Do You Have a Healthy Relationship With Money?

I remember many years ago having a pretty amazing insight about a client's relationship with money. I was looking at her financial numbers and she had asked me what steps she could take to improve her situation. I looked at her debts and quickly assessed which ones she should focus on paying down first.

For a few minutes I spouted off some valid suggestions for her such as, "I would highly recommend getting out of your adjustable rate mortgage on your home. I would also suggest that you focus on putting money towards this particular high interest debt..." When I was done she shared with me that she was feeling anxious and overwhelmed.

The message I got was. "Whoa, bring in the reigns and place all the financial advice on hold". I had made the mistake of giving all my attention to this woman's net worth statement (a statement that lists all your debts and savings) instead of focusing on the worth of the beautiful and sincere person sitting in front of me.

It's tempting to approach finances as if it were all about getting the numbers right, and nothing about how we feel internally.

I want a bright red flashing STOP light to go off every time you catch yourself focusing exclusively on financial results and strategies while ignoring important emotions you’re having related to those results and strategies.

Any time you feel anxious or "squirmy" inside, your body is giving you extremely valuable information in regards to your relationship with money. It may be a sign that you've become too focused on your desired outcome, you're being overly impatient with yourselves (or your partner) and demanding you should've already arrived at your destination, oh, let's say, by yesterday. Or, maybe you're terrified of making big changes or feeling overwhelmed or hopeless about your situation.

When seeking financial change, we have to be patient with ourselves and remember that we are only human. Getting financially on track is both an INTERNAL and external process. Notice I said process and not destination.

Financial success is a life path. The illusion is that someday we'll make it to a place where we can put up a big flag and exclaim, "Now, I've finally made it!" But in truth, it's a path that we live every day by setting the intention to give both our finances and our feelings about our finances compassionate attention. We set the intention to be kind, compassionate and patient with ourselves, our partners, and our present situation.

1-Minute Live and Love Richly™ Action Step

1.            Set the intention to become aware. Notice how you feel inside when you're making financial decisions and creating action plans. Perhaps you're creating a plan to pay off debt, bring in more money or quit charging to your credit card.We often make these kinds of financial decisions solely from our head. I want to encourage you to also direct your attention towards your emotions when making these decisions.

2.            Get curious. Once you're aware of how you feel inside, ask yourself what that feeling is revealing to you. Are you trying to take on too much? Or, are you just afraid of the consequences of changing your behavior?

Our emotions are telling us one of three things about our money relationship:

1.            A particular financial decision isn't right for us.

2.            We're trying to take on too much-this is usually an indication that our desire for perfection and instant results has kicked in.

3.            We're aware of the need for change, but we're afraid to make them. Often, we need to give up a limiting behavior or habit that is holding us back, and we're afraid to make the commitment to do it. This is when we want to acknowledge the emotion first and then be willing to press on and take action. There's a great saying you can reflect on in this situation-feel the fear and do it anyway.

Next time you're making a financial choice, pause and take your financial pulse. This is a great way to make choices that you can stand behind 110% because the choices are in alignment with both your head and heart.


Author's Bio: 

Leslie Cunningham specializes in working with women entrepreneurs who experience fear and self-doubt in their ability to consistently make more money in their business. The end result that women achieve through following Leslie's advice and expertise is that they are able to permanently get off the emotional financial roller coaster ride and break into six-figures and beyond.