5 Steps to Making a Solid Money Decision.

written by Bari Tessler January 23, 2020

Dear Community,

As you probably know, we’re gearing up to start The Art of Money 2020 program on February 1st. I’m so happy to welcome the hundreds of folks from around the world who have decided to join us and are about to begin the journey of healing their relationship with money.

If you’re reading this and are still trying to decide whether or not to join us yourself, I have some help for you.

See, what you’re facing right now is a money decision. Should you spend money on this thing … or not? We all want to make good money decisions, but it’s not always easy. (In fact, we spend a whole month on exactly this, in The Art of Money!)

But right now, you’re not just making any money decision. It just so happens that you’re trying to decide if you should spend money on a program that could help your relationship with money itself.

Whew … that’s a bit of a mind bender, eh?

Should you spend money on improving your relationship with money?

That might feel a bit weird, so let me de-weirdify it a bit for you. Then I can give you some help about how to make money decisions about buying anything.

Pretend, for a moment, that this online learning experience and community you’re considering joining is not about money. {Stick with me. I promise this will help.}

You’re simply trying to decide if a learning experience is going to help you in some way in your life. Simple as that.

Okay … now that you’re just trying to make a decision about whether or not to sign up for this potentially beneficial online program and community, let me take you through a step-by-step process for how to make a good money decision … about anything.

It could be a couch, or a new pair of boots, or a vacation, or a car, or, yes, an online program about money.

This process I’ll run you through can help you even if you never decide to join us in the Art of Money program. So, this isn’t some Jedi mind trick to get you to join my program.

Honestly, this is the process I use in my own life to make good money decisions, and it’s the same process I teach in my program (though what you’ll find here is a simplified version).

So even if you don’t decide to join us this year, I hope you’ll use and enjoy this process in any money decision that feels not-so-easy to make.

1. The Numbers.

This is the most practical, cut-and-dried factor to consider.

Do you have enough money right now to make this purchase?

Simply reading that question might bring up some fear for you. You might not actually know how much money is in your bank account right now, or how much you’re earning, spending, and saving each month.

You might be terrified to even peek at your numbers — this is way more common than you might think! And it’s a huge, paralyzing roadblock between you and a clear money decision.

Believe it or not, people “go unconscious” about money regardless of how much or how little they earn. Yep! This pattern cuts right across the spectrum of income and socioeconomic status.

See, this actually isn’t about the numbers. It’s about your relationship to them.

Plus, “having enough money” is a pretty subjective issue.

Some people who are just making ends meet or living on a tight budget may choose to do whatever it takes to invest in something really important to them. (More on how to decide what’s “important” in a bit).

On the other hand, people who have more than enough money to satisfy all of their needs and desires might still feel enormous pressure around making money decisions.

So … what’s your relationship with your numbers?

If you really want to join The Art of Money but aren’t sure if you can swing it, you might brainstorm ways to create an extra $88/month in your life. You might cut out a few lattes here, skip a movie there, or make a little extra cash on the side — it might be easier than you think.

And if you have no idea what your numbers are, and are afraid to even look at them, consider this: The Art of Money will gently teach you how to do just that.

2. The Timing.

Is NOW the right time for you to make this investment in yourself?

In our Art of Money example, you might ask yourself:

Is your relationship to money calling (or screaming) for support right now?

Have you been longing for this kind of support for months or even years?

Has your need for money healing, practices, and guidance gotten LOUDER recently?

Are you in, recovering from, or about to face a big life event — like getting married, having a baby, changing career, starting a business, or grieving a loss? These can catapult us into a money initiation.

Do you know you don’t want to wait for another year to do this? (The next time it will be offered is in 2021.)

Do you feel ready to do this work?

How does The Art of Money 2020 line up with the timing of your unique money story?

3. The Value.

This. Is. The. Biggie.

Is the thing or experience you’re considering buying valuable to you? In our example, does the Art of Money program feel valuable to you?

If so, how valuable? Are you willing to spend your money to reflect this value?

It’s often difficult to pinpoint or quantify the exact the value of a purchase. My work often falls into this category, as it’s difficult to know ahead of time (or from the outside) just how deep and sweeping the transformation and benefits you’ll receive will be.

Sometimes we have to dig deep to decide for ourselves how valuable a potential investment is, to us.

When it comes to The Art of Money, people often report massive shifts … which are subtle at first and then get expressed as external change over time.

Here are some of the tangible and intangible benefits you can expect from The Art of Money 2020. As you read these, check in with yourself. How much would these be worth to YOU?

