In this modern age it is easy to feel we don’t have enough money to buy ‘all of the things’. We’re bombarded with a constant stream of advertising telling us which material possessions are essential for our comfort, wellbeing and convenience. We buy things hoping to fill the sense of emptiness, but ironically there will always be something else we don’t have, so the feeling never goes away.
If you harbour negative emotions toward money you’re not alone. So many of us grew up being told ‘money doesn't grow on trees’ or that ‘you have to work hard to earn a living’. You may have inherited your parents’ money story and perhaps even passed on this mindset to your own children. Did you know a negative attitude toward money could actually be limiting its flow into your life? The good news is it’s not too late to rewrite your money story and in turn shift your mindset to attract more abundance.
Assess your relationship with money
Your relationship with money will help you to determine your own money story.
Ask yourself the following questions:
- What feelings and emotions do I conjure up when thinking about money?
- How does money make me feel?
- How do I feel about money?
- Do I love money? Or does the mere thought of it trigger me and make me feel like I missed out.
These deep dive questions might help you discover your personal thoughts and feelings relating to money.
Let go of an unhealthy money mindset
We are often drawn to spending money in a bid to find happiness, increase our self-worth or confidence. But the truth is, buying stuff will never truly make us happier. We can only find true happiness within, not from external sources. Money is not the source of our unhappiness, but it’s easy to see why it often gets the blame.
Issues around money begin to surface when we attach our value, security and power to how much or how little we have. We can’t attract money or opportunities into our lives if we don’t believe we deserve it. For some of us, having lots of money is associated with greed, so we subconsciously block ourselves from having much money.
Looking at our values around money can bring up some tough emotions as these are often based on conditioning from our childhood. Working through deep held beliefs can help to free us of emotional ties to a negative money story. Once we unhook from this narrative, we can begin to rewrite our money story.
Write a love letter to money
What if you simply needed to fall in love with money to bring it forward into your life? Instead of feeling threatened, triggered or ignored by money, what if it met your every need and gifted you the resources needed to live your best life?
So how do you fall in love with money? Try writing it a love letter…
Peta Kelly, author of ‘Earth is Hiring’, entrepreneur and millionaire at age 26, claims that writing a love letter to money enables you to acknowledge your relationship with money as well as helping you to dissolve your resistance to it. Putting pen to paper may just help you to recognise that money responds to you because of how you treat it. Peta suggests we are either welcoming or repelling money with our behaviour, words, or money story.
“For something to grow we need to appreciate it. This is why we use the term ‘appreciation’ when it comes to assets…If we really want our money to expand we need to appreciate it, and I mean genuinely appreciate it. Appreciate how it is already working in our lives.”
So get out your stationary and a nice pen and get writing. Peta recommends beginning with ‘Dear Money’ and musing about how you might have treated money badly in the past and why. Where in your past might you have blamed money unfairly for things that went wrong? What insights around money have arisen over time and how do you want your relationship with money to evolve?
Consider inviting money to become a co-creator and help you to achieve certain goals. In your letter explain to money why you want more of it, what role will would money play in your life if it were to flow more effortlessly toward you? Share with money how it would change your life if you had more of it. What impact would it have on your family and those you care about? How would you be able to have a positive impact on the wider community if you had more money? Write as though money is a long lost friend who you’ve fallen out of touch with, but with whom you would like to reconnect with and rebuild a loving relationship.
Take some time to let money know how much you appreciate it. What does it already provide for you? A roof over your head? Healthy food? Your clothes? Acknowledge that most (if not all) of your immediate needs are already being met, and allow yourself to feel gratitude toward money. Finish your letter with promises of being more loving and respectful toward money and inviting it to work with you to build a beautiful life together. Instead of seeing money as a costly enemy with whom you are constantly at war, begin to see money as an ally, foster a friendship with money, a buddy who adds value to an already rich and rewarding life.
Acceptance helps bring in abundance
To help let go of negative emotions relating to debt and money it may be useful to be accepting of your current money situation and let go of the pressure to be wildly wealthy or debt free right now. Acknowledge that money will flow into your life organically and that some years may be more abundant than others. At the same time build a solid strategy to stay afloat, pay off your debts and gradually build more abundance into your life with a more positive attitude around money.
Money is energy
Rather than put a ‘price’ on money, consider instead it to be a transient energy which moves in and out of your life, gracing you with the opportunity to exchange it for goods and services. See money not as notes or coins, but rather a resource which participates in your life’s journey, contributing to your capacity to give and receive. In turn, you contribute to money’s journey as you generate it via your work and time.
Perhaps you already are abundantly wealthy, you simply don’t realise it. Perhaps you simply need to appreciate what you already have. When we can appreciate the existing abundance in our lives it is much easier to develop a genuine sense of fulfilment and contentment enabling us to be more satisfied with our life.
Set yourself up for success by changing your spending habits. Swap compulsive shopping for carefully considered purchases. Invest in high quality, consciously made, ethically sourced possessions which which spark joy and which will last for many years. Throw in a bit of generosity toward others and those in need while you’re at it. Generosity helps to shift your money story as it demonstrates you believe your needs are met and you have spare to share.
Peta suggests we can do more for the world and more for the causes we care about when we get out of the way of our own limiting money story. “Money has a role to play in the way you thrive. You deserve to have what you need to thrive. Just because you have more, doesn’t mean that others have less,” Peta asserts.
True wealth encompasses all that you value. It honours your resources and supports your well-being. Being truly wealthy is something you embody. It’s not actually a bank balance, it’s how you show up in the world. When we expand our perception of wealth into more than just ‘finance’ or ‘money’, but rather a sense of well-being and abundance we can more easily tap into this flow and live a fulfilled and enriching life.
Alison Gallagher is a freelance writer, resourcefulness expert, entrepreneur and mother of two young children. She has been featured in various publications including Stellar Magazine, Australian Health and Fitness Magazine, and Cleo Magazine. Alison is particularly passionate about sharing practical tips on how to live simply, sustainably and seasonally.