Article by Tanya Ibberson
The reality though is that we all have a money history, whether we would like to admit to it or not. Regardless of our backgrounds and upbringings, we all have stories, memories, and experiences with money that we carry with us from our early childhood. Without being conscious of them, they form and impact our money mindset.
This shows up in the automatic comments that we make, whether out loud or in our own self-talk. Such as ‘money doesn’t grow on trees’ or ‘money is the root of all evil.’ This, in turn, can affect our relationship with money, and how we manage it. Or don’t manage it, as is sometimes the case.
So how can we master our money mindset and put ourselves in a position to be able to consciously change any negative patterns of behaviour that could be impacting our business and personal finances?
Here are four ways that you can take action right now to get you on your way to mastering your money mindset and enable you to financially fly:
Get into the habit of using positive language in your conversations and thoughts around money. Make the choice to consciously fight back against that inner voice and say the opposite; “I can’t afford that” can become “I can’t afford that right now.” “Money doesn’t grow on trees” can become “money comes to me effortlessly.”
Using a powerful “I can’t” statement confirms to your brain that this is categorically something that isn’t going to happen for you. Say that often enough, and you won’t even try to take a different view of where you are right now financially.
Also, if the word ‘money’ or ‘budget’ itself causes you anxiety, try using a different term instead. Talk about managing your ‘resources’ instead of money, and a budget can become a spending plan instead.
The thoughts and throw away comments we tell ourselves around money are a culmination of memories and experiences that we build up over the course of our whole lives.
Our body registers the feeling that goes with those memories, especially from where we’re small, because we don’t really understand the topic of conversation. Our immature brain at that time doesn’t register the significance of a negative money conversation, but it remembers how the situation made us feel and tries to protect us from being in that situation again by guiding us to do certain things instead.
This explains why we can’t always understand our money behaviour after the fact; we’re emotional beings and we don’t always access our logical brain before acting, such as with impulse online purchases.
By recognising those comments, we can start to understand where they originate from, and even question whether they’re true. Our negative money beliefs can often actually be negative money feelings attached to old memories, but that doesn’t mean they’re true now.
Regret for past choices, former behaviours or for debt that might be hanging over you now because of your past decisions is helping to keep your mindset stuck where it is now.
The fact remains that you can’t do anything now to change the past. Continuing to focus on something that can’t be changed, and carrying those feelings of regret, shame, and guilt, only makes the practical matter of dealing with the situation now so much trickier.
Nobody wants to face dealing with something that makes us feel bad, so it’s easier to avoid it. And the credit card statements go in the drawer and get forgotten about.
What you can do is take control of what happens right now. Forgive yourself for your past decisions and make plans to ensure the pattern won’t be repeated. Start by taking control of your finances, understanding where you are right now and what you need to start doing to take you in the direction you want to go.
A study of over 10,000 millionaires by Ramsey Solutions showed that 97% of millionaires…. Believed they could be millionaires.
This does make sense, bear with me. If you start on the path to train in a new profession, whatever that might be, you would investigate courses and qualifications, you would look at job prospects or business opportunities, and maybe start networking to get your name known in the field you want to work in.
You wouldn’t expect to wake up one morning and just ‘be’ a conveyancer or an accountant. The same thing applies with taking steps to being a financially independent person.
You need to start with small steps moving in the right direction and thinking like the person you’re aiming to become.
This isn’t just a visualisation and manifestation exercise, although visualising will help. This is about taking positive action to elevate yourself to where you want to be.
If being financially secure means having an emergency fund that you don’t have right now, what steps could you take to make that possible? Think about what is important to you, and how you could make those positive changes.
Tanya Ibberson is an accountant and Financial Coach running The Financial Wing Woman – https://financialwingwoman.com. Her new best-selling book, Your Financial Flight Plan is out now and available on Amazon