Visualise the role of money in your life. Does money help you achieve your life’s vision, or does it prevent you from living your dream life?
Money often reflects the relationship you have with yourself, and mirrors your mindset, your ethos about life.
We don’t only use money for financial purposes – we express ourselves through money; we use money to communicate. Money can make statements and carry messages. Money says, represents and does anything you want it to: it mirrors your desires, your fears, your measure of success, and your idea of happiness. We chase money, some spurn money – whatever you use money to say about you, it reflects your unspoken self.
How we see money can be a deterrent to achieving our goals; it can make us feel debilitated, vulnerable and insignificant, and, we react to these emotions in different ways. Some disregard the importance of money, and others expend all their energy obtaining it … or spending it! I have met people with hefty bank balances who still feel ‘poor”. Some people enjoy the power and status that money brings and share their wealth abundantly, while others hoard, continuously afraid that the money will run out.
Money, in its rightful place, should enable you to live the life you really want to have. The more attention you pay to your money, the more money will serve you! It’s about how you think and feel about money.
We have imbued money with many meanings: power, success, control, wealth, happiness, sadness, failure; and the list goes on. My father used money as a means of control and power. My mom was powerless, having to justify how, when and why, she spent money.
Do you allow money to dictate who you are, what you’re capable of achieving, and how successfully you are living your life?
The truth is, that money has no other meaning. Money is just that – money.
Money does not prove that you are powerful or successful. Money does not guarantee happiness or health. And money certainly is not a measure of your self-worth.
The purpose is to see money as a currency that we use to enable our lives. Once you put money in its rightful place, as an enabler, you can allocate your money to achieve your goals. In this way, you become the master of your money, telling it what you want it to do for you, instead of the other way around.
The first step to putting money in its rightful place in your life, is to understand your relationship with money, and how it impacts what you do, or don’t do, with your money.
To understand where your thinking, feelings and behaviour around money comes from, think back to your first impactful money memory. Our relationship with money starts when we are young, and the money messages we hear from our parents shape our money story. By the time we reach adulthood, our money story is so ingrained in our belief system that it functions on autopilot.
Once you understand how your relationship with money was formed, it’s important that you take ownership of it, and understand how it has impacted your money habits.
Your money habits are about how you think and feel about money, and what you do with money.
Do you feel worthy of money? Do you fear not having enough, or losing it all? Do you believe you are capable of earning? What do you use your money for? How do you spend it? Do you stick to your budget? Do you use money as a reward? To create opportunity?
Does money enable the life you want to live?
Assess your money habits. Decide what works for you and what no longer serves you.
Knowing something is not enough to drive a behavioural change. Knowing which habits don’t serve you, and changing them, takes effort.
I firmly believe in having a clear plan for your life, with specific goals and actions of how you are going to achieve your vision. Knowing what you want to achieve with your money is a great motivator to adapt and change your money habits to make it happen.
If you are able to put money in the right place, with you it’s master, and money your servant, it can enable your dreams, making it possible for you to live your best life possible.