Financial planning and money coaching do not necessarily go hand-in-hand. Sometimes people just want the facts, ma’am…where do I put what money and into which bucket, thankyouverymuch. However, when people can’t seem to save money for whatever reason, it’s usually not logistical – it’s emotional. Energetic. Behavioral.
Sometimes I can help people identify their attitudes and behaviors that are messing with their money success, and sometimes people don’t want to hear it. The one thing I always find is that when a person recognizes and understands how the energy they’re bringing to the situation affects the outcome, they’re much more likely to be willing and able to change it.
Your attitude creates illusions
Paying attention to my energy helped me see what a control freak I was… and helped me see how money and energy combine to fuel “control” illusions in other people — about themselves, relationships, and business. For example:
- Mary thinks that her job that makes her miserable is the only way she can make money. Her spouse agrees with her.
- John thinks his divorce is 100% his fault (it’s not), so he doesn’t want to keep any of the assets that he and his wife built together.
- Perry wants her husband to earn more money, so she tries to help him with his work. And then gets frustrated and resentful when he doesn’t follow through.
- Brian thinks that he needs to “help” his wife with her job search. He creates tasks and “to do” items for her because he *knows* she wouldn’t get anything done otherwise.
These thoughts — that they need to control their spouses for the desired outcome — make them unhappy. I see the beginnings of marital strife (they might not even notice). And, in fact, this could be any relationship where money is involved, not just marriage. You think the issues are about money, but they aren’t. It’s really all about energy. Reality: your spouse can’t be invested in where you work; otherwise, your job becomes more important than your feelings and relationship.
When financial mistakes are made, each spouse is 50% responsible… the “active” person usually gets blamed, but the “passive” person acquiesced. You can’t “help” your spouse “be” more successful; then their professional actions or inaction become more important than who s/he is as a life partner.
Disappointment over someone else’s professional obstacles is an intimacy killer. How do you change this dynamic? Start by realizing there is nothing wrong with the current situation and look at the energy you’re bringing.Understanding your relationship with money and your energy is an exercise in self-awareness, and let's face it: self-awareness makes you better at everything. Click To Tweet
Getting tuned in to your thoughts and attitudes is the first step to realigning yourself to where you might be wasting energy. In my experience, when someone can detach from the outcome and stop blaming someone else for how things are going, they can find a solution to their money problems fairly easily. It may take work to solve the problem, but the solution comes without a fight. But when they just can’t see a way out, that’s when it’s clear to me that the so-called “money problem” isn’t about the money at all — it’s about the energy.
Self-awareness is your superpower. Understanding your relationship with money and your energy is an exercise in deep self-awareness, and let’s face it: self-awareness makes you better at everything. Habit researchers talk about the concept of a keystone habit, one that triggers many other good habits to follow. People who exercise regularly, for example, are more likely to also eat better, save money, and improve other habits.
I believe self-awareness is another of these keystone habits. Once you begin practicing self-examination and self-awareness, it becomes second nature. Suddenly you’re looking at your motivation around everything, not just money issues. For me, it manifested as a healthier lifestyle and healthier relationships — not to mention a healthier bank account.
For more useful tools and tactics, check out our library of free resources so you know that once and for all, your money is aligned with your life. Or, if you’d prefer to chat in person, click here to make an appointment for a free consult right now.