Money can cause happiness, stress, worry, envy, or any number of other feelings. I was raised in a home with an intensely fearful atmosphere surrounding money, but I was able to uproot those fears and do a 180 from that mindset! Are you needing some financial freedom? Read on to find out how I fixed my unhealthy relationship with money!

Free 5-Day Surefire Money Makeover Challenge

Struggling with finances and need ways to start cutting costs and seeing savings ASAP? I’ve got the solution! Start my free 5-Day Surefire Money Makeover Challenge here by filling out this form:

How I Fixed My Unhealthy Relationship with Money

Family finances rooted in fear

When I was a very little girl, I was carefree. Which is wonderful and the way it should be for all small children. I was blessed that I was able to have that precious time, because I realize that not everyone does.

But around age 5, that started to change. Up until then, my mom and I had lived with my grandparents, and my grandpa in particular was a very warm and kind man. When my mom married my dad, we became a happy family, but from then on, things started to change financially.

Now, don’t get me wrong. My dad is my dad. I love him. He stepped up and became my father when he married my mom. There’s never been any “step-dad” or anything of the kind. He’s just my dad, 100%, always has been and always will be.

I had a really happy childhood, but from that time on, it wasn’t as carefree anymore. You see, my dad tends to have more of a negative outlook, especially regarding money. So as a very small girl, I went from having no financial worries, or even awareness, to living in fear that the bottom might fall out from under us at any moment.

My parents were both very prudent with their money throughout their lives, and I saw a lot of that growing up. My mom was frugal and couponed a lot when I was little. I remember playing in the living room or sitting at the table drawing while she sat beside me cutting coupons and organizing them into her little accordion coupon holder.

She lived frugally, took advantage of sales, and haggled with the best of them. In fact, when I bought my first car, she went back and forth with the salesmen and managers, and she even had different dealerships bidding for the same vehicle that we were after so we’d buy it from them.

Let this blow your frugal mind like it does mine when I think back on it: the dealership we purchased my vehicle from ended up selling us the car below cost. I truly don’t know how she did it.

How I Fixed My Unhealthy Relationship with Money | poverty mindset | unhealthy relationship with money | scarcity mindset | money | saving | fear of poverty | fear | positive financial mindset | control of finances | worried about money | money fears | #fear #financialworries #unhealthyrelationship #moneyproblems #moneyissues #povertymindset #scarcitymindset
My dad, my mom, and me–before my sister came along

My mom always made a point to stretch her dollars when it came to groceries too. She fed us hardy but affordable meals.

I didn’t realize until I was grown that a lot of the meals she cooked for us were “what poor people eat,” as she later revealed. But those beanie weenies and tuna bakes sure were yummy, and little me loved every bite.

I never had a sense that there was anything to worry about regarding money when it came to my mom. After all, we had wonderful celebrations with presents for birthdays and Christmases, and once in a while we’d go out to eat for a special occasion.

But my dad is a different story. He was forever glued to the news on TV and forecasting gloom and doom about all economic conditions.

I remember him sitting at the dining room table a couple of times each month working on paperwork and paying bills, either muttering under his breath or complaining loudly. I always hated those times. There was a horrible tension that oozed throughout the house each time he sat down to pay bills.

He would complain about spending money and wonder aloud how we’d be able to afford to live. His most famous phrases were “we’re going to be eating out the dumpster” and “we’ll be going to the poor house.”

My sister and I can laugh about his Eeyore-like mantras now, but at the time, 8-year-old me was terrified. I recall my mom asking him to stop talking like that because he was scaring us girls.

Turns out as an adult I discovered that my parents hadn’t been poor at all. They didn’t have tons of money or anything like that, but they weren’t poor.

It makes me sad because we never went on a real family vacation even once, and they could have afforded that. And now my mom’s gone so I’ll never be able to have a memory like that.

I finally decided to spend some money on a vacation with my husband and his family a couple of years ago, and it was amazing. I wish I could’ve had that with my family growing up. It just goes to show that the poverty mindset struggle is real.

Carrying on an unhealthy legacy

When I got married, I was excited to start a fresh, independent life with my husband. I moved out of my parents’ house, packing up all my worldly goods, and that unhealthy relationship with money that had been ingrained in my brain since age 6 came right along with me.

Did you know there’s actually a term for being afraid of being poor? Yep, that’s a thing. Peniaphobia. The fear of poverty. And boy oh boy did I have that fear.

My new husband and I combined our money to start our married life together, and of course, I was ready to start pinching pennies and saving for doomsday.

I remember talking about saving money and how we should be contributing more to our savings account. My husband just did not get it. And I couldn’t understand how he didn’t hold all the same views about money that I’d grown up with.

