When I started my journey to becoming financially fit, just a little over a decade ago, I had no idea where I was headed. I knew I needed to make some serious changes in my relationship with money because I was nowhere close to where I wanted to be, where I dreamed of being all my life. I knew I had the drive, I knew what I wanted my financial future to look like, but I didn’t know why I just couldn’t seem to get ahead and reach my goals of being financially free.
So what was stopping me? My money mindset!
Now some of you may be thinking, what in the world is money mindset and why should I care? I get it, I had no idea what it was until I started searching for a way to dig my way out of the $25,000 of debt I had got myself into because I wasn’t aware of the somewhat toxic relationship I had with money. I was living paycheck to paycheck and I wasn’t paying attention to where I was spending my money. I knew how much money I had in my bank account and when it was gone, it was gone. By the last few days of the month I’d be eating ramen noodles and driving around on the fumes in my gas tank hoping I’d have enough to make it to the bank to cash my check on payday. I was MISERABLE!
I’ll never have enough money.
Money is the root of all evil.
Money is a limited resource.
You have to work too hard to get wealthy.
I can either be rich or be happy, but not both.
Rich people are selfish and greedy.
No one in my family is rich so I’ll never be either.
Sound familiar? If so, it’s because you have limiting beliefs about money, and they were probably instilled in you from a very young age. I can remember hearing some of the familiar phrases we all probably heard from our parents, family, and friends when we were young. “Money doesn’t grow on trees!” “We can’t afford that!” “Money can’t buy you happiness!” “More money, more problems!” These are negative thoughts about money and they keep us stuck with a money mindset that limits our ability to become financially free.
You don’t know what you don’t know! So let’s dive a little deeper and define money mindset first.
Money mindset is the overriding attitude that we have about our finances.
Your money mindset drives how you make key financial decisions in your daily life. And it can have an enormous impact on your ability to achieve your goals. If you are focused on what’s wrong, or if you continue to have the limiting beliefs, like those I’ve mentioned above, it’s almost impossible to get motivated.
So let’s talk about the 3 steps that you can take right now to begin to shift your money mindset and start to manifest abundance so that you can be financially free and live the life you have always dreamed of living. These, along with several others, are the steps I have taken to get out of debt and manifest abundance in my life, and I have used them to help others in similar situations.
Step 1 – The F word can set you free
Forgiveness! Today is the day that you forgive yourself and everyone from your past for every bad thing that has happened to you ever. Now let’s just get one thing clear, forgiving doesn’t mean forgetting. Forgiving means that you love yourself enough to let go of the crappy things that have happened to you because they no longer serve you.
“When you forgive, you in no way change the past-but you sure do change the future.”
Action step – Make a forgiveness list. Write down a list of everything you can think of from your past that has hurt you. It doesn’t matter how big or how small it seems now, if it hurt you, write it down. Include situations that relate to money but be sure to include anything that had a negative impact on your life. Anything that blocks positive energy from flowing in your life should be included here. Set a timer and write for 20-30 minutes.
Once you have completed your list, reread each item and allow yourself to really feel how you felt at the time each situation was happening. Don’t dwell on it for long, just a couple of seconds, and then I want you to say out loud “I’m sorry. Please forgive me. Thank you. I love you.” You need to say these things and truly mean them in order for this to work.
This exercise is known as Ho’ponopono. It was created by a Hawaiian therapist who cured an entire ward of criminally insane patients, without ever meeting any of them. The therapist was Dr. Ihaleakala Hew Len. I will include a brief overview of this exercise below, but if you’d like to learn more about this Hawaiian tradition, google it!
You are responsible for everything in your mind, no matter how bizarre it may seem. Like I mentioned above, I want you to really FEEL these steps when you say them outloud. When you realize that you are responsible for everything in your mind, it becomes very natural to feel sorry. It isn’t easy to accept that your negative mindset around money is what has inadvertently caused you to go into debt, but once you start to realize that this is what has happened and you feel remorse for it, that negative energy flow subsides and you start to heal.
Ask forgiveness-Please forgive me
Don’t worry about who you are asking, just ask! Remember your remorse from step 1 and say it over and over, please forgive me, and mean it.
Again, it doesn’t matter who or what, just keep saying thank you. Thank whatever or whomever it was you just forgave. Thank the universe. Thank yourself for being the best that you can be. Just keep saying thank you.
Love-I love you
Say I love you. Say it to the universe. Say it to the house you live in. Say it to the air you breathe. Love is the most powerful weapon we have, so say it often, and mean it. I love you!
That’s it, that is the whole practice of Ho’ponopono. Practice this on a daily basis and you will start to feel lighter and open up room in your heart to let positive energy to flow in.
Continue to practice forgiveness on a daily basis. The next time someone takes your parking spot at the store, forgive them immediately. They probably didn’t see you and it isn’t going to hurt you any to walk a few extra steps, so don’t carry this negative energy with you all day. Repeat this mantra each time you practice forgiveness: the more I forgive, the more at peace I will be. The more at peace I am, the more abundance flows to me.
Step 2 – Clear out the clutter
Clear out any unnecessary clutter that is interfering with your finances. While it is a good idea to clear clutter in every aspect of your life eventually, for now focus on the clutter that could be blocking financial abundance. Money is just pieces of paper with energy attached to it. Energy needs space to flow. So if your desk and your wallet are cluttered with crap, then it’s no wonder money isn’t finding its way to you.
Action step – Let’s start with your wallet. Toss out used up gift cards, old receipts, pieces of paper with chicken scratch, and any other items that serve no purpose. If you haven’t needed to use that phone number in a year, chances are you will never need it, so toss it out or enter it into your contacts on your phone already and get rid of that tiny piece of paper that is just taking up space in your wallet.
If you have any dollar bills in your wallet straighten them out and put them in order, all the ones together facing the same direction, all the tens, twenties, etc. put them all together and facing the same direction. Put the largest dollar bill on top so it is facing you. This will make you feel more abundant each time you see it. If you don’t have any dollar bills in your wallet, feel free to get a one hundred dollar bill to put in there and keep it there, it feels good and it will help keep positive energy flowing each time you see it.
Pick one other area to clear of clutter. It should be an area where you deal with money. Maybe your desk, or your kitchen or bedside table where you keep your check ledger and receipts to reconcile once a month, or do you really only do it once or twice a year? Again, clear out anything that serves no purpose. Reconcile your books and then continue to include it in your schedule daily, or once a week at the very least.
How do you feel now that you have cleared out clutter in two spaces having to do with money? Is your wallet 5 lbs lighter? Can you see your desktop? Continue to clear clutter in every aspect of your life until you have all of the clutter gone. You will continue to feel more positive energy flowing and naturally this will allow abundance to flow more freely in your life.
Step 3: Give your money a job
That’s right! If you don’t tell your money what to do you won’t know where it went at the end of the month. You might have heard of this being referred to as creating a budget. Creating a budget at the beginning of the month and sticking to it is a very important step in creating financial freedom.
The word budget has gotten a bad rap, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Budgeting is just creating a plan for your money. It means that you are spending with a purpose BEFORE the month begins. A budget isn’t a straight jacket that keeps you from doing what you want but rather it gives you freedom by being intentional with where your money goes.
Include every single thing that you spend money on each month. Bills, food, gas, daycare, date night, membership dues, getting your nails done, hair cuts, coffee at Starbucks, donations, and money you put into your savings. If you find that you are spending more than you are making, you must find places to start cutting your spending. If you are buying things using your credit card and you can not pay off your credit card balance at the end of the month, you are spending outside your means and you will need to fix this before it gets worse, and it will get worse if you do not start to take steps to fix it.
When I first started to create a budget and realized how much I was spending dining out each month I was shocked. I was buying breakfast from fast food restaurants on my way to work each morning because I was too lazy to get out of bed and make something at home. Then I would eat out with co-workers every day for lunch. It was easily adding up to $400 a month! That’s a car payment! So I immediately started making my sausage and egg muffins at home each morning and cooking extra at dinner time so that I could eat that for lunch for the next day at work. This actually took less time out of each day for me then it did stopping on my way to work and going out to eat at lunch time, and it wasn’t even really that big of an adjustment for me to make. I was saving at least $300 per month just by doing those two simple things each day.
As you continue to work on your budget, give yourself some grace, it is going to take some adjustments, and you will need to actively look for creative ways to cut back each month. If you need more help with creating a budget please follow me on my facebook business page and search for #budgetingtips. I will be starting a 30 day series of daily budgeting tips here beginning August 13th.
Want to continue your journey to financial freedom? Join my private facebook group, where we will be sharing more on money mindset and how to manifest abundance in your life. You can request to join the group here.
A financial transformation specialist who partners with women to transform their money mindset and help them create a love affair with money that will make anyone jealous! Erin has a Masters of Science in Accountancy and has studied money mindset, as it relates to us individually and in our businesses, and the taxes that we pay, for over a decade.
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