In this episode, I talk through my struggles of reframing my money mindset as a young entrepreneur and how I learned to charge my worth by digging deep into my feelings about deserving money.
Understanding and healing my money trauma was probably the biggest obstacle I had to overcome while running my business at a young age. It took me years to overcome, but I had to do it to get to a place of success and happiness in my career.
At first I didn’t even realize I had trauma, all I knew was that money was my worst enemy. It wasn’t that I was bad at managing money, but I was terrible at the idea of money. The thought that I deserved money was gut wrenching and because of that, it took me a long while to reach a place where I started charging my worth.
It was several years ago that I was trying to make an in-person sale with a client and physically went into a panic attack. I started sweating and shaking. I couldn’t breathe and started sobbing in front of the client, and she didn’t even know why. I didn’t really either, all I knew was that when it came time to tell her how much she owed me, my whole body shut down and went into fight or flight. This was the moment I realized I had suppressed money trauma that I needed to work on.
I conditioned myself to start charging my worth in order to protect my passion, but it didn’t get rid of the feelings I had attached to money. I tried to build up mental toughness around writing invoices, but it wasn’t until I went to therapy a couple of years later that I truly understood where my money trauma came from.
I grew up extremely poor. We moved a lot and living conditions were unstable. Over time, money became a massive trigger for me and always had a negative feeling attached to it. It wasn’t that I thought I didn’t deserve money, it was that all my life, the exchange of money had been a traumatic experience. It always resolved in some type of sadness, anger, argument or massive life change for me as a child.
So when I was learning how to run a business at age 24, trying my best to charge my worth AND make sure I was charging enough to pay my taxes and bills AND still have savings, overcoming my unresolved money trauma was a massive hurdle.
I had to sit down and dig up all my icky feelings attached to money in an effort to unsuppress them.
I was a child when those exchanges of money were being made. I experienced some negative feelings, but they were not a direct outcome of my actions – they were out of my control.
As an adult, I now have control and the ability to exchange money without anger. I had to remind myself over and over that I am desired in these transactions. I’m providing value to my clients and they want to give me their money for my value, purposefully.
It took a lot of tough love, and the understanding that it was going to take years to undo this trauma, but that could do it because I refused to let my career fail because of it. Every time I got uncomfortable, I had to put in the work to rewire my brain to view money as a positive thing.
Money is not bad.
I deserve to be paid.
I deserve to have a career.
I deserve to not end up in the position of my upbringing.
I work really hard, I’m passionate and I deserve money.
I think that most importantly, if you do the work to understand why money makes you uncomfortable, you can get ahead further in charging your worth. There’s a lot of psychology involved in money and understanding why money is an issue in your life will help you massively when you’re trying to run a business.
I recommend that you start by sitting down and brian-dumping your feelings about money. How does it feel to answer someone when they ask how much you charge? How does it make you feel to look someone directly in the eyes and tell them that amount? Ask yourself if you’re making enough because if not, you’re going to burn out. Put in the work, push past your comfort zone and you’ll get there.
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Until next time my friends – Arastasia
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