Financial health is all about our relationship with money. That relationship is so much deeper than just our budgets, financial investments, and spending habits. Money has its own energy that carries a certain weight and can affect us on a deep level.
We've all got our own feelings, experiences, and perspectives on money. The messages we received as children have an impact on how we interact with money as well. We each have negative and positive patterns when it comes to our relationship with money. It can have a great effect on our mental health, which can, in turn, take a hit on our physical health.
Suzanne Monroe of the IAWP has the following advice:
Understanding the Finances Element
At the most basic level, our finances are simply about whether or not we can take care of our basic needs. Some of us really struggle to pay for necessities like rent, food, and a car. Others have an excess of money but struggle financially in other areas.
Even if your basic needs are being taken care of, you still might feel the stress of it all if your future is uncertain. If you don't have the sense that your needs will always be provided for, you'll spend your days in continual frustration and worry.
How balanced you feel at this basic level will impact your overall mental and physical health at deep levels.
Finances and Childhood
Your upbringing can drastically impact your financial health, as well. If you received negative messages about money from your parents, community, neighbours or friends, you might still inadvertently believe these messages. Some of these ideas are probably playing out in your life, affecting your relationship with money.
These could be ideas such as "money is the root of all evil", "money doesn't' grow on trees", or that being rich is vain and selfish. It could also include your parents' spending patterns such as haphazard, impulse buying without regard for future needs. It could consist of obsessive penny pinching that takes on an unhealthy quality.
Finances and Self-Worth
It could also be an underlying message about worthiness. You might believe that the things money can buy are tied to your personal value. If your family never seemed to have enough, you might have felt "less than" your peers because you were always ashamed of your second-hand clothes. Or you might have been very jealous of the exciting trips and holidays that your friends were able to take, while you stayed at home.
Money and all the associations with money that we accumulate throughout life have a profound impact on our self-esteem and self-worth. These experiences can directly impact how we spend our money, which jobs we choose, and ultimately how we view life itself. Your mental health might be at stake if your relationship with money is rocky.
Your financial health is crucial for relieving stress, anxiety, depression, and other mental health struggles. It is also important to heal your self-worth and to truly begin to see your own self-value. By healing these things, you'll also directly impact your physical body and mind.
Balancing Your Finances Element
As we can see, finances have a huge impact on our ability to care for our bodies and our minds. For a true wellness practice, it's important to consider the holistic picture of how we are living. Financial health is a big part of creating more wellbeing and joy in your life.
Here are a few ways to get started in balancing your Finances element.
1. Reconnect with your finances.
If you've been avoiding or ignoring all things having to do with money, it's important to start paying attention again. Your relationship can't be healed if you're busy pretending like it doesn't exist.
Do the brave thing and take a look at your bank accounts. Find a simple system that allows you to track your expenses and income. You don't necessarily have to change anything at first. Just start to pay attention and bring your finances back into your awareness again.
2. Work on financial goals.
After you've been paying attention to your finances, you'll have a good idea of what you need to do to improve. This is when you can start to set goals that will help you achieve better health.
Find ways to create accountability, whether that's through the way you track your goals or by having an accountability buddy. Surround yourself with positive role models and inspiring financial health experts.
Find ways to stick to your goals and make them a priority in your life.
3. Create rules for your money.
It's important to decide how you want to use your money. By making rules for yourself, you'll create better structures and guidelines to help you make better choices.
Determine what is important for you to spend money on. Once you've covered your bills and necessities, decide what you'd like to do with the rest of your income. Think about your values and make rules that fit those values.
For example, you might need to decide between two things one month. If you've thought that you might need a new smartphone, you might actually value buying organic produce more. Or you might instead want to save your money for a career change instead of taking another spring break holiday.
Or you might also just want to do it all, which is also fine. You'll need to create a roadmap for how to get where you are now to where you want to be.
Keeping Your Finances Element Balanced for Life
Your finances will always be in flux throughout your life. This means that you'll need to be developing a relationship with your money constantly. Keep tabs on it without fear or shame, while creating structures and goals to help direct your path. Assess your values and determine how you'll express those values with your money. Then notice how other parts of your life are impacting your finances. Over time, you'll develop a healthier relationship with money and a balanced Finances element.
Love the Mantra:
"I am now healed spiritually, emotionally, physically, mentally, socially and financially"
Meditation for Improving your Financial Circumstances
Meditation can be a part of a healing strategy, and you can use it to focus on particular problems. You can't apply it topically or take it like medicine. Still, as part of an overall strategy for solving a problem, or reaching a specific goal, it will indeed help you.
The strategy is:
Set your goal
Make a list of all the things preventing you from achieving it
Meditate on those blocks to find ways of overcoming them
Use positive thinking and actions
Before you begin this meditation for improving your financial circumstances, spend a little time thinking about your goals. Be clear about what you want to achieve, and identify as many things as you can that are stopping you. Once you are ready, try this guided meditation …