“Money will command your attention. Allow it a proper place in your life, but deny it a throne. Money means many things, but nothing so much as a yardstick by which your measure will be taken. The need of it, the use of it, the power of it, the love of it will be used by others to define who you are and who you are not. Even you may use it to determine how you should perceive yourself. Be careful. Money is also known to be a relentless slave master. If I have learned anything from this balancing act it is the importance of defining your worth in your own terms.” By Sidney Poitier in ‘Life Beyond Measure, Letters to My Great-Granddaughter’
Is Sidney Poitier saying, we have let money mean too much, allowed it to become a measurement of our success in life? Many of us have a deep seeded sense of poverty in our consciousness, our world has been through wars and the great depression. These events, feelings and attitudes have been going on for generations. They generate fear, insecurities and our own sense of lack. Poverty consciousness leaves us unable to enjoy or even take note of what the world is offering you.
We‘ve been through some rough times lately, demands on our time and energy can leave us feeling emotionally drained and physically exhausted. If your total life was a bank account, how many daily deposits and withdrawals are you making to and from the account? This account includes the body, mind and spirit. We all have a “life account” from which we frequently make too many withdrawals or allow others to withdraw too freely.
Just like a life bank account, your subconscious keeps a tally of your self-worth based on what you think of yourself. Every time you criticize yourself, you also make a withdrawal on your self-esteem account. And every time you give yourself credit for what you’ve done, you make a deposit.
It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that if you make more withdrawals than deposits, you’re going to end up physically, mentally and emotionally bankrupt. If you feel sluggish and cranky, you could already be on your way to bankruptcy. When we overdraw physically, mentally or spiritually, we “see red”, ie., we experience frustration, anger and exhaustion.
But when we credit our life’s account by setting realistic limits, we have more to give. And when we have more to give, there is also more to receive. Although taking care of ourselves is often difficult to do, it is an excellent investment in creating the quality of life we want and deserve. By taking the time to nurture ourselves, we ensure we will not get “overdrawn”.
This neat little visualization helps to balance your life account. Imagine, or picture yourself in a town that looks friendly and prosperous. As you stroll along the sidewalk, people smile at you. You enjoy the architecture of the buildings.
Just ahead you see your bank. But it isn’t just any bank, it is literally your bank. It says so on the front, in elegant gold letter: The (your name) Bank and Trust Company.”
Opening the front door, you go inside. The interior is spacious and full of light. Friends and business acquaintances are in line waiting to make transactions with you. You notice which ones are there to make deposits and which ones are there to make withdrawals.
The door to your office has your name on it, and below it, “PRESIDENT”. Sitting down at your desk you check the balance sheet of Your Life Account. The statement could be in a ledger, a filing cabinet or even on your computer.
What debits are itemized? Are these debits from that project at work that didn’t go through? Did they come from blowing up at friend…..or the friend blowing up at you? Were you late for an appointment? Missed an important date? Or didn’t exercise hard enough? Make note of your own debits and tuck them in your mind.
Now what’s in the credit column? Anything? If not you’d better make a deposit in your Life Account. “But what do I put in it” you say? Well, you get up in the morning, you brush your teeth, pet the dog, called on a sick friend, cut the grass, did the laundry, drove the kids, share your lunch….get the idea? How about that bright idea that was recently put into action? And how about that goal you accomplished?
These all belong in the plus column, but unless you give yourself credit for them, consciously entering them, they won’t register in your subconscious. So write your accomplishments in your in your ledger, seeing them written in your handwriting or filed in your computer.
Check your Life Account regularly. It can be daily or weekly, but check it! If more debits show up then credits, start balancing! Review the good things you’ve done—everything from the magnificent to the mundane—and remember to make those deposits. The simplicity of this visualization is marvelous.