It’s Friday the 13th AND taxes are due on Tuesday. Talk about a potentially frightening combination!
Does money tend to stir up your anxiety as much as watching a horror movie? Do you feel like you’re living a nightmare when you think about college and retirement funds, investments portfolios, and the rising cost of everything? Do you believe that it is possible to flip your script of financial fear to financial freedom?
Yes, it is possible! In this post I will take the general theories from my previous blog, “How to Redraw Your Mental Blueprint,” and get specific about how to apply them in your financial life. The first step to decoding your relationship with money is to understand your financial culture. You have downloaded into your subconscious mind a blueprint of How It Really Is when it comes to money. If you came from a family culture of financial fear and lack, you may pinch your pennies, be wary of investing, and regardless of how much money you save, still feel there will never be enough. At the other end of the spectrum, if had a parent with a debt issue, you may find yourself spending beyond your means and then playing all sorts of weird “management” games to get the bills paid just in the knick of time. Therefore, the stress and drama that comes from spending and trying to play the system becomes how you relate to money.
The good new is, just like the architectural blueprint of a house, you can change your mind’s framework. To move from the fear of financial lack into the freedom of financial abundance, you need to clearly see your current blueprint.
Answer the questions below to gain clarity.
- What was your family culture about money?
- Who controlled the finances?
- Was money used as a reward?
- Was money withheld as a punishment?
- As a child, did you worry about money?
- Were your basic needs met?
- Did your parents fight about money?
- What were you taught about money from your parents or caregivers?
- Was there an open or closed dialogue about money in your home?
- Did your family consider themselves wealthy, middle class, or poor?
Take time to really marinate on your answers and allow yourself to dig deep and really feel what the financial climate was like growing up. Once you write down your answers, you will gain insight into your downloaded money myths.
The second step in creating a healthier relationship to money is to realize that there is no “reality” about abundance. Your parents taught you what they did and that became your reality about money, which does not make it permanent. Many parents pass their money fears down to children thinking they are protecting or preparing them for the way it is. The way it was for your parents does not have to be the way it is for you. Family systems that teach children money-management skills, a strong work ethic, and concrete tools create a more abundant blueprint. Financial fear creates constriction around money. Since we are all made up of energy, feelings of constriction block your flow of abundance and cloud your ability to see potential opportunities for financial gain.
Tips to Create Your New and Improved Money Blueprint:
Create a visual collage of what you want in your life. This can be done by creating separate pages or small boards for each area or just one with everything on it. I use a corkboard so I can change the pictures and words as life changes. This life collage is not just for the things you want like the job, the car, and the house of your dreams, but also for the people you admire and aspire to emulate. Look at the board a few times a day and engage all of your senses to create the full experience of actually having what is on the board and embodying the qualities of the people you admire.
Present Moment Awareness.
The ability to be here now is an essential part of changing any inherited blueprint. By creating the ability to be present in your life, you create the opening to catch the fear-based thought before it becomes your reality. The only way to change ingrained thought patterns is to be aware enough, in the present moment, to stop and change the thought. You can achieve this through breathing exercises, daily meditation, and awareness. Once you become the observer of your thoughts, you can sort through them and figure out which are fear-based and not serving your purpose and which are opportunities for you to create the life of your dreams. When you find yourself spending out of control with the “I don’t have to pay for it until the credit card statement comes”, stop and reflect on how it feels when that bill arrives and you scrounge to make the minimum monthly payment. Recognizing in the spending moment this repetition and the stress it brings will help you reconfigure your habits.
Be aware of the way you talk about money and change the language that is not in line with your goals. Use positive words of abundance instead of negative words of scarcity. Change “I’ll never have enough money in the bank” to “My needs are fulfilled, and I am comfortable making this salary.” We create change with the words we use, the thoughts we hold in our mind, and the feelings they inspire.
Finances can be a taboo topic, especially if you came from a home environment that did not have an open dialogue about money. So I challenge you this week to get raw and honest about how you relate to money.
Use this community as a platform to bounce ideas. Being responsible year-round will make April 15th not feel like Friday the 13th.
Terri Cole, founder and CEO of Live Fearless and Free, is a licensed psychotherapist, transformation coach, and an expert at turning fear into freedom. Recently, Terri released her first CD “Meditation Transformation”. She is now in the process of writing her first solo book “Flip Over and Float—Transform Fear into Freedom in 6 Simple Steps for Sustainable Change” and co-hosting Live Your Truth Love Your Life, an online group-coaching program, with yoga psychologist Ashley Turner. Terri is set to appear in Lifetime Network’s new show “The Conversation,” executive produced by Demi Moore, airing April 2012. In addition to her website, Terri can also be found on Facebook and Twitter.