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.

Monday Sparkles: Which Money Type Are You?

Money Coach Sibylle

Some would have us believe that we are purely rational beings, but that’s quite simply not true. If we were, we’d all eat healthy, get enough sleep, and be rich and happy! Money seems to be an area where we are particularly irrational, although most of us are completely unaware of this and think their way of dealing with money is universal. This belief is at the root of many a marital row!

There are many different systems of “money mindsets” or personalities, with as many as 8 or 10 distinct personalities identified in each. Personally, I’m always in favour of simpler, clearer systems, so here’s what I’ve found in my studies and my work with clients. I’m outlining them below; you’ll probably recognise yourself in at least one of them, as many people are blends between at least two types.
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Saver

If you are a saver, you like to hoard your money. The thought of the proverbial Rainy Day keeps you from taking financial risks. Investing in yourself or taking out a loan to finance something you really want, or an education or course (or Coaching), seems reckless and frivolous to you.

The advantage of being a saver is that you’re unlikely to ever get into financial trouble. The downside is that you may deny yourself and those around you the joy of adventure and risk-taking.

In order to challenge yourself to become more daring, make a finance plan allocating percentages of your monthly income to things like fun and personal development, as well as gifts for others. Commit to spending that money every month (or the accumulated amounts every three months or so). Money makes you safe, yes, but it can also provide the means for you to grow and evolve, and enjoy life.

 

Spender

Money never stays with you for long. As soon as you come into any amount of money, you find ways to spend it. No matter how much money you make, you never have anything left in your account at the end of each month.

This money type knows how to enjoy themselves. They are generous and love treating others as well as themselves. However, larger financial goals which require saving up, tend to elude them, and if anything untoward happens, they are woefully unprepared and may find themselves penniless.

Perhaps you’re saying that you only buy what’s necessary, but that’s not really true, is it? Most spenders tend to “leak money” as I call it, by buying impulsively. You’ll think you can’t afford going after your passion(s) or sign up for that course (or for Coaching), but the harsh truth is: As long as you have money for a TV license, for buying clothes or for any number of subscriptions from Netflix to the gym, you actually have money. It’s just a matter of allocating it differently.

Like the Saver, you need to make a budget and stick to it. Be sure to allocate plenty of cash to fun, so you’ll actually stick to it, but also include saving.

 

Avoider

This is the type who will tell you that money isn’t important. They dislike dealing with money, never so much as glance at their bank statements, and leave bills unopened for weeks. Spending isn’t a problem for them, until they find to their surprise that they’ve exhausted their bank account including the overdraft because they had no idea how much they had in the first place.

Avoiders are free of worries and easy-going when it comes to money. Sooner or later, though, they will run into trouble because flying blind only works as long as there are no obstacles.

In order to come to grips with being an Avoider, you will have to force yourself to actually deal with your finances. Set a date every month to review your finances, or if you’re in a relationship, involve your partner so you can hold each other accountable. Then, make a monthly budget and stick to it. This isn’t stuffy and unadventurous, it’s the key to the adventures you most want in life, as you’ll be able to actually afford them when the opportunity comes along.
Money habits are hard to change, as they are very deeply rooted in our personalities and our perception of ourselves. It’s worth doing the work, though, as it will put you in control of your life like no other change of habits will. Get your finances sorted (if you want to turn around your situation fast and with dramatic results, contact me about money Coaching), and then do exactly what you want in life! If you start today, you won’t know yourself a year from now.

Monday Sparkles: Breaking Free

Some weeks ago, I wrote about what it means to be financially free. My motivation for this came from the new Coaching program I’m working on, “Wild and (Financially) Free“, which focuses on getting enough money for our passion(s) – to pay for any expenses and to create the necessary space and time in our lives.

Money can translate into freedom in very real terms, but it’s not the only aspect, and that’s how I had the idea to this article today. I’m going to explore different paths to your personal freedom, and I’m also making a strong case against anyone else trying to tell you what your freedom should look like.

This includes freedom without any money. It may seem counter-intuitive for me to talk about this, as a Coach who helps people achieve better cash flow, but it’s actually very much in line with what Coaching is all about: Empowering the client to achieve their dreams, instead of simply teaching them to reach the same dreams the Coach is pursuing.

 

The meaning of freedom

If you ask ten different people what freedom actually is, you’ll probably get at least eight different answers. There are so many ways to be free. Before I delve into definitions, I’d like to state the rather sobering fact that nobody actually is completely free. We all live in the context of society, our loved ones, or at the very least we are restrained by the living conditions of our planet and our basic physical needs. Freedom as an absolute doesn’t exist, and that’s where the contradictory definitions come from – they are all equally subjective, and so they reflect what’s important to an individual, rather than a universal truth.

Having said that, here are some ways to look at freedom:

Financial freedom. If you remember that article a while ago, being financially free means to be able to live comfortably off the interest of one’s financial assets without having to touch the invested capital. I’m starting out with this one because it’s the only term on this list which actually has a clear, verifiable definition, but there are still a few subjective aspects to this one as well.

To be financially free of course means that you can do what you wish with your days, and that is definitely freedom. if you are, however, stuck in a scarcity mindset and feel the need to constantly increase your wealth to still feel secure, you aren’t free at all. Even for the extremely wealthy, mindset determines the fulfillment they feel around their money.

