What if we feel like the avantgarde of our generation – but the values and ideas we stand up for don’t finance a life that lets us feel like we are on the winning side of life?
What if a creepy realization slowly takes over our minds letting us know that enthusiasm over one’s own personal growth (and finally having quit that job a while ago) is not enough to earn a living?
Somewhere on that journey we have learnt that “blaming others” isn’t the answer.
That instead we should be open to feedback.
And while it might be possible to monitor the words that leave our mouth, it is incredibly harder to watch out for the miniscule moments in which we retreat into ourselves and surrender into judgement in the form of anxiety and exhaustion – or the apparently most sinful one of all: doubt!
And without further notice we unconsciously opened the door to a wearisome dwindling spiral of working immeasurable hours.
This is when we found self-sacrification as the new antidote to the pain of NOT reaching the dreams we once painted on the wall.
Whether or not we free ourselves from that spiral might determine whether work is the place where we make ourselves. Or break ourselves.
A solution to that riddle? There is enough heartfelt advice out there: To delete our abundance blocks. Or to manifest wealth through the power of our minds. It’s not that the internet was short of gurus. However, their advice is debatable, because it gets dispensed by those who have long time before crossed the wealth-line. And because rarely do we wanna become like them. We don’t resonate with them – with their laptops and hammocks under palm trees, no tax declaration but often times also no health insurance and lives that seem to be mainly about consumption and self-righteousness. Less about contributing to a world that is more worth living in.
So: Is there an ethical money mindset? Or are we all either self-conscious or poor?
The truth is: We can’t know. Because we don’t know your ethics. But let’s have a go at the questions we should ask ourselves, if we want an authentic and sound relationship with money, work and our subjective fears of scarcity and exhaustion.
Here is our attempt.
#1 Start LISTENING FOR GOD’S SAKE!
We mostly struggle to charge better prices (or salaries), because deep down we aren’t convinced our product/service (or ourselves e.g. in salary negotiations) aren’t good enough. Let’s be radical and assume that THIS IS CORRECT! And instead ask: What would be realistically fantastic? How would it have to be like so that saying yes becomes a no-brainer? And if our opinion is that clients or superiors just “fail” to see the value of our offerings, we haven’t put ourselves in their shoes properly. The challenge is not one of optimizing our offering to our liking. But one of listening.
Hence the first question is:
What is your offering like, if it is excellent?
More directly: What elements are important to “them”? When they meet me or my products, what is an experience that truly solves (not just touches upon a solution, but truly solves) their problem?
#2 Replace your transactional thinking with real rapport.
You know the tax consultant that invoices every 15min of work – even if it’s just a stupid phone call about nothing important? In markets of low competition and with products or services whose value is easy to communicate such behaviour won’t kill you. Everywhere else it easily will. Transactional thinking leads to attacks and defensiveness. With offerings that are harder to explain or in markets that are more competitive, people need to trust you(r brand) in order to give resources they’d otherwise have for themselves to you. When do they do that? When they trust that their needs and interests are congruent with yours. If you are mainly interested in their money – guess how much rapport that creates! (And yes, people do sense it when you are either not truly convinced of the quality of your offering or mainly want their cash.)
Are you truly solving “their” problems?
In other words: Are you solving their problems or are you mainly here for money (or because you are more attached running your own show than to solving a real problem)? If yes, move on to #2. If no, go back to #1.
#3 We will never rise above who we think we are.
How is it even possible that intelligent people procrastinate? That they self-sabotage when success is around the corner? There are people who don’t seem to be able to reach a salary above a certain ceiling. Or entrepreneurs who become wealthy and then loose it again.
The answer is that we usually a) have a certain threshold of how much is an appropriate income. We work hard until we are somewhat close to that, but then comfort rules over growth.
And b) we attach negative connotations to money like “If I have lots of money I am arrogant” or “I am not lovable if I can’t generate a great income”. Like that we build inherent resistance against money – and are surprised if our body unconsciously isn’t attracted to it.
Find out how you self-sabotage and/ or procrastinate with money, because you are held back by your inner threshold or limiting beliefs about money. But more importantly: Reduce that resistance against money by cultivating the narrative of how you are worthy of having it. Because you will treat it wisely? Invest it wisely? Donate it? What are the ACTUAL reasons you are a worthy holder of that full bank account? And: Do you behave accordingly? If not, then your body was right with its resistance against money. You aren’t more noble than anyone else! So better start behaving like you want someone with a lot of money to behave!
Hence, the third question is:
In what specific ways are you a person that is worthy of holding money? (Don’t lie to yourself!)
#4 There is no shortcut.
You are maybe reading this article, because you are looking for a secret escape to your suffering of having to leave your comfort zone. But no fitness trainer can ever make us fit without exercise and healthy food.
Most of the time we secretly know the answers to our most pressing questions, like: we know, we have to raise our price, or to ask for a raise. But we are secretly looking for ways to avoid them. Unfortunately no article, no coach, no mentor can ever make disappear the consequences of non-action.
Leading us to our fourth question: What is it that you know you have to do, but trying to avoid at all costs? (That’s your biggest bottleneck to growth and a door you probably will have to go through at some point)
#5 Peer group trumps intention.
Change is hard at the beginning, messy in the middle and gorgeous at the end. (Robin S. Sharma). It’s hard because discipline is hard. And our surroundings are the single biggest determinant for whether it pays off or not. That is because conformity and resonance trump effort and reward. Hence peer group trumps intention.
This is tough because there are reasons why we have exactly the peer group we are in. They serve a (feel-good-)function to us and we to them. And if we are operating from a sense of scarcity we will get on MAGICALLY WELL with others alike. But if we want to change and reduce our immunity to it, adapting our peer group is the most sustainable way.
Question #5: What kind of people are in your ideal peer group, why would you be in resonance with them and who could introduce you to these people?
#6 Who do you dare to be?
By now you are maybe exhilarated. Maybe angry at us. Wherever you are, here comes your last question: What is your homework and in what specific ways do you choose to be an inspiration to yourself and others?
And this is precisely why the secret to move beyond self-sacrification isn’t more rest. But knowing who you are.
For the record.
We understand and honour that all the change we are so non-chalantly talking about is hard. That’s because we find it hard, too.
Hence we have created an Accelerator that provides exactly that peer group. That group of likeminded visionaries who choose to be by your side to support and to hold you accountable.
If you are willing to be by THEIR side, too; And if you are curious to professionalise (further) your skills in leading transformational conversations on the spot (aka coaching), check out our website below and apply for the next cohort:
The Arc’s Leadership Accelerator Programme:
Join us for an intense Leadership Development programme that shifts you from merely doing a job to authentically lead impact that inspires yourself and others.