How would you feel is someone said to you “You don’t deserve to be wealthy” or “You’re not important or rich enough to learn to be financially secure/independent”. You probably wouldn’t be very happy in the least and outraged at best. We may not be told straight up but there is always this underlying message bombarding us. For example, those that market debt sell this to us every day. Credit cards, loans, advances to name a few are all messages saying you won’t have the money so let us help you out and before you know it you’re in greater debt and the thought of saving any money vanishes. In addition, the consequences of the true cost of debt lies under the surface and is not transparent.
We’re also told that we are not important enough or rich enough when we can’t have access to higher interest accounts without minimum balances or we can’t access certain advice without first showing we have thousands of dollars to potentially invest. But, and this is a big BUT- we can be offered credit cards at almost 20% interest or loans with very unfavourable interest charges and we accept them with ease because we’ve been convinced we are not worthy of anything better.
How do we insulate ourselves from these messages?
One answer might lie in how we view ourselves- do we see ourselves as worthy of becoming wealthy and can we handle the truth about the work needed to achieve this? Some may respond by saying wealth isn’t important as long as I have my health, or I don’t need a lot of money. These are all responses I’ve heard over the years and the one common thread is the misunderstanding of wealth.
Wealth means having the trust therefore comfort that you have enough money to live by your own standards. This may be having enough so that when you become ill you can afford the best treatment, can purchase any prescriptions or access alternate therapies. It can also mean that you trust you have enough reserves should you need immediate funds, travel whenever you choose or that you have enough to pay the bills when you can no longer work. The definition of wealth is personal to each of us and your goals need to focus on what is.
Another way to insulate ourselves is to acquire the best and most accurate information about what would be the consequences should you choose to go down this path and how it will affect you in the present and more importantly in the future. Since time to save is our biggest asset the older we get the harder it is to recover from these consequences. Wealth is achieved over time and the focus and discipline required is not an easy task so any help is worth the effort.
Seek out the best information and constructive advice. Your financial literacy is crucial in enabling you to avoid the enticement of messages that are confusing and limiting to achieving your meaning of wealth. Finding the right professional to work with may take time but they are out there. To start, ask your friends and colleagues who they work with and ask if it has been successful, determine if it would be someone you could work with and then give them a call. Be clear in your expectations which should include in depth education first before any decisions are made.
Saving for your future may be hard, but you’re worth it!