I use mindful practices rooted in Chan/Zen to help clients reinvent a healthier relationship with finances.
I've had an accounting practice for 18 years, which has provided me with a clear understanding of how people manage their finances. I’ve listened to my clients reveal their underlying fears about their businesses and the financial difficulties they've encountered. I’ve learned the importance of focusing on the individual as a whole rather than just managing their books.
I’ve also been actively meditating daily for the past 16 years. Five of those years, I practiced and volunteered regularly at Dharma Drum Retreat Center, a Buddhist Chan Center founded by Chan Master Sheng Yen (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sheng-yen) . Through attending numerous intensive, silent retreats led by Master Sheng Yen's lineage successors or monastic teachers, I learned the art of deep listening. In doing so, I am able to allow clients to discover for themselves how they have contributed to their circumstances and how to correct their reactions and responses to help themselves.
Additionally, I attended a weekend workshop dedicated to learning how to assist in facilitating retreats. This training was further enhanced by continuously attending retreats including a 21 day, silent retreat in Europe. During my volunteering, I was assigned the mediation hall frequently which facilitated in broadening my understanding of mediation from the perspective of an observer.
My experience continues to grow as I provide workshops, classes, or volunteer at other centers co-facilitating Chan/Zen retreats.
I have a bachelor's degree in accounting and master's degree in rehabilitation counseling.
My year-long internship was in East Harlem, Manhattan. The center provided programs for poor African or Latina women on parole or as an alternative to incarceration. Many had a history of substance use, mental health, sexual or physical abuse, and limited education and work experience. The center focused on reuniting them with their families and rebuilding their lives.
I was a vocational intern and my responsibilities included vocational counseling and facilitating vocational groups including career building, mindfulness and meditation, and financial literacy.
I’m currently employed as a vocational counselor at an outpatient treatment facility which provides individual, group and family treatment for those struggling with a substance use disorder.
I’ve combined my life experiences with money, work, and meditation practice to bring you Wise Finances (https://slgwdk.com/wise-finances/)
When you are ready to seek help financially, Silvia is for sure the right woman to email, text or call! In our first session I already know she is an excellent financial advisor because she is using her accounting and counseling background. I learned that many of my emotions are driving forces for my spending or savings. Silvia was very knowledgeable and professional because she informed me on the many skills to address fixing my credit, starting a budget all by visually showing me how and where to start. Silvia is a wealth of information and understood where I was coming from financially. As a single parent, I'm overwhelmed and come from a place of deprivation. I now see how even if I set aside a few dollars for fun, that is okay too! . I am excited to sign up for more classes and have a clearer sense of what I am doing with money and Silvia was the right person for me. She was thorough and realistic . Thank you Silvia!
Attended: Wise Finances (Virtual 6-Week Workshop)
This was a truly transformative workshop series for me! I can not recommend it highly enough.
I went from having fear and anxiety about my financials to being able to approach my finances with confidence. Silvia brings a very "wise" perspective to this workshop with an integrated approach of mindfulness and financial knowledge. This was the game-changer for me because while it is easy to find financial information online, it doesn't matter if you don't cultivate the practices and habits to be able to integrate that financial information into your life.
Silvia is an amazingly skilled practitioner, mentor, and facilitator. She is not judgemental and very approachable, which was key for me to be able to open up about my financial situation. Thanks to her, I am sure that this workshop series will have a long-lasting impact on how I manage money in my life.