He wanted to know what we were saving for:

Are we saving for a car?

No…

Are we saving for a TV?

No!

Are we saving for a vacation?

Pfffftt! NOOOO!

I didn’t understand how he didn’t understand the concept of saving in general. We were coming from very different places, financially speaking.

How I Fixed My Unhealthy Relationship with Money | poverty mindset | unhealthy relationship with money | scarcity mindset | money | saving | fear of poverty | fear | positive financial mindset | control of finances | worried about money | money fears | #fear #financialworries #unhealthyrelationship #moneyproblems #moneyissues #povertymindset #scarcitymindset
My husband and me, our first Valentine’s Day as a married couple!

I’d always hoped that I’d be able to be a homemaker when I got married. But it just wasn’t possible for us. We both needed to work full-time.

I’d been working as a sign language interpreter for a decade, and then one day, something terrifying happened. The school where I was working did a complete overhaul of my job description, and I found myself in a situation where I could potentially wind up liable.

It was a huge ethical dilemma, and it was especially frightening because I needed that job. We needed me to have that job. We wouldn’t be able to make it if I quit. But then the situation suddenly came to a point where I didn’t have a choice. I had to leave.

I was so scared. I didn’t have a plan. I assumed I could freelance interpret, but I absolutely dreaded the thought of that. I set to work and did all the mathematics possible to analyze the situation and cipher out the least number of hours I’d need to work per week.

I gave myself a month—two, max—to emotionally and mentally prepare for this change, and in the meantime, I decided to see just how frugal I could become. I scrimped and budgeted like I’d never done before, and we were just barely able to slide by with me staying home.

It was like a dream come true. It wasn’t easy, and we had to say goodbye to a lot of things we enjoyed and had become accustomed to, but it was doable.

Free 5-Day Surefire Money Makeover Challenge

Struggling with finances and need ways to start cutting costs and seeing savings ASAP? I’ve got the solution! Start my free 5-Day Surefire Money Makeover Challenge here by filling out this form:

Related posts

Okay, random tidbit time. Wanna hear something incredibly ridiculous? Let me know if this is as unbelievable and absurd to you as it is to me.

When my mom was sick with cancer 6 years ago, it wasn’t looking good. She had breast cancer that had metastasized to her liver and, shortly afterward, to several other places. She was so incredibly ill that she couldn’t eat or walk. She couldn’t even get out of the hospital bed.

I was desperate to find some sort of treatment for her, so I called Cancer Treatment Centers of America. Out of the 5 hospitals they have around the country, one of them is located in our town. I was infused with hope—it was like there was a facility there just for us!

But then they said she could only be admitted if she could walk into their building. She couldn’t come in on a stretcher or even in a wheelchair. She had to be able to walk just enough to get into the building on her own 2 feet. I was extremely discouraged, as you can imagine.

But then, by a miracle, she improved just enough to be able to walk for short stretches. I was like, “Mom, this is it! You can go to Cancer Treatment Centers of America!”

She was unimpressed. I reminded her about one of her friends who’d gone there and had great success. My mom’s response just kills me to this day. She said, “Yeah, but now they’re hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt.”

Can you believe that?!

I said, “But Mom, SHE’S. STILL. ALIVE.”

I think looking back on that and realizing the extent of the whacked money mindset my mom had was a huge influence on my decision to stop living in financial fear.

“Almighty” dollar vs. my Almighty Father

Even on her deathbed, my mom was worried about money. I realized what a pitiful way to live that was, and I made the decision to fix my unhealthy relationship with money before I started adopting such a detrimental mindset.

Having quit my job when I couldn’t afford to, and having seen my dad live his whole life in financial fear, along with my mom still worrying about money from her deathbed… All that combined to create in me a desire to kick this ridiculous whacked out attitude about money to the curb.

CONFESSION TIME: Up until the moment that I quit my job, my trust had been pretty well rooted in money.

Sad but true. It’s how I was raised. I was brought up to value money.

Now I’m not saying that money isn’t valuable, don’t get me wrong. Money is essential for survival, it’s just the way the world works. And having money or spending money isn’t inherently evil, not by any means.

But being too preoccupied with it is.

Allowing it to overtake your heart is.

Letting it have control over your life is.

For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. | 1 Timothy 6:10, KJV

I probably wouldn’t choose the word love to describe my unhealthy relationship with money, but I was obsessed. I wasn’t obsessed with chasing after it, but I was haunted by the thought that I might lose it.

