Updated: Oct 5
Our beliefs about how the world works were beginning to form when we were little kids -- that is true whether we are talking about money, relationships, or how to behave in the world.
Have you ever noticed that the children of worriers tend to be worriers? The children of short-tempered parents tend to have short tempers? The children of the chill are pretty chill?
When your five-year-old self saw habits practiced -- whether your mom and dad were balancing a checkbook, going to the gym, or spending a rainy afternoon reading -- those behaviors made you understand how to be.
We all believe things that are untrue. It starts when we are really little and see something or hear something and in our five-year-old minds that is simply how the world works. When I was little, all the women in my life complained if they had didn't have a fast metabolism and couldn't be a size two without trying. For years, I believed that skinny women had no problems. This went on well into adulthood. (Truth be told, there's a part of me that still believes it even though I know it is ridiculous.)
These beliefs are not just in the subconscious mind, they are bodily -- even spiritual. They created the world as we know it to be.
When we were kids we learned about how the world works by watching what grownups do, how they react, and what they say to each other. Some of those beliefs are so old we don't even realize that it is something that could be challenged. It is like air -- it is a fact of life we don't see or question.
But what if those beliefs are all that is limiting you? And, they're not even true.
So, how do you find what these could be? Do a little digging into your childhood memories.
What is your earliest childhood memory about money?
Did you have a parent whose stress and worry was palpable whenever bills were due?
Did you have a parent who never knew how much they had and were surprised at the end of every month?
Did your parents pinch pennies and always feel like there wasn't enough?
Did you have parents who would argue about child support and alimony in front of you?
Did you have wealthy parents who told you not to flaunt your good fortune?
Now, think about your own emotions when money is the topic. Did your parents' mistakes or good examples (yes, that can happen too) help or hinder you? Do you tie your human value or success to money? Do you feel good or bad about it? If you feel bad about it, how can you reframe your childhood memory and your belief to feel good about it?
The Actual Truth About Money:
It is a blessing and a tool -- that's it.
It isn't evil and it won't make you evil.
It isn't something to hate or love any more than you love or hate your socks or your lawnmower. It is a tool with a useful purpose.
It doesn't determine your lovability or integrity. All people are lovable. And your actions determine your integrity.
Having a lot of it might draw attention to you, but it won't change who you are. It will just shine a little light on who you are because of that attention. If you cultivate and end up with an abundance of Fame, Beauty, Talent, or Intelligence they will also highlight who you are to others.
And don't forget that like Fame, Beauty, Talent, and Intelligence, it is a blessing not a burden and it can be cultivated.
I would love to hear any "ahas" you had doing this exercise. Let me know what you realized you believed about money at firstname.lastname@example.org
I found the books below to be extremely helpful in discovering my own money blocks. They give helpful tips to stop believing untrue, and self-limiting beliefs about money and other parts of life. I highly recommend them all.
(*the following are paid affiliate links)
*Daniella Bozzone is a habit and mindset writer and a private investor. She is a regular contributor to ThriveGlobal.