There are thousands of personal finance books, magazines, radio and TV shows.  Yet money anxiety persists. No one is immune.
Financial fear lurks in the once safe nooks and crannies of our daily lives. Millions of hardworking Americans are living paycheck-to-paycheck. With economic uncertainty so high, even those with emergency funds and retirement accounts are prone to night sweats about their financial futures.

Our money is holding us hostage. Like a bag over our heads, financial anxiety prevents us from seeing and feeling the truest of joys that life has to offer.  

I’ve spent the past few years traveling around the country speaking and connecting with folks about money. And it’s become crystal clear to me that we are whirling around like a centrifuge when it comes to our personal finances. There is a lot of movement, but no forward progress.
Time and again I’m asked the same 20 basic money questions. Over and over I cite the same 20 core financial answers.  Yet it feels like nothing is changing. As a society we remain twisted up in severe money pain.
Clearly, there’s another dimension to our personal finances that has yet to be addressed.
Lately I’ve been thinking about the concept of a “money tree.” In this image, the leaves represent the traditional financial advice we’ve all been hearing for years; the branches, our emotions; the trunk, our familial and cultural programming; and the roots (deep underground and invisible to the naked eye), our spiritual underpinnings.
To date, 90% of our energies have been focused on fixing our financial leaves. But a tree cannot be healthy if the branches are overburdened, the trunk is damaged, or the roots are weak. Likewise, my hunch is that our financial lives cannot be rejuvenated without an equally holistic remedy.

So with this post I am embarking upon a one-year journey – a quest to find financial peace of mind. My goal is to find “something” that in one fell swoop will help us never worry about money again.

Photo credit: neilio / ccl

Photo credit: neilio / ccl

My hope with this adventure is to find a framework or concept that can be used by all people in all situations to soothe money pain. A tool that works – regardless of your age, gender, income, occupation, or religious affiliation – to guide you to make a lifetime of financial decisions that make your heart sing. Just in the way a scared kitten might hide under a sofa, I want to help call out our money joy from wherever it has sequestered itself from so many of us for so long.
Crazy idea?

“Problems can’t be solved at the same level of awareness that created them.”
-Albert Einstein.

In a couple of very messy areas of my own personal life I’ve seen how this works. With regards to food, Suze Orbach and Geneen Roth have taught us the power of “eating what our bodies want.” With regards to human interaction, Marianne Williamson and Gabrielle Bernstein have shown us the power of assessing our actions through a spectrum of “love versus fear.” These simple frameworks have powerfully transformed our relationships with ourselves and with each other. These touchstones work because they come at the underlying problem from a vastly different consciousness than the one that originally birthed the problem.
I believe deep down, at a guttural level, that there is a financial equivalent out there as well…
If this resonates with you, then please join me on this journey to MoneyZen. Together we can find the pathway to financial peace of mind.