Updated: Oct 3, 2022
Most of us are loaded with negative beliefs about money — many of which we are unaware of. And many of which are stopping us from what we truly desire. Do you give money a bad rap?
We get many conflicting messages from society and the media about money. On the one hand, through advertising, there is the subliminal message that money provides you with the opportunity for a more expansive life. On the other hand, the media also tells us that money cannot buy happiness. Does a more expansive life not bring you joy?
In my “Re-Script Your Life for Abundance” workshops, I often start by asking participants, “what does money mean for you?” The typical response is, “money means flexibility and freedom to do what I want,” or “money is security.”
Conflicting Messages Around Money
When I ask the same audience what their parents said about money, I often say, “We never talked about money in my home” or “my dad said people with money were crooks.”
And if you were to ask the same people how money shows up in their lives, a common refrain would be, “it’s never enough.” Or, I don’t need a lot of money, but a little more sure would help.” Questioning Inherited Ideas. We inherit many beliefs about money from our families, culture, and the media. These become our subconscious beliefs. Have you ever questioned your subconscious beliefs about money?
On the one hand, we may desire to attract more money, but on the other hand, we may subconsciously believe that money is evil, and people with money are dishonest. You may not be aware of your beliefs around money, but they could be ‘blocking’ you from receiving more money.
Most Beliefs About Money Fall Under One Of Five Dominant Scripts
Money Is Bad
The Bible’s source shows that the love of money is the root of all evil; oppressing the poor and corrupting even good people is a widespread belief. You may see wealthy people as entitled and corrupt if you believe this. You may also think that the problems in this world are motivated by money.
2. Money Is The Reason for All My Problems
Underlying this is the belief that all your existing problems stem from not having enough money. And that having more money will solve your problems. This belief comes up through statements such as, “If only we had more money, we would be able to do ….”
3. Money Makes Me Look Good
Inherent in this subconscious belief is that having money and all its ‘trappings’ increases your worth in the eyes of others. You believe that rich people are better than people without money — that your friends and family will have a better opinion of you if you have more things money can buy, such as nice clothes, a luxury car, and a beautiful home.
The amount of money companies spend on advertising is evidence of this pervasive belief. This belief can cause a person to get into debt to adorn the trappings of socially prescribed ideas of wealth. 4. There Is Never Enough
This mindset that there is “never enough” is rooted in the sense of lack. It also reflects a feeling of discontent — someone who believes there is never enough money. It has little to do with a person’s actual net worth.
Some Millionaires are stuck in the sense of lack and fear that they may lose it all. They count their pennies and are afraid of spending. People raised in the Great Depression often have this fear of being destitute. People who feel they never have enough money constantly fear going broke.
5. Money Requires Great Sacrifice
The idea that making money requires tremendous sacrifice is another common money belief. And often, at great sacrifice to yourself and your family. That there is “no such thing as a free lunch.” This idea is pervasive and even applauded. We often hear the wealthy brag about putting a hundred hours at work each week.
How Can You Change Your Beliefs About Money?
The programming you received as a child from your family and community is deeply entrenched. But you’re not doomed to those scripts for the rest of your life. You can change your beliefs about money at any time.
1. Listen To Your Internal Dialogue About Money
Becoming consciously more aware of how you feel about money is the best way to start your journey to re-scripting your beliefs about money. For example, listen to how you respond in conversations with your friends about the subject of money. And how you talk about wealthy people. Do you view them negatively?
2. Question Your Beliefs
Once you become aware of your internal dialogue about money or how you speak to your friends about money, start questioning your beliefs. For example, if you view wealthy people negatively, ask yourself why. And ask yourself if it is true. Do you firmly believe that rich people are unkind or dishonest?
3. Listen to Your Body
Recall your last five financial transactions. They don’t have to be large but could be as small as that cup of Starbucks coffee this morning, the pair of new shoes you bought, or your groceries for the week.
Or it could have been a large purchase, like a new home or a brand-new car. Maybe it was a donation you made to a charity you believed in.
How did you feel about these transactions? Maybe you did not give it a second thought. And if you did experience an emotional trigger, was it guilt, temporary pleasure, or a deep sense of relief?
Think of purchases you made that resulted in buyer’s remorse. What was behind your second thoughts? Fear? Did you feel a knot in your stomach? The sensations in your body are the best indicators of your truth.
Listen to them; they will reveal your subconscious beliefs. For example, when you hear others talk about money, do you feel a tightness somewhere in your body?
4. Start to Re-Script
Wealthy people tend to have more positive internal scripts about money. First, decide the place you would like money to have in your life. Then, question your ideas and feelings about money. Are they true? What new beliefs can you adopt about money?
Think of wealthy people you admire. What is it about them that you admire? Their business acumen? Their compassion? Their ingenuity? People like Oprah Winfrey, Bill Gates, and Jeff Bezos come to mind.
Money is a tool. You get to decide how you want to use that tool.
In Conclusion: The 25% Test. If you are overspending, hoarding, or in debt, you could have an unhealthy relationship with money. And what we all want is a healthier relationship with money; this starts with becoming aware of our internal scripts around money. So what would an honest attitude towards money look like for you?
Money touches all aspects of our lives. If your money makes little difference in your life, would you reject a 25% increase in your income? Conversely, would your life be impacted if you took a 25% drop in your income? I’d love to hear from you.
by Jennifer Thompson