‘Christmas is coming the goose is getting fat please put a penny in the old mans hat.
If you haven’t got a penny a half penny will do
If you haven’t got a half penny then God bless you!’
I can still hear my Dad’s lovely voice when I think of this verse as Christmas draws near, as he used to sing it to me and my siblings and any little children that stopped to hear.
In saying that I am very blessed to still have my Dad around today.
He is one very special human being who has added and continues to add so much value to my life and that of my children.
Anyway, I didn’t post this today to only speak of my Dad.
I wanted to utilize my past memory with the hope of perhaps helping you to have a different take on your money story than what you may of be thinking and even gain a little different understanding, perhaps even clarity.
I realize that Christmas can mean so many different things to each and everyone of us.
To some it can be a time of great happiness and to others overshadowed by sadness, dread and pain as you may of lost a loved one or had some traumatic personal tragedy strike at or through out the year.
Some of you may love the opportunity to gather around friends and family and some of you may find yourself already wishing for the other side of it.
No matter where you are on your journey to Financial Fitness, Happiness and Freedom addressing what you truly feel can help you to powerfully move forward and past what has been holding you back in the cold hard facts of it.
So I pause a moment and stop and I ask you to do the same, to not only honor your own personal experiences but to acknowledge yourself for being willing to step through those and make change to what has not been serving you.
That take courage, tenacity and GUTS!
Now putting that a little to the side, I invite you if you choose, to make use of this opportunistic time of year.
To get closer if you like to the real you, to become aware of some of your thoughts, feelings, old habits, problems or inhibitions, that present themselves around about Christmas time.
Christmas can come with a whole mixed bag of troubles and emotions I am sure you can agree, if you don’t feel these yourself you don’t have to look far to see these presenting for others.
I’m sure you may agree, it’s pretty safe to surmise that Christmas is collectively seen as a time of great giving and receiving, although in saying that there is always the opposite reflection of this. Still many of you may be struggling and not feel like you are in a place to give to others freely.
Especially if you are just getting started on the road of managing your money, ‘Financial Fitness and Freedom.’ Yet! (a powerful little magic word).
This is precisely what I wanted to address today because this place in itself can feel so overwhelmingly, uncomfortable and pressuring.
You can experience great feelings of anxiety, fear, sadness, disappointment and panic.
If this feels like you, you are already experiencing this and you can resonate with what I am saying here.
Take a pause, draw in a slow deep breath and let out a slow long exhale, repeat this over until you feel a little calmer and then be prepared to face the overwhelm, the uncomfortable and pressured feelings with a new sense of courage.
Just know that these emotions are old, they have been there for a long time and they are just being triggered as a chance for you to change.
So no need to let them run rampant, see if you can breath and relax your mind and body. Allow yourself to become like a lifesaver observing the ocean, only difference is you are observing your thoughts, beliefs and habits.
We can be triggered by all sorts of things around us , children, animals, plants, family members, other people that we hold judgements about, even our own reflection in the mirror.
What do I mean by triggered you might be thinking.
Triggering is like an uncomfortable negative emotional or physical response of reaction in response to something that is displeasing, painful, traumatic, judgmental, critical. that can cause an over-spilling of emotions like frustration, anger, sadness, shame or guilt etc.
For eg Just imagine what you would feel like when someone makes a comment about you that doesn’t seem fair or that is not true.
You can even feel highly responsive and react by striking out your anger or you can be deeply hurt and shut yourself down.
You can even experience this triggering when you have negative thoughts or you criticize yourself. Depression can be the affect.
These triggers or reactions are in response to what we are believing about ourselves underneath.
Now around Christmas time uncomfortable emotions and feelings can be triggered just by the smell of pine, tinsel or decorations in the shops.
You could have memories that are stirred up from a Christmas with a loved one that is no longer with you.
All of the parties and end of year functions, the over excitement of children wanting to see Santa and making their long wish lists with you have little money to go on.
