Financial Freedom Workshop

Racing heart


                Choking fear

                        Head in a vise


                                     Gut clenching

                                              Blinding panic




These are a few of the words used by different people to describe their feelings around money. You may be surprised to know that these were feelings described by people who had a lot of money as well as those who had very little.  We have found the feelings to be almost universal and String of Pearls has a passion to see that change.

Fear Quote

String of Pearls is committed to seeing individuals obtain and live in freedom spiritually, emotionally, physically, and financially.  Often though, while we have seen many come to freedom in their physical, emotional, and spiritual health, finances are an area where many still struggle.  There are thousands of books on how to manage money and many people have read them and aren’t able to follow through.  They now know what to do with their money and the shame deepens as they make another poor investment or go back into debt…again.  What is the missing link?

We at String of Pearls believe that much of the missing link is simply coming into the light.  Shining it on your shame and fear and watching them disappear.  What would you give to have peace around your money situation regardless of the circumstances and get rid of the blocks that keep you from having more of it?

Emotional Freedom

String of Pearls is pleased to announce our Financial Freedom workshop  scheduled for April 11 and 12, 2014. 

In this workshop you will learn to…

  • Identify faulty beliefs around money and erase their power over you
  • Identify blocks to hearing directly from God and remove them
  • Learn how to give without guilt
  • Obtain boundaries so you are not ever manipulated into giving when it doesn’t feel right
  • Identify your purpose and pick investments in line with God’s calling on your life
  • Set a Biblical foundation for beliefs about money (that is guaranteed to surprise you.)
  • Address and clear shame in regard to finances
  • Practice listening to God
  • Leave the workshop with peace
  • If you wish, leave the workshop with coaching in place to solidify learning and implement new tools.

Noelle Upper Body - Smile

For many years our presenter, Noelle Schwantes, would have used the same terms from the top of the page to describe her relationship with money.  The road to financial freedom is one she’s particularly passionate about because for years fears about money defined her every waking moment.  These fears and the shame about poor money habits defined all her decisions and drove her further into poor habits to cope with the negative feelings.

At one of the worst times in her life she cried out to God.  She was separated from her first husband.  She shared a cramped and dingy basement apartment and was working as a server at a restaurant because she couldn’t emotionally handle the job her degree had trained her for.  She was broke and driving an unsafe car and became hysterical when unplanned expenses came up.  She describes waking up at night with what felt like a python curling in her belly.  In a word, she was desperate.  She prayed that God would teach her financial surrender or that he would allow her to die.

2012-12-21 19.16.03

He didn’t allow her to die (Something you may have deduced since she’s the presenter for the workshop!) and she no longer has a snake in her belly!  Instead, God taught her a series of amazing lessons that have led to freedom from compulsive spending, preparation for habits that lead to wealth, peace around finances REGARDLESS of what her bank balance looks like, and a conviction on knowing that there is work to be done and God is looking for people to financially bless. She is thrilled to get this chance to share the amazing lessons God has taught her and looks forward to see freedom spreading!

Date: April 11, 4-8pm and April 12, 9-6pm

Cost: $25.00 Non-Refundable Fee to Reserve Your Space.

Location: Embassy Suites Chattanooga — Hamilton Place

Address: 2321 Lifestyle Way, Chattanooga, TN 37421

Directions: Click here

So you have decided you’d really like to do this workshop but feel some frustration because it seems like everyone who would like to teach you how to deal with money wants you to pay them thousands of dollars to do it.  This workshop is different.  There are limited spots as this is an experiential workshop so the $25.00 will cover materials and make sure we attract individuals who are serious about this area of freedom.

At the end of the workshop, there will be an exercise that will allow you to pay a workshop fee based on what you feel you got out of it in combination with what you feel God is speaking to your heart.  We are excited about this payment plan because it means that we are accountable for delivering excellence and you are able to practice skills you’ve learned in a tangible and powerful way.

If you have ever felt fear or shame around finances.  If you feel trapped because of your financial situation.  If you long for things to be different.  If you feel called to do something but face financial obstacles, this workshop is for you.  Reserving your seat now could change your life.  We look forward to seeing you there.


Freedom to Wait



African American Model 2

Noelle Schwantes, LPC-MHSP, NCC

I’m very excited about today’s post because the topic was suggested by one of our readers!  It also happens to be a topic that is very dear to my heart (while at times I hate it) because I have spent a good deal of my life doing it.  Today’s post, however, is about asking for information from our readers prior to writing the final post.

The topic was brought up in the context of waiting for a life mate.  I waited a good bit for my spouse (and he was worth the wait) but in the midst of the wait I grew tired of people’s pithy responses to my pain.  With that in mind I am very prayerful and interested in knowing what the struggles and questions are for those of you who are currently in a waiting period.

How can we support you best with this post on an often painful topic?  For those of you who prefer to ask your questions in private, please email me at and for others who wouldn’t mind some dialogue, please post your questions in the comments box below. I will plan on addressing this topic next week.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Freedom: Faith Not Sight


Noelle Schwantes, LPC-MHSP, NCC

I’ve been thinking about faith a lot lately.  Maybe because it is being required of me in larger doses than ever before.

Several months before Joseph was born Marcel was told he would be laid off of his lucrative corporate job.  When Marcel prayed he felt impressed that his job would last through May even though he was told it would only last through February.  His final day at work was approximately a week before Joseph made his appearance…in May.  He left being able to cash out his vacation, we had insurance until the end of the month, and he received a severance.  It was a slice of humble pie for my very accomplished husband who now began to seek God pretty diligently to understand how to care for us.

A few months later he got a call from a former colleague that the employees had all been let go with no notice, no severance, no nothing…the company had folded.  It was a rather dramatic example of how we were cared for even when it didn’t feel that way.  We’ve been pretty quiet about it, only sharing the details with close friends and family.  But recently, as I’ve studied the impact faith had on Jesus when he walked this planet, I thought about stretching my faith by writing about the gory details we’ve walked through, before we see the miracles.

I don’t want to just survive this time and I don’t want to feel sheepish that I didn’t trust when we’ve come through this time and seen the amazing ways God provided.

So with the support of my sweet husband, I will be writing the next few posts about the snippets of our lives in this challenging time. We pray and trust that when amazing things happen, it will be clear that there is a God who watches over us and organizes details we never could have imagined.  And we hope that our journey will impact yours as well.  Rest well friends.

Contest Update

Hello Everyone.  I want to take a minute to formally thank all of you who supported us in the Futuristic Marketing Contest.  I also want to give you a brief update on what happened.  Some of it I find myself a little (or a lot) embarrassed to admit, but one of the things we believe in very strongly is authenticity and we figure our blog community will feel better about their growing experiences if we honor our own.

The day I recorded the video started out very well.  I was grounded and centered.  I knew I tend to look awkward on camera because I generally feel pretty stupid talking to an inanimate object in a room by myself.  So I took a hint from Creflo Dollar who began his ministry by preaching to an empty room when nobody showed up for his first meeting.  He said he decided he was going to “preach to the angels.”  So I asked if God would fill the room with angels for me to talk to.  It worked.  When I looked at the video I felt as if it looked like I was really talking to someone. :)

With a few technical difficulties I was able to download the footage to my computer and begin editing it.  I was still calm and in good spirits.  Then I uploaded it to YouTube and began to email, blog, and call friends to let them know that if they’d leave a comment we could win an iPad.  After that I began to turn into a raving lunatic.  I was obsessive, frantic, anxious, and preoccupied.  I hated it and remembered why I don’t like to play games. This went on late into the night on Thursday.

I used to be a workaholic.  In all honesty I still struggle with the concept of “play.”  My dad used to say I came out of the womb 30 years old.  Most of the memories through my early adulthood have a tinge of anxiety, stress, and tension.  I was driven and I was a perfectionist.  It was a set-up for depression and fear.Contest

After uploading the video, I began to feel like I did before God got his hands on me.  I have a highly intuitive friend who told me the day after the contest that she sensed desperation and chaos in my communications.  For example, I sent out group texts (which I have never done before) and there were a few horrified text messages from people who didn’t remember who I am.  One girl had no idea who I was even after I explained and asked me to delete her number.  Not great for the ego.  I believe it was the first time someone saw me as a stalker…well maybe Stephen Thurmond in the 7th grade…but we’re not going to talk about that!

The morning after posting the video I was in tears and God and I had some words.  I asked him why he had led me to make the video when I was going to make a fool of myself with stalker text messages and well, turn into a lunatic.  I told him I knew he was asking me to start doing videos regularly but that I could not do them the way I had done the first one. What Anne Lamott calls, “bad mind” kicked in and I would not have spoken aloud the things I was saying to myself.  I didn’t feel like I heard directly from God, but I felt better after a good cry. (As a little bonus, research is showing that there are actually toxins in our tears.  When your grandmother told you tears were cleansing she wasn’t lying.)  I talked to a friend and prayed with her and went about what turned out to be a delightful day.

