Do you ever find yourself saying the words ‘I can’t afford it?’
Perhaps you simply think these words.
If the words ‘I can’t afford it’ have weaselled their way into your life, making you feel as though there are things you can’t have, you’re not alone.
The belief of ‘I can’t afford it’ is pervasive in our culture.
As a child I was constantly being told ‘We cant afford that’, when in most cases, this wasn’t the actual truth, it was a way of telling me that my parents didn’t see the value in what I wanted.
But, when you hear a statement like this enough times, it embeds itself into your psyche and can be hard to shake off.
So for many years I believed ‘I can’t afford it’ every time I saw something that I really liked.
This led to me buying a heap of cheap stuff I didn’t like that much, and in doing so, whittling away my money on things that I didn’t truly value.
This is how beliefs like ‘I can’t afford it’ stamp all over our joy-parade.
Yes, this belief, keeps us living a life that feels constricted and limited and less than.
And the more we subscribe to these words ‘I can’t afford it’ the more we believe them.
The more we believe them, the more they become our physical reality.
But I want to let you in on a little secret…
In the majority of cases, it’s not that someone can’t afford what they want.
It’s a much deeper issue than this.
It’s either A) They haven’t taken the time to get clear on what they truly want in life, or B) They don’t believe they’re worthy or deserving of having what they truly desire in life.
And because they don’t value themselves, they make decisions and take actions that go against them having what they really want.
Most of the time people think they can’t afford something when the truth is, they’re simply not managing their money in a way that is aligned with their values.
For instance I had one client who really wanted a motorbike.
It was her dream to have a motorbike, but she was adamant in our first session together that there was no way she could afford it.
‘I can’t afford it’ she said to me, truly believing those words.
Over the next few months we did two things:
- We cleared her beliefs around how worthy and deserving she was, so that she totally valued herself, and..
- She traded in two cafe bought coffees each day, for two homemade coffees.
Five months later, we finished our sessions, with her riding away on her motorbike, paid for in cash!
Oh, and when I checked in with her a few months later, she’d just scored a brand new job that was paying her triple the income of her previous job.
She stopped subscribing to the belief of ‘I can’t afford it’ and started to believe in the possibility of being able to afford all that she truly desired.
In doing so, she realised that – like most people – she actually had a fair bit of room to play with her money.
The truth is, you can afford whatever you want.
As long as you value that thing enough to do what it takes to get it.
You see, it’s not that we can’t afford things, it’s that we don’t value the things we say we want enough to find a way to be able to afford them.
We may think we really really want something, but until we decide it’s worth doing whatever it takes to get it, then we’ll continue to spend our money on other things.
Things that take us away from what we really want.
So how do we start to loosen the grip of this belief of ‘I can’t afford it’?
When you find yourself saying ‘I can’t afford it’ – out loud or inside your head – ask yourself instead: How can I afford it?
You see, if we keep telling ourself ‘I can’t afford it’ then that’s exactly what we experience.
Whenever you want something, there won’t be enough money to buy that thing, or if there is, you won’t know because you’re so stuck in believing that you can’t have what you want.
This is because the words we say to ourself are super powerful in creating how we feel and what we attract into our life.
Studies show that the words of our everyday language directly influence the way our brain wires itself when it comes to how we think and even what we’re capable of thinking about.
So in that sense, if you continue to repeat a particular statement, it does become your truth.
And you live by that statement.
It’s not the truth, but it feels like it is, because you’re continuing to allow those words to play-out uninterrupted.
And you’ve probably heard this phