Money Thoughts | Ep. 11

Today I’m breaking down how our money beliefs are affecting our business growth and why it’s so important to have a healthy money mindset.

This topic was inspired by the intense mastermind retreat I recently attended in Aspen, Colorado. It was a great experience at a beautiful hotel with amazing food and shopping.  I was joined by one of my friends and mastermind sisters and it was so inspiring to have a five-star experience.

We both had made hard decisions and done big things for ourselves to have created this amazing opportunity. 

On our last day, we were able to reflect on the experience and our businesses. We had gratitude for ourselves for making scary decisions when we were starting our businesses and choosing to invest, even when it felt terrifying at the time. Hard decisions that were way outside of my comfort zone got me to this place. 

We both were emotional as moms realizing we’re in a place in life now where we don’t have to worry about things like the cost of organic milk anymore. And we both very vividly remember what it felt like to struggle, what it felt like to literally wring every drop out of monthly paychecks when we were one surprise expense away from falling on our faces financially.

We both had kept the same mantra with us for a really long time:

I’m never going to get ahead.

And we realized we have breathing room for the first time in our lives. It was a beautiful moment.

I want this for you, too, and it all starts with your thinking. Let’s go.

Harmful Money Stories

Shame around Lack of Money

Did I make you uncomfortable when I talked about the five-star experience? The version of myself two years ago would have probably been uncomfortable hearing that. If I’m honest, I would have been a little annoyed! But I think it’s really important to normalize and neutralize a topic that I feel gets very emotionally charged for people.

Think about how often money comes up for you in your everyday life. Think about what emotions you often tie to money. I had a lot of anxiety around money for a long time, and I had a money story I had to heal. My anxiety around money was so bad that I didn’t want to open my credit card bills. I didn’t want to look at my bank statements. I just wanted to pretend that money was there – I never wanted to see the reality of money. For some reason, I was afraid of looking at the numbers. 

If you haven’t clearly identified your money drama, ask yourself some questions. How do you feel when you look at your bank account? Do you feel neutral? Does it feel like it’s just numbers, just information? Or do you avoid your bank statements like I did? Do you get anxious or frantic? That’s a form of money shame.

The Scarcity Mindset with Money

I remember there was a time I had a certain level of income in my mind, and I really thought I would never have money drama at that level. But just as we have thoughts and feelings without money, we also have thoughts and feelings with money.

Samantha and I coined this term over the weekend: goblin energy. You turn into a goblin when you want to go into your cave and just count your coins and feel safe. You want to hoard the resources; you don’t want to spend them. And it comes from the deep fear that if it all goes away, you won’t be able to create it again. What if it was just a lucky strike? If you spend it, then it’s going to be gone forever. That is the scarcity mindset telling you that you can’t make more. That’s the goblin energy.

Money and Morality

It can be hard to talk about money. I realized the other day there are a lot of similarities between sex and money. I come from a culture where sex was talked about, but only in a very particular light. It was very hush-hush, and there was a lot of shame around it. I grew up during a huge abstinence movement, too, so sex was demonized. It was seen as a scandalous thing. But we all know it’s a healthy, human thing. It’s a beautiful thing in the right context, in a relationship where there’s trust. There are obviously ways that something natural and normal gets abused and becomes bad based on the beliefs of others or our circumstances, and it’s the same with money.

Money is just money, but we’ve either made it a good thing or a bad thing. We decide simply having it or not having it makes you a good or bad person. My husband worked for the church, and there are very strong beliefs in religious backgrounds around money. Within that context, I really thought being in lack was holy. I believed that if I was financially suffering, I was noble. I had this fear of being a materialistic person, of turning into a greedy buffoon like Scrooge McDuck, hiding in his vault of golden coins while people are out on the streets starving. 

Suffering for Success

I had other beliefs, too. I believed you had to work REALLY hard and pay your dues to make money. It doesn’t get to come easy to you – it requires blood, sweat, and tears. I believed you had to work hard until you grew old and then you retired. And maybe then you could enjoy your money… 

I remember my hustle mentality; I’d work 70-hour weeks, sometimes until two in the morning. I’d fall asleep face-first on my laptop, wake up at 6 am, and do it all over again. I truly believed success was owed to me because I was suffering. And when success didn’t come to me in the way I thought it should, I became resentful. I felt deeply wronged. Here’s the thing: I believe in sweat equity. I do believe in diligence, but in a healthy way. You don’t need to suffer for success.

