Who Owns You Really?


 

Abstract:
 

This might sound crazy. After all, if you’re watching this video, you’re almost certainly not a slave physically owned by anyone else!
 

I’m not talking about actual slavery, but entirely different, subtle forms of ownership. In our day and age, this usually happens through money.
 

Your mission today is to become aware of who owns you, and then minimise the outside influence.
 
 

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Task 1: Become clear on who owns you

 

Of course we are no longer physically owned by someone who can literally buy and sell us, harm and even kill us. And yet there are people and organisations that have a claim on parts of your life.
 

If you’re employed, large parts of your time belong to your employer. If you pay off a mortgage or buy anything in installments, you have effectively given away power.
 

This isn’t always a bad thing, but it’s something you need to be aware of. Create a list of everything you’re paying off or owe.
 

who owns you

Photo by Christopher Harris on unsplash.com


 

Task 2: Take back ownership

 

A bank can take fairly drastic measures against you if you default on loan payments or a mortgage. Here are some steps you can take to gain back control.
 

Check the list from Task 1 so you’re fully aware of who owns you – or part of you and your time.
 

  • Separate the wheat from the chaff: For example, if you have a small child, they have a claim on you but that’s not ownership, it’s a natural and temporary duty of care.
  • Follow the money: Some forms of lending are good (mortgages can make a lot of sense, depending on the circumstances). But if you live in your overdraft or have loans for items, you need to re-assess.
  • Get smart about your money: read books, take coaching, go to a financial advisor. Create a plan on how to take back control bit by bit. It won’t happen overnight, so you need long-term support.

Does Money Kill Your Joy?


 

Abstract:
 

In my yearly survey, Wild Spirits regularly tell me that money is their biggest obstacle to success. Yet my money-related features are always the least viewed of all. One member of the Wild Spirits community told me: “You’re all about joy and passion, Sibylle, and to me, finances are the opposite of these things.”
 

I relate. In fact, I used to think the exact same thing, before I found a better way. Your mission today is to make finances a passion, or at least, to bring joy to your money management.
 
 

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Task 1: How does money kill your joy?

 

No, I won’t let you get away with “money just sucks”. Money buys life-saving medical equipment, trips to exciting new places, and tickets to your favourite musician’s concert.
 

Money is brilliant.
 

D’you know when money sucks? When there isn’t enough of it. It’s time you get to the reason for it – not your low-paying job or the cost of childcare, the real reason.
 

  • How was money talked about when you were a child?
  • What do you think about rich people?
  • What difference would an extra 100,000 make to the passion(s) in your life?

 

Does Money Kill Your Joy?

Photo by Pine Watt on unsplash.com


 

Task 2: Rewrite and reframe

 

It’s time to rewrite your money story. Look at your beliefs and start poking holes into them.
 

Then, it’s time to associate finances with joy. There are many ways of doing this; here are a few suggestions:
 

  • Get online banking and check your savings regularly, watching them grow with the interest.
  • Make a celebration of your monthly budgeting session with tea, candles, a treat, some quality time with your partner, dreams of the future etc.
  • Get a beautiful new wallet in gorgeous colours to give your cash a pretty home.
  • Try the envelope system of budgeting (google it) and get pretty colourful envelopes for it.
  • Have a monthly “Play” budget to blow on something fun.

Working Too Much And Still Broke?


 

Abstract:
 

In my 20s, I was broke pretty much all the time. I lived in my overdraft.
 

As I grew older and the jobs I worked in got more demanding, I slipped into a cycle of overspending, being broke, working even harder, being exhausted, and overspending to compensate. Many are familiar with this downward spiral, but can’t find their way out.
 

Your mission: Recognise the pattern and turn it around.
 
 

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Task 1: Come clean

 

You may protest that you really don’t earn enough. This might be true. But if you’re like most people, you probably earn more now than you did when you’d just finished your training or degree. Your standard of life simply went up with your income.
 

Also recognise that overspending, being broke and then having to work even more is exactly what capitalism wants us to do. It’s built on ever-increasing spending. You’re not stupid or alone, you’re still broke because you’re meant to be.
 