When I got home I had an email from Jonathan Budd announcing the next training video and you guessed it, another contest.  I laughed and thought “*&^%&  NO!”  I did however watch the training video and at the end against all my determination, the contest intrigued me.  The question asked, what would you do with an extra 2 hours on non work-related time each day?  I sat and thought about what I would do and began to envision funny scenes to demonstrate it.  I noticed that inside I felt…playful.

We did not win the first video contest and I am disappointed mostly because it would have delighted me to give the iPad to one of you who supported us with comments.  I am grateful for the lessons learned and consider it an invaluable experience.

I do, however, feel peace about getting “back on the horse” immediately and have decided with a little prodding from God, that I am going to film a video for the second round of the contest.  I am going to have fun, stay grounded, notify people but not badger them, and see what happens.  You can look for the new video tomorrow night if all goes as planned.  Thanks again everyone for your support and acceptance.

So what about you?  What would you do with an extra 2 hours of non work-related time in your day? Leave us a comment to share and look for the video tomorrow to see my answer!


A Big Hairy Deal! (Free Webinar)

Recently I have spent a great deal of time thinking about our blog and the growing amount of services we are offering.  It is a time of expansion and fun, and yes, a bit of anxiety.  The blog has evolved a great deal from when it started.  Initially it was something I felt called to do and so I would write what was on my heart each week.  Later, we learned about sweet spots and marketing, etc. so we are growing to meet more of the need we have discovered.

In order to do that we recently hired Mirania to help transfer the blog to a more sophisticated platform, we hired Emily Hammond to do our business cards and design products, we hired Amy Vitrano to do a welcome video, (You should see the results of that on the blog in a few weeks!), and this week, tomorrow night in fact, we will launch our first webinar.

All in all, this webinar is the culmination of a years worth of preparation.  It is a big hairy deal to us!  Of course, if you are not a woman entrepreneur it will likely not be a big hairy deal to you, but the bottom line is that WE ARE VERY EXCITED!

The purpose of our blog is two-fold.  Our primary purpose is to support women entrepreneurs.  Those that are just starting or those who are just considering it.  We offer posts that cover practical training opportunities, help remove emotional blocks, and connect you to the core of who you are.  This is a free service because it is a mission and a calling that beats powerfully in our hearts.  We have also recently offered bi-weekly conference calls to support that aspect of our mission. (See the side of the blog for details on the calls)

The secondary purpose of the blog is to offer a business vehicle for women who are ready to step into their identities as entrepreneurs.  But we didn’t want to just offer a business vehicle.  We wanted to offer the vehicle AND the infrastructure and support to make sure women have what they need to be successful.  I was not a wealthy individual.  At times in my life I survived on approximately $7000-8000.00 a year.  It was a super exciting week when I could afford a pizza.  I KNOW what it’s like to have the anxiety about having enough money feel like it is choking you to death.  To have it wake you up at night.

That is not my life anymore and I want to share how I did it with others. Because of being so well acquainted with that anxiety, our team has taken it slowly and carefully with a TON of prayer.  For a year, we have been quietly but steadily putting the pieces into place.  You see, we didn’t want to make an offer that was anything less than fantastic.  We wanted to make sure we were ready as a team to fully follow through on what our team needs to be successful.

So maybe now you are catching a glimpse of why this is such a big hairy deal!  Our hearts have been engaged for a year, behind the scenes, preparing for you.  And tomorrow we are ready to unveil this program!!  The webinar is free and will occur at 8pm EST on Wednesday, June 13.  Here are the details you’ll need to know.

Instructions for the webinar:

  1. Go to at 8pm EST on Wednesday, June 13.
  1. Call 559-546-1200 for audio
  1. When you get to the website, go to the box on the right that says, “Join a Meeting”
  1. Enter your meeting ID#, 115-608-614

We are so grateful to those of you who have faithfully followed our blog and we are excited to offer this initial launch as a thank you and support of your dreams.  Our goal is to continue growing into the services you need most.  We will look forward to seeing you on the webinar…who knows, tomorrow could change your life!

Comments Returned!!

As promised I have begun to be more consistent about responding to comments!  As of now, anyone who has ever left a comment on our blog has got a response waiting so please feel free to go back through posts.  Also, if you sign up as a subscriber, the site will automatically notify you if comments are posted.  Yeah for community!!  Looking forward to future discussions!!

Things to Come

Since I didn’t post last week, I wanted to double up this week and let you know that Kathy, Gale, and I have been cooking some things up recently.  Be on the lookout for the String of Pearls team to be bringing added value and extra posts in the near future.  I am very excited that you will be hearing from Gale and Kathy soon too!!