Most of us have an odd relationship when it comes to money. We tell ourselves we want more of it, but secretly most of us will find ways to keep ourselves from getting more of it. Don't believe it? Here's a perfect example.
You tell yourself that you're being underpaid at work and should be making more money. You start looking online for jobs on Monster, Glassdoor, or LinkedIn. You see a job that looks promising and it pays about $20k more per year than you're currently making. When you see the starting salary range is much higher than your current salary, you start making up excuses for why shouldn't apply:
They probably want someone with more experience for that salary range.
What if I land the job but I'm not any good at it?
I'm not qualified for that job
Money isn't everything!
Instead of applying for what could be your dream opportunity, you talk yourself out of it and either stay stuck at your current job, or you start looking for jobs with a lower starting salary.
Here's another example...let's say that you really do want to make more money. You imagine yourself making multiple six figures, and you start to visualize how having extra money can change your life. There's one big problem though. Deep down, you think that people who have a lot of money are just greedy losers. You think people who drive around in luxury cars are pretentious assholes.
If you believe that all people with lots of money are assholes, then guess what? You will never, ever, EVER have lots of money in your life. You've basically programmed yourself to believe that people who have money are bad, so you'll never have money because you don't want to be seen as a bad person.
About a year ago I discovered my roadblock around money by working with a coach. Some of my beliefs about money included:
Cheap items are just as good as brand name items
Money isn't everything!
People who drive nice cars are just show-offs
I'm no good at saving money
I can't afford to buy "nice" things
Spending money on yourself is selfish
You have to work hard for money
Most of the stories we tell ourselves about money aren't even ours! They most likely come from your parents or friends. How many times have you been in a store about to buy yourself something nice, and a little voice pops into your head....."What are you doing spending that much money on XXXXX?" Think about it for a moment, is that really YOUR voice?
When I started to think about my own story in regards to money, that voice in my head was really my dad's voice, not mine. My dad was someone who always took pride in buying the cheapest thing possible.
He was the one who drilled into my head that cheap items are just as good as brand name items. Growing up I always knew that if I wanted to borrow a couple of dollars, going to my dad was always the absolute last resort. Asking him for $5 meant having to listen to an hour-long lecture about how hard he had to work for his money. I'd risk being tortured by the CIA before I'd ever ask him for 20 dollars.
My goal for you today is to get rid of your old money story. Stop telling yourself how scarce money is and how hard you have to work for it. Start to really question that voice in your head that tells you it's not okay to buy yourself something nice. Here are a few exercises to help you get started:
1. Write down all the things you heard about money growing up. Have those stories about money been hurting or helping you?
2. Write down all the wonderful things you can do with money. Building a hospital, donating money for a college scholarship, a family vacation, etc.
3. Go test drive a luxury car. While you're on the test drive, imagine yourself driving this car home each night. Is this luxury brand any better than the car you're currently driving?
4. Go to an open-house for a home you think you can't afford. Take your time walking around. Imagine yourself living in that home. What would it be like to entertain family and friends in this home?
5. Come up with a new money story. Your new money story can include statements like: I can make as much money as I want, It's okay to spend more for quality, etc.