 

Task 2: No more “broke” mentality

 

I hate the term frugality. It smacks of lack and self-denial. I want you to recognise that your living above your means is what actually leads to self-denial, in the shape of ever more work and pressure.
 

This work goes beyond a video. You need to continuously work on your money mindset and change it from scarcity to abundance.
 

Working Too Hard And Still Broke?

Photo by Nolan Issac on unsplash.com


 

Task 3: Joy in abundance

 

When I downsized my life, it improved in every way. I had time, rest, space to pursue my passions, and enough money for everything.
 

Here are three steps to get there:
 

  1. Stop buying stuff. It’s as simple as that. You don’t need new clothes, or a gadget you’ve never needed before. Borrow, swap, reuse!
  2. Determine two or three “luxuries” you can’t do without. Consciously decide you’ll keep them, and feel good about yourself.
  3. Determine what lights you up and allocate money to it. There’s nothing more important, and you’ll no longer need impulse-purchases when you’re lit up with joy.

4 Steps To Take If There’s Never Enough Time/Money

never enough

There are people who always rush around. “Lots going on!” is there every other sentence. They’re involved in a million different activities, and while every one of these activities sounds great, they seem to be piling up to an overwhelming workload.
 

Others are always strapped for cash. I used to be one of those. In fact, I’ve currently taken on a big financial commitment which strains my finances and will continue to do so until June. Sometimes it takes me back to the way I used to feel, all the time. Then I remind myself that I’ve indeed learned my lessons and am doing this willingly! It was different years ago, when I had no control over my finances at all and there was never enough.
 

You probably know at least one person who never has enough time or money. Maybe you’re like that yourself? When you look around yourself, do you perhaps wonder how others manage to make big purchases, or take time to create art or get a lot done? And at the same time, you seem to be permanently behind schedule, disorganised, and a little out of breath? Or alternatively, there seems to be “a lot of month left at the end of the money” every time?
 

It might be time to find the root causes of this phenomenon. Once you know what you’re dealing with, you can take measures to turn things around.
 
 

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Don’t play the blame game

 

Obviously, everyone has had busy times in their lives, and unless you were born with the proverbial silver spoon in your mouth, you’ve likely been short of cash at least once, too. Neither is a reason for worry! It’s just when this becomes a chronic state of things that you should get suspicious.
 

If there’s never enough time or money in your life, it’s an indication of an underlying issue. It’s usually to do with beliefs we hold, either consciously or unconsciously.
 

Before I continue, it’s important for you to understand that you’re not “to blame” for what’s going on. Beliefs are usually formed in childhood and become second nature to us. Most of the time, we assume that what we believe is simply “reality”.
 

There’s a big difference between taking the responsibility to own your beliefs, and blaming yourself for them. Taking ownership means you’re in control. You’re empowered to change things. Blaming yourself is counterproductive and simply not fair. In other words, you couldn’t help creating those beliefs of yours, but you can refuse to continue giving them power over you.
 
 

Taking back control

 

The most effective way to get rid of self-sabotaging beliefs is to replace them with functional ones. You can do this by following the steps below.
 

  1. Identify your belief by watching your thought and speech patterns. Do you always say you can’t afford something? Are you always “in a hurry”? The phrases you most often use around the subjects of time or money, are likely expressions of your belief.
  2.  

  3. Challenge the belief. Ask yourself: “Is this really always true?” Find examples of when the belief clearly wasn’t true. For example, if you believe money is hard to come by, remember the time when you were given money for your birthday or got an unexpected pay raise or tax return. Undermine your dysfunctional belief as best you can.
  4.  

  5. For a space of about three weeks, challenge yourself every time you think or express your belief. Stop yourself immediately. Then speak (out loud, if at all possible) the belief you’d like to replace the dysfunctional one with. Example: “There’s never enough ti… -stop! I mean, I choose not to make the time for this right now.”
     

  6. To speed up the process, you can also use your new belief as an affirmation. At least twice a day, say your new belief out loud. Be sure it’s in the present tense and contains only positive words, as your subconscious can’t distinguish between “will” and “won’t”. For example, make it: “I have plenty of money” rather than “I’m not broke”.