  • Greater confidence, peace of mind, and compassion in your money relationship.
  • A smart, personalized Money Self-Care Practice that keeps you grounded and clear-headed.
  • Tuning into what truly matters to YOU and aligning these values with your money habits.
  • Less fights about money with your sweetie and more intimate, fun (and even sexy!) money conversations.
  • Letting go of old, unhelpful patterns, traumas, and shame around money.
  • Learning the language and systems of money. (This is so empowering.)
  • Daily, weekly, monthly, and annual money practices so you can see how much money is flowing in and out of your life, and where.
  • Claiming the self-worth and empowerment to set healthy boundaries and break through “money ceilings.”
  • Feeling more successful and “grown-up” with money, however YOU define this.
  • Building your Financial Support Team. Yep: we’ll help you get clear on who you need and how to find a great one!
  • Tools to make “money stuff” more creative + playful + meaningful to you.
  • Mind-expanding teachings from eclectic expert teachers on dozens of different aspects of life connected to money, from somatic practices to Enneagram to savvy business models to paying off debt to creating sustainable biz models with your “superpowers.”
  • Loving, smart, supportive conversations with a global network of kindred money explorers from all backgrounds, income levels, and creeds. Truly: the tenderness and encouragement in this group is awe-inspiring.

Take a deep breath. Notice how your body feels, right now. Ask yourself:

What are these things worth to me? How would my life be different or better if I had all of these things?

Follow your values.

Once you’re clear on how valuable something is (or isn’t) to you, the choice is almost made for you.

4. The Cost.

How much will it cost you to do this — or not?

This is about the numbers — but so much more.

Can you afford this purchase? Do you have the cashflow on hand? Is this purchase in alignment with your values? Will it impact your long-term goals in positive or negative ways?

In our Art of Money example, you might ask: is this an investment in yourself that will potentially help you earn more, save more, be savvier with your money relationship?

If you can immediately, confidently answer these questions — wonderful! You’ve got a good handle on your numbers, your values, and your goals. Many of you, though, might not know the answers to questions like these yet, because you don’t have a bookkeeping system in place to show you your numbers. Oh, this is so much more common than you’d think!

{Please note: that’s why we include this exact type of training inside The Art of Money: so you can know how much money is coming in and going out, each month and what your real numbers are. This is foundational for making more informed, confident money decisions, along with some other important tools.}

In the Value section, we asked: What do you expect and hope this experience will bring you? Now, let’s look at the flipside: What will it cost you to NOT make this investment in yourself?

How is NOT doing this work hurting you, your career, and your relationships? How much will it cost you over the next year? What’s the cost of staying right where you are in your relationship to money?

When it comes to avoiding money work, here are some common, painful consequences I’ve seen:

  • Ongoing conflict with your honey about money (whether unspoken or very loud.)
  • Worry about money problems when you open the mailbox, answer the phone, or go about your day (background worry!)
  • Confusion about what your numbers actually look like, because you’re too afraid to look.
  • Shame, guilt, fear, or anxiety about where you stand financially.
  • Money wasted on bank charges, late fees, unpaid taxes, and more — because your financial house isn’t in order.
  • Avoiding important relationships because of money stress or fear.
  • Neglecting your most cherished dreams and values — because you can’t afford to invest in them (or aren’t sure if you can or “should”.)
  • Career stress, confusion, or paralysis because you’re not sure how to move forward financially.
  • Feeling disempowered, confused, overwhelmed, and unworthy — in your money relationship and beyond.

As you feel into these, ask yourself: what toll do these take on you, and what will happen if you do nothing to change them? Would it be helpful to you to invest in some new tools and support, so you can feel better in all of these situations?

5. The Intention.

Is this a self-loving decision? Are you ready to receive the value of this investment?

Have you ever bought a fancy grill, dreaming of all the quality time you’d spend with family and friends outside … and then never used it? Or signed up for an online class, but missed the calls and skipped out on the practices?

A lot of people beat themselves up about this. We spend our money on something we think we’ll use and love … and then let it rot. Ouch.

The keys here are investing with intention and being ready to receive.

If you’re prepared to gently, lovingly hold yourself accountable for receiving the value of this investment…

If you feel empowered, trusting, and loving towards yourself in making this investment…

If you’re prepared to invest not only your money, but your mind, your heart, your time, and your energy, as well…

Then everything is aligned for you to receive a powerful return on your investment.

So. Deep breath. Check in with yourself.

Look at your numbers. Consider the timing. Weigh the value. Reflect on your intentions. Is this your time?

Only YOU can know.

If you’re considering joining us for The Art of Money 2020, please make this a conscious, loving decision, for yourself.

And if you decide you’re a YES to The Art of Money 2020, know that I’m here to hold your hand and welcome you into our incredible community (which is literally into the hundreds at this point, with folks from 24 different countries already.)

We officially kick everything off on February 1st. I would absolutely love to see you there.

I wish you a grounded, clear-headed, savvy money decision.

Tune into what matters the very most for YOU, and this point in your precious life story.

And if the time is right, I’ll see you inside the community space for the program once we begin the journey in a couple of days.

With my dearest wishes,

P.S. Remember: making good money decisions is a skill you can practice and get better at. In The Art of Money, we help folks learn how to make better money decisions over time: to notice when they feel great or not-so-good, and fine-tune the next time.

With some guidance and practice, we CAN make our money decisions more conscious, loving, and confident. This is one of the many skills you’ll get support for in The Art of Money 2019.

And that, my friends … is a beautiful thing.

The Art of Money 2019 starts on February 1st! Join us right here.

You might also like: