6. Changing your mindset around self-worth, value and money.
I used to have the most disrespectful and unhealthy relationship with money. I actively despised money, called it all sorts of awful names, and blamed it for much of the worlds evils. I also believed that there wasn’t ever enough of it, and simultaneously tried to get rid of it as quickly as I earned it. Money and I were not friends.
Back then, I used to spend as much as I earned. It didn’t matter if I earned $500 a week or $2,000 a week. I would find amazingly creative ways to spend it. I bought $500 dresses that I never wore. I went to expensive dinners more often than necessary. And I flittered it away on meaningless things that made me feel better about myself for about a millisecond. I never got into debt, but I was often broke, even though my income was high.
It wasn’t until I started my own business and earned money with my own blood, sweat and tears, that I started to view it differently. Suddenly I realised that my relationship with money was just another reflection of the relationship I had with myself. Because I didn’t value myself, my time and my unique gifts; I didn’t value the money that I earned from those aspects of myself.
And let me tell you: running a business when you don’t value yourself = no money. My attitude had to change. And fast.
Out of nowhere I found myself researching about investing, and reading books about money. I’d listen to podcasts and eagerly eavesdrop on conversations about money. Caring and eagerly learning about money was something that I previously never thought I would ever do. Before this sharp turning point, I always thought I’d gracefully swan my way through life, without ever having to droop so low as to have to deal with the filthy topic of money. And yet, I knew that I wanted a financially successful, nay, even an over-flowingly abundant and prosperous life and business!
If I wanted my money story to change, I had to change.
Over a period of about a year, I had three major realisations that transformed my relationship with money, and as a result, instantly increased my income.
1. Money = self-worth.
How much money you have in your bank account, purse and hands is a direct reflection of how much you value yourself. What that means in simper terms is: the higher your self-esteem — the higher your bank balance. It all starts with you.
I had strong underlying beliefs that, as a woman, it was shameful to ask for money, to talk about money, and to put a numerical value on my efforts. I was told that, as a woman, you do things for free, and others will tell you what you are worth. It’s a terrible, out-dated and conflicted belief system, but when I look at the root of it, I see where it comes from.
I was partially raised by my Austrian grandmother, who had strong views that the role of a woman is as a housewife, and that only the men handle money. I was told many time over, that money is men’s work, and not something for girls to worry or think about. And that any money that I had, would be dutifully partitioned out to me by my grandfather, father or husband. Even though I grew up in modern times where women were working and earning on their own, I had no role models or examples around me of strong women asking for money, knowing their worth and valuing themselves in and out of the workplace. I had no idea how to do it and definitely didn’t feel confident doing it. And so I had to experiment and figuring it out on my own.
2. Saving money is form of self-love.
Loving ourselves means taking care of every aspect of ourselves and our lives. I used to have a really detrimental cycle where I would end up spending everything I had, down to the very last coin. This habit left me feeling incredibly stressed out and anxious, until more money started coming in. It didn’t matter how much I had to begin with, I always ended up with nothing.
This is not self-love. This is a far cry from taking care of yourself. Not managing my money properly, and making sure that I always had enough left me feeling worthless, depleted and insecure, even if it was only for a short time until money started flowing back in again. And while it is very sweet and endearing that I have such trust in the Universe that I will always be supported, by letting my funds run dry like it used to, it was also a form of disrespect. It was like I was saying to the universe “I am not worthy of being taken care of financially.” And so, of course, that is the experience that I had.
When I recognised that I could empower myself and take my life to an entirely new level, by managing my money in such a way, that I always felt taken care of, things began to shift. I started saving 30% of my income reverently. I felt taken care of, supported, and safe for the first time. And as my savings grew, my ability to attract a higher income grew. It was as if my money was attracting more money.
3. Taking responsibility for my money is sexy.
I was reading a book called Overcoming Underearning by Barbara Stanny, and working through some of her exercises when this realisation hit me: because I had been taught that men take care of finances, I had neglected to take any responsibility for my money. I recognised that I had an underlying belief that said “One day a man would come into my life, and take care of my money for me, and so all I have to do was wait for that day to come”. In the meantime, my money had no care and no structure.
I was completely shocked when I realised that this belief system was running my money show. Here I was, an independent young woman who had financially supported herself since she left home, and she was still waiting for someone else to come along and take charge of her money! It’s outrageously twisted when you become aware of some of the unconscious conditioned beliefs that are creating your life without your awareness.
As I put the book down, I made a commitment to myself: from this moment on, I was taking full responsibility for my finances, and was no longer waiting for a man to manage something that I was eagerly interested in having more of. Straight away I created new savings accounts, came up with a plan on how to take care of my money and started tracking my income. Amazingly, within a month, I doubled my earnings.
Now, I absolutely love managing my funds, saving my money, taking care of it and tracking it. Plus, I use positive thinking, manifesting techniques, and have created a much healthier and abundant relationship with money. These three realisations helped me empower the way that I view money, and took away the stricken anxiety that I held around it. The more that I relax in the concept of money, and recognise it as an inanimate form of energy exchange, the more my portals open to having the money that I desire.
A lot had to change for me, but having and running my business gave me one giant push in the right direction, and taught me what I had been missing for all those years. The understanding of the way I see money in my life and the way I handle it, is reflected in my having of it. This is a topic that I passionately cover with every single one of my clients. Want to continue this conversation with me?
You can access all the articles in this 8-part series, here:

  1. Identifying your skills, and deciding what kind of business to start.
  2. Understanding your great, big, guiding why. (By using your heart and intuition to make decisions.)
  3. Overcoming fear, self-sabotage, and putting yourself out there.
  4. Creating a platform, building an audience and using social media.
  5. Finding balance and boundaries, to live out your freedom-fuelled life.
  6. Changing your mindset around self-worth, value and money.
  7. Honing and defining your niche and your message.
  8. Nurturing relationships and connecting with influencers to elevate your brand.

Image from bohemiandiesel.com

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