What does “rich” mean to you?

About 15 years ago, I saw someone holding the book, Rich Dad Poor Dad. I looked at that book and am ashamed to admit that I made a judgment call about that person. Because the word “rich” was in the title, I automatically assumed they were greedy. But what if being rich is an outcome of being impactful and serving people on a large scale? You can be rich in relationships, rich in time, rich with your family… I actually don’t think there is a number attached to the word “rich”. How freeing is that? Have you attached a number to it?

I grew up in a middle-class household. While I am deeply grateful for my upbringing and the blessings I had, I didn’t realize how fortunate I was growing up until other people started making comments like, “It must be nice!” or “Did daddy get that for you?”. Then, money became something I was ashamed of. I felt very undeserving, like it was something I had to apologize for. Even later in life, I felt like I had to prove myself. This is where my workaholic tendencies started to take shape. I thought if I worked myself to the bone, no one could say I was undeserving of what I had. I was overworking myself to hide my shame. Some of you have a different story than mine. Maybe you were teased for not having money or wearing hand-me-downs, and it has shaped your beliefs around having money.

Healing Thoughts about Money

Money doesn’t change who you are; it magnifies the person you already are.

I want to put money in the hands of generous, charitable people that want to make a difference in the world. I realized I need to “grow my giving muscle” as my husband says, by giving to others now, no matter my income. Money doesn’t change you – money is neutral. We’ve attached so much meaning to it, but it’s just an exchange of value, a way of expressing services rendered. 

Money is just paper.

If you were to sit down and think about money, wealth, and scarcity, what rules do you have? I want you to think of how you would show up in the world, how you would serve people and love people, if your brain wasn’t preoccupied with worries around how you’re going to pay that bill. 

When I think about the time when I was struggling over the price of organic milk, I think of how much of my mental bandwidth was totally consumed by money problems. I was stressed, exhausted, and depleted. I was less emotionally available in my marriage, relationships, and as a mom. True wealth is when you are free to give to the world and others in whatever capacity you desire, and that looks different to every person.

You don’t have to have money to make money. 

You have to have money to make money. That was a rule I carried around with me for a long time. If you’re without money and you choose this belief, you will always choose to be helpless because you’ve put yourself in an impossible situation. The truth is, you have to have a heart for others, a lot of grit, and a lot of resilience to make money. You have to have the ability to solve a problem, and you have to love and serve people. If you focus on your impact deeply and you seek to serve others, using your gifts and your potential to the fullest, income is going to be a byproduct of that.

Your income is always a product of your impact.

If you have this belief that wealthy people are bad people, and you’re also coveting that top rank in your company,  your brain won’t let you get to that income because it feels like it’s in moral violation of yourself. It helped me to sit down with my goals and determine who I would help and how I would share my resources with others. Determining how we can serve people fights the idea in your brain that you’re going to be a bad person with money. Do you feel like money compromises your spirituality? It only will if you let it! And why would you let it? It’s important to bring out the beliefs around money because if you don’t heal your money thoughts, your old money beliefs are going to sneak in when you actually have money.

What if a financial goal is just a measure of impact? What if a million dollars is also a thousand lives changed? Then it becomes socially acceptable. But as soon as you attach a number to it, you are greedy. So instead of a million dollars, why not just believe it’s a thousand people you’re trying to serve? You want to help a thousand people achieve their own time and financial freedom to show up as a more empowered mom, wife, sister, friend, and member of the community.

Assumptions about Poverty and Wealth

I don’t believe people who are in poverty are lazy. I actually think they are some of the hardest working people out there. I also know millionaires who are the hardest working people. So what’s the difference between them? Sometimes it’s different belief stories, and some of the beliefs stem from social constructs that are very hard to undo. Some people have serious socio-economic beliefs that have been ingrained into them since birth, and sometimes they are in systems that are very hard to undo. I’m continuing to work on and get educated in this area, and I’m not the expert. But, I think it goes to show we have to stop making assumptions about people with money and without money. 

When we stop making assumptions, I believe we can start making amazing changes and show up in the world more powerfully. So whether it’s a million dollars or a thousand lives changed, it’s really just about service, isn’t it? Let that sink in, and then go out there and serve. Make an impact. 

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