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New Mouthy Money blogger and financial well-being coach Laura Moore looks at how to solve the puzzle of personal financial well-being.
When you think about money, what comes to mind?
Spreadsheets, numbers, calculations… Commonly, people go straight to thinking about the practical side of money.
We try to solve money problems with practical solutions such as creating a budget to stop overspending or opening a pension to prepare for the future.
All important pieces of the financial well-being puzzle, but there is one big piece of the puzzle we are missing out when we do this…
Money is emotional.
It makes us feel things – stress, excitement, worry, freedom, anxiety. And these feelings are what drives our behaviour.
If you find yourself awake at night worrying about money, impulsively over-spending, or scared to think about your financial future, a good place to start before implementing a practical solution is looking at how money makes you feel.
What emotions come up for you when you think about receiving money, or saving money, or spending money? These feelings are all little clues you can use to improve your financial situation.
When we can change how we feel about money, we change the way we manage it.
So, where to start with improving how you feel about money?
Self-awareness is key and being honest with yourself.
Acknowledging the language you use about money, the phrases you are saying to yourself and your friends, and the emotions you feel will help you make positive changes to your relationship with money.
If you find yourself always saying “I am so poor, I will never be good with money”, then the chances are, this will be true for your life. Our words become our actions, and our actions become our life, and limiting language will keep you stuck in a negative cycle with money.
Our brains are very clever and when we make statements like the one above, our brain will look around in our environment and life to find real examples of what we are saying to reinforce what we think to be true.
Changing your language to reflect how you would like to feel and behave with money can be extremely powerful – create affirmations about money that help you improve your relationship with money.
For example, instead of saying “I am so poor, I will never be good with money”, try swapping it out to be more positive e.g. “I am learning to manage my money and allow myself the grace to make mistakes”
This simple language shift will cause your brain to look for examples of times where you are managing your money well to reinforce this new way of thinking and feeling about money.
It sounds like a small shift, but it will have a mighty impact.
I’m not saying you are going to wake up and by thinking positively about money, you will suddenly have streams of new income and your debt will disappear (as lovely as that would be!).
But it is the first step in improving your relationship with money and when we feel good about money, we will start to manage money in a way that aligns with the dream life we are trying to create.
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio: https://www.pexels.com/photo/woman-holding-gray-ceramic-mug-846080/
Laura Ann Moore is a certified financial coach, financial wellbeing speaker,and host of the Mind Money Soul podcast, talking about finances in a fun, judgement-free way to help people feel good about money, get financially confident, and build wealth.