The current state of your finances; good or bad, exciting or embarrassing, is what it is because of you. There is no room for excuses, or victims. It is of no value to try and assign blame to a past employer, the state of the economy, federal spending, an ex-partner, broken water heater, dead battery, or a bad fortune cookie. Except for the cookie, some outside events may have lent influence, but the helm was never out of your hands. Understanding this
nugget of truth is critically important because of the gold residing on the flip-side…
The state of your finances in five or ten years, and the rest of your life is completely in your hands. You are the Master of your own destiny. You do not need to worry about what cannot be controlled or predicted, you only need to know how to set and adapt your own sails; how to manage and adjust your own behavior.
What you are probably not aware of are the hidden influences in your financial decision making processes. We all have them. They are ideas, or scripts we’ve heard and sub-consciously repeat to ourselves about what we can and cannot do, or what we should or should not do with our finances. Money is good. Money is bad. (In truth, it’s neither.) I’ll never have enough. I’ll always be broke. It will always come to me. I deserve it. I don’t deserve it. Like any good ol’ fashioned emotional baggage these scripts prefer to stay hidden…until we decide it’s time to un-pack them.
To ferret out your deep seated beliefs (and prejudices) around money, ask yourself probing questions and patiently consider the pros and cons of each discovery. Here’s a few to get you started:
What’s the one thing I wish my parents had taught me about money when I was a child?
How does having money, or not having it make me feel about myself?
What is the earliest observation I can recall that involved money?
Recount the biggest financial mistake and greatest success someone close to you has experienced. How have those events shaped your thinking?
Take note of your insights. Like the rest of us, you are not flawed and you are not perfect. You are learning. Learn from your past.
Let go of immature, extreme, or limiting ideas about money and open yourself to new insights that will allow you to see, plan, and execute on a brighter future.
You are at the helm; two of the keys to enjoying a more successful journey are assuming control and letting go of what’s controlled you.