“I’m not good at managing money.”
“You have to work hard for your money.”
“You can’t get rich doing what you love.”
“If you aren’t born rich, chances are you never will be.”
“Financial security comes from having a good job and a steady paycheck.”
So you might be asking, what do all of these statements have in common?
They’re money beliefs that many of my clients have that keep them from stepping into their power with money and using money as the amazing tool that it is to create the lives of their dreams.
The fact is that the stories we create around money are often unconscious ones and so we aren’t even aware that they exist. Perhaps you grew up in a household where your father said “you’ll never be any good with money” after you made a few mistakes learning how to spend money. If you decide that he’s right in what he says and you tell yourself that story enough times (consciously or unconsciously), you begin to engrain the belief that you’re not good at managing money which then allows your past experiences and mistakes to invent your future. Essentially, when we live consistent with the belief that we’ve created, our lives are designed by default as we unconsciously behave and react in accordance with what we believe. Our brains invest energy and time to reinforce the belief by collecting evidence that the belief is correct!
I’ll use myself as an example to illustrate the cycle of “living by default.” I grew up in a household where gratefully my parents taught me about money from an early age so that as an adult, I had basic money management systems and processes in place to support me in effectively using my money. This was helpful in having me build financial security so that I had freedom and choice in later years to leave behind a role that was no longer a good fit, to thrive after my position was eliminated, and to eventually start my own business.
However, while all of that technical information on money management systems, processes, habits, and routines was definitely helpful, what I didn’t realize was that I had developed a money belief that “financial security comes from a paycheck and benefits.” And I only figured this out in summer 2010 as I embarked on a new professional life as a financial coach where I would be working in someone else’s business on almost 90% commission. Talk about a huge potential roadblock to working successfully as a consultant if I believed that I could only be financially secure by someone paying me a paycheck consistently! And as I looked back at the professional path I had taken in the 13 years before, I realized how this belief kept me in my corporate job much longer than I wanted because I wanted to be comfortable and safe with the salary I was earning.
Once I was aware of this belief, it was my choice as to whether to create a new story for myself about my abilities to create my own paycheck based on my own worth and ability to contribute in a different way. I can’t say it was easy, yet once I recognized the roadblock of this belief I chose to interrupt the story I had created and break away from living in the pattern that I could only find success by working for someone else.
After making the decision to shift my belief and change my story, I could then live consciously in the present and choose the “financial rules” and beliefs that would create my life. I chose to believe that with the right mentorship and support, that I could learn how to become a successful entrepreneur who created her own income and my own life. I began to take action that supported that belief by training myself to understand more about how to build a successful business. And along that journey of training and learning, I have opened myself up to an entirely new world of “living by design” where I consciously choose my beliefs and the actions that I take.
Perhaps it’s not your dream to start your own business, however I can almost guarantee that unless you’ve spent a lot of time already identifying and shifting your money beliefs that there is something running around in the hamster wheel in your head that is holding you back from the abundant and thriving life that you truly want to create.
We all have the power to identify and shift our money beliefs from something that runs our lives unconsciously to something that empowers us. I once heard a mentor say, “if you’re going to make up a story (or belief), make sure it’s a good one!”
I invite you to create money beliefs that support you in thriving in your life and consciously allow yourself to live life by design, and not by default. Being present to what you want to create in your life and relishing the freedom and joy that accompanies living consciously is an amazing way to live!