ILLUMINATION
Published in

ILLUMINATION

Mo Money Mo Problems…But, Not Really

Challenging And Re-writing Limiting Beliefs About Money

Photo by Dmitry Demidko on Unsplash

Biggie Smalls said “the more money we come across, the more problems we see.”

For me, the very idea of money makes me uncomfortable. I have said this a million times. Talking about money. Owing money. Being owed money. Asking someone to pay. It makes me so queasy and I’ve made sure everyone knows. That way they will leave me out of it when it comes to discussing things from squaring up for dinner to charging market prices for my skill and experience.

But money isn’t like wearing Spanx under a bridesmaids dress, which is actually uncomfortable. It’s a tool. It’s a means to an end. It’s energy. It’s useful. And there is enough.

When we assign a negative emotional value to money instead of it’s actual value, it can break us…by keeping us broke. And so we don’t depart from that identity, that programming we most likely had nothing to do with, we carry on “knowing” truths about the rich and the poor and where we may or may not fit in.

So I made the choice to develop new truths, practice new behaviors, and feel new emotions around it all. Instead of making a funny face and awkwardly bowing out of any conversation about money and giving away all of my power around the situation, I have chosen to very actively identify where these beliefs came from, why they have so much control, and then dismantle them!

I grew up where phrases like “Wait till payday” or “We don’t have enough” were frequently uttered and adamantly believed. And there were no explanations beyond that. As a kid, I didn’t understand those statements. We had food, clothes, a house, and toys. What more could we want? I knew money didn’t grow on trees (I picked up on the sarcasm when that one was lobbed at me), but I didn’t know where it came from, how it was used, and why it was a problem.

My mother was very clever with her scarcity remarks, too. My favorite was “What am I gonna buy it with? My good looks?” when I would ask to stop at Dunkin’ Donuts. I mean, I don’t know, Mom. I think you’re pretty.

I came to realize that even if we did have the few dollars to make the donut stop, she grew up with very little in the way of money or other resources, so she was hard-wired to feel a sense of lack and fear that she unknowingly passed on to us.

The so-called truth about the absence of money was drilled in. There just wasn’t enough ever. And the reality of it all started to sink in as I entered my freshman year of high school. When the last thing you want is big change, we “inexplicably” had to move to a rental house in another neighborhood. I was devastated the way any 14 year old might be, vowing to just move in with the neighbors or even live alone.

I didn’t realize until much later that my parents didn’t pay taxes for far too long, had a lot of debt, and defaulted on their home loan. Bankruptcy was inevitable. It was when we moved again, but this time to my aunt’s mobile home outside of town, that it really hit.

Oh. There really isn’t enough.

Photo by Joshua Rawson-Harris on Unsplash

So I brooded and listened to sad music and never told my parents I was mad at them. I got a part time job, finished high school, went to college, then grad school and started doing things differently than they had.

Still, the idea of money always made me so uncomfortable, even when I was 24 years old, making more than my parents ever did combined. The idea of having too little made me feel stressed and having too much made me feel guilty. So I just went along my merry way with these subconscious beliefs guiding me. Until one day many many years and relationships later, I realized some very important information.

I do not have to be poor or broke to be virtuous or likeable.

I will not be abandoned if I have more money.

Wealth and abundance mindset is a choice. I have control over my thoughts, beliefs, and actions.

Whatever unconscious training I received about money as a kid does not have to apply anymore.

I do not need someone to take care of me in exchange for my happiness nor do I need to live paycheck to paycheck. There are more than 2 options.

So I started on a very purposeful journey to acknowledge my fear of lack and become friends with money. I started to get used to the ideas of the potential it had for me rather than being some sort of broke martyr with an ulcer.

I started reading books, doing the recommended exercises, and buying into Jen Sincero’s encouragement that I can be a badass at making money.

One night I was reciting my new mantras about abundance in my head. I was feeling deeply into the uncomfortable knot in my stomach that seized up when I dared to think big. I was reminding my protective ego that it’s ok for me to dream even if I might get hurt. And then I realized something that kicked my motivation for this mission into high gear.

I AM HURTING. Right now. In this powerlessness. In these thoughts that make me feel less than worthy.

I understood that the excitement pulsing through me when I visualize my ideals is worth it. It’s worth trying and failing and trying again. It’s worth having faith in the unknown, working my ass off to rewire old patterns, and get right with money. Fear of not having enough and abundance guilt can piss right off. That mindset is keeping me stuck in mediocrity when that’s just not what I’m meant for.

I know this now. I know there’s more. I don’t have to think about it. I feel it in my gut, my wise woman intuition, the mother in me. And by God if believing in myself and putting in the effort to make these changes isn’t working! My emotions and what is manifesting into my physical world is changing!

Granted, there is a lot more work to do and a lot more unraveling of stubborn, long standing convictions. But I’m on my way! And the phrase “money makes me uncomfortable” has all but disappeared and been replaced with “the more money I come across, the more freedom I have”!

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