Our beliefs, or our view of the world starts with our early childhood memories. We learn from our parents, our environment and form our own beliefs from those observations. So what are your earliest memory’s of money? How do you think that has impacted on how you relate to money now in your adult life?
My earliest memories of money revolve around the word ‘No’. No I couldn’t have the umbrella with the pink frill; the must have winter fashion accessory for a 4 year old. No, I couldn’t have a Barbie doll, they were too expensive, so I got the imitation one instead.
My parents were (and still are) very careful with their money, they were quite frugal in day to day expenditure but that meant that there was money set aside for our holidays and should any emergency crop up.
Their goal was to be mortgage free, as they hated any sort of debt and over the years they achieved that goal.
What beliefs about money did I take from this?
1. Be careful with your money, it doesn’t grow on trees.
2. You don’t need an extravagant lifestyle and lot’s of stuff, the basics are fine.
3. All debt is bad.
These beliefs worked really well for me whilst I was living at home. I diligently saved the bulk of my wages from my after school job, which enabled me to buy my first car.
Then the inevitable happened, I started working full time, left home and made new friends.
I remember spending most of my first pay packet on the most beautiful sheepskin rug (OK, I am a New Zealander and we are surrounded by sheep!!), my parents were horrified. I was so proud of myself and my new possession.
The next week it was something else, and then I was on the slippery slope of buying stuff; I discovered credit cards, and for many years after that the money beliefs my parents had instilled in me disappeared out the window. I never did tell them the size of the mortgage I had on my own home!!
You see, my beliefs about money changed as my environment and relationships changed. I didn’t realise it at the time, but my beliefs went from being careful with money to being careless with money.
It was only when I got to a point where I knew I had to change, and really started challenging my beliefs that I realised there was much more to my parents careful attitude to money.
They were careful with their money so they could manage on Dad’s income which meant Mum didn’t have to work. They didn’t waste money on ‘stuff’, they saved it so I could have a great education and we could be together as a family.
I have come full circle. Yes, I still love nice things, but rather than buy on impulse, the decision is thought through more carefully in terms of the big picture and the financial and life goals that are now in place.
So I encourage you to have some quiet time, think about your earliest memories of money in your childhood.
1. What money belief did you take from that situation?
2. How has it impacted on your life?
3. Most importantly; is that belief working for you now?
If the answer to question 3 is No, then contact us and let us see if we can help you.
Lynda Moore www.mymoneyseeker.com