3 Steps to Improving Your Relationship With Money

If you want to achieve your financial goals, you have to have a good relationship with money! Here’s how wealth coach Belinda Fuchs defines it, including specific steps to improving your relationship with money.

“People who have a poor relationship to money feel poor no matter how much money they have in the bank,” says Fuchs. “Even as they make more and more money, their stress increases, they save less, and their problems just have more zeroes on them. This is the world of scarcity: people feel owned by their money instead of feeling powerful as the owner of their money.”

Fuchs’ three steps to improving your relationship with money will help you save more and spend less! And to learn more about money and your personality, click on Your Money or Your Life: 9 Steps to Transforming Your Relationship With Money and Achieving Financial Independence by Vicki Robin et al.

3 Steps to Improving Your Relationship With Money

Step 1: Identify your relationship to money.

Understand what money means to you. Is it power, control, joy, happiness, freedom, or is it just a way of keeping score? Here are four questions to focus your responses:

  • How would you describe your relationship to money and your current money management habits?
  • When you hear the words money, wealth, or rich, what comes to mind?
  • What did your parents tell you about money?
  • How do you currently act with money?

Step 2: Compare your answers to the supportive and non-supportive belief criteria.

Were your thoughts and feelings empowering or disempowering? Supportive beliefs provide encouragement, empowerment and positive feelings. Non-supportive beliefs can bring disempowerment, helplessness, hopelessness, and panic. (Overcoming your financial fears is a great way to improve your relationship with money!)

Your answers to the questions above form your Belief Systems about  money — affectionately called your “B.S.” It’s the made-up scripts created over your lifetime.

Examples of non-supportive beliefs:

  • If I try and I don’t succeed at making money, I’ll be a failure.
  • I have to work very hard for money and I won’t be able to make money doing what I love.
  • Making money will take time away from my family and people won’t like me.
  • I don’t deserve to have a lot of money.
  • I’ll never have enough no matter how much I make.

Step 3: Consciously upgrade your beliefs. The good news is that there’s an alternative – you can improve your relationship to money! Even though you don’t have a direct impact on financial markets, you do have 100% impact on your personal beliefs. You can choose to leave your money past in the past…starting today.

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Make a decision now to “own your money.” Be willing to go to the core of the non-supportive beliefs and recognize that the opposite is truer than the “B.S.” you’ve been holding onto. Consciously choose supportive beliefs!

If you have any questions or thoughts about these steps to improving your relationship with money, please comment below!

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Belinda Fuchs is the President of OwnYourMoney.com – and offers two quizzes to determine if you own your own money, or if it owns you (for singles and for couples). Fuchs is also the host of Boston‘s newest TV talk show “Money on Your Mind.”

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One thought on “3 Steps to Improving Your Relationship With Money

  • Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen Post author

    New research shows that counting your money makes you happy…

    When we are feeling blue we are told to count our blessings, but according to a study recently published in Psychological Science, counting our money might be a more useful activity. Psychologists Xinyue Zhou, Sun Yat-Sen University, Kathleen D. Vohs, University of Minnesota, and Roy F. Baumeister, Florida State University, investigated the psychological, physical and social impact of money.

    To examine this, the researchers asked one group of participants to count out eighty $100 bills and another group to count eighty worthless pieces of paper. They then played a computerized ball-tossing game called Cyperball. The participants were led to believe that they were playing with three other gamers when the other players in fact were computer generated. Some participants received the ball an equal amount of times while other participants were excluded. Out of the participants excluded in the Cyperball game, those who had counted the money rated lower social distress than those who only counted paper.

    In another experiment, the scientists asked participants to immerse their fingers in hot water for 30 seconds after they counted either money or paper. Surprisingly, those counting money rated a lower intensity of the hot water and physical pain than those who counted paper. In addition, the researchers found that participants who counted out the bills rated themselves as feeling “strong” more often than the paper counting group.

    Adding a twist to the experiment, the scientists asked a group of participants to list their monetary expenditures from the past month and another group to list weather conditions in the past month. Both groups were then put through the Cyperball game and the physical pain test. Those who thought about the weather rated normal amounts of social distress or pain; those thinking about their finances experienced higher social distress when they were left out of the Cyperball game and reported greater pain from the hot water.

    As the psychologists concluded, “The mere idea of money has considerable psychological power, enough to alter reactions to social exclusion and even to physical pain.”

    Source: ScienceDaily (July 16, 2009). “Instead of Counting Blessings, Count Money to Feel Good” press release.