On a scale from one to ten, exactly how happy are you with your money situation right now?
Take a second and really think about it. Be honest. Notice what comes to mind and how you feel. Then when you’ve come to a number that intuitively feels right, continue.
Chances are, if you’re anything like the dozens of women I’ve interviewed over the past month, you’re less than thrilled with your financial picture.
Maybe it’s debt, low-to-no savings and maxed-out credit cards that are keeping you in a cycle of scarcity and fear.
Maybe it’s months of hustle without a raise or promotion that’s got you wondering if this career path is really worth it.
Maybe you’re doing OK . . . You can pay your bills, you’re financially stable, but secretly you want more. You’re craving a little luxury — owning your own home, upgrading your wardrobe and taking regular vacations — you know those things real adults seem to have.
No matter where you’re at with your money, don’t feel bad. Shame, blame and guilt do nothing for you. In fact, they work against you. They drain your energy, lower your vibe and block you from experiencing the wealth you desire.
So make a commitment right here, right now, to redirect the energy you spend complaining, freaking out and numbing your money stress, toward supporting yourself in making your money dreams a reality.
Be your cheerleader, not your critic. Got it?
Now . . . after listening to sooooo many women’s secret fears about money I felt a huge call to talk about it this week. I’ve done a ton of inner and outer work on my finances over the past two years and have had some huge shifts and a-haaaaas, that I feel will really support you.
Because I’ve been there too.
I’ve struggled with debt, felt underpaid and undervalued at work, missed out on opportunities I couldn’t afford, experienced the terrifying butterflies that come with putting your personal finances on the line to start a business, or the gut-wrenching feeling you get when your account balance is a total mystery and you’re waiting for the debit machine to approve your transaction.
I know how much it sucks to feel limited by your money. To not do the things you really want to be doing because you simply don’t have the funds.
I also know what’s possible when you truly commit to making a change. When you get out of denial, ignorance and blame and begin taking full responsibility for your money and your life. I lived with my head in the sand for years, YEARS.
It wasn’t until I started getting real with my money and clear about what I wanted, that I began to experience results, and dare I say, even, miracles around my finances.
Now, I’m definitely not perfect. I still have lots of room to grow, but I’ve also come a really long way in terms of making my money work for me and feeling abundant. If this is an area you feel you could use a little work on, I’ve broken down the exact strategies and practices I used to shift my money mindset below.
1. Make it Fun.
Yes, you read the right . . . FUN. One of the biggest aha’s I had with money came while working with a financial coach.
Last year, I hired her to help me move through some big money blocks I had around my business. I was so freaked out about all the “financial stuff” that I’d go into major avoidance mode. Money really freaked me out and I didn’t trust myself to manage it properly, so I’d ignore it.
One of the first things she had me do was take myself out on weekly dollar dates. My goal was to make the process of digging into my financials fun. So every Monday morning I’d head to my favourite little coffee shop, cozy up with a cappuccino and buttery scone and dive into my banking.
I created a ritual out of it that eventually evolved into a habit. Now I look forward to working with my money. I love updating my colour-coded spreadsheets and seeing how much I’ve made. By shifting the fear-based energy I was bringing to my finances, I was finally able to give them the love and attention they needed to grow.
2. Get clear on your money story. Don’t like it? Write a new one.
Your money story is the set of beliefs you’ve adopted about your finances over the years.
Maybe growing up you heard things like “money doesn’t come easy” or “only certain people get rich.” These little nuggets we pick up from our environment and experiences shape what we believe to be true about money. And what we believe to be true about money has a direct impact on the financial reality we experience.
If you’re not super stoked about your bank account balance, spend some time digging into your beliefs around money. What’s the story you’re telling yourself? Is it serving you?
If not, time to write a new one.
3. Track It. Know what you make AND what you spend.
When it comes to money, ignorance is definitely not bliss. You’ve got to know what’s going on inside your bank account, if you want to see that baby grow.
One super easy and fun way to start to make this happen is to track your income. Create a spreadsheet and use it to record every dollar you make. Watching that number rise is so empowering. It also builds momentum and makes you feel abundant.
