The Money Dance
By Mimi Doe
The University of Michigan conducted a survey. They wanted to study what effect money had on people’s lives. Three of their findings:
What do people worry about most? Money! What makes people the happiest? Money! What makes people the unhappiest? Money!
Money, and our issues around money, are full and deep and intense and often impenetrable. We all have a story to tell about our money dance.
Mary, a single mother of two, was brought up by her grandmother because her own single mother couldn’t support them. She lives with the fear of losing her daughters as a result of her unsteady income. One father of three battles his demons with money–demons passed along to him by his father. When he was thirteen-years-old his father went bankrupt and lost the farm that had been in the family for generations. As this boy grew up, he had anxiety around money issues and avoided risks of any kind.
We may not inherit money but we do inherit an approach to money from our family of origin. Let’s take responsibility for our prosperity consciousness, our money mentality, so we can blast away the wall that’s keeping abundance from us. When we are alert to our old money programming we can rewrite the script. Not only will our kids get a healthier example but, by becoming aware of money’s role in our childhoods, we can tame old images and fears. We can choose, today, to allow and accept prosperity into our lives.
- Be aware of how you speak about money to your children: “We can’t afford this” or “I’ll never have enough.” Is there guilt associated with spending? “I’ve spent a lot of money on your piano lessons, so keep practicing.”
- Give your kids responsibility for using their own money early on. It helps them maintain a balanced perspective on value. My daughter loved special frozen drinks from a local coffee shop. I began to feel the expense wasn’t worth the treat and suggested she use her own money. “It’s totally not worth $3.50” was her wise response. We concocted our own drink at home.
- Take a look at what you might be trading for money–time with your kids, self nurturing, pursuing a dream. Is there a way you could scale back your expenses to spend time on what you value now?
- Money is a balance buster for many of us. We don’t know the best way to manage the money we earn and haven’t made the time to learn. Get a grip on family finances by setting up a system for paying bills on time (I like the Quicken software program), saving for college and retirement (automatic savings plans are pure magic), handling debt (find a professional to help you create a plan), and meeting your financial goals (you’ve got to make these goals before you can meet them). Once you are in control of your money, you won’t feel thrown off balance.
- Are you avoiding taking responsibility for money because it illicit feelings of fear, stress, scarcity? Schedule a time each month when you and your partner can review your current financial situation. Create goals and strategies. Is saving for your child’s college tuition just a dream? Even if it’s an old coffee can for collecting change, just making the dream concrete opens the way for the flow of money.
- Eliminate debt and find exhilarating freedom. Debt can be an anchor around our “financial psyche”–dragging us down in all areas of our lives. Create a debt repayment plan and move on with your life.
- Prosperity is more than just money – it’s a way of thinking. Open your mind and heart to receive all the abundance the universe is waiting to shower upon you today.