19 Jan You & Financial Success: Part One
Question: Are you willing to be financially successful?
I’m so glad that you’re reading this. In this series, we’re looking at being financially successful. I have a promise to make right at the beginning: if you apply yourself to what I’m suggesting that you do in this series, you will experience being financially successful within the next 30 days. Truly!
Before we go any further, let’s look at the definition of success I’ve used with thousands of people over the past 40 years:
Success is doing what you said you would do consistently, with clarity, focus, ease, and grace.
Success is not an “end state.” It is a journey, with signposts along the way that help you determine whether or not you’re being successful at any moment.
From the above definition of success you can see that:
Financial success is doing what you said you’d do consistently, with money, with clarity, focus, ease, and grace.
Let that sink in for a moment. This is a different way of looking at – really of experiencing – what financial success is all about. It’s an intimate look at our relationship with money.
Being financially successful is not about how much of the energy of money you possess. It is about whether or not you use it with clarity, focus, ease, and grace.
I know very wealthy people who are worried about losing their money or what people think about them because they have so much of it. One woman I talked with told me that since inheriting a large sum, she had the suspicion that the only reason her daughters called her was not because they wanted to speak with her, but because they wanted to ask for more money.
On the other hand, I know people who make a more modest income. They go on trips, contribute to the causes they love, have fun, and are not worried about finances. They demonstrate clarity, focus, ease, and grace in their relationship with money. They are, by this definition, being financially successful.
Why start our four-part series on success by looking at our relationship with money? This is the reason:
How you do money is how you do life!
There is virtually no place in your life that doesn’t include money. I challenge you to think of something that isn’t related to, or impacted by, your relationship with this form of energy. I had a chat with Brad a while back about this, and here’s what he came up with:
Brad: “I thought it would be an easy challenge until I tried to find something that didn’t involve money in my life. Even going up and living in the woods away from people, I could see that unless I grew everything I ate and made my clothes and my house, I’d have to use money in some way. I’d want to have a phone in case of emergencies, and that would involve paying a carrier. I mean, it gave me a headache to try to figure out what wouldn’t be influenced by my relationship with money. That was both illuminating and scary.”
And here’s another challenge. I don’t advise you to take it because it will take up most of your time. Keep a small notebook and write it down every time you think about money – the moment you think it – during the day. Don’t do it! I’ve tried, and it’s a nightmare of obsessive thinking. I quit after one hour.
This article begins your journey into financial success, so it’s time we look at one of the guideposts along the way to being financially successful:
If you have a notebook or journal, you might want to answer at least some of the questions below. It’s all about creating some clarity in your relationship with money. Take your time with this. And acknowledge yourself! I’ve discovered that many people who have lots of the energy of money aren’t clear about what they want to use this energy for! You’re being courageous as you begin this journey to become financially successful.
Are you clear about what’s really important to you? For example, would you love to use money to fund your dreams? If so, what dreams are they? Or to contribute to causes that you truly care about? What causes would you love to fund?
What are some Life’s Intentions that you could accomplish by being financially successful? A Life’s Intention is a purpose that warms your heart and nourishes your spirit. I’ve designed a Life’s Intentions Inventory that you can use. Go here to print out a copy. Fill it out and pick three that score 5 for you.
Might you be interested in setting up a vacation savings account? Something that you could contribute to every month? Can you imagine going on vacation without spending anything on your credit card to finance airline tickets and hotel reservations, because you’ve already paid for them from your vacation fund?
How about a Christmas, Hanukkah, or Kwanzaa savings account so that you have sufficient funds to buy all the gifts you want without having a January “Spending Hangover?”
You could form a support group with a few friends to look together at these questions. That can create a sense of comfort and community as you’re getting clear about becoming financially successful.
Let me know what you’re discovering! You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Until then, may you discover the simple truth in the definition of financial success: It doesn’t matter how much money you have. What matters is if you are using it with clarity, focus, ease, and grace.
Wishing you all my best,