Meet & Love: Shannon McLay
Founder & CEO of The Financial Gym


Shannon McLay is the mind behind The Financial Gym– financial expert who has created a space for women to take control of their finances. Shannon quit her job to pursue something more meaningful, but she knew that meant she needed to be better with her own money. We got a little more up close and personal with Shannon who you can meet on Monday, August 13!
Join us at our upcoming Love Squad Workshop where we’ll connect with the trainers, get financially naked, and grab our finances by the horns. Sign up here. The Financial experts, deemed Financial Trainers are all women, here to whip you into [financial] shape.



“Money is very emotional. At the surface it seems simple, after all, it’s just a game of numbers, but it’s so much more to that.”



LS: Have you always been good with money? And how did you get so good with managing it?

SM: I actually was the worst type of financial person, I thought I was good with money because I paid off my credit card bills every month, but I was actually bad at it. I wasn’t mindful of my spending and my answer to every financial situation was just “I’ll make more money.”  That solution works until it doesn’t work anymore and for me it was because I didn’t want the high powered banking job any longer. I wanted to pursue my passion of helping people with their finances and in order to make it work, I had to get good with my money, and I did.

LS: What was one of the biggest lessons you’ve learned when It comes to money?

SM: Money is very emotional. At the surface it seems simple, after all, it’s just a game of numbers, but it’s so much more to that. Every financial decision we make from going to Duane Reade, to taking a spin class to ordering Seamless all have emotions tied to them. Unfortunately, emotional decisions aren’t always the most financially astute and it requires a mindset shift to overcome them and be successful at managing your money.

LS: How did you decide to start The Financial Gym?

SM: I decided to start the gym while I was working as a financial advisor at Merrill Lynch. I saw a huge need to help people build wealth and manage debt that wasn’t product driven and that didn’t require you to already have money. I think financial planning should be available for everyone no matter what your bank accounts look like.

LS: As a financial expert, do you have slip ups of your own? How do you stay on track?

SM: I have slip ups all the time. Those are to be expected. I handle them now, though, by planning for them. I have a “splurge” savings account and an “oh sh&t” savings account that cover my financial butt when I have those slip ups.

LS: What do you hope for other women and their money?

SM: The two words we hear women say around their money situation all the time are “fear and shame.”  Those are highly charged and negative emotions to have around money which is our life blood. I want to see women drop the fear and shame and use words like “empowered and abundant.”  It’s my mission in life to see this become a reality for as many woman as possible.

Founder and CEO: Shannon graduated cum laude with a degree in Business from Wake Forest University in 2000 and has since worked in financial services for the last 17 years. Her experience is in Institutional Sales, Retail Sales, Hedge Fund Sales and management. She is the author of ‘Train Your Way To Financial Fitness’ and her own blog Financially Blonde as well as a contributor to AOL, LifeHacker, Huffington Post, US News & World Reports, Budgets Are Sexy, Frugal Rules and others. Shannon hosts the award winning Business and Investing Podcast – Martinis and Your Money – Living a Better Life One Cocktail At a Time and is dedicated to helping people achieve financial freedom, which is how the Financial Gym came to be.