What Is Your Relationship With Money?
Just reading that first word creates a whole host of automatic emotional responses.
Have you ever thought about having a relationship with money? Money touches absolutely everything in our lives: where we live; how we get to work; how we feel rewarded for what we do; what we eat; what we do; where we travel.
It’s become one of the major focus points in life. “I don’t have enough money” is quite a stock standard response to many questions.
It’s much deeper than that though.
In the past year I’ve been introduced to this concept of ‘having a relationship’ with money from an internationally qualified Money Coach, Lisa Rouhana. What’s interesting to me is, knowing her almost 8 years now, I’ve watched her transformation from Cape Town based business owner into the power house international business woman that she is today.
I invited her to join me on a hike up Table Mountain to chat to her a bit more in depth about her journey and money.
(AP) I’ve always admired your lack of excuses regarding “not having money” – how did that happen?
(LR) When I don’t have sufficient funds to go on that Bali trip, I don’t respond with “I can’t Afford it” which is a common response I hear people say. I speak the truth – “my money has other priorities right now”.
Our money always flows to what is a priority: food, alcohol, travelling, clothes, children. Be honest with yourself.
If I look around, most people experience challenges rather than joy when it comes to money. Do you live from paycheck to paycheck? Do you think money’s the thing holding you back from being able to start your own business?
(AP) What challenges did money bring you?
(LR) I’ve learnt that money is a symptom. We all fall into behavioural patterns, particularly around money. Most of us aren’t even aware of this, which makes it that much more difficult to break. How do you change something you can’t name?
Through this money work I realised I’m a rescuer – especially with partners. Once I had a name for my challenge – Martyr – I could understand my behaviours.
There are 8 archetypes, Victim, Innocent, Warrior, Martyr, Magician, Creator, Tyrant and Fool which play out in an array of ways: debt addiction, gambling, workaholism, under earning and so on.
When I was trapped in this pattern of rescue it created a plethora of toxic emotions. Resentment. Disappointment. These usually produce the final nails in the relationships coffin and so the ‘only way out’ is to run.
With all these patterns reoccurring I knew I needed to consciously start making better decisions to create a different reality. This started with my money behaviours.
Don’t look for your keys in the dark, switch the light on so you can start making conscious decisions rooted in understanding.
Money causes issues in relationships, both personal and in business, and yet no one ever thinks they have a relationship with money. In life there are always 4 ideas we can pool our understanding into:
- We know what we know (know the question and answer)
- We know what we don’t know (know the question but not the answer)
- We don’t know what we know (don’t know the question but have the answer)
- We don’t know what we don’t know (don’t know the question or the answer)
This last one is probably where most readers will place ‘relationships with money’ before reading this (now you know the question but not the answer).
SIDENOTE: This is why I invite you to live a life with an open mind to explore new thoughts and ideas that can help you understand your life.
(AP) How did you come to understand this dynamic? What does ‘a relationship’ with money mean?
(LR) I believe whatever is affected by human emotions we’re in a relationship with. Through my work I’ve witnessed how money responds to our emotions, as it is our emotions that trigger behaviours.
If you want money to love you – you are going to have to love money.
If you want money to respect you – you need to start respecting money.
If you want money to look after you – you need to look after money.
Three quarters of the men I’ve dated I left because I got tired of being the good one with money. When those toxic emotions get too intense often the only way out you can see is to run, only to go and repeat the same pattern with the next one. My work is about finding the root cause, if you just treat the symptoms, often those challenging behaviours happen again.
95% of our behaviour is unconscious. Until you can positively impact the 95% of what controls your life you can’t make a meaningful change.
This makes complete sense because if you think about it – there isn’t a single person on this planet who doesn’t consciously want more money, right?
Whatever issue we have in life there’s always a solution. The trick is to find what works best for you and explore various options, free of other peoples’ judgement. It’s like not eating chocolate cake because someone else told you its disgusting. I’ve consciously stopped saying no to trying new food I ‘think’ I won’t like – because you cannot have an opinion about something if you haven’t tried it.
(AP) How does money coaching help people identify their problems with money, on an emotional level, that can help them in their personal lives and/business?
(LR) We’re in a relationship with money, as money is energy. Money responds to the subconscious instructions we give it, if our conscious mind is saying I love money, and I want lots of it, but our subconscious is consumed with thoughts that money’s the root of all evil, or even that I’m not worthy enough then that will manifest itself in the amount of money we have. Often, I’ve seen the more people chase money the more elusive it becomes. Kind of like women desperate for a child that struggle to fall pregnant only to adopt and then suddenly fall pregnant.
Until you can align your conscious understanding with your subconscious behaviour – you’ll be swimming upstream.
Smart people learn from their own experiences; geniuses learn from others. There’re no shortcuts in life, but we can certainly cut short the length of time it takes us to master something.
(AP) I believe the best coaches have actually been through a problem and can relate to their clients’ positions. What’s been your biggest lesson to date that helps you with your clients?
(LR) Going through this process so that I didn’t leave my current partner and continue my destructive pattern. The only way to understand how we get to have this relationship with money, is by having the courage to explore our past. This can be quite daunting and scary, but by understanding our past, resolving suppressed emotions and having a greater awareness we then have a choice to do things differently. It’s only through changing our behaviours that we change our reality.
We are in control of the choices we make.
The sooner we understand that everything that happens to us is a result of the choices we make the sooner we take control of our life’s rudder.
Most people will be hearing this for the first time and don’t even know what where how or why when it comes to money. As always – great information is nothing without acting upon it.
(AP) What is the first step people can take to get a better understanding of their relationship with money?
(LR) My first step was recognising my recurring patterns. I’ve had a flawed belief from childhood that it’s up to me to rescue anyone in despair. It’s been exhausting as rescuing is not only with money. Rescuing robs the other person of their own power to help themselves. Last year, I began practicing boundaries with Allan and not jumping in to rescue, which is my comfortable go to place. Sheesh, it was hard to watch him struggle…. And now….I realise I was partly responsible for his misfortune.
Real value and power lies in teaching people how to empower themselves.
A quick 5 minute survey at www.lisaloveslife.co.za will give you the answer as to what your money archetype (relationship description) is.
I invite you to explore a deeper understanding of what your relationship with money is. Who knows – you might save yourself years of swimming upstream needlessly.
Lisa has kindly offered the first 5 readers to complete the survey a one on one catch up to discuss their archetype.