Not having enough money is certainly a problem for many. But oftentimes, the real problem lies with your own ideas about money. Financial discontent is not uncommon among many members of the working class—even the world’s handful of millionaires faces their own money problems.
Regardless of how much you are making, there’s a tendency to spend more often than you should be. In that regard, the key to your money problem is quite simple: spend less. Learn to live within your means. The billion-dollar question is how is it possible to be able to do that in a world where we are encouraged to want more and to yearn for more.
If you are serious about putting your personal money matters in order, if you are truly determined to get out of debt… you’d have to do a major mindset and attitude overhaul. And one way to begin is through visualization. Let’s look at an example in one popular story often shared about Hollywood celebrity Jim Carrey.
Believe you can
Before Jim Carrey became a household name in Hollywood, he struggled as a stand-up comedian while taking a few odd jobs on the side to help support his family. It was a hard life, but the Ace Ventura star never stopped having an optimistic outlook and dreamt about having a career in film.
When he wasn’t working, Carrey used to sit by Mulholland Drive. Out there, he’d look out at the entire city, throw his arms in the air and, always, he’d tell himself affirmations, the kind that made him feel like everyone in Hollywood was excited to work with him that he was a genuinely talented actor, he had piles of movie offers to settle through—that really, he was great.
During one of those trips, Carrey recounted how he once put down a line “for acting services rendered’, and also jotted down a $10 million check. He dated the check Thanksgiving 1995 and fixed in his wallet. And as the stories go, it was the exact amount he was paid when he starred in The Cable Guy. True or not, everyone knows Carrey went on to become a legend in the field of comedy and judged by the number of films he has made, it’s no secret that hard work played a role in building his legacy, as well.
Develop a healthy mindset
Before you try to bring any radical changes to your spending habits, you’d need to set your mind towards financial goals and learn to summon the determination to achieve your goals. Stop worrying about how long it will entail and how hard it would be: Just imagine yourself debt-free, with a healthy amount resting—and growing—in savings, retirement, and investment accounts in your name. Imagine how delightful all that would make you feel.
At the same time, you must let go of greed and any fear related to having or not having money. It will surely take some time, but once you start seeing the bigger picture, it will become easier for you to start acting on your financial discontent. You will understand the importance of foregoing instant gratification such as the one you probably often crave when you impulsively spend on life’s little pleasures in lieu of getting rid of your personal financial problems.
Start spending less
Start spending less by cultivating a healthier relationship with money. People are often controlled by money, whether consciously or subconsciously. It can empower you, and it can make you feel inadequate. Stop letting money control you and your actions and treat it as it’s nothing more than a tool. As Victor Hugo said, “Go out in the world and work like money doesn’t matter.”
When you learn to spend less, it becomes possible to improve your financial status. Keeping your desires in check and saving your money instead of spending it mindlessly paves the way to solve other financial problems including being deep in debt, inadequate income, or fear of the future. Having a strong mindset—the kind that made Jim Carrey a star—and to develop a positive attitude about money helps you see clearer and understand what you need to do next.
Ian G Elbanbuena is a blogger and infopreneur who writes on various topics mainly finance, self-improvement, business and marketing. At present, he works as a marketing staff at CompareHero, Malaysia's leading comparison website.