BREAK FREE BLOG

A passionate motivational speaker and life coach with a new reality-based, no-nonsense approach, Terry Taylor is the designer of a unique strategy for reaching your goals and loving your life. Creator of the CD program, 8 Steps For Reclaiming Your Life, and author of the upcoming book, This Is Your Life: No Apology Needed, her mission is to help you to break free from conflict, confusion and the control of others so you can go after your goals guilt-free, with confidence and joy.


Your Relationship With Money

JUNE’S BREAK FREE TIP  shows you how to achieve a healthy relationship with your money — so you can use it to carve out the kind of life you want instead of aimlessly whittling it away.  

I’ll bet you’ve all spent lots of time considering your relationship with your “honey,” but what about your relationship with your money? A healthy attitude toward money can help you achieve the kind of life you want. But an unhealthy attitude toward money can put you at war with yourself. So I propose that you ask yourself the following questions:

  • Do you regard money as a necessary evil or a real value?
  • Do you feel guilty or good for earning money, saving money, investing money, or spending money to improve your life?
  • Do you feel like a good person when you spend money on others, but a bad person when you spend money on yourself?

OUR CONFUSION ABOUT MONEY

Why does money affect us so powerfully?  Because it plays such an important role in our lives!  Why do we consider money “necessary” yet “evil” – when all other necessary things (like food clothing and shelter) are considered “good”? Why isn’t money considered “good”? Because we’ve been raised to believe that money is “materialistic,” and that the materialistic is “bad.” But food, clothing and shelter are also “materialistic,” and history has shown us that the materialistic things that enhance our physical well-being also enhance our spiritual well-being! Money is no different.

WHAT IS MONEY?

Money is a wonderful tool that serves our lives in many ways, some of which you may not be aware of. A good way to appreciate money is to see how your life would be without it.

Without money, you and your fellow human beings would regress back to the primitive state of (1) limited barter, or (2) growing, hunting and making everything for yourself.  Either way, your life would be reduced to mere survival, consist of endless toil, and result in very few goods and services to enjoy. It’s hard to haul a cow to the nearest neighbor to exchange for bread, shirts, or school-teaching services. Both your range and variety are confined by the burden of lugging your goods, scarce availability, slow travel over long distances, and perishability. Your choices are limited by how much time you can take from other survival chores, how much you can carry, and whether you can find someone who wants what you have (and has what you want).

With money, you and your fellow human beings are able to achieve an advanced civilization with a highly specialized division of labor. You can TRADE with anybody, anytime, all over the world – with a vast variety of goods and services to choose from. You can pay by mail, by phone, by wire, or over the Internet. Not only that, you can SAVE for future purchases, you can HELP others through tough times, and you can INVEST in research to create more and better products to improve everyone’s life. With money, a whole new world of limitless possibilities opens up to you!

WHAT MAKES MONEY “MONEY”?

Money does not “just exist.” There are four pre-conditions:

1 – People Creating GOODS. Without GOODS “money” would be meaningless. We wouldn’t need to use money to buy anything if there were nothing to buy! But goods don’t “just exist” either – they are MADE by the thought and effort of human beings. They come from human beings creating valuable things from animals, plants and the raw materials of the earth.

  • Cattle exist, but humans must round them up, water and graze them, and invent handling and treatment processes in order to have plentiful milk, meat and leather goods.
  • Plants exist, but humans have to discover which ones are healthy, prepare the soil, and plant, water, protect, and harvest them in order to have plentiful plant-based foods and products.
  • Minerals, oil, coal, silica, iron, and precious metals exist, but humans have to get them out of the ground and process them in order to have tools, machines, buildings, appliances, toilets, heaters, a/c, light bulbs, phones, cars, computers – and the fuel to manufacture and run all these things!

2 – People Wanting To TRADE Goods. Without TRADE “money” would be meaningless. If everyone were happy with just what they could produce individually for themselves, there would be no need for money. But people found they couldn’t produce everything they wanted. Human beings want to continuously improve their lives, which leads to the desire for more choices. So people decided to specialize in making a larger quantity of a few select items, and then exchange most of what they make for different things other people make. This way everyone could obtain more of what they needed with less toil.

3 – People Wanting an EASIER WAY to Trade. Since lugging actual things to trade with each other is limiting and cumbersome, human beings invented money: something we could all use to exchange our goods more conveniently. In countries with no money, it is difficult to trade or save because grain and meat spoil, and nails rust.

4 – People Coming Up With a SOLUTION. People invented a “medium of exchange” that we call money. Over the years they discovered that money must be a durable substance (usually a precious metal) in the form of portable, standardized coins that everyone recognizes the value of and will accept in exchange for goods. Paper dollars, checks, credit cards, PayPal – all of these things are claims (like IOU’s ) on the real wealth (like gold or goods) that backs them up – and if there’s no real wealth backing these conveniences, people will no longer accept them as payment.

WHAT DOES YOUR MONEY REPRESENT?

Your money represents YOU – your character and your values – by how you obtain it and by how you use it. In this way, “materialistic” money enables you to express your spiritual values.

How You Obtain Your Money. If you earned your money honestly — by using your time and energy to help create products people want — your money represents the value you added to other people’s lives, and you can use it with pride. But if you got your money dishonestly – by stealing or otherwise obtaining other people’s money against their will – you will feel guilty about having it and using it. The money will seem “dirty,” but it isn’t the money that’s dirty, it’s the way you got the money that’s dirty. However, if someone voluntarily gives you some of his honestly-earned money (as a gift or inheritance), it is then your money to use with good conscience and gratitude.

How You Use Your Money. If you treasure your life and take your values seriously, you will you use your money to improve your life and support the things you value. But if you take your life for granted, you will fritter away your money on nonessentials and spur-of-the-moment distractions.

How can you improve your relationship with money?

HERE’S HOW TO GET STARTED:

Step 1: Grow Up. Be self-responsible and earn your own living. Then you can have pride in yourself and be proud of the money you earn and the things you’ve decided to do with it to make your life better.

Step 2: Honor Your Ownership of Your Money and other people’s ownership of their money – in your own family in all your relationships. Mutual respect means honoring each person’s right to the fruits of his or her own labor.

Step 3: Do Not Use Money as Your Standard for Success. What counts is the kind of person you want to become and the kind of life you want to live. When we are each free to strive for the things we value, we can make different amounts of money and achieve different things without resentment. We can feel good about pursuing our own goals and we can cheer others on with their goals. We can inspire others with our achievements and we can be inspired by other people’s achievements.

Step 4: Use Your Money to Support Your Values. You shape your own life – and the kind of world you want – by how you use your money. You can save it, loan it, invest it, gift it, or spend it. You decide what to save it for, whom to loan it to, where to invest it, whom to give it to, and how to spend it. In these ways, money allows you to “vote” for the kinds of products and services you want for your life, as well as the kinds of people you want to associate with!

When you come to appreciate the advancements that the use of money has made possible – and how money can serve your life – you see money as a necessary GOOD instead of a “necessary evil.” You come to respect your hard-earned money and to know that it is yours to use to achieve your own goals and aspirations. You eliminate unnecessary conflict and guilt – and you are far more able to love living your life!

I’d love to hear how these steps work for you — feel free to email me at Terry@YourRecipeForLivingCoach.com, or post a comment on my Break Free Blog at www.YourRecipeForLivingCoach.com. Please know that you are welcome to share this BREAK FREE TIP via social media or email.

Note: To learn more about having a healthy relationship with money, read This Is Your Life: No Apology Needed, now available at Amazon as an eBook. Also available as a paperback or CD at my website, www.YourRecipeForLivingCoach.com.

 

 

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