Hi Everyone! I hope you all had a positive week. Welcome to the next instalment in the Pineapple Chicken Money Relationship Series. In my previous post, I argued that it is possible to have a zen and loving relationship with money. This week I would like to use the lens of building and maintaining healthy relationships with people and share 5 tips which can be applied to building a positive relationship with money.
Tip 1: Think over the history of your relationship with money
This week I really want you to delve a little deeper and think about when you were growing up what conversations you had with your family about money and your money situation. Was it hard to put food on the table? Did you not see a lot of your parents because they were both working long hours? Or did you have a comfortable childhood?
Your past relationship with money obviously will impact your current feelings about money. This task is really to step back and assess whether you have fears/lack of fear around money. The first step to falling in love with money again and ensuring it is a healthy relationship, we have to be introspective and take a honest look at your current situation and feelings.
According to Ken Honda, there are a few common personality types, do you recognise yourself as any of the below?
- The Compulsive Saver (Stockpiler) – Individuals in this category believe that saving in the bet way to guarantee a sense of security in life and often their lifestyle is quite frugal. They most likely grew up in a home without much money. Compulsive savers are often unaware that they are in a controlling relationship with money.
- The Compulsive Spender (Spendthrift) – These individuals love spending money whether it is on themselves or giving gifts or treating people to something special. This personality type spends money to feel in control, however, these individuals may have low self-esteem or are unhappy, thus, they use spending to escape that feeling and brighten up their mood, despite it only being a quick temporary fix. These individuals may not be able to enjoy things they buy just because, before they cut off the label of an item, there is a new shiny thing to put on top or cover it up.
- The Compulsive Money Maker – These individuals believe that life is best when earning as much money as possible. They work hard to work on themselves to improve their ability to make money, whether building knowledge, working on their efficiency or productivity. Money Makers seek approval and recognition from others for their financial success. However, they may struggle to realise that no matter how much money they make, they will always crave attention and recognition. It is an endless cycle.
- Indifferent to Money – Individuals in this group hardly notice money, they just get on with life. This person might just leave all the financial decisions to a family member or partner/spouse, to a point where they might not have the most basic financial knowledge or where important financial documents might be. These individuals may be quite well off given that they don’t really deal with money or care about money, they probably don’t spend much so it is naturally saved. However, this is a high-risk plan because, unfortunately, when their support is no longer around, they will be clueless about their situation.
- Money Hater – These individuals believe that money is a bad thing and a source of problems. They believe that the world should be less about making money and consumerism. They want to live their lives as little affected by money as possible.
- Saver-Splurger – A combination of the saver and the spender, the individuals cycle through being serious and regimented in their saving, but suddenly they feel compelled to just spend their money to the point where they may be broke. It is a constant flip flop between having a lot of money and then having no money at all.
- The Gambler – This is probably pretty self-explanatory, these individual seek excitement and thrills. They love to take big risks and are all about the big wins. They may be the children of Compulsive Saver type parents, the boredom of living with parents who are so tight with money that they either become a Compulsive Spender or Gambler.
- The Worrier – No matter how much money they have, this individual will worry about money, if they have a lot, they worry about it being gone, when they don’t have any, they worry that they don’t have any. It comes from a lack of confidence and the tendency to worry that something is bad is going to happen.
Tip 2: Make a list of things you enjoy
To fall in love with money you have to make time to do what you love and also make enough money. Enough will depend on each individual and personal circumstances. Most importantly, you want the relationships to be sustainable, so I think “enough” means being financially comfortable so that you don’t stress about money in everyday life. Whether you enjoy spending, making or saving money, make a list of things you enjoy. It is important to associate money with things you love rather than the negative thoughts that are associated with not having enough money which causes stress and worry.
By writing this list of things you like and enjoy, I want you so start thinking about how you can build a “curated life”, where anything you buy or do is done consciously and mindfully. You are buying quality products that will last or spending money that will benefit your own wellbeing, such as your health or knowledge. When you assess your priorities and do things that bring you joy, you can spend more confidently knowing that the money is spent wisely. I will share more about this in a future post as Tara Button has written a whole book about it and I want to read it before sharing her findings with you!
Tip 3: Gratitude
Like all things in life, we must practice gratitude. We need to let go of our fears about money. We have to stop feeling anger about the past and take the future as it comes. To fall in love with money, we have to be grateful for the present and plan for an even more fruitful future. Take a minute out of your day to be thankful for what you have. Ground yourself in knowing that you currently have enough, you are enough, and in this moment you have what you need.
Tip 4: Giving and receiving money
When we are in a relationship with someone, we learn to give and receive, whether it receiving words of affirmation or you give your loved one quality time and acts of service. Just like love, we should be joyful when we receive money and not be embarrassed by it. I mean who doesn’t like a bit of cash in their birthday card! We should enjoy money, it is bragging about money that we need to avoid.
More importantly, we must also be generous with our money. I am not saying that you should be giving all your wealth to charities or foundations (unless you want to of course!) but there is a positive force when giving money to someone who needs it, to leave them with a feeling that they are cared for. I think positive energy out (giving) and positive energy in (receiving) will enable you to have a much better relationship with money. Just like being with some you love, giving always feels better than receiving.
Tip 5: Trust the flow of money
Falling in love with money requires acceptance and willingness to trust the relationship will work out. I am a risk-averse person so this concept that does not sit very comfortably with me. However, like any relationships, we can’t always focus on the negatives, for any loving relationship we have to accept that there will be ups and downs and the hope that it will get better.
A positive relationship with money is trusting the flow of money and that you have a future with money. You cannot just sit and worry about there not enough to support the future. Just like a relationship, there is the running assumption that you have a future with your partner, that is why you make plans and do things together, if not you would not be in a relationship in the first place! We don’t get to choose whether we want a relationship with money, therefore, we have to accept that there will be stresses along the way, but if we trust the flow of money, we can plan for the future and not throw in the towel, or worst, just being indifferent about money altogether.
Those are my five tips! Which one do you think you might try out to build your relationship with money into a loving one. Leave me a comment below 🙂
With Sweet & Sour Love,
Pineapple Chicken x