Today, I’d like to write about one of the most taboo subjects around. No, not non-monogamous relationships; not politics or religion, either. I’m referring to… money.
For some reason, it seems to be more acceptable to talk about STDs than about money. My own experience mirrors this: Whenever I publish an article or video on the subject, it gets a fairly low number of views. Why, then, do I continue addressing it?
The answer is: Because it’s important and because you’ll never be able to truly prioritise your passion(s) unless you sort out your money mindset and the actual management of your finances and put them on rock-solid feet. Another reason is that it’s utterly ridiculous to shun a subject so mundane, one that’s so vital for our lives.
I’m going to look into the reasons why people resist the subject. Then I’ll give you rock-solid ways out of the taboo and towards a healthy, even joyful money management.
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Why is money (management) a dirty word?
I have googled it, read books and psychological articles, and talked to literally hundreds of people about the subject. It’s part of my Coaching programs, after all! From all of this, several trends have emerged:
– The first is discomfort. People are embarrassed to talk about money for manifold reasons. We don’t learn about money management in school, so most people don’t know the first thing about budgeting, saving, or investing. The older they get, the more uncomfortable they are about this, and end up avoiding the subject altogether.
– There also seems to be a remnant of an aristocratic arrogance in the sense of: “Money is something you have, not something you talk about”. This one is particularly baffling, because clearly the only people who profit from this kind of attitude are employers who pay their employees unfair or vastly different salaries. Nobody ever finds out because of the taboo.
– Related to the second point, but in contrast to it, is the view of rich people as bad and greedy. This attitude is widespread – just check out memes on social media! It’s not surprising that people should wish to avoid being seen as someone to whom money is important.
– The last reason is embarrassment. People feel vaguely ashamed for not having or earning more and don’t want to admit they don’t have money management figured out. Others are ashamed because they earn a lot, which feeds into the previous point: They are afraid to be seen as one of the “filthy rich”.
Reading the above, where do you fit? I have yet to come across a human with a naturally healthy attitude to money. We all fall into one, or even several, of the categories I listed. Knowing yours will give you an advantage in moving forward.
The effects of the taboo
I’ve already mentioned some of the effects: people being embarrassed about even having money, because it’s supposed to be a dirty and immoral thing. Injustice and inequality are being perpetuated.
On the personal level, however, the tragedy is that so many people never get educated about their finances and will always regard the subject of money from an emotional place of either fear, disgust, or avoidance.
Barring a move to an off-the-grid lifestyle in a functioning community where barter still flourishes, you’re going to be forced to deal with money pretty much daily for the rest of your days. When you look at the above three emotions, is this really how you want to feel about something so central in your life?
Might it be time to turn things around? Might it be time to face the subject, change your beliefs about it, and learn the joy of money?
Tackling your money mindset
You’ve already got a head start on this process by finding out what your negative beliefs about money are (see “Why is money a dirty word?” above). Now in order to get rid of a belief, you need to do the following:
Weaken the existing belief: Imagine your belief is a table resting on four legs. You’ll now proceed to break off these legs by finding tangible proof that your belief isn’t true. For example, if you think all rich people are awful, go and look up the amazing good some people do (such as buying up whole stretches of rainforest for the sole purpose of preservation).
Replace it with a new, helpful belief: Now find a belief that will take the place of the one you’d like to let go of. If your belief was that rich people are awful, find something true like: “Many rich people are wonderful people who do a lot of good. Money makes people more of what they already are.”
Of course there are many other facets to creating an abundance mindset. Once you tackle your beliefs, you’re off to a great start, though.
Learning money management
Now that you’re working on your mindset, you need to also learn the nuts and bolts of financial management. There are many books on the subject, and if you’re subscribed to Wild Spirits News, you also get regular “Money Corner” tips and advice.
Set up a monthly budget that includes categories for fun stuff such as you passions. There should also be a percentage of your money reserved to be blown on silly things. The joy you’ll feel upon spending this money will in turn fuel your abundance mindset.
You can do courses, or learn from the ground up in my Wild Money program. It’s a combination of teaching you the principles of money management and investing on the one hand, and Coaching for an abundant, joyful mindset on the other. You probably never imagined that you’d approach finances with a happy, even playful attitude, and that you’d be better off for it! Come and try it out.
Whatever you do, please break the taboo about money. It’s okay to care about it. It’s okay to like money and enjoy it. It doesn’t make you a shallow person, unless you start valuing money for itself, rather than what it stands for and what you can do with it. All the real negativity around money starts when people put money before people or the planet, or seek to achieve power over others with it.
As long as you don’t do any of that, you’re free to enjoy money, buy yourself some luxuries, play and also give to others. And don’t forget to finance your passion(s), generously but within a solid budget. Your life will take on a sparkle it never had before.