“The nine-to-five is one of the greatest atrocities sprung upon mankind. You give your life away to a function that doesn’t interest you. This situation so repelled me that I was driven to drink, starvation, and mad females, simply as an alternative.” – Charles Bukowski
(Photo: David Blackwell)
There’s an old military term that I love called “Hug The Monster”. It means fully embracing and fully facing that which scares you. “The monster” is obvious when you have to repel from a helicopter or jump out of a plane but it becomes a bit murkier when the “Monster” is constant and more persistent.
One such “monster” is the fear of going broke, being homeless and having nothing. People will often stay at jobs they despise for the fear that they will fail, go broke and wind up on the street if they take a risk and pursue their dreams. So they stay in jobs in which they are under paid and which they hate, they become comfortable in their quite misery.
The constant fear of going broke is what keeps a lot of people from being rich. It not only keeps you stagnant in life but it also creates a negative relation to money.
I found that money came a lot easier to me once I lost the fear of being broke. Till I faced and hugged the monster, only to realize that there was nothing to fear all along.
Why would that be? Why did money come to me so much easier and in more abundance once I lost the fear of not having any? My answer is that once you remove the thing that has power over you, you start to have power over it.
Here’s a best example I can come up with.
Let’s say that you had a piece of 2X4 wood plank laying on the ground and you had to walk across it. No problem there, it’s easy you can do it all day everyday. You might even think walking back and forth on it is fun. You have nothing but positive feeling about it.
Now let’s suspend the same plank between two building 20 stories high.
How harder and scarier would it be for you now to cross the same plank?
Why would that be? After all it is still the same wood plank? The answer is that your fear of falling keeps you from making it happen with ease. Money works the same way. Your fear of “falling” or going broke keeps you stuck and prevents you from making it with ease and creates negative and scary feelings about it. Once you remove the fear that going broke has over you, money flows a lot easier to you. Your fear of going broke is you keeping that plank 20 stories high instead of on the ground.
So how do we remove the fear of going broke, how do we hug the monster? Here are some ideas and concepts that I discovered along the way which really helped:
There’s no shame in being poor.
When I was poor, for the longest time, I thought that having nothing and being poor was somehow shameful. It meant that you are lazy or stupid. That all changed for me once I discovered the writings of Jack Kerouac and Charles Bukowski. Jack Kerouac’s book On The Road and the writings of Charles Bukowski made being poor and broke seem beautiful, almost romantic. I realized that there is no shame in having nothing and if having nothing is all there is, it’s not so bad. I stopped caring what others thought of me. As long as I can live my life, my way, then being free but being broke is still better than being rich while a slave to someone else. It’s a great gift that I discovered both of these writers just before the time that I started to have abundance with money. (I don’t think that it is a coincidence, but then nothing in life ever is)
A dollar a day keeps the “Monster” away.
Most “Monsters” are self-made. The fear of going broke is very real when you have bills to pay each month and you don’t know how or where that money will come from. If your income has varied a great deal over the years and over those same years you still found yourself being broke at the end of each month, that is not a circumstance that is a choice. A subconscious choice but a choice none the less. It’s you selecting to spend money and not save in order to recreate the same situation over and over again. The more you can save,the less scary the “Monster” becomes. Save, save and save. Each dollar you have saved is you lowering that plank from twenty stories high, putting it closer and closer to the ground.
Realize that the universe usually always takes care of you.
If you haven’t figured it out yet, you deserve to be here and that everything will be alright? How many times have you been flat broke, not sure how you are going to make the rent or your car payment? Unexpectedly, you get a check from some place which is just enough for you to cover your payments. How many times has that happened to you? How many more times does it need to happen before you realize that you will be ok? How much time and energy have you spent over the years worrying, fretting, agonizing over being broke when all along everything always works out? How much power have you given to your “Monster” only to realize that you were safe all along?
It’s usually never as bad as you fear.
Let’s just say that all your worst fears do come true – You’re evicted from your home, you’re broke on the street and you have nothing. Now what? The answer is that even then, everything will still be ok. The worst is usually never as bad as your fear. If you wake up tomorrow with amnesia and find yourself on some deserted road in the middle of nowhere, without a penny in your pocket, no friends, no past or identity, you would still be ok. You would make new friends and have new opportunities, establish new connections and create a new life for yourself. You would not starve to death, you would not die. Somehow you would get food, you would find shelter. The universe would take care of you. Having nothing is not the end, it’s only the beginning.