On the flip-side you should also track your expenses. It’s not quite as fun, but being fierce about your finances means knowing where your money’s going. If you know you’ve already spent $200 on dinner and drinks this month, you might be inspired to get creative and cook a meal. Clarity = power. When we know where our money is going we have the power to make better decisions spending our dollars.
4. Know what you want.
Over the last two years, I’ve realized a troubling truth.
So many people sabotage their own success because they think their big dreams are “pie-in-the-sky” ideas that cost way too much money. The lifestyle they secretly long for feels like a pipe dream because they’re unclear of exactly what it would take to get there. So they remain stuck, exactly where they are.
The first step toward success is actually knowing what you want. Get into the details of your dream life and break down exactly what it would cost to get there. When you really get clear on what’s important to you in life and do a little research on what it would take to make it happen, most people realize it’s much more possible than they thought.
Maybe that chic condo you thought was totally unaffordable is actually quite reasonable after all. You’ll never know if you don’t get clear.
5. Love what you got.
Good old gratitude pays off big time. No matter how broke you are, I refuse to believe you have nothing to be grateful for. If you’re reading this right now it means you have internet, access to a computer or smartphone, and can read English — all things billions of people on our planet aren’t able to do. You should be grateful for that.
There’s also a metaphysical reason to be grateful. What you focus on expands. So if you’re constantly dwelling on how broke you are, or how little you have . . . guess what?! You’ll get poorer. Feeding your negative bank account with negative energy makes it more negative.
But if you spend time every day to focus on the things you DO have, like a roof over your head, friends who support you, and access to financial help and income opportunities, those things will expand and elevate your life.
6. Increase your capacity to receive.
So many of us have such a hard time receiving. We get embarrassed when people pay us compliments, or get sheepish when we’re spoiled with cute gifts. That’s because on a subconscious level many of us struggle with issues of worthiness.
So work on it . . . Accept compliments, kind gestures, gifts and support from those who offer. You are worthy of their time, money and energy.
Abundance cannot come into your life if you’re not able to accept it.
7. Think like an entrepreneur.
Girlboss or not, I believe it’s in every woman’s best interest to think like an entrepreneur.
Even if you’re in a 9-5 or collecting a paycheque, there are tons of ways to increase your income. My boyfriend and I started brainstorming ways we could bring in more money last year and decided as an experiment to throw our house on AirBnB. In two years, we’ve made thousands of extra dollars.
Maybe you could sell your old clothes on consignment, walk dogs in your neighbourhood, offer your services as a consultant or assistant, or invest in an income property. The sky is the limit when you get creative!
Challenge: Write down 25 things you could do make some extra money; they don’t all have to be totally feasible or work out completely. The idea is challenge your brain to think in new and creative ways, and stretch your mind’s conception of what’s possible for you.
8. Act on it, hustle baby.
As my mentor Marie Forleo says, insight without action is worthless.
If you want to transform your finances, you’ve got to make some moves! You’ve got to show up for yourself and actually DO what you gotta do to make your money goals happen.
If you don’t show up for your money, your money isn’t going to show up for you. It’s that simple.
9. Be nice to yourself.
In fact, be extra nice. Stepping up to the plate and making the decision to get real with your money often comes with a lot of fear and anxiety. So if you’re going to succeed, you’ve got to be sweet to yourself.
Don’t beat yourself up for not doing better in the past, or freak out if you fall off the wagon. Instead, gently and calmly guide yourself back on track.
10. Get curious.
When we start getting intimate with our money, a lot of our issues can rise to the surface and block us from experiencing success.
When I started to really dive into my money story and make positive shifts around my financial habits, all of this childhood stuff began to rise to the surface. Issues around worthiness, self-esteem and security came bellowing at me like a swarm of locusts.
At first, I freaked out. I realllllly didn’t want to have to deal with it, at all. But when I shifted my mindset from resistance to curiosity, I learned a lot of really deep, powerful lessons and gained great insight into myself and my motivations.
If you approach your blocks, setbacks and obstacles with curiosity, you will always discover the wisdom you need to move through ‘em. Always.
May you live long and prosper...
IF YOU LIKED THIS POST, BE SURE TO CHECK OUT:
- My interview with the ladies at Mo Money Mo Progress
- The Simple Money Mindset Shift (That Always Pays Off)
- 8 Words That Will Bring You Instant Peace