If you’re new to this blog, let me bring you up to speed: I run a support group for people who hate budgeting (so, everyone) called – pointedly – “I HATE Budgeting (But I Like Having Money).”
We meet monthly (coming on 7 years in January 2019!) and since September 2018 have chosen to use the famous 12 step program used by other support groups to apply to budgeting (i.e. making decisions with money).
November’s meeting was lead by one of our long-time members, Laura, who did an excellent job. It covered Step 3: Turn your will and life over to the Higher Power of your understanding.
Here are the notes from the meeting, in hopes they will provide you with the strength and peace to feel confident about your financial choices.
One of the first questions I had about this step was,
“What is my Will and what is the Will of my Higher Power?”
- Kathy shared that her view of her Higher Power is One who wants to care for her because He/It loves her and wants what’s best for her.” (Then I thought, “Well, what’s best?“) Almost instictively Kathy added, “From self-love all our choices come.”
- Debbie: “I learn the ‘right’ things by God’s grace, despite what it looks like, even though it may not be what I feel.”
- Sue responded, “It’s not second-guessing myself.” (I’d call that operating from a place of trust/love instead of a place of distrust/fear.)
- Merridy: “It’s hard for people to know the love of God, which is so empowering. Be open to learning (about Him).”
From the blog post “Self Will Run Riot”:
Step Three is about exploring how we have tried to arrange
people and situations to meet our needs.
How we have placed self reliance above humility;
above reliance on relating with our Higher Power and with others.
And the results followed.
We tried so hard to control and manipulate people, places, and things, because we did not know H.O.W. to change ourselves.
Now we are learning how: by being Honest, Open Minded, and Willing.
What does step 3 mean to you?
- Debbie: Self will versus free will means being open to receive help, to collaboration. “Doing everything for-and-by myself keeps me habitually stuck, harboring shame and feeling isolated.”
In my experience as a financial planner, many people struggle with their past financial decisions, doing exactly what Debbie mentions – harboring shame and becoming isolated – and that keeps them from making peace with those decisions and moving forward.
- Terry spoke honestly when she said, “Step 3 is a bitch, humility is hard! What does ‘turning my life over’ look like? How do I trust?”
Indeed, where does one start with something like this? Perhaps with one small step. Ask youself the following questions and you might find an area of your (financial) life that you are willing to turn over to your HP for just an hour, start with that.
- What am I trying too hard to control?
- Why do I want to control this?
- What outcome do I fear?
- Is this fear serving me and my higher purpose in life?
- What is this fear saying about me, my values and my goals?
- If my Higher Power Loves Me, what – exactly – should I fear?
- Am I giving the source of this fear too much power in my life?
When was your self-reliance detrimental to your well-being?
- TSH: Bailing out children instead of letting them manage on their own.
Again, in my work I see a LOT of parents who are financially supporting adult children and there is a tremendous amount of anguish involved. This situation could be a result of The Great Recession, the rise of opioid use, the economy in general, Millenials still making the world a better place in their eyes or something else. I think it’s very difficult for parents (and their advisors) to know what is the “right” way to respond.
- Me: Personally, relying on my self to purchase rental property with a boyfriend when I was very young, going against every grain of financial wisdom, my parents’ advice and my own truth proved very detrimental. It didn’t destroy me, but it was negative in every way (financially, personally, mentally).
How might your life change if you turned it over to your Higher Power?
- Give up worry
- Me: Make decisions from a place of love, not from a place of fear.
- Bill: “It’s about joining forces with The Force.”
What specific actions and decisions relate to these questions?
- Sue: “I have to make a decision to turn things over; it’s an action.”
- Debbie: “Be willing to live in the ‘I don’t know;’ be aware of my Higher Power.”
- Bill: “Instead of saying, ‘I can’t do this anymore,” say, “I can do this but I choose not to.”
- Annette: “I like learning, figuring myself out. I need to understand so I see it as a partnership (with my Higher Power).”
- Sue: “Buying stuff to fill a hole…I’m not sure what will fill it.”
If you need more than a blog post, join us!
Peace & abundance,