How to Crush Common Money Blocks that Women Encounter
Sometimes the one thing that may be blocking your way to success is you.
Money blocks are the mistaken beliefs, imagined fears, or hesitations that are all connected with the idea of what increased affluence will bring, or what we need to do to get there.
These obstacles often exist only in the mind. But they can make a mark in your reality. They can lead to self-sabotage. They can dampen your entrepreneurial fire.
Money blocks can be an issue even with the most empowered of women. Often we are not even aware we have them. Perhaps we will have subconsciously learned them from a young age from popular phrases such as “You can’t have your cake and eat it,” or “You don’t get somewhere in life without working hard for it.”
Every culture around the world is awash with sayings telling us how we should or shouldn’t feel about money. They reemerge any time we work on creating and planning goals. All these beliefs we have picked up over our lifetime may actually be affecting and limiting our potential for financial success.
Some common money blocks
At first thought, it might seem crazy that people worry about earning more money, but money blocks really are a common problem. Here are the ideas that I most often come across:
Money is the root of all evil
This is a common perception lurking at the back of our minds. It is behind the guilt we might feel when we desire to make more money, the idea that it is greedy to want it, or the feeling that financial success should not be openly coveted. On the other hand, we know that money is essential to life, and that the more we earn, the greater difference we can make to our own lives and to those around us. These conflicting ideas are a money block that many of us carry around with us.
I can’t have it all, can I?
I often hear people perpetuate the idea that if we create financial success, then it must be at the cost of other aspects of our lives. It’s the idea that if we chase success financially, then we will have to neglect our family and relationships, our personal lives and our other hopes and dreams. Sometimes, it is almost as if we expect to see a direct correlation between financial success and failure elsewhere in our lives. When we look at this logically, we see it need not be true, but often it is such a deep-rooted idea that it is hard to shake off.
I don’t deserve this much money
Guilt is a huge money block. It usually results from the huge amount of time we all spend making ill-informed comparisons with others. Most of us will have thought along the lines of “She works longer hours than me,” or “She’s more experienced,” and so on. Sometimes our guilt comes from the idea that we need to be giving more than we are taking. All in all it means that asking for more money from our clients or employer is an incredibly hard thing for many of us to do, and as a result so many women are not earning what they so richly deserve.
There are many more examples of money blocks, but what they all have in common is that they are a belief that you have carried up to know that is preventing you from opening yourself to reaching your financial potential.
But listen: there are proven, useful and effective ways to finally get rid of these money blocks.
Tip 1: Know yourself
It is important at this point to ask yourself some big questions, such as “What kind of life do I want for myself and my family?” or “What would I really like to be earning in one, five, or 10 year’s time?” These questions will be scary, and this is because deep down you know that the answers to these questions will instigate some kind of change. And even though we know that change is an inevitable part of life whether we instigate it or not, just carrying on as we are is always less frightening in the present.
It is also important that you are truly honest here: don’t dismiss your true financial ambitions because the journey to get there seems just too long and scary right now.
Tip 2: Claim your goals
Once you know where you would like to go, you can face your fears and work out how you will get there. What worries you about the path from now to your perfect scenario? What negative thoughts emerge?
You might unearth multiple money fears that are holding you back, such as “I’m too old to be starting afresh” or “I’m not sure I can earn that much money doing this.” Now for each, you need to clarify whether this a real, bona fide obstacle, or a fear. When you recognize a fear as something that only exists in your head, it will have far less power over you. It will be much easier to identify the pathways around it, and on to your financial goals.
Tip 3: Work to get an honest and objective view of the situation
It’s really crucial to not be alone in your journey to releasing money blocks. Reach out and share your situation with other women taking a similar path or a professional such as a personal business coach, even though just talking about money can be difficult for many of us. Beware that family and friends may be carrying the same self-limiting beliefs so choose your confidants wisely.
You will find that other people often see your situation more clearly than yourself and that they can help you identify and negotiate stumbling blocks through the sharing of knowledge and experience.
Tip 4: Work on the changes you want to see
To overcome your fears, you are going to need to work out what it will take to make you feel comfortable and safe as you negotiate change. Take some simple but practical steps. For example, if you worry about not having enough time for everyone and everything, learn more about time management or employ extra help with some tasks; if you suffer from money-related guilt, structure a plan for using some money for philanthropy.
Tip 5: Create your money manifesto
Using what you have learned about yourself and your goals, write a concise statement of promises for how you intend to interact with money from this moment onwards. Keep this list of mission statements to hand, and refer back to it whenever another change appears on the horizon, or when you sense any kind of fear or misgiving rise up.
The tools are now there for you to identify and clear the money blocks that have been burdening you, your entrepreneurial spirit and your business. Without these shackles, the sky is your limit.
By Salma El-Shurafa
Salma El-Shurafa is an experienced Executive Coach and founder of The Pathway Project. She is a Professional Certified Coach by the International Coaching Federation (ICF), a Certified Professional Co-Active Coach from The Coaches Training Institute (CTI) and a graduate of CTI’s Co-Active Leadership program.