship. Just things like comparison, things like imposter syndrome, things like just questioning your intelligence. You’ll confront all of that in more and for me, I think the biggest roadblock has been the comparison trap of just letting the Instagram reel highlights be how I measure up my own success.


And I think it’s important sometimes, we need to put blinders on. I think it’s important for you to maintain perspective that when you follow people, especially on social media, you are following their highlights. You’re not seeing the hardship. You’re not seeing the crying, the tears, the fear, the holy shit, what the fuck am I doing? Oh my God, I have to call my therapist because this feels ugly. And we all have those moments.


And so I think it’s important when you feel that imposter syndrome, the comparison, you might be paying attention to what everybody’s doing too much and not focusing enough on yourself. So I like to practice journaling because what I feel happens to a lot of us is we get caught in the daily minutiae of life and it can just feel like you’re on a treadmill that’s like going nowhere. But when you actually write shit down and you go back and look and be like, holy shit, we did all of that? OK, girl, I see you. So you need to really build those visual reminders in to remind yourself of how far that you’ve come and I think that is a really powerful place to be.


How about you Tori?

Tori Dunlap (00:56:29):

I’m a huge journaler. So yeah, couldn’t agree more. I have two.


The first I’ve talked about of I kind of was weirdly resisting the thing I really wanted because it meant I actually had to do it. And I love my parents. Very supportive, very well intentioned. But when I called them with this whole debacle of what was going on at my corporate job, they were like, well, you can’t leave. You need your health insurance. You need your consistent paycheck. They literally told me, quote, “You need to do anything you need to do in order to keep your job.”


And I not only made the decision that was risky and that I felt was risky, but also kind of directly defied my parents. And of course I was in my twenties. I was allowed to make decisions for myself, but it’s always a little scary, especially if you’re close to your family to make a decision that someone close to you is counseling you not to make. Now of course, now I joke and I call them and I’m like, remember you told me to keep my job when I was going to quit. And now I’m doing great. But I think that that’s one thing is really, like we were saying before, is understanding what you want, what you’re capable of and taking counsel when you want to take counsel, but also trusting that you know best.


I would say my second thing, this was especially when I was getting started, you were talking about the kind of highlight reel of social media. I had a similar thing, but in a different way. I was looking at people’s businesses and I was so impatient because I looked at somebody’s business and I was like, I can do that. I know I’m capable of doing that. Why am I not getting traction? The perfect example, she is now a colleague of mine, which was crazy. I looked at Jenna Kutcher’s business, especially back in like 2015, 2016 and I was like, I want that. I know I can do that. I know I can host a podcast. I know I can have hundreds of thousands of followers, if not million. I know I can do that. Why is it not happening? And I got so impatient, but the thing about overnight successes, I put that in quotes, the thing about an overnight success is you discovered them last night. So they feel like overnight successes because you’ve been there for a night.


Jenna Kutcher had been at that for years before I discovered her and people seeing maybe my business now and going, oh, I want that. I’ve been at this for years and so I got so impatient because I knew what I was capable of. I knew I was capable of that. I knew I wanted that. I knew I could get there. And I was impatient that it wasn’t happening right fucking now. And the whole thing is that if I had that business, if I had the business I wanted four years ago, I wouldn’t have been able to handle it because it would’ve grown way too fast. I wouldn’t have had the skills as an entrepreneur to be able to manage it. I wouldn’t have known what I was doing because I didn’t have those years of slowly climbing stairs. And even now, sometimes I look at somebody else’s business and I’m like, I know I’m I capable of that.


But now I have the mindset and I have the perspective where I go, okay, I’m capable of that. Maybe that’s not for another two years. All right, cool. That’s what I’m building for in another two years or another five years or another 10 years. So I think I was so ambitious and that ambition weirdly was something that was toxic to me because I wasn’t willing to be patient and understand, oh, they got to that place because they’ve been climbing for so many years. They are where I am now, but five years ago.

Jannese Torres (01:00:04):


Tori Dunlap (01:00:04):

So I think if you are starting a business, starting to grow something and you are ambitious as fuck, I love it. You have to use that ambition as a tool rather than something that is going to actually cripple you rather than something that’s actually going to bite you in the because ass you’re trying to do too much too soon.

