I was recently reminded of this new-age mantra.
I recall hearing it frequently when my husband and I were immersed in our personal development journey in the mid 2000’s. Most of the success gurus teaching this concept were also trying to sell us more of their programs. One in particular taught his students to live and spend “as if.” On multiple occasions I heard him advise students to spend as if they were wealthy, if they wanted to transform their financial situation (all of his programs also just happened to cost five and six figures). Unfortunately, when you do that, and then find yourself knee-deep in debt, your credit card company wants cold, hard, cash… not your positive, wealth-minded energy.
I’ve seen the movies, The Secret and What the Bleep Do We Know. I get that according to quantum physics, EVERYTHING is energy. Me. You. My dogs. The keyboard I’m typing on and the desk it’s sitting on. The computer screen I’m looking at. And the bottle of water I’m drinking.
But it’s still hard for me to fully grasp this concept. I often wonder if it’s just me, or if others struggle with this as well. If they’re just parroting what they’ve been taught—what many of us have been taught—because it sounds good, and we want it to be true.
While money may physically be comprised of atoms and molecules just like everything else in this world, how many people really honestly see it as just energy? I’m not saying it isn’t energy, rather I’m questioning whether that fact has anything to do with how money works in our world and in most of our lives.
Case in Point
In my book, Breaking the Spell, I share a conversation I had with my husband when I was lamenting all the money I had invested and lost in my pursuit of success.
After telling me not to feel guilty and being very supportive, Louie said, “Money is just energy.” While I appreciate his support and his helping me see I can’t change the past, I couldn’t resist responding with, “Do you really believe that? Do you really understand what you’re saying when you say ‘Money is just energy’ or is it just something you’ve heard so many times—and it sounds good—so you’re repeating it now?” Nothing against my husband, but he too still gets caught in the grip of money. We’re both working on reframing the role we let money play in our lives. By restating that platitude, he was being a parrot.
Excerpted from Breaking the Spell: The Truth About Money, Success, and the Pursuit of Happiness
Money in the Real World
Just putting good energy in your business probably won’t attract paying clients and pay the bills. You have to be offering a service that people value and are willing to pay for. A few years ago I started a business I was very passionate about. I was encouraged to invest a lot of money in start-up because the Universe would see that I was serious and would reward that emotional and financial energy with clients, and a successful business. I put more money and energy into that start up than I’ve put into any of my successful businesses, yet it failed. What I did not do was research the business idea well enough before launching. And I’m here to tell you that no amount of passion, positive energy, or money will make a bad business idea a success.
The reality is money is something we created to facilitate the exchange of goods and services. It has a face value that the government has assigned to it, and that we all agree to. It goes up and down with the stock market and the real estate market, things we as individuals have little to no control over.
There are a lot of money mantras in our world today.
Money is energy.
Money doesn’t grow on trees.
Money is the root of all evil.
In the end, aren’t they just beliefs?
Do they really impact how much, or how little, money we actually have in our lives? Isn’t that more related to the family we were born into, our own personal drive and determination to get out into the world and earn money? And ultimately the value we place on money?
Before I wrote this blog post, I searched the Internet to see what I could find on this topic. Below are a few of the more interesting, and thought-provoking opinions I found. I’ll reserve my judgment and let you decide for yourself which you choose to believe.
How you think, feel, speak, and act about money affects how money thinks, feels, speaks, and acts toward you.
Attracting more money in your life is a matter of creating positive energy with thoughts and feelings.
Remember, money is nothing more than a substance with energy. You want to make it possible for that energy to freely course through your life. Any negative thought concerning money will create a barrier to that flow.
Now if you put your plastic or paper money in the fireplace, yes you will get some heat energy out of it. But notes and coins are just the representatives of money. Money itself is an abstract; its worth depends on the what the State or economic conditions dictate. It is not energy.
It’s about value and apparent value. Money has an apparent value- given it by the State. It is not energy.
Clearly there are believers on both sides of this argument.
And I suppose my purpose here is what my purpose usually is on this blog… to stimulate thinking and conversation. To question what we’ve been taught and not just blindly accept it. To challenge all the canned mantras and gurus and determine what we each believe as individuals.
I’ve often said that when I started attending personal development conferences and hiring success coaches and mentors, that far too often I checked my brain at the door. I took what was being sold at face value, assuming those teaching knew more than me. In some cases they may have. In many others, they may have just been reteaching what they’d read or been taught. I know for a fact I never studied under any actual quantum physicists!
I encourage all of us to question everything. Just because it’s written in a book, or on a website, or shared from a stage, doesn’t make it fact. Do your own research. Then come to your own conclusions.
Yes, there’s an awful lot of information available on the web. But we must remember, it’s all just someone’s opinion or perspective. Even this blog post is just mine.
What do you think?
Please post a comment and share your thoughts.