Sometimes, money is a tool that we misunderstand.
In many ways, money is the tool we use to help fix, improve, or strengthen our lives. Money drives our decisions and influences our path but we don’t fully embrace the role that it plays in our lives. Or if we do, we apply it to our lives in the wrong ways.
You might be feeling scared, defensive, and stressed about money. You might view it as a thing that is always out of reach or unavailable or lacking. But it doesn’t have to be that way. We want to help you change the way you view and relate to money.
The first step?
View money as a tool to reach your goals, not as the goal itself. People view money in many different ways, and often the way they view it isn’t serving them.
The Destination Or The Journey?
You have bills to pay, retirement to save for, and a dream bucket list to accomplish. It seems natural that money is the goal to make all of those things happen. When, in fact, it’s the exact opposite.
When you view money as a goal, you attach a lot of pressure and expectation to your finances. It would be like showing up to a first date with a diamond ring: when money is the ultimate goal, your expectations and values are out of line. It will lead you to an increase in self-doubt and worry. Instead of worrying about growing your wealth, if you focus on leveraging your growing wealth to accomplish your goals – you’ll be able to better align your financial goals with the dreams you have for your lifestyle.
Money is a tool to help you reach your financial goals, a tool for your personal fulfillment. When you change your mindset about the role money plays in your life, you will be better able to use that tool to help you along your journey. It’s all about balance. You’re working to balance your present with the future, security with opportunity, and all of your financial decisions with your core values.
Now, we’re not saying that this is an easy shift to make, because it’s not. Seeing money as the end-goal may be our knee-jerk reaction, but when you feel yourself veering into that lane, pause and remember why you want to reach that goal in the first place.
Viewing money as a tool is a great way for us to examine our priorities, values, and goals.
Your Goals Matter
So if money is not the end goal, what is?
This is a question that has boundless answers that all depend on you. It could be happiness, fulfillment, or meaning. It might be using your time to serve your family, friends, and community. No matter what it is, this is the goal you could be working toward.
Your goals are important which is why we talk about goals so much in financial planning. They structure and inform your daily lives and financial decisions. When you structure your financial life around the things that matter most to you, you will be better able to see money as a means to an end, a way to help get you where you need to go.
The important thing to remember is that money is not the only way to achieve your goals. While it is an important tool, it’s not the only one. There are many ways to view your resources, just like there are many ways to reach your goals.
As an exercise, try writing 2-3 of your top goals. Then, write 2-3 of your most important values. Take a look at the list you created. How are your goals and values aligned? This is your springboard for your financial management philosophy. This is how you will get where you need to go.
Here at TFS, we are passionate about people. Each and every day, we work to help people reach their goals. If you are interested in speaking with us, please give us a call.