People typically come to me feeling that money is a separate issue on its own to heal, and this is true to a degree. However, what’s usually in the way to creating abundance and wealth are the very beliefs that deeply challenge our self-worth. The feeling that you aren’t enough is always at the core.
Unhealthy financial beliefs generally fall into two categories: internal and external. Internal beliefs are all about deservingness and whether you believe you can have wealth or not. External beliefs project judgment towards money itself as the problem. As you will come to see, money is just an energy. Therefore, it’s useful to think of it as a barometer that reflects back to you how you feel about it and/or yourself.
You might have a mix of both belief types right now. That’s OK. These are very common. It is absolutely possible to heal and thrive, especially when you have a high degree of self-awareness. In fact, this gives you an advantage.
Understanding how limiting beliefs develop is very helpful in overcoming them.
We all experienced traumatic experiences growing up. It’s part of being human. As children, our brains are like sponges, absorbing the energy of everything and everyone around us. We lack the ability to discern if an adult is telling us the truth, or if their faulty beliefs are the source of their disapproval or anger towards us.
During a traumatic experience, we feel unsafe. This triggers our fight or flight survival instincts and the body releases a cocktail of stress hormones to prepare us for action. However, as small children, we often can’t fight back or run away to safety. As a result, the stress energy does not discharge in a healthy way. Instead it gets trapped in our nervous system and the accompanying challenging emotions (and our shameful interpretations) become repressed into the subconscious to be dealt with later. It’s the best chance for us to survive the current moment given our immature level of development.
This is why we struggle to see our blocks; they’re hidden. Worse, unchecked, they continue to create our recurring limitations in life.
Our role and responsibility to ourselves now as mature, healthy adults is to revisit these emotions and beliefs with the aim of healing wherever we don’t love ourselves. It’s our job to provide ourselves with the love that was lacking in the past. No one else can do it for us. When we love ourselves, we automatically have high self-worth. If our self-worth isn’t high, how can we believe that we deserve a lot of anything, especially money?
We need to re-train ourselves to seek validation internally (from our higher self/soul), rather than externally through parents and cultural conditioning. This is how we take our power back and create self-worth. It begins with valuing and accepting our own emotional experiences. Usually what we experienced was that our feelings, desires, and needs were not OK. This is what creates shame.
So how do we heal?
First, we acknowledge that we are innocent. As children, we only wanted to love and be loved in return. This is still true for us as adults. We were dependent on our parents to take care of us to survive. We had to conform to their beliefs. It’s biological. Most of what we have been conditioned to believe isn’t even ours! This means healing is actually more about undoing negativity to reveal our natural state of self-love and abundance. Then we naturally live in alignment with our soul.
In my experience, deep healing happens in 4 steps. It involves connecting with our subconscious, feeling our repressed emotions, asking some tough questions to see the truth, and then letting go through forgiveness.
Here is a simple exercise to uncover some of your larger blocks. Ask yourself the following question/statement: “the reason I can’t have wealth is because…” or, “I shouldn’t have a lot of money because…” and allow the truth to emerge. You might find this exercise more effective by writing out your answers. What comes up for you?
Now that you have some material to work with, let’s illustrate the healing process by moving a common limiting belief through these steps.
Example belief: I don’t deserve to have a lot of money
A) Emotional healing
We can’t heal what we don’t know exists. Since the root of our issues with money or anything else is stored in the subconscious, we have to make what has been hidden conscious. We invite our repressed emotions to come to our awareness by becoming totally present and creating a safe space for them to be felt. We allow ourselves to feel the way we felt as children – whether that is to grieve, become angry, or to express another difficult emotion. This needs to occur without the mind’s judgment. To judge now is to repeat the internalized parental cycle of shame, keeping the old cycle locked in place.
We have to learn how to go into the body somatically to feel what is there, rather than thinking. It can be challenging to just allow, especially when our society prizes left-brain doing. Like anything, it takes time to build these muscles. Be gentle with yourself.
