Friday, April 23, 2010

Mastering Your Money Mindset

By Julie Marie Rahm

Today I’m going to blog about four metaphorical tools you need to master your money mindset and accelerate toward abundance. Mastering your money and mastering your mindset go hand in hand. Why? Because what you focus on grows. When you put a lot of thought energy behind something, you get more of it. How can you tell if you’re directing your thought energy toward abundance?

You need the first tool for today – your metaphorical level. Your level has two functions. The first function is to monitor your mood. You know you’re directing your thought energy toward abundance when your mood is in balance and you feel good. When you begin to feel bad, your level tilts, indicating your thoughts are taking you away from abundance.

Often, it’s something small that tilts our levels – someone cuts us off in traffic or someone drives too slowly in front of us; someone puts the empty cereal box back in the cupboard… So you can use your metaphorical level to monitor your mood and indicate when you need a mindset tune-up to accelerate back toward abundance.

The second function of your level is to indicate on which side of something you’re focused - the lack of it or the abundance of it, because there are two sides to everything. Did you know that fear and greed drive 95% of decisions people make about buying and selling investments like stocks and real estate? Both fear and greed focus on lack. Fear, because we think we’ll lose money if we don’t make a move one way or the other. Greed, because we think we might miss out on having more profit. Since what you focus on grows, focusing on lack brings more lack. Focusing on abundance brings more abundance.

How about noticing something you’d like to have? If I say “I would like to have a shiny new red corvette.” Is that focusing on lack or abundance? Lack, because I am noticing that I do not have something I want.

As an investor, when you focus on abundance, you have good vision for what could be. You see the possibilities. So, you make good risk management decisions and you maximize your investment potential. Even in the worst economic times, someone made money, and often a lot of money! If you have a wealth manager advising you, make sure that person has an abundance mindset. When you join in that mindset, the sky is the limit, because you are not limiting yourself to what have traditionally been good investments.

So your level is tilting. What do you do? You bring out the second tool, your metaphorical hammer, and use it to hammer out negative or lack thoughts, and hammer in the framework for abundance one thought at a time. One thought at a time is critical. If you feel rage, the leap to bliss is ginormous. It is important to believe the thoughts you “hammer in”. So if you feel rage, find a thought that moves you up to mere anger. Then find a thought that moves you to blame. Work your way up to a glimmer of hope again one believable thought at a time.

Let’s continue with the red corvette example. I will hammer out the lack thought of noticing I want a red corvette that I do not have. And I will hammer in the framework for abundance with the thought that I could buy a red corvette today, I’m just choosing to spend my money on something else.

If you really want to have some fun developing an abundance mindset for money, put a $100 bill in your pocket and mentally spend it all day as you move from store to store or on the Internet. By doing that your thinking changes from “I’d like to have that, but I can’t afford it, or it’s too frivolous” to “I could buy that, because I have $100 in my pocket”.

Let’s go back to the level again. Maybe something happens and your level tilts suddenly and dramatically. When we have a disproportional response to something that happens, it is usually because the event triggered a lifetime of negative thoughts and emotions. And, those thoughts and emotions usually are not directly related to the event at hand, but something on the periphery of it. When that happens, you need your metaphorical plumb line to point to the heart of the matter and get to the truth about the experiences and memories that are really troubling you.

Like my client in California who started getting excruciating headaches when he was laid off just before he could refinance his $600,000 mortgage, the rate for which adjusted from 3% to 7%. He went into a tailspin thinking that in addition to his financial woes, he had a brain tumor and was probably going to die just like his grandfather did. The metaphorical plumb line pointed to a cash flow problem, not a health problem. When he found another job, his headaches went away.
Then, you need the fourth tool, your metaphorical utility knife, to instantly cut the tie to the cumulative effects of those negative experiences and memories so they are never triggered again. By neutralizing the cumulative effect of negative experiences and memories, you are free to deal only with the thoughts and emotions of the moment, which is a much easier task to master and you maintain your abundance mindset.

My friend needed to cut the tie to the cumulative effects of the experience and memory of his grandfather’s death.

So, now you know about four of the metaphorical tools you need in your “tool belts” to give yourself a mindset tune-up when you need it so you can accelerate to abundance.

The level – to monitor your mood and to indicate whether your focus is on lack or abundance

The hammer – to hammer out negative thoughts, and hammer in the framework for abundance one thought at a time

The plumb line – to get to the heart of the matter

The utility knife – to cut out the cumulative negative effects of your experiences and memories

I invite you to schedule a free 15-minute consultation with me to discover the truth about what’s really causing your issues when they arise, and which metaphorical tool you need most to accelerate to abundance in every area of your life.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Your "Plumb Bob" Keeps You Centered in a Crisis Crunch

By Julie Rahm

How often do you feel stress, tension, and anxiety, because you have more tasks to do than you have time to do them? Almost all of my clients come to me with over-tasked lives. If everything goes smoothly and they estimated their task times to completion accurately, their days go well. But what happens when something changes? It’s all a matter of priorities.

If that sounds like your life, the metaphorical tool you need in your tool belt is your plumb bob. A plumb bob always points to the center of the earth. Your metaphorical plumb bob points to the heart of the matter and keeps you centered in a crisis crunch.

Imagine you’re a mom at home with young children. You have a babysitter booked later today, because today is your best friend’s baby shower and you are bringing the cupcakes. You have been focused on the shower for days, anticipating how much fun it will be and how great it will feel to have adult time with your friends. It’s still only 40-degrees outside and your heat pump is broken. The repairman assured you he would be at your home by 10AM. You agreed to watch your sister’s children at your house this morning while she runs errands. And, you have your usual responsibilities to fulfill keeping your house, grocery shopping, and caring for your children. Your three-year-old wakes up that morning and says, “Mommy, I don’t feel good”. You feel her forehead and know her temperature is high. What happens now? You make an appointment with the doctor. The only appointment time available is 10AM. You are no longer available to watch your sister’s children. The babysitter will not come, because your child is sick. You know how disappointed your best friend will be if you do not come to her shower. How do you prioritize your day so that you feel good when the day is done?

Take the Plumb Bob Priority Quiz.

Answer the question: What is the end result you can’t live without?

The end result you cannot live without is your child getting well.

Get to the heart of the matter and determine your priorities by answering these questions.

1. Is there a physical safety risk?

2. Is there a financial safety risk?

3. Is there a relationship risk?

4. Is there an emotional/mental/spiritual risk?

5. Is there an integrity risk?

6. Is there a values risk?

Is there a physical safety risk? Yes, your child is sick. And, it is cold outside and you have no heat.

Is there a financial safety risk? No, your income stream is not affected.

Is there a relationship risk? Yes, your sister is expecting you to watch her children, and your best friend is expecting you to come to her shower and bring cupcakes.

Is there an emotional/mental/spiritual risk? Yes, you really want to go to the shower. It is the first time in weeks you have planned anything for yourself. You feel disappointment, resentment, and a flood of negative emotions and thoughts wash over you.

Is there an integrity risk? Yes, you gave your word to your sister and your best friend.

Is there a values risk? Only you know your values hierarchy. If “family” is at the top of your list and you put your child’s needs first, then the answer is no.

Once you identify your priorities, use your metaphorical utility knife to release the remaining tasks and relieve yourself of the burden of getting them done. Some possibilities for releasing the burden are:

1. Ask someone else to do it for you.

2. Break it down into smaller tasks and allow more time.

3. Do it on another day.

4. Don’t do it at all.

What does that look like? Reschedule the heat pump repairman, who is willing to rearrange appointments and come to your home at the end of the day. Take your child to the doctor. Offer to watch your sister’s children on another day. Call a friend who is also invited to the shower. Ask her to stop at your house to pick up the cupcakes and take them for you. Call your best friend, explain that your child is sick, and agree to celebrate together over lunch on another day. Use your metaphorical utility knife to cut out thoughts of missing out by not being at the shower.

So when you find yourself in a “crisis crunch”, use your metaphorical plumb bob to keep yourself centered and prioritize for prosperity.

Monday, April 5, 2010

You Think It's the Big Stuff. It's Really the Small Stuff that Keeps You Stuck

You think it’s the big stuff. It’s really the small stuff that keeps you stuck. Maybe it’s your 1980s wallpaper, or weeds in your lawn, or a spot on your carpeting. Maybe it’s your daily commute. Maybe it’s being responsible for the same chores, week after week. Maybe it’s your daily routine. The seemingly inconsequential things in your day can bring you down, affecting your entire day without you even realizing it. Negative thoughts and emotions build around the small stuff. Day after day, the effects of these minor moments accumulate until you’re just plain angry, resentful, hopeless, and depressed. Today is the day to take back your joy! All you need are three metaphorical tools in your tool belt and the willingness to use them.

The first tool is your metaphorical level. Use your level to indicate when your thoughts and emotions begin to tilt your mood toward negative and away from steadiness. Pay close attention to your level throughout the day. When the level tilts, stop and identify the cause – and don’t assume it’s the big stuff.

The second tool you need is your metaphorical utility knife. Once you determine the cause of your level tilting, cut the cord to all of the past times your level has slipped toward negative for the same reason. Cutting the cord relieves you of the cumulative effects of past experiences and memories, emotions, thoughts, and fears around the cause.

The third tool is your metaphorical hammer. Use it to hammer out your current negative thoughts and emotions around what caused your level to tilt. Then, hammer in the framework of positive thoughts and emotions that will bring back your joy.

Perhaps it would help to remember that your purpose is whatever you’re doing at the moment. If you’re washing dishes or taking out the trash, that is your purpose. Those chores are not things to rush through so you can get back to your real purpose. Do your best work. And, if it’s your house, car, yard, or other possession that tilts your level, look on it from a new perspective of awe and reverence. What maintenance does it need from you today? Now we’re getting into priorities. Next week, I will share with you how to use your metaphorical plumb bob to keep you centered in a crisis crunch and prioritize for prosperity.
Top curve