Overcoming Resistance to Financial Planning

Posted by on Sep 16, 2014 in Financial therapy | 0 comments

F irst of all, congratulations if you have read beyond the title of this post because for those of you who are truly resistant to looking at your finances, your unconscious would have made sure that you wouldn’t even notice this post and if you did notice it, you would automatically have made the decision that this wasn’t something that you needed to worry about right now.

The truth is that, many of us are walking around in complete financial unconsciousness! I absolutely get this because, even as a financial adviser, for many years I was doing the same. For lots of us, the idea of looking at your money or creating a financial plan feels boring and uninspiring but it’s this exact message that may be keeping you financially stuck. Worry about money takes up a great deal of head space and it’s therefore crucial that you get a handle on this so that you can free up your mind to be concentrating on the things you truly want to be doing.

The good news is that, the minute you decide to take charge of your financial situation, whether that be just starting to pay attention to your numbers or better still, to invest in a financial plan, you are already well on your way to creating the life you desire.

You may feel anxious about looking at your finances because you are frightened about what you will find. I’m here to tell you as your friend that continuing blissfully unaware will simply perpetuate the behaviours, often self-defeating, that will reinforce your anxiety about money.

Freud talked about the ego defence mechanisms which are put in place to reduce anxiety, of which ‘denial’ is one. The unfortunate thing is that the ego defence mechanisms are unconscious so you likely won’t be aware you have them in place. The good news is that once you bring something to conscious awareness, you can start to change it!

If any of the following resonate, then it’s likely that you could be suffering from a wee bit of denial in the money department and you may need to shake things up a bit:

  • When people bring up the subject of money, you feel uncomfortable and change the subject.
  • You tell yourself that you live for the moment and therefore planning isn’t really that important.
  • Other people tell you that you really should start taking a bit more care of your money.

A strong negative emotional reaction to this type of post is likely to suggest that this is exactly where you need to be focussing your efforts!

I believe that, in life, and especially with our money we are sent challenges and these challenges are sent to teach us something. The process of becoming financially conscious is one of self development and until we learn the lessons, we will continually be sent our financial challenges.

This is why it is so important to send a powerful message to the universe that you are taking control, that you have learnt the lessons and are ready to take your financial life to the next level!

“If you don’t take control of your money, it will take control of you.”

Once we realise that our money is simply a tool to help us live our lives the way we want, it becomes something that is really worth paying attention to.

Many people have no idea how much they spend on a monthly basis and this isn’t about keeping a budget… I really dislike that word as it suggests all kinds of deprivation! But, the one thing you can do right now is just start to become aware of your numbers. Something as simple as noticing how much you spend each month can result in a powerful mind-shift. Start to get a feel for how much you need to earn to support you in the lifestyle you desire. Without this information, how are you ever going to get where you want to go?

For many, this one simple thing can feel like a daunting exercise and so it’s important to do whatever you need to do to make this feel as pleasant as possible. Thinking about the bigger picture of how your life will be when your money supports you in living your lifestyle can be a great motivator for some of the more mundane tasks that we need to do to become financially conscious. I’ve heard of people setting themselves ‘money date’ nights where they sit down and really get acquainted with their numbers! When I do my own financial planning I conjure up the images of all of the experiences that I am going to enjoy, all of the feelings that I’m going to feel, as a result of taking these tiny steps.

Give it a go and see how you get on and, in the meantime, I’d love to hear about any of the challenges you are experiencing around your money stuff right now so please feel free to message me with anything you’d like me to cover in future posts.

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