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Is Money the Path to Your Best Self?

Self-actualization through Money

March 22, 2016

It is my observation that people largely aspire to be their best selves and to live a life that is honest and deeply satisfying.  To do this, we must periodically wade into life’s messy stuff and examine our lives and ourselves with a view towards deepening self-awareness and implement behaviors that align with this “best self” and “deeply satisfying life”.

There are various ways of doing this. We can explore the mind through psychotherapy. Additionally, we can address physical health through nutrition and exercise.  Spiritual development may be pursued through meditation and mindfulness.  I propose focusing your journey through the window of money.  The force and path of its energy is a singularly powerful way to obtain insight into the depths of ourselves and our lives and to initiate positive change.  Money is how and where we connect ourselves with our needs and wants.  These needs and wants range from basic food and shelter to education, luxury items, or nurturing self-care.

Money touches everything, even free and priceless things like watching a beautiful sunset or the love we have for our children.  This can happen inconspicuously, like in the taxes that care for the roads you drive to watch that sunset.  Accordingly, it follows that peering through the windows of personal finance gives us insights into every aspect of ourselves and our lives.

Unlike other avenues for self-development, money resides in palpable numbers. The numbers act as a sounding board to assess actual progressive changes in your life.  The numbers tell stories, and they can’t lie. The health or lack of health in our financial lives affects every aspect of life thus making it an extraordinarily advantageous place for meaningful focus.MEC jpeg
This graphic maps out the cycle that we all work with as money flows through our world, or the Money Energy Cycle (MEC).  It starts with yourself and comes back to yourself.  Concurrently, your Money Energy Cycle offers the opportunity to self-actualize through living a productive life, to connect with and support people and production outside of yourself, and to meet the needs and wants that you do not provide for yourself.

This isn’t about income levels or what “stuff” you own.  It’s about self-actualization, overall balance and fulfillment, and alignment with the goodness in this world. It’s about sending that forward with connection and wellness.
An ideal MEC might look like this: a vibrant young woman aims to earn money in a way that not only funds the many pulls upon her pocketbook, but also offers what she’s good at and likes within herself to her local community.  Through introspection, she notes her love of cooking.  Among friends and family, she is famous as an amazing cook.  Since traditional restaurant positions entail many non-financial outcomes that she is not interested in, she must find a way to take this trade and make it her own.  The solution is a food truck.  She enjoys the hard work, loves her truck, and produces delicious food.  This business model gives her control over her busy schedule and creates a balanced financial return that meets her cost of living.  With self-awareness of her true needs and wants, she uses her earnings intentionally to bring balanced value and energy back into her life by enjoying today while funding her ideal future.  Lastly, she honors her value of community by spending locally and funding other Money Energy Cycles she wants to see thrive.
As a money wellness coach, I witness positive energy coming from this work spread throughout and beyond one’s personal life.  The VitalFinancials process focuses on where you’re coming from, where you are, and where you intend to go against the reality of the numbers.  This process balances and aligns your Money Energy Cycle. Your personal wellness becomes connected to the dollars moving through your world and extends through the world at large.

The view and the power we have upon our lives by using our Money Energy Cycle as a lens may be our best possible means of making this happen.  We start with the person in the mirror and watch the magic.