Making Amends with My Money

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My physical realm has changed dramatically.  My routine is completely different now.  Over the last two months, I’ve changed jobs, moved in with my boyfriend, re-merged full-time back into my daughter’s life, moved to a different city and environment, began driving a car all the time after two years of walking everywhere, and have accumulated a lot more financial responsibility.  Although my income has increased, the responsibility of managing money has shifted entirely.  It’s a lot to administer, but so far it has not been overwhelming. 

 I’m a little tired; I will admit that, but because I’ve held a constant vision of where I was headed and what was soon in store, there is a lot of contentment here in the midst of the external developments.  Everything is going in a positive direction, so it’s simply a matter of being present for the experiences I’m having, instead of reverting into fear because of past mistakes I’ve made, during random arising flurries of doubt.  There are moments when I catch myself questioning the leap of faith I’ve taken here; where memories of poor money management lure me into believing that I’m the same old irresponsible fool who carelessly splurged, when I should have been saving or paying bills. 

I’m not that person anymore.  I don’t splurge.  I am careful about what I spend my money on, good about planning for food and gas, and diligent about paying my bills on time.  My boyfriend even trusts me to manage his money, which is a pretty good indication that I’ve even impressed him with how I’ve managed my own. 

I remember back a few years ago when I used to visit other people’s homes and assess how many groceries were in their cabinets and fridge.  The big clue that they were financially stable was when I saw that they had a surplus of toilet paper, along with extras like tissue and Q-tips.  You see, I rarely had a surplus of anything, including booze.  I rarely made it to the end of a pay period with money to spare.  It was a horrific cycle of never having enough of anything.  I lived like this for years.  I had a really bad habit of telling myself that I didn’t have enough money, which became a self-fulfilling prophecy.  I literally never had enough money.

In March of this year, I was aware of the fact that I would soon have another mouth to feed.  Although I could live on Top Ramen and chips and salsa for weeks on end, and learn to get by on less than $20 per week, I understood that this frugal lifestyle was not going to serve an eleven year old who I would soon have to care for.  I had to find another job, for certain, but more importantly, I needed to change my thinking about money.  Instead of constantly telling myself, I don’t have enough, I began stating, I have plenty of money.  I have an abundance of money and I have everything I need.

This simple shift in self-talk and my belief about money made a gigantic difference.  I inadvertently began spending differently and planning more.  I began appreciating everything I had and made an effort to save a little bit of cash at the end of each pay period.  Although I wasn’t making much money, the little bit I had was sufficient and copious.  Suddenly, money was showing up in unexpected places.  What also unexpectedly occurred was that my creative juices began flowing and I discovered ways to accumulate side income.  Because I was diligent in completing manuscripts last year, instead of wasting my time on entertainment and socializing, my writing is becoming an asset.  I published three books this year, and there are royalties trickling in. 

It’s all a matter of self-respect and respecting my pocket book.  I’ve come to the conclusion that it doesn’t matter how much money I make; what matters most is my relationship with my money.  How can this money serve me and how can I serve my money?  It’s a karmic relationship I’m having here with the dollar bill.  I’ve gone from fearing my finances, to enjoying the flow of money.  I used to avoid looking at my bills and writing a budget.  Today I’m discovering myself taking charge of what’s in my bank account, organizing my wallet and knowing exactly what I have each morning, and exactly how much I’m going to have at the end of the month.  Honestly, I shock myself with how responsible I am with my money.  It makes me feel good, and I think that’s what keeps me on top of it.

I never understood how much self-respect and feeling good about myself, would be a driving factor in my recovery.  Unexpected things continually unfold.  I still have a lot to learn about money and a lot of old debt to pay, but this is a good beginning for me.  Sometimes a simple attitude change and a broadening perspective, makes all the difference in the world. 

I have everything I need and more.  I have plenty of money and money is constantly flowing my way.  My bills are paid and I spend less than I make…

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