Coaching for Financial Anxiety
All About Us
We are a Chicago- and Atlanta-based coaching and consulting company passionate about facilitating individual, team and organizational change.
We apply cutting-edge, theoretical and practical coaching approaches to help individuals, teams and organizations bring about significant personal and professional transformation.
All you have to do is turn on the TV or radio and you’ll hear the “doom and gloom” messages. Some experts say we are in a recession. Some say we’re in a depression. Some say it’s going to get worse before it gets better. Some say there’s nothing we can do but sit and wait.
It’s no wonder then, that more people are being thrown into a “fear,” “deficit,” or “scarcity” mode. Financial anxiety can cause physical and/or medical problems, such as sleeplessness, lack of appetite, headaches and muscle pain – and it can also cause psychological/emotional problems, such as lack of concentration, lethargy, overuse of alcohol and drugs, paranoia, anger and rage, and depression. It can also cause relationship conflicts — at work, at home, with family, with spouses, with friends. Any problem that was already present prior to financial fear tends to become exacerbated.
Just know you are not alone. Nearly every American feels some level of financial anxiety, from mild to extreme. First it is important to determine where you are on a scale from one to ten – ten being extreme anxiety. If you are at a 3 or higher, you need to consider getting some assistance to decrease your anxiety so it doesn’t interfere with your life. Lack of money or “fear of lack of money” can either motivate a person to seek assistance from a counselor, coach or other professional, or it can de-motivate a person, causing them to become isolated and withdrawn. It’s pretty obvious what the healthier alternative is!
“This time, like all times, is a very good one, if we but know what to do with it.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson
There’s no question that there is pain associated with lack of money. A good life coach or business coach will understand this pain, acknowledge your pain, reassure you that “this too shall pass” and give you a sense of positive hope and personal power. They will help you focus on “reality” and “what to do now” rather than fear and hopelessness. Tony Robbins says, “In order to succeed you must have a long-term focus. You must make the decision to break through some short term pain or discomfort in order to get your desired result.”
Seeking help to work through your fears is most likely going to result in your increased happiness and satisfaction, as well as feeling you have some control over your situation. When people feel they have control, they are more likely to take action steps necessary to improve their situation. When you feel you have little or no control, a good coach can help you look at options, restore balance, give you a sense of control, and reassure you.
“Both poverty and riches are the offspring of thought.” — Napoleon Hill
7 Ways You Can Get OUT of Deficit and INTO Abundance
Here’s the first thing you need to do (or not do!). Don’t listen to the negative news! Don’t listen to pessimism about the economy. The media wants to scare us, and we cannot be in “love, joy, abundance and flow” as long as we are in fear. We cannot be in the present when we are in fear. Fear is about the future, and the unforeseen. The reason you should not “buy in” to the negative news is that it seeps into your subconscious and affects your thinking, therefore affecting your actions. Your thinking is what needs to be dealt with FIRST. This newsletter gives you some creative ideas to “think” in peace, abundance, and flow.
The second step is to take a long, hard, truthful look at your values and priorities. In his book, You’re Broke Because You Want to Be, Larry Winget talks about how we get in our own way of money flowing to us. We stand on our own brake pedal. If you are experiencing a deficit in your life, it is because you have agreed to assist in creating it. He says if you are experiencing a lack of money you have CHOSEN it. Along these lines, Jack Canfield’s first chapter in his book, The Success Principles, is titled, “Take 100% Responsibility for Your Life.” You need to see that how you’ve chosen to spend (or save) your money has been a result of your desires, values and priorities. If you are suffering as a result of how you’ve handled money in the past, you need to re-think your choices now. It’s never too late to choose a different path!
The third thing to do is to focus on the present, and what you can do RIGHT NOW to make your life better. Focus on TODAY. One day at a time. One hour at a time. We are making decisions every moment of every day. THINK before you ACT, and ask yourself, “How is this action moving me toward my highest good?”
The fourth thing is to develop a “positive money consciousness.” People often sabotage their finances due to their negative mindset about money. In her book, The Nine Steps to Financial Freedom, Suze Orman devotes the first three chapters of her book to this subject. “The road to financial freedom begins not in a bank or even in a financial planner’s office, but in your head. It begins with your thoughts,” she writes. She goes on to say, “And those thoughts, more often than not, stem from our seemingly forgotten past with money… So the first step toward financial freedom is a step back in time to the earliest moments you can recall when money meant something to you, when you truly understood what it could do…” Jack Canfield explains in his chapter “Success and Money” that there are three steps to turning around your limiting beliefs about money.
- Write down your limiting belief (i.e., “money is the root of all evil.”)
- Challenge, make fun of, and argue with the limiting belief (i.e., “money is the root of all philanthropy.”)
- Create a positive turnaround statement (i.e., “people love to pay me money for what I most enjoy doing.”)
Coaches call this “cognitive restructuring.” You’ve heard of positive affirmations and prosperity consciousness. The popular movie and book, The Secret, is all about the “law of attraction” and “thoughts become things.” These strategies are working for millions of people – however, positive affirmations alone are not enough. You could repeat, “I am rich” until your face turns the color of money, but if you don’t DO SOMETHING to make that happen, it won’t. Many people think that if they say enough positive affirmations, money will magically appear. The reality is, money doesn’t usually fall from the sky. You have absolutely NO CHANCE of winning the lottery unless you buy a ticket.
Create a list of your own positive affirmations. Here are some examples:
- “Money flows to me easily and frequently.”
- “I always have everything I need.”
- “The Universe is abundant and there is plenty for everyone.”
- “My world is affluent.”
- “My decisions are a reflection of my true desires and values.”
- “I have peace knowing I am always being taken care of.”
- “My business thrives as long as I am committed to helping others.”
- “I am doing everything possible for my highest good.”
- “I now know what I want and trust myself to do what it takes to get it.”
The fifth thing to do is work on the concepts of gratefulness and mental imagery. Stating your affirmations in grateful terms, and giving thanks in advance, i.e., “I am happy and grateful that I now have plenty of money in my bank account to cover all my bills and needs,” is very powerful. Then create a mental picture in your mind of what your bank account looks like, seeing yourself paying all your bills easily with money left over, seeing your savings account growing, and seeing your life improving. Feel the good feelings that come from these mental images.
“A grateful mind is a great mind, which eventually attracts to itself great things” — Plato
Sixth, brainstorm as many creative ideas as possible of how you can improve your situation. Ask others for input. It is amazing how many things can actually be done to improve your financial life if you are willing to. Some ideas may be – cut down on unnecessary spending (“extras” you don’t absolutely need), work more hours, take on a part time job, do some “contract” work, ask family or friends for assistance, ask your entire family to team with you in improving finances, refinance your home, or ask landlords to decrease rent until things improve. Yes, some of these things will most likely cause some short term discomfort, so you need to keep your eyes focused on the long term gain.
Seventh, be willing to enjoy your process, have fun, and laugh! During a recession people start looking for distractions (and escapes). Distractions can be healthy or unhealthy. Get creative in finding healthy distractions. Have a sense of humor! Late-night hosts are already having plenty of laughs about the economy. This is precisely the time when you need to laugh. Humor takes people “above” their situation so they can look at it more clearly and get more reality on it.
Think positively about money, and its role in your life. Think of the good things it can bring you and how much more you can help society by having money. Think of what you can do to change your situation for the better. Change your mindset and do something today.
“You will never change until you first become uncomfortable.” — Larry Winget