Freedom from finances. Now this one is probably not going to be relevant for you, as you are fairly certainly using a computer or other electronic device to read this, and that implies you live very much “on the grid” and as part of our regular bill-paying, grocery shopping society, like I do. Getting away from all that is a fairly effective way to free yourself, though, and so I thought I’d mention it. I personally know people who either on their own or as part of an eco-village project, are growing their own food and making their own things, at least for the most part. They have become almost or completely independent of money, jobs, and consumerism.

Freedom to live a joyful life. This is the one I’ve chosen for myself. I would love financial freedom but have decided that I don’t want it enough to do the work required. Instead, I have chosen to grow my Coaching business, which is my calling, and to use my financial savvy to make sure that I’ll always have sufficient money for my passions and to have an ecstatically joyful life every single day. It’s a viable choice, either as a temporary stage in life or a permanent solution; I’m honestly not sure which one it’ll be for me.

This approach is all about the freedom to do as I please, within the limits set by earning money and organising my life. It works for me, as I couldn’t do archery or swordfighting or dancing all day anyway, and I love both my daytime job and my Coaching business.

Your own situation is just that, your own. We all come from different backgrounds, face different challenges and enjoy different advantages. What’s important is that you understand that “freedom” is a subjective term and up to your own interpretation, because frankly, living according to someone else’s idea of freedom defeats the very idea behind being free.

Nothing’s more worth figuring out than your own version of freedom. It’s precisely that which I work on with my clients, and why I chose this particular focus of my Coaching.
​​The above is the lead article in this week’s Monday Sparkles. Join the tribe to receive the full newsletter, exclusive offers and insider info (100% spam free), by filling in the short form below. You will get:

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The Money Spending Trap

 

Have you ever noticed the obvious contradictions in experts’ money and abundance advice? Some tell you to save money above all else, others insist that in order to be abundant, you need to live as though you already had material wealth, and treat yourself to luxuries.

When I embarked on my journey to learn about finances and change my money mindset, I often ended up tearing my hair trying to figure out which strategy to use. Remembering how confusing I found it all, was one of the reasons I decided to create my new “Wild and (Financially) Free” program which will be launched next month.

I thought I’d give you a bit of a sneak peak into the contents of the program.

 

Save or “be abundant”?

As usual, it’s not a question of either/or. Instead, you need to go a little deeper and differenciate. Here are a few points to consider:

Saving doesn’t necessarily mean denying yourself what you’d like to have. T. Harv Eker taught me to think of saving as “paying myself”. When I put away a certain amount every time I have money coming in, I think of it as the salary I pay myself.

Spending doesn’t have to mean going over the top either. If you spend money on yourself and things you love, it can make you happier and feeling well-cared for. The trick is to know what to spend money on – simply throwing cash at everything which takes your fancy, is definitely not the way to go.

There is a fine line between impulse purchases and things you truly love. Impulse purchases are pretty things which catch your eye, online or in a sale. You get a momentary rush of happiness from buying it, but it wears off quickly. If you, however, purchase something related to your passion(s), you will get enjoyment from it long-term. These are the things which truly make you feel abundant.

 

The multi-passionate issue

There’s another complication if you happen to be a multi-passionate like me. The issue is that there are simply so many things we love! Applying the filter I suggested in the previous section can still get you in trouble as a multi-passionate; you could always justify your purchases because they aren’t a fleeting wish but represent something you are actually passionate about.

The answer to this issue is prioritisation. Even the biggest multi-passionate cannot focus on everything at once. Here’s an example: For me, the last 12 months were about following my passion for historical combat and archery. In order to get going, I had to spend money on equipment and training, and so everything else took a back seat.

I tend to video the fights at our swordfighting club’s tournaments, and for this I use my iPhone which has a surprisingly good camera. A friend once commented that I should buy a “proper” video camera and I told him that it’s just not in my budget right now. He said it would cost no more than a few hundred bucks, but the thing is, I have so many different passions to spend “only a few hundred” Euro on that I need to draw a line somewhere. Maybe in a year or two, I’ll focus on photography and video, which I also love, but right now my budget is spoken for elsewhere.

 

The key to it all

In my experience, the best way to keep your expenses in balance and be able to both “pay yourself” through saving, and treat yourself by spending, is to allocate your money by percentages. You need to know your fixed expenses every month and figure out which percentage of your income is needed for these. Let’s say it’s 70%. Then all you need to do is allocate the remaining 30%.

You could reserve 10% for gifts, 5% for donatios, 5% as “Play Money” and 10% for saving. Play Money means an amount you can safely spend even on impulse purchases if you so choose. It’s yours to blow, every single month.

With this system, you achieve two things: You will never overspend on anything, because the budget is fixed in advance, and you will grow more abundant as your income increases. Ever notice how every time you get a pay rise, you still don’t seem to have any money left at the end of the month? The truth is that when money is available, we will spend it – unless we have a system in place which allocates a certain percentage to a certain budget.

Make sense? I suggest you try it out. It’s remarkable what peace of mind a simple system like this can bring.

The above is the lead article in this week’s Monday Sparkles. Join the tribe to receive the full newsletter, exclusive offers and insider info (100% spam free), by filling in the short form below. You will get:

  • A weekly newsletter with free Coaching magic every Monday
  • Special offers exclusive to subscribers
  • Insider “behind the scenes” info about Wild Spirits Coaching
  • A free worksheet and the valuable “One-Year Goals Workbook”