So, for our example of I don’t deserve to have a lot of money, we might feel deep sadness, we may experience the energy of shame as a contraction in our solar plexus, we may become hot and angry, and we might feel the anxiety of never having enough growing up, or even today. We become aware of all of the emotions we are experiencing, and allow them to be. We fully accept them as part of ourselves, because they are. ALL of our feelings are OK. We rejected parts of ourselves and now we need to reclaim them in order to be whole.
You might have heard that emotion stands for ‘energy-in-motion’. No matter what we’re experiencing, it’s helpful to remember that it’s all just energy wanting to move. Repressed emotions literally occupy energetic space in the body and need to be discharged for optimal health. Therefore, one of the most important healing skills you can develop is the ability to become a container for your repressed emotions (and messages) to flow through in the present. If you’d like a good resource to help guide you, I highly recommend the fascinating and easy to read book “The Emotion Code” by Dr. Bradley Nelson.
It’s also extremely important to physically and vocally express your emotions, as this helps drive the energy out and release trauma. It may feel unnatural to you, but it is key to restoring your power. While there are several ways to do this, vocalization, movement, and breath are the big three. You might feel a lump in your throat while you are releasing. This can indicate a shut-down throat chakra (ie you were silent or froze) as a result of trauma. In order to reverse this pattern, we need to use our voices now, whether that’s through speaking, screaming, singing, or just making the guttural sounds that your instincts are calling you to do. You can also bring movement to your body, like dancing, shaking, or even acting out the play-like movement and sounds of animals if that is more comfortable for you! There are also various forms of breathwork that can induce and facilitate very deep release. If you’re a writer, journaling out your experiences might appeal to you.
The key is to find the best expression or combination of methods that work for you. So, taking our example, you might want to move like a lion or scream to move your anger out, have a good cry, or shake off your anxiety.
As your emotions flow and express and you become very present, something magical happens. Because we want to see the truth now, your subconscious starts to reveal greater understanding to you. You might experience memories or images, along with messages and insights of what really happened. With our example, you might be shown that it was actually your father who hated the rich because he grew up poor. He denied your material requests because he couldn’t afford them, and he didn’t know how to make things better.
Before we move on to the next step, I’d like to address new age schools of thought that discourage individuals from feeling any of their pain, and instead direct their focus to maintaining positive thoughts. This is not healing. Having studiously applied this myself for 2 years, I can tell you that this kind of concentration takes place in the head rather than the heart. It’s also called spiritual bypassing. Eventually it will feel like something is missing because you are literally bypassing the very source of your depth as a soul. Sadly, it also dismisses the valuable messages of your unhealed pain, which are calling you to wholeness.
Ultimately, when our repressed emotions and desires are left unexamined, we remain trapped in our conditioning. We’ll continue to experience the same challenges in the world. This is the big difference between positive thinking and healing. The only way to embody happiness and profound love is to heal everywhere we have not loved ourselves so that our light emanates from the inside out. It will feel painful at first, but by committing to actively remove our barriers, we re-open our hearts and deepen our capacity to love. Be gentle and compassionate with yourself. Your inner child still lives inside of you and wants (and needs) your loving tenderness.
B) Using the adult intellect
Our logical minds play an important part in healing – just not at the start. To move into thinking without having allowed the buried emotion to be felt keeps the deeper pain locked in the subconscious and prevents full healing. Once the emotion has passed through, we can enlist the analytical power of our intellect to discern whether our interpretation was in fact, correct.
For our example of I don’t deserve to have a lot of money, if your parents grew up in poverty, how could they have known how to create wealth? Did you parents do inner work to heal their limiting beliefs? If not, how could you as a child possibly have been able to influence them to change their ways? If your father could not afford to give you toys, does that automatically mean you weren’t worthy of them? Just because a parent scolded us, or had no money to spend on toys, it doesn’t mean that we didn’t truly deserve positive treatment or rewards. Can you also find compassion for your father who didn’t know how to provide more for his family?
By seeing a broader perspective, with equally valid interpretations, we increase our field of view. We challenge what once felt certain. We must question the certainty of our conclusions – conclusions made as children without fully developed reasoning and emotional intelligence.
