What is your relationship like with money? Is it a healthy, harmonious one or is it toxic AF?
Maybe it’s somewhere in between.
We all have a relationship with money, and we often don’t realize how much that relationship mimics the one we have with our parents or caregivers. I’m not just talking about what you learned about money from them. No, I’m talking about the actual relationship itself.
If you grew up with narcissistic or emotionally unavailable/immature parents/caregivers, chances are you’ve had a similar relationship with money and your business if you own one as you’ve had with them.
To give you an example I’m gonna share what my money and business relationship were for a long time.
For me, I would go through these constant waves where money or clients would be flowing in and I’d be so excited, so happy (or so I thought) and then money and clients would fade out and I’d feel depressed, stressed, abandoned, and filled with fear.
Not exactly pleasant and for way too many years that went on without me being able to pinpoint why this happened. I felt like I was a failure, not good enough, and like there was something wrong with me.
And then I had a very profound moment after a therapy session and session with my coach.
I’d done a ton of work on my relationship and friendship issues, and I thought maybe I’d been approaching money all wrong.
I’d been focused on learning more about investing and saving, doing affirmations, and taking courses on business and money strategy and mindset. All good things, by the way, I’m not knocking them, but they weren’t helping. I was only doing a bit better, but the cycle still existed.
So, I decided it was time to approach the issue the way I’d approached everything else in my healing. I decided to look at money and my business as if I had a relationship with them as if they were people in my life.
The floodgates opened!
I realized the way I’d been treated regarding money and my business was very similar to the relationship with my narcissistic mom and my loving yet emotionally stunted dad.
Throughout my childhood (from age 6 on to be exact) I experienced this pattern where my mom would have one of her violent blow-ups and kick me out of the house. My dad would come to pick me up and I’d be happy and excited he was there. But I was also always anxious, fearful, depressed, and stressed because I knew eventually, I’d have to go back to my mom’s, and I’d be “abandoned” by him yet again.
I’d wanna stay so badly and do all the things with him but I had to go back to my nightmare house.
I’d approached money the say way! I’d get all excited when she showed up, I’d wanna do all the things like pay off the debts, catch up on bills, have fun, and do things for Angel, my daughter. But there was an anxious happiness because I knew money would soon bounce and I’d be abandoned again. I’d feel that same depression, anxiousness, fear sadness, and stress.
I had the same relationship with my business because an inner child had enmeshed these relationships together. It sucked realizing this but my therapist and coach both reminded me I knew how to work through this.
I’m a master at working through the relationship wounds related to narcissistic parents and emotionally unavailable ones too.
Your money/business story may be different from mine.
Maybe your parents weren’t around. Ok so do you always worry about money someday disappearing, so you obsessively work to make sure there’s enough?
Maybe it wasn’t your parent(s) that were narcissistic. Maybe it was their parent. Do you feel like you have to be responsible for everything and take care of everything like you’ve done with your parent who leaned on you for support? So now you don’t let money take care of you because you have to take care of it?
Maybe your parent(s) weren’t that bad, they just weren’t very emotionally expressive and available. Do you feel like money is just this cold thing, but you don’t really feel any love from it so even if you’re doing well, you still feel slightly unfulfilled, and you don’t know why?
The story can vary because it’s based on your unique experiences. It’s also possible you have a completely healthy relationship with money/business and if so that’s fabulous! But if any of that relates or if it gets you thinking about your own relationship then it’s time to sit down and have a convo with money and/or your business.
Pull up your bank account, business website, or whatever else helps you connect, and just look at them for a while. Notice how you feel, what thoughts come up, and how they seem to feel about you.
Even if you’re doing well this can still be helpful because maybe there’s another level of success or connection with them you desire but you feel stunted.
Do this repeatedly, daily even until you start to connect the dots.
Now more than ever I think it’s important to work on these issues and clean up unresolved traumas so try this and see what you discover or just do it to improve the relationship.