4 Steps to Improve your Relationship with Money

August 11, 2020 4 min read


The Money Bag Newsletter by Financial Footwork



What is your gut reaction to the word moneyis it positive, or negative? 

Our sister company Seiler FEC works with pro athletes to help them train their money. When sitting down with these sports hero's, this is one of the first questions we ask. “What is your emotional response to the word, money?”

While Seiler FEC focuses on the pros, Financial Footwork trains everyday champs so that they can win with their money too. You may not be snagging championship titles, but you still deserve to win. Just like the pros, you probably have a daily routine too. And that same discipline you use throughout your day, applies to how you train your money. 


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Whether you're a superstar or an everyday champ, we all have an emotional response to money. Let’s look at the two buckets of reaction. Positive, and negative. If you have a positive reaction to money, you might feel opportunity, power, possibilities, and accomplishment. More often though, people feel a negative reaction to money: fear, stress, unpredictability, family expectations, and problems.

The good news? You can turn that negative into a positive. It just takes daily training and practice. But first, you have to understand where those feelings came from.

Typically, our money habits begin forming very early in life.  Watching cartoons as a kid, they were always selling something during the commercials. I knew that I could buy a toy using my mom’s credit card, and that toy would arrive at my house.  I understood that if I paid for something, I would get it. 

I was developing my spending habits with money before I understood how it worked. I understood how to spend a dollar, but I didn’t understand how a dollar was earned. Didn’t money just live in my mom’s credit card? 

This happens with the majority of us. First we learn how to spend. Then, when we find out the money we’re spending  isn’t free, our views on money change. Sometimes it even begins to create a negative response.


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We develop positive and negative habits around money based on our environment and the things we are exposed to with money throughout our life. Everyone has a different mix and understanding of how their money impacts their life and that forms our opinions on how we view our financial picture.

So how did your environment growing up impact how you view money?  Think about it--how did that create your values with money? Reshaping money habits can be difficult and frustrating, by taking it step-by-step we can identify those habits and create a roadmap to being more financially fit.

Now we've introduced you to emotions and money, and how you formed those feelings growing up.  From the pro athletes we work with to the everyday champs, we all have an emotional response to the word. Sometimes it’s positive and sometimes it’s negative.

Here are 4 training tools to train your money habits to a positive, and winning response.


Step 1: Identify your Money Response

Ask yourself, is money a negative or positive word for you. When you think about money, what types of emotions do you feel?

How you personally respond to money will help you identify if you need to change your habits and your thought process with your money. 


Step 2: Review your Money Habits

What are you currently doing in your financial life that is continuing to drive your positive or negative response to money? What habits should you keep and what habits should you change?

Analyzing your habit patterns will help you identify areas of opportunity with your money and ways to better your financial picture. 

For example: You are a spender and you have a hard time controlling your spending. When you go out to the store, a restaurant or to shop for a specific item, do not take a credit card with you. Take a small amount of cash and limit what you can spend while you are out. This controls your spending habits and the urge to swipe the credit card. 

You are creating a positive spending habit by limiting the amount you can spend and you are bettering your financial picture by saving money you did not need to spend. You’ve taken a bad spending habit and created a positive one.


Step 3: Implement Financial Tools

Financial tools in money are essential to tracking where you are financially. One of the greatest financial tools we can implement is a monthly budget. 
Your budget is your roadmap to your money. It tells your money where you want it to go every month.  It tracks what you are choosing to spend money on and how much you are saving on a monthly basis. Your budget is at the foundation of your financial picture, creating a budget and reviewing it will give you insight into your positive and negative habits. It is your starting line for creating new habits and a better response to the word money.

Step 4: Create a New Habit Pattern

Make a weekly and/or monthly plan using your financial tools and establish a positive habit pattern with your money. Try tracking you spending, setting a goal for your savings, recording your payments and look at how much debt you are paying off each month. 

Track your wins and celebrate them! Be consistent in how you are approaching your money and handling it. Habits are created through consistent execution, be consistent with your money and use a monthly budget to roadmap yourself to success with your money.


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