C) Restoring Balance
Once we have released the stuck energy from our system emotionally and logically, we are in an ideal position to see another type of truth; radical self-honesty. This allows us to bring balance to the situation. Until you see how this belief has served you, you won’t be able to let it go.
Here is a very important question for you: how have these beliefs protected you or your world-view? How have they created safety? Remember that trauma is all about feeling unsafe. The need for safety actually trumps the need for love. If you don’t survive, love is irrelevant!
The more honest you’re willing to be with yourself, the more you will heal. Sometimes our negative beliefs protect us from feeling greater pain before we’re ready. As children, we aren’t capable of processing very big feelings like abandonment, hopelessness or powerlessness. In our example, perhaps because you loved your father so much, you agreed to take on his belief to avoid challenging him and causing more pain to him and to yourself. These are usually the kind of deep unconscious agreements that bind us to victimhood. We have to see them first in order to let them go.
In other cases, they prevent us from taking full responsibility for ourselves. I don’t deserve a lot of money allows you to continue blaming others for your misfortunes in life by serving as your excuse to not even try to become successful.
And eventually, ask yourself what this pain will lead you to or give you in the future? Hint: it’s always the opposite. Your pain is a dormant gift in disguise that brings you closer to what you most deeply desire. So, if you feel deep shame, this is an invite to eventually feel self-worth. It remains in its raw form until you are ready to alchemize it through healing.
Because forgiveness is rooted in love, it ends the cycle of victimization that you felt, which always comes from fear. Forgiveness is an action that comes from the heart, so it is often accompanied by strong emotion. You may also physically feel a warmth or opening around this area. It cannot be rushed and is the result of seeing the situation from a balanced perspective.
Linking back to innocence, we need to forgive ourselves for not knowing better and for not being able to handle things differently. If it could have been different, it would have been different! We also need to forgive those who raised us. Usually they did the best they could from their own limitations.
So, in our example, you forgive your father for not being able to teach you differently. And now you take responsibly for teaching yourself. You liberate him, and free yourself from seeking his validation. You accept that he has the choice to also free himself, if he so chooses. And you accept if he does not, but it is not your work to change him.
This is letting go. You release the ‘perpetrators’ from victimizing you, and you can genuinely feel gratitude for the wisdom you have been gifted with. This is why compassion = healed pain.
Forgiveness also frees up the space to receive what is true: that we are all equally deserving of abundance and happiness and to just be ourselves. It is only your unhealed wounds that tell you you’re unworthy. Your soul already knows this deep down, right now – even before doing any of this work. This is because abundance is our true nature. We just get in our own way.
Optional: if you believe in God/Universe/Angels, ask for help or strength (at any stage of healing). Your prayers are always answered.
It would be irresponsible of me not to caution you about the risks involved with doing this kind of deep work.
When you uncover repressed pain from the subconscious, it can be confronting, especially if this is new to you. It can be very challenging to your identity. You may feel things you didn’t know were there, and the emotions can be intense at times. It can also be very difficult to see your beliefs accurately because they feel so normal to you.
My recommendation is to work with a trained coach or therapist who can personally support and guide you. You want to be mindful that you don’t just bring difficult feelings to the surface without possessing the right tools and skills to safely release them. Additionally, the positive rewiring effects of working with a professional who warmly and unconditionally receives your authentic truth cannot be understated. Since all wounds happened in relationship with others, healing them with others is required at some point. This is something I truly enjoy supporting my clients with, and if you’d like to explore if I could assist you, I invite you to contact me to discuss your situation in confidence.
Although this work can be difficult, it’s an opportunity to develop courage, and learn that you are bigger than any of your emotions. This will deeply serve you in all areas of your life. You will naturally feel the profound depths of love and happiness that your soul longs to express. Your relationships will become joyful and you’ll be able to accept others for who they are. And you’ll see that you have the power to change anything, which will come in handy as you learn about wealth creation strategies that may feel outside of your realm of possibility now. Finally, by loving your innocent child, you will greatly increase your feelings of self-worth.