Money: When it feels like there’s never enough

Lisa Towes-Daugherty |

Written by: Lisa Toews-Daugherty

Our relationship with money starts young, with the lessons and examples of our parents.   Then our culture continues to shape money’s impact on our lives, blasting us with messages that more is better and we must get our share of it or else someone else will. We are afraid that we won’t have enough. And worse, we mistakenly believe that we can never have enough money.  We have forgotten that money is just something that we created to facilitate the exchange of goods and services. Now it’s money we seek to produce and serve. And, like so much else in our lives, it seems to be in scarce supply.  But we do have a choice. We can recognize that we already do have enough.

We take control of our fear by approaching money from a different place.  Philanthropist Lynne Twist calls it “sufficiency” in her book entitled “The Soul of Money.”  Sufficiency is not abundance.  Abundance leads to a desire for more.  It’s about living our lives and spending our money in a way that is reflective of our values.  Brene Brown calls it wholeheartedness in her best-seller “Daring Greatly.” Sufficiency and a wholehearted life are giving up fear and being content with the knowledge that we will have precisely what we need when we need it. No more.  No less.

When we finally let go of trying to get more of what we don’t really need (consumerism), we are free to pay attention to where our core values can lead us.  Money can nourish and flow only when we stop trying so desperately to hold onto it.  It’s not freedom FROM work, worry, hunger, etc. that we should be seeking.  It’s freedom FOR.  Freedom for recognizing that we live in a world where everyone can live a wholehearted life.  Freedom to see that there is, in fact, enough.

How can we break free of the scarcity mindset?  Start with the conviction that we already have all that we need. Approach money decisions with the attitude that what you have is already sufficient. Make no mistake, this is not easy or simple. It’s a constant struggle against almost everything around us.  A struggle that, if we allow it, will transform us and our world.  A struggle that leads to true wealth.