Is a Poverty Mindset Your Inner Soundtrack?
As a young adult, the idea of making the kind of money I wanted to make seemed so unattainable to me. As a kid, I'd always daydreamed about getting paid to travel the world. I'd sell my travel photography and paintings along the way, maybe even do some writing. But if I were being really honest with myself, I'd admit this felt a bit like a pipedream. In the early 2000s, when I was graduating from high school, this type of lifestyle wasn't really a thing. Or if it was, it was reserved for the elite, privileged, and trust fund kids.
Leaving for college, I wasn't sure how I would be able to support myself if I pursued those whimsies. I couldn't make sense of how to create the life I wanted or how I would be able to have the financial freedom to pursue my passions. So I floated aimlessly from studying one career field to the next. From a missed opportunity to attend a painting school in Greece because my dad didn't approve, to studying photography at a junior college because it was all I could afford, to shifting gears and settling on a business degree which seemed like the logical decision, then eventually going back to study interior and graphic design. I feel like I wasted a lot of time trying to figure out who I wanted to be or at least discover what talents of mine could turn into a profession I would even enjoy.
I know this is not uncommon for most 20-somethings. But it was frustrating and arduous all the same. How many of us get out of college to realize the area of specialization we studied doesn't even suit us? Or you're sideswiped with the fact that you can't survive off the salary it entails. Or we all know a friend who always knew what they wanted to be, only to find a year post-grad into their first career that the idea of the job was much sexier than the actual daily tasks it required.
It's easy to understand why so many young adults deal with a quarter-life crisis. Feeling like you wasted years, hundreds if not hundreds of thousands of dollars pursuing a path or profession you thought would make you happy, all to find it was nothing you imagined it to be, is not a fun place at all. This place is known as disappointment, and if not quickly addressed, it can easily turn into depression.
I know because I have been there.
I let my limiting beliefs limit my potential to dream, to aspire.. even to try.
Now, as I approach my 40s, I feel I have figured a few things out. I have found that to step into my purpose, talents, passion, and calling, I had to first free myself from the poverty-mindset soundtrack that was playing in my head.
Free Yourself From Poverty Mindsets
Poverty mindsets are so deeply rooted that they are hard to pull out, hard to make sense of, and often hard even to see. They are much more than our thoughts about money. Poverty mindsets can affect our actions, self-esteem, justification, and ambitions. And if not noticed and addressed, they can become our blind spots, slowly poisoning our ability to accomplish what God has placed in our hearts to achieve.
Awareness is the first step to changing our perspective. Start by asking yourself some questions.
What's some of the negative self-talk you have been telling yourself for years?
Some of mine were:
I could never make that much money.
That kind of success is unfathomable to me.
Only trust fund kids or uber elite can live like that.
You're not smart enough to figure that out.
My passions will never turn into profit.
My dream-life vision is just a pipedream.
You're not brave enough to try.
That life's not meant for you.
What polluted biblical lies have you been believing?
Some of mine were:
It's evil to be that rich.
You're being selfish to want that much.
If it's this hard, then God doesn't want it for me.
Wealthy people are greedy.
Being poor is holy.
If your poverty soundtrack is less obvious, some of your negative self-talk may have turned into your own blind spots.
Here are some other questions I had to ask myself to discover mine, starting with my childhood. Because, believe it or not, that is where more of the lies begin.
How did your parents act when they were paying bills?
Did your parents argue about money?
Was money openly talked about in your household while growing up or hidden from the kids altogether?
If you needed money for something as a kid, were you ever afraid to ask for it? How did your parents react?
What were some phrases your parents had about money that you find yourself repeating as an adult?
What biblical lies have you heard them repeat about money?
Take some time to unpack these soundtracks or memories. Try to understand how they may affect your feelings about money, confidence, and success.
If we can not get our poverty mindsets made right with money, how do we expect to get them right with success?
Now, there are thousands of people making money being travel influencers on social media. Their pages are full of captivating photography and millions of followers... so much so that they are actually making A LOT of money doing it. Who knew? It seems the only person holding me back from my dreams was myself.