Those who stand up stand out.” This was one of the messages conveyed during First Citizens Investment Services 4th annual women’s financial well-being seminar held at the Bay Gardens Hotel. The event was held under the theme ‘Secrets of a Six Figure Woman’ and it more than lived up to its promise of divulging tips on navigating the road to financial freedom.
After welcome remarks by newly appointed administrative and marketing officer Nicole McDonald, the program got off to a rousing start with a powerful delivery from Sharon Christopher. Christopher, who is First Citizens Deputy Chief Executive Officer, outlined six strategies for success, which included standing up, knowing when to sit down, the myth of perfection, singing our praises, sending blessings, and staying strong. She emphasized that while money is a driving force, it is not necessarily the key to personal development.
“I am really talking to you about success and what I consider important for success but you need to understand that success may mean different things to different people. Now, because of course this is a seminar put on by the financial services sector, we talk about success and we have dollar signs and so on. But success is not just about making money. The truth is however, if you have no money and you’re struggling to survive then you will find it very difficult to be successful in that space. So there is some correlation between being at least financially able and successful,” Christopher explained.
Legal Eagle Natalie G. Augustin provided valuable insight on the legal aspects of establishing and protecting your legacy, focusing specifically on the importance of drawing up a will.
“This is an instrument that we all shy away from but it has tremendous powers and a tremendous effect on marking out what you have actually done with your life and how you wish for your accomplishments to be recognized, shared, distributed, or whatever it might be,” Augustin noted.
First Citizens regional manager Carole Eleuthere Jn Marie provided the nitty gritty details on how women can improve their financial standing and stressed that it is never too late to turn a dire fiscal situation around. “The secret of getting ahead is getting started and the secret to getting started is breaking your complex, overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks and then starting on the first one. So those of us who have not made that critical move to get started, I keep saying there is no better time to start but now,” Eleuthere Jn Marie encouraged.
Participants who were in danger of dosing off after a sumptuous lunch were quickly given a boost of energy in the form of well-known fitness vixen Velda Samuel, proprietress of Vel’s Gym. Displaying her tight and toned abs, Samuel had the ladies on their feet as she led an abbreviated version of a cardio class and gave pointers on using exercise as a confidence builder.
Now that the body had been taken care of, it was time to nurture the mind courtesy of life coach Angie Montoute, who had graciously stepped in for original speaker Rumelia Dalphinis-King. Montoute explored finding balance in our personal and professional lives, but was most emphatic about women knowing and appreciating their self worth. Her message was simple:
“Very often as women we don’t recognize the actual power that we have.”
The final presenter was Dr. Marie Grandison Didier. The venerable dermatologist and sexual health activist implored participants to manage their heath in order to then manage their wealth. Didier further explained that there is more to health than the physical aspect.
“The definition of health is a state of physical, mental, and social well-being and not simply the absence of an illness. So many of us, we’re not ill, but we are very unwell. We are either physically or mentally unwell, or in the social sphere in which we operate we are unwell because something dysfunctional is happening there.”
In a lighthearted segment, First Citizens staff showcased their catwalk skills as they modeled professional and casual wear supplied by Scotts Underground. Participants were also treated to a 30 percent discount off Neutrogena products onsite thanks to Renwick and Company. Other sponsors included Helen Television Systems, Ti Mamai, and The Wave.
The session closed with an interactive open forum where dialogue was encouraged and lingering issues clarified. Judging by the positive reviews from several attendees, the seminar was a resounding success!