Money is something not often thought about until you have to deal with it. As a child we have no sense of responsibility or independence in any aspect of life including finances. Most children are unaware of how to manage money and are taught they must ask for money from their parents if they wish to have any. While teenagers are yearning for independence, they start to find ways to make money, but they still are not given an understanding of their relationship with money. Instead they are simply retaught how to get it. At this time it is not simply asking their parents, now they can work for it. People then grow into adulthood with a concept of how to make money, but little understanding as to how money affects their emotions and how they might have a healthy balance of their emotions around the topic of money. In fact, money and emotions are are treated separately. But what is so dangerous about those two aspects being dissociated from each other? Is it better to be emotionless or is that the start of all financial evil? We will find out.
The polarizing opinions in regards to how the human emotions should be introduced to deal with financial struggles have been heavily debated over the years. On one end, emotions are seen as a sign of weakness and subjectivity that negatively influences any financial decision we make in the course of our life. But we take a different approach that is more inclusive of our human nature, which is acknowledging our emotions to the fullest while not letting it takeover our decision making process. That way, it allows us to embrace the way we react to reality without seeing it through a distorted lens. From this status quo of emotions being involved in financial decisions, that leads us to pursue an unconventional solution to a conventional problem.
The effort to plan, budget, and spend less have been the pillars to financial stability, well at least it used to be. However, in the recent years we have come to the realization that having a lot of money does not fix the solution. Many people who learned how to make more money remain financially stressed, which demonstrates that financial stress requires a psychological solution. Although the practical strategies, such at budgeting and planning, are important, being aware of yourself and your relationship with money is the first step in the right direction.
Integrated financial therapy introduced a multi-modal approach to financial struggles – a new innovative outlook to money. As with making any changes in your habits, you first must acknowledge what is needed to change. That can be achieved via introspection, self-awareness, and emotional intelligence. These do not necessarily involve practical skills but rather a critical assessment of self which can be challenging for many of us that constantly distract ourselves from self-analysis. There are different types of therapies that emphasize a multi-modal approach: narrative therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, and object relational therapy.
We don’t realize the importance of self-reflection until it’s too late or too much financial stress has been on one’s shoulders. It is okay to face a financial obstacle but it is in hour hands to overcome it.