Our relationship to money defines it in our lives. Much like our relationship to love, or how we feel about it. We are constantly reinforcing our relationship to money whenever we have an opportunity to either spend it, earn it, be given it or win it! Do you ever say ‘I can’t afford it’? Or how about just feeling anxious when handing it over when you’re buying something?
Are you a confident spender or are you very frugal? Often our experience of spending money tells us how we really feel about it. We all need money to a certain extent and decide for ourselves how much we need to be who we want to be – which is completely relative. For some people living a modest and frugal life of self control is more important than having a million in the bank. How much you want is up to you to decide but whatever it is we often stand in the way of our obtaining it by running our old programs about money.
As an exercise just imagine standing at the till handing over money for your weekly shop. How do you feel? Is there an emotion associated with handing over money? How about putting your monthly wage on black at the roulette wheel at a casino, or taking out a loan to buy a new car? All of these experiences may or may not have an emotion attached to them. Try and think of some other experiences which have either negative of positive emotions attached to them. How about imagining making money or winning money. How does this feel? A lot of our emotions and feelings which are tied up with money are running on autopilot and we have picked them up through our life – many of which we will have inherited unconsciously from our parents and social groups.
To an extent lack of money can limit our lives or we can be consumed with an unhealthy obsession with it. Where do you draw your baseline with money? At what point will you be satisfied that you have enough? When do you stop caring about making money and put your feet up? We all have certain attitudes towards money and it is these attitudes which control our experience with money – more than we care to admit.
Money is often associated with being super competitive and always wanting to be on top. To have more than your friends or to use money as a means of ‘one-upmanship’ to prove yourself better or superior to someone. This experience is really based in fear and insecurity. When you can let go of the competitive mind and be ‘ok’ with you, there is no need to have lots of money in order to compete. Making money to ‘prove’ yourself to someone else is also a huge waste of energy as their reaction may well be the opposite of what you expect – they may simply be indifferent or even dismissive.
Letting go of our emotions around money will help it to lose it’s charge over us and allow us to create some new experiences around money. Think into your identity and self image as these ‘self perceptions’ have a huge effect on us and how we experience life. Do you see yourself as a ‘loser’ or someone who is a failure? Do you see yourself as capable and confident? How we perceive ourselves, and feel about ourselves has a great effect on how much money we allow ourselves to have and spend.
Paul Mckenna’s Instant Confidence is a great book for helping to turn up your income ‘thermostat’ and start to see yourself as a confident and capable person. If you’re struggling in the area of money and cash flow this may be a good place to start.