Jannese Torres (01:00:25):

That is a gem y’all for real. Tori, this has been an amazing conversation. I know that folks are going to pluck out so many gems from this convo.


First off, congratulations on your forthcoming book, “Financial Feminist.” I’m so excited and I’m definitely following you and your journey as now a soon-to-be published author because I’m starting off that journey now. I’m so scared.

Tori Dunlap (01:00:50):

I have a laundry list of things to tell you. So many things I wish I would’ve learned. And actually maybe we’ll do it like a joint episode, if people are curious about getting book deals, about writing a book, maybe we’ll come back and that would be fun.

Jannese Torres (01:01:02):

You know what? That sounds like a brilliant idea. And I want folks, if they are encountering you on the Yo Quiero Dinero podcast, where can they find out more about you and follow your journey?

Tori Dunlap (01:01:12):

Sure. So I am @HerFirst100K on all the socials, H-E-R-F-I-R-S-T-1-0-0-K. I also host the Financial Feminist podcast. Like you so lovingly plugged, we also have a book that is available for pre-order now called “Financial Feminist, Overcome The Patriarchy’s Bullshit To Master Your Money and Build a Life You Love.” That’s the first time I’ve said my subtitle on the book without having to look it up.


It’s the first time I’ve done it. I’m sure I’ll say it many more times in the coming months, but I’m like, yes, I got it. And if you were a Financial Feminist listener, please tell folks where they can find you.

Jannese Torres (01:01:46):

Absolutely. So you can find me everywhere at Yo Quiero Dinero podcast. You can find me at yoquierodinero.com And if you just want to learn money in an unpretentious way that really addresses systemic inequalities. I mean, we both do that. So pick your flavor. I think the more the merrier. We need so many more voices in this space and I’m a firm believer that we will accomplish so much more together as community than we will trying to compete with each other. So I just want to thank you, Tori, for the work that you do to empower us to be badasses with our dinero because I mean, we really are unstoppable and we have to have the tools to make that a reality. So thanks for what you do.

Tori Dunlap (01:02:31):

Thank you for what you do. I’m so excited. Thank you.


Thank you again to Jannese for joining us for this episode. Please make sure to give her a follow over on her podcast Yo Quiero Dinero and check out all of her socials as well under the same name. We’ve linked all of that in our show notes.


September 15th to October 15th is Hispanic Heritage Month. And one of the best ways we can support heritage months like this is not just limiting them to certain months or days throughout the year, but to prioritize spending money with minority owned businesses all year long and supporting those creators all year long. So please head over and support her work and her work specifically in the Hispanic community. Thank you as always for your support of the show. Thank you for being here and we will catch you next week.


Thank you for listening to Financial Feminist, a Her First $100K podcast.


Financial Feminist is hosted by me, Tori Dunlap.


Produced by Kristen Fields.


Marketing and administration by Karina Patel, Olivia Coning, Cherise Wade, Alena Helzer, Paulina Isaac, Sophia Cohen, Valerie Oresko, Jack Coning and Ana Alexandra.


Research by Ariel Johnson.


Audio engineering by Austin Fields.


Promotional graphics by Mary Stratton.


Photography by Sarah Wolfe and theme music by Jonah Cohen Sound.


A huge thanks to the entire Her First $100K team and community for supporting the show. For more information about Financial Feminist, Her First $100K, our guests, episode show notes and our upcoming book also titled “Financial Feminist” visit herfirst100k.com.


Tori Dunlap

Tori Dunlap is an internationally-recognized money and career expert. After saving $100,000 at age 25, Tori quit her corporate job in marketing and founded Her First $100K to fight financial inequality by giving women actionable resources to better their money. She has helped over one million women negotiate salary, pay off debt, build savings, and invest.

Tori’s work has been featured on Good Morning America, the New York Times, BBC, TIME, PEOPLE, CNN, New York Magazine, Forbes, CNBC, BuzzFeed, and more.

With a dedicated following of almost 250,000 on Instagram and more than 1.6 million on TikTok —and multiple instances of her story going viral—Tori’s unique take on financial advice has made her the go-to voice for ambitious millennial women. CNBC called Tori “the voice of financial confidence for women.”

An honors graduate of the University of Portland, Tori currently lives in Seattle, where she enjoys eating fried chicken, going to barre classes, and attempting to naturally work John Mulaney bits into conversation.

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