 

Remember, it takes a minimum of 21 days to create a new habit, and the same goes for establishing a new belief. In the beginning, you’ll feel like you’re lying when you speak your new belief. Stick with it, and you’ll notice that it starts to feel like the truth after a while.
 

In order for the changes to stick, you need to follow up your inner work with action in the real work. Learn time management and money management and commit to putting them into practice. Life is too short to deal with a constant state of lack.

3 Steps To Dramatically Change Your Finances Through Focus

finances focus

I’m not exactly rich right now. Two years ago, I’d finished paying off old debts and made a conscious decision to live and to pursue my passions. What followed were a few major expenses. I got my teeth fixed (around 3,000 EUR) and enrolled in business courses (2,700 EUR). I finally got into traditional archery and swordfighting (for which I bought equipment far exceeding 1,000 EUR).
 

Add to that the fact that I took a substantial cut in salary when I downsized my life, plus a few unforeseen expenses, and you have a fairly skint Sibylle who once again owes some money. Yet when I think back to the time I went broke in 2004, I realise it couldn’t be more different this time around.
 

For one thing, I owed a lot more back then. But the main difference is that I had no idea about finances and no idea how to deal with the mess. I was scared and helpless. Now, while my finances are a little strained, I still know exactly what’s going on. I went into this knowingly and don’t regret a single expense, because they were all necessary for my well-being and/or happiness. Most of all, I know without a shadow of a doubt, how and when I’ll have every last penny paid back and a comfortable financial “cushion” once again.
 

In short, I’m now educated about finances. I’ve also developed something which enhances everything in life, including finances: focus.
 
 

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Finances revolutionised

 

To learn about finances, I spent years going to workshops around the world and doing every program offered online. I read dozens of books on money management and found through trial and error, which of the systems I learned made sense. Therefore, I regularly write about money in the newsletter, and I hope with all my heart that it’s helpful.
 

The most important thing about finances is to tackle them on two fronts: Money management, which is about knowing where your money goes and how to budget it, is step 1. Step 2 is a mindset which is as free as possible from learned ideas about money being scarce, or only coming to bad, greedy people, and all these other things we pick up from childhood onwards.
 
 

Where is your focus?

 

You’ve probably heard about the law of attraction, which states that you manifest in your life whatever you focus on. Focus is what occupies your mind most of the time. Now with an average of 6,000 thoughts that each of us has every day, it’s practically impossible to police this process. Fortunately, there’s a shortcut: Your emotions, which are caused by your thoughts.
 

Ever felt pretty good, and then you remembered something awful someone said to you, or your child being bullied, and after a minute or two you feel awful? Nothing outward happened, you just thought of something negative, and it changed everything.
 

To find out where your focus is, check in with your emotions. Set 3-4 alarms on your phone throughout the day. Whenever you hear the alarm, ask yourself how you feel. If the answer is anything other than: “Wonderful!” at least half the time, your focus is not on things that make you happy.
 

If you consciously adjust your thoughts 3-4 times a day, you will form a habit over time. Think thoughts of gratitude, or think of someone you love. It takes a while, so stick with it for at least a month or two! The change will be dramatic.
 
 

Make it work for your finances

 

Here’s how you can use the above process in relation to your money situation.
 

1. When you “check” in, specifically ask yourself how you feel about your finances. If you feel awful, or even just uncomfortable, your focus is likely on bills, expenses, or debts. Adjust this towards thinking of the money you receive, however little it is.
 

2. Create a “giving” fund of ideally about 5% of your income. If you can’t afford it, start with 10 or 20 bucks a month. Donate these to a cause close to your heart. Whenever you do this, send along your love.
 

3. Also check in with how you feel whenever you spend money. If you feel anxious or worried, stop yourself. Say: “I happily give xxx EUR/$ for this” or, as Marie Forleo suggests: “There’s more where that came from.”
 

These may seem like small steps, but they will turn around your focus. You’ll move away from scarcity and regret, and towards abundance and security. Your cash flow will follow.