You can feel triggered and overwhelmed by animals getting under your feet, the elderly taking a long time to decide on something or by spotting an old man or women or a child walking down the street.
So being aware of how you are feeling, along with the ability to speak kindly to your own heart in any given moment can have and bring about powerful lasting healing effects.
If you do find yourself being triggered at any stage around your financial situation, see if you can remove yourself from momentarily without reacting.
This is to give yourself some time and space on the inside.
It could be as simple as going to the bathroom and stopping to close your eyes, breathing in and out and re-connecting with yourself so you can remind yourself that you are okay right where you are.
From there you can reinforce and remind yourself of your goals and their importance to you.
You can say out loud to yourself or in the presence of your own mind – I know what I am doing and this is what I want.
In most instances drawing from my own personal past story with Christmas and poverty consciousness and with working with many others, I have found that most of this discomfort around giving and receiving has it’s roots in the fear of what others will think.
My colleague and friend Amanda Gore calls this F.O.W.O.T. (You can google Amanda if you could do with a big dose of laughter).
Anyway F.O.W.O.T is a killer of dreams.
It will keep you a prisoner inside of your own mind and stop you in your tracks from ‘Ever’ moving forward.
So if or when you find yourself in this place where you can be overtaken by these old emotional patterns and triggers, call those old fears out for what they truly are, then you can make a change at the core level.
I swear that this can stop you from pulling out your credit card, overspending from fear of being judged, beating yourself up after the spending and being filled with the shame and guilt.
It can also bring a massive shift in self esteem, confidence and self value when you step the other way.
So find a special place where you can get quiet with yourself, even if that is later in your day and question what those thoughts, feelings and old habits coming up really mean for you.
More precisely what do they mean about you, This means I’m …….(fill in the blank).
If you have made a decision to learn and apply the steps and structures of financial fitness, where you are right at this point is NOT going to be where you are in the next year moving forward.
At this stage you are putting the foundations in place so you know longer have to live like you have in the past. That changes ‘Everything!’
You are working on removing the money stress from your life ‘Forever!’
You are giving to yourself and your family, and theirs after them, the steps and structures of financial fitness and learning how to buy your time back for financial freedom.
This is a big gift of Self-Love.
So may I invite you for this Christmas to think that perhaps instead of giving out of a vulnerable place, you could replace this old way.
Instead, could you allow yourself to be open to changing that.
Could you be open to being okay with the discomfort of these old past triggers and learn from them.
Perhaps this could mean telling others, your family, your children what you are doing for yourself instead.
In doing this, you could be giving to your family, your children, your friend the big gift of permission to also do this for themselves.
This is valuing and honoring yourself.
And, here is a big one –
Could you allow yourself to be open to receiving this year instead and giving others the gift of being able to give to you.
So many times when our pockets and our bank accounts are empty we have this big beautiful heart that just wants to give and give, yet we find it so difficult to receive, even compliments.
Yet how does it feel when you are giving from an empty purse?
How do you think it feels for someone else to receive from this place, even if they do not know of your circumstances the energy is very present.
Have you ever experienced receiving from someone that does not truly have it to give?
So may I invite you to examine these patterns around finances that could be playing out in your life, so you too can have some of the same clarity from it that I received many years back.
Money in itself can teach you about the art of true giving and receiving, it can show you about the natural laws of energy Eb and flow, it can show you where your fears are hidden around control and being out of control, It can show you your fears of being dependent or independent.
Even fears about being around people that you believe take your energy.
Of selfishness, greed, sexuality, dis-empowerment, wanting more, struggling with less and the ability of letting more in and so many more.
Money when managed from an emotionally stress free space is all about allowing the free flowing natural rhythm of the Universe/God/Spirit, come to you, flow through you, gathering, dispersing and gently transforming.
Yet money is just money, a figure written on a piece of paper, a form of appreciation.
It is what we attach to it, what we have taken it to mean that holds the key to what can keep us trapped.
Set yourself free by giving yourself the gift of emotional and financial freedom.
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