August 29 2022
Gain a new perspective on your money worries. Reading time: 3 minutes 😰🤑
Let me be upfront and say firstly that there is no solution to money worries.
Before you abandon this article in despair, allow me to elaborate.
Worry consists of thoughts and feelings. Thoughts and feelings are intangible and have no solution.
A person’s financial situation, on the other hand, or the numbers and values that make it up are tangible and real.
I know it could be argued that even your financial situation is not tangible. It is, after all, often based on judgments and assumptions. In general, however, your financial situation can be measured at a point in time based on current market values, which makes it pretty 'real'.
This means that your financial situation, while clearly not immune to external shocks and fluctuations, has aspects that can be improved upon and strengthened over time.
In essence, a challenging financial situation has a solution; money worries do not.
Over the summer, I had the privilege of attending a two-day live masterclass with the 'coaches coach’ Michel Neill. The event was hosted by EMCC Ireland at Trinity College Dublin.
Michael explained to us that trying to find a solution to thoughts and feelings is like fighting a cloud. It might rain or it might not. The cloud itself has no solution ☁️
Can we deal with the rain if it comes? Absolutely. Can we prepare for the rain? Sure, there are steps we can take like having an umbrella, suitable clothing and footwear, a back-up plan for an outdoor event. We are very used to dealing with the rain, in Ireland particularly 🌧
When it comes to money worries, the same logic applies.
We can't solve the worry. What we can do, is step back and look objectively at our financial situation. We can act to improve aspects of our current financial situation that need addressing or strengthening.
In a state of worry or anxiety, however, we are unlikely to be able to recognise what needs to be done and take the necessary steps to improve our financial situation.
That’s all well and good you say and you may even accept that money worries have no solution and do not serve you but how do you stop them?
No more than you can stop a cloud, you can't stop a worry.
What has helped me and what I have been talking about with my clients recently is recognising the temporary nature of worry and anxiety.
Observing it, accepting it and allowing it to pass by if you can. This can take practice. The first step though is to acknowledge the worry and anxiety instead of trying to fight it.
You may go on to ask yourself, are my thoughts about my financial situation causing me more suffering than the current reality of my financial situation? Often the answer is yes.
Question whether your thoughts are helping or hindering how secure and free you feel about money now and in the future. Often they are hindering.
This is not an attempt at NLP for financial well-being. Instead, these questions may serve to interrupt a negative thinking pattern about your financial situation.
They will allow you to observe and be curious about your worry rather than be driven by it. Inspired or right action can then follow from a more solid place.
Bringing some lightness to the situation can also help even if it requires some black humour about your current plight.
That is why, I leave you with one final analogy shared by Michael Neill about what it is like to fight against our thoughts and emotions. This one is courtesy of Monty Python, where Colin ‘Bomber’ Harris played by Graham Chapman, attempts to wrestle himself 🤼😂
You can watch the two minute spectacle recorded live at the Hollywood Bowl here🎥
The next time you start down the rabbit hole of worry and anxiety about money or any other topic, imagine yourself wrestling with yourself. Perhaps that image may be enough to bring some awareness 🔦 or at the very least some light relief to the moment.
Humour even in the darkest of times can be helpful. Worry is never helpful.
The material contained in these blog posts is intended for educational and entertainment purposes only. No responsibility is taken by Money Coaching Ireland for actions taken or not taken by individuals as a result of reading/watching/listening to these posts. Money Coaching Ireland recommends that individuals seek professional advice prior to making any significant financial decisions.