“There’s never enough” “If only I had just a bit more” “I’m not sure how I’m going to make it through until next pay day” These are just a few of the repeating phrases I hear from clients in one to one sessions and at my workshops when we get onto the subject of money, it always evokes such strong emotion in people. It’s a fact that it’s easier to teach a workshop on sex than it is on money; money causes more arguments in couples, and sometimes brings out the worst in families when it comes to inheritance. At this time we are told the Western world is on the point of recession, some would say we are already in it, oil prices have sky rocketed thus increasing the price of just about everything we need to function in day to day life. In the midst of all this we perceive that a minority is becoming richer and the rest are becoming poorer. Is it any wonder that all this causes more stress and the concern of “will there be enough?”
There is another view point which says the world is as you perceive it to be, change your perspective and the world changes with you. At first it sounds like “New Age” fluff but talk to any highly successful business person and they will whole heartedly agree that it is your belief and perception that defines your world and your life. As we grow up we inherit different values and ideas about money from family and the economic climate we were born into, be it conscious or unconscious we are always loyal to our family values, which can either hinder or enhance our personal relationship to money. Here is the crucial point, forget about everyone else’s reaction to money or what you read in the newspaper or see on the news, how is your personal relationship with money? If money were an image, what would it be, if it were a colour, what colour would it be? If you see money as a green slimy monster or a brown ferocious bear, it would be plain to see that maybe you and money are not the best of friends, which in practical terms may have you chained to the office desk or telephone because you’ve just got to make one more sale so that you feel there is enough, ah yes but now you have that one maybe just one more sale would make it just that bit more safer, ah yes but… and so on.
To break the spell that money has over many people is quite simple, start by writing down all the beliefs you have about money, once you have exhausted this list start going through them and asking yourself where these beliefs came from, are they from family members, work colleagues, friends etc. What you will find is that very few of the beliefs you have about money are your own, most come from an outside source. Then look at money itself, most people forget that money in itself is innocent, it is our reaction, our relationship to and what we do with it that either makes money good or bad. A few thousand years ago we would be bargaining and paying in rice or spices rather than paper and coins. Think of money as a currency for the exchange of energy, if someone does work for you, then they are giving their time and energy and in return you give them a currency which allows them to buy food and live their lives. In tribal culture no one is ever without work as everyone is deemed as having something to offer to the community. If someone is sick and unable to work the whole community gathers together to make sure the person doesn’t go without food and everyone gathers together to help in the person’s healing, each person is a valued member of society, no one person is considered higher or lower than another, it is just seen and honoured as their life purpose. Everyone is essential to the health and continuation of the community.
In my workshops we write and tell stories about money, we act them out using Dynamic Theatre and watch as the true nature of someone’s relationship to money reveals itself. After the uneasiness and sometimes tears subside we all realise that it’s not just one person’s story we are watching and telling but that of the collective. In all cases what surprises most people is the supportive nature of money and how in the spirit of things it always seeks to help out where it can, but people throughout history in their sense of emptiness use it in it’s shadow form for power, greed and control of other people’s lives. At the end of the course I tell people to always remember that money is innocent it’s what we do with it that counts.
So, love money as an old and trusted friend who will never let you down. He will always be there and is full of wisdom, some of which I don’t always want to hear, but like all good friends we soon smile and laugh once more and our journey together continues, our road stretching out far off into the horizon, beyond the rich golden setting sun where a new day awaits with even more promise than today. That’s the story of my money what colour is yours?