Ah, money… Many of us would like a bit more, but the stories about money (and those who have money) we’re telling ourselves are often not exactly helpful, and they can actually get in the way of reaching our financial goals.
Wealth rarely comes without belief and intention. It’s possible to luck your way into financial abundance, but the odds aren’t in your favour. While a healthy money mindset alone isn’t enough to create wealth, it makes wealth possible – and much more likely. However, that healthy money mindset is one of the biggest issues for creatives. From a young age, we are fed the belief that creativity should not be attached to monetary gain, that we should be working for “the love of it alone”, that creating and giving our art away for free and/or “exposure” is normal.
Over the next weeks and months, I will deep-dive into money mindset. The reason? Well, first of all you told me this is your most pressing concern. Plus, I often see that creatives wonder why they aren’t financially successful, spend money on business coaching (which is really important, I did it myself), but nothing really changes. What they really need is not another business course, but to change their beliefs around money and wealth, because that’s what subconsciously sabotages their success. So whether you’re struggling financially or just haven’t reached your money goals yet, your mindset is the best place to start.
Develop a positive attitude around money
Most of us would like more money, but we also harbour a lot of negative feelings and/or beliefs around money.
When you think of wealthy people, what are your thoughts? Are any of them negative? Write them down, and ask yourself why you feel that way.
Find your tribe
Hang out with like-minded people. If you want to be financially successful, it makes sense to spend time with – financially successful people. Being around people that share your vision of the future will give you the support you need to persevere. Plus, they already have a positive money mindset, so you can really learn from them.
Ignore the negative Nellies
When creating wealth becomes a goal in your life, you’re sure to receive some criticism from friends and family members that have different beliefs around money. They might make you feel guilty. It’s important to question these emotions if you start to feel them: There’s nothing wrong with having money, and money is not “the root of all evil” (in fact, being financially comfortable, or free, gives you the opportunity to do good).
It’s important to be able to ignore these opinions from others, but don’t argue who is right or wrong. Allow them to live life in their own way and demand the same in return.
Learn to respect money
If you aren’t respectful of your partner, they’ll eventually leave you. The same is true of money. Be respectful of how you spend and invest it. This is a really common problem for creatives. Why? Because of the beliefs we’ve been fed since childhood (as mentioned in the intro to this post). We often even like ourselves in the role of the starving, disorganised artist. It’s oh-so-bohemian, right?
Do you have your bills organised or are they all over the house/office? Do you pay your bills on time? Do you invest wisely, both for the future and to further your creative career?
Anything that involves money should get your attention and respect.
Focus on creating value
The more value you can provide to the world, the more you can expect to receive. Most people make the same amount of money each year because they deliver the same amount of value each year.
So play to your strengths and delegate the rest to others. Someone else is great in the areas in which you struggle. It makes more sense to use your strengths than to spend valuable time building your weaknesses to a tolerable level.
As a creative entrepreneur, you have to think about what makes you special, what sets you apart. Don’t get into the competitive mindset and try to be what others are, thinking: “That person does well, so I should do what they do.” Think of new ways to create value instead, and focus entirely on your customer/client/student/fan base.
Also delegate what drains you. From social media to accounting, emails to organising your schedule – you don’t need to do these things yourself if they zap your energy and time, and it’s often more cost-efficient to get help than you think. If you hear yourself saying “but I don’t have the money for that”, question this straightaway, because that’s often the exact mindset problem I am talking about. Yes, it might cost you some money, but it’ll also free up time and energy you can then use to create value, and I promise you that this investment will pay off ten times over.
Eliminate expenses that aren’t meaningful
Look at all your monthly bills and expenses and eliminate those things that don’t bring you any kind of value. Maybe that’s the money you can either invest into your future (pension, mortgage…), or into your creative business (see above).
Wealth starts with having a positive mindset about money. Examine your own mindset and thoughts about wealth. Have respect for money. Be creative and generate as much value as you can in your creative business. Spend time with others that have similar goals.
Last but not least: Be accountable – make a start by leaving your biggest money mindset challenges in the comments!
© Petra Borzynski 2019