How I Fixed My Unhealthy Relationship with Money | poverty mindset | unhealthy relationship with money | scarcity mindset | money | saving | fear of poverty | fear | positive financial mindset | control of finances | worried about money | money fears | #fear #financialworries #unhealthyrelationship #moneyproblems #moneyissues #povertymindset #scarcitymindset

Remember how I grew up hearing that we would be eating out of dumpsters and going to the poor house? Well, as you can imagine, I learned pretty early on the huge value of the “almighty” dollar.

And consequently, I allowed—and even encouraged—myself to have a stranglehold on money. I had learned to view it as the end-all, be-all of life. My mindset was that money was my provider.

Well let me just proudly share this with you! It is not the “almighty” dollar but our Almighty Father who takes care of us.

When I quit my job, I prayed for guidance and for the Lord to give me the desire of my heart—to be a homemaker—and I placed my trust in Him.

I had to labor to rest.

Let me say that one again because, boy, it was haaaaard for me to grasp that one, and I still need to hear it often:

I had to work at resting in Him.

And it was so hard for me to do that.

But I’ve learned that money does not take care of me. God takes care of me. And He is a faithful Provider.

Let me give you an example of how God has renewed my mind regarding money.

Several years ago, I had to have surgery for endometriosis. It was more involved than expected, so I had to stay overnight. Later, when the bill came, I was flabbergasted.

They were charging me $20,000 for an overnight stay, not including the bills for the doctors, anesthesiologist, etc. I burst into tears and couldn’t be consoled.

But God provided. He lowered the cost to an amount we could afford.

A couple of years after that, my husband had to have surgery on his back and neck. It was a new type of procedure only offered in several areas, so we had to travel out of state. When those bills came, the numbers were astronomical.

I was scared. But I remembered how God had provided for us before, and I believed He would do it again, so I chose to trust Him, day by day.

And He provided. The doctors and facilities were somehow covered under our insurance, and the balance was a number we could afford to pay.

How I Fixed My Unhealthy Relationship with Money | poverty mindset | unhealthy relationship with money | scarcity mindset | money | saving | fear of poverty | fear | positive financial mindset | control of finances | worried about money | money fears | #fear #financialworries #unhealthyrelationship #moneyproblems #moneyissues #povertymindset #scarcitymindset
My husband right before going back for one of his surgeries

Then this year, I had to have endometriosis surgery again. And my husband ended up needing surgery too. He’d been in a wreck over a year before, and all the other treatments had failed to help him, so he needed back and neck surgery again.

There were so many expenses, but I had seen God provide for our needs before, so I knew He would again. I was concerned, but even though our income was now 40% of what it had been before, I wasn’t worried.

And I know, I’m still believing and trusting, that He will provide. It’s not an if, it’s when and how.

The roots of financial insecurity have run deep in my life, and at times that wrong money mindset will try to get a stronghold in my mind. So I have to decide day by day and situation by situation that I’ll keep placing my finances in God’s hands.

After all, look at how He promises to take care of us:

Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble. | Matthew 6:26, 31-34, NKJV

I had to remember how loved I am by my Father God. That He is my Father. That He cares for me even more than I care for myself. I do my part to budget as well as I can and spend wisely and save wisely. But ultimately, my faith is in Him alone.

Oh! And here’s something huge I’ve learned from all this:

It’s okay to spend money on something fun!

It’s okay to take a vacation!

Obviously, it’s not okay to spend everything I have frivolously, but neither is it okay to hoard everything away in fear.

If you’re dealing with an unhealthy relationship with money, I hope this has helped give you hope that, yes—God can you heal of that!

Always remember, my friend, God does not give us a spirit of fear, but power and of love and of a sound mind. (2 Timothy 1:7)

How’s your relationship with money? Let me know what you’re struggling with or how you renewed your mindset in the comments below.

Free 5-Day Surefire Money Makeover Challenge

Struggling with finances and need ways to start cutting costs and seeing savings ASAP? I’ve got the solution! Start my free 5-Day Surefire Money Makeover Challenge here by filling out this form:

Related posts

If you enjoyed this post, click below to save it to your favorite Pinterest board!

How I Fixed My Unhealthy Relationship with Money | poverty mindset | unhealthy relationship with money | scarcity mindset | money | saving | fear of poverty | fear | positive financial mindset | control of finances | worried about money | money fears | #fear #financialworries #unhealthyrelationship #moneyproblems #moneyissues #povertymindset #scarcitymindset

How I Fixed My Unhealthy Relationship with Money | poverty mindset | unhealthy relationship with money | scarcity mindset | money | saving | fear of poverty | fear | positive financial mindset | control of finances | worried about money | money fears | #fear #financialworries #unhealthyrelationship #moneyproblems #moneyissues #povertymindset #scarcitymindset




If you enjoyed, please share!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *