Becoming a “badass” with money starts with your mindset.
By Jenny Hoff
It’s common advice: Put more money in your bank account by spending less from your paycheck. While it can be useful advice for those who live outside of their means, it can also keep you living in a state of scarcity, of believing that the only path to financial freedom is going without.
“If you are constantly thinking about money you don’t have and how you can cut costs, your mindset is always on ‘not enough,’” says Jen Sincero, author of the bestselling books You are a Badass and You are a Badass at Making Money. “Instead of looking at how you can cut back, look at how you can expand.”
Sincero was a struggling writer, living in a garage apartment in her early 40s, waiting for her big break while still subscribing to all the limiting beliefs she had grown up with: rich people are bad, you can’t do what you love and make significant money, writers and artists are meant to struggle. She realized that one of the biggest mental hurdles she had to overcome was viewing wealth as evil.
What Do You Believe?
“If that’s really what you believe, you’re not going to let yourself make money,” says Sincero.
In between writing gigs, she spent her time figuring out how she could save a little here and there, instead of focusing on how she could make more than enough money to take financial worries off the table. Finally, she hit her breaking point and put tens of thousands of dollars on a credit card, much more money than she had in the bank, in order to pay for the services of a nationally renowned career coach.
“I believe in going into debt if you have the right mindset,” she says. “My mindset was that I am officially unavailable to be in financial struggle anymore.”
Risk and Reward
By taking a huge risk, getting rid of any plan b in case her business didn’t work out and focusing 100% on her goal, she forced herself to change the mindset that she might fail. Her brain did not accept defeat.
“When you open your mind up and say, ‘I’m available to take big, scary risks, money is there for me,’ all the opportunities that are around you open up,” she says.
Sincero stresses that the most dangerous place to be is in between. What doesn’t work is giving up your saving mentality and not committing to expanding your net worth. Whether it’s starting a business, changing careers or even investing the money you have saved up in real estate or other assets, you must be ready to take the risk and do the work needed to see your plan succeed. Once you get into the abundance mentality, you may have dozens of great ideas. But Sincero warns against chasing too many goals. Choose one that you know you can achieve, make a strategy and doggedly pursue it.
“The focus is critical,” says Sincero. “Once you burn the bridges, you’re going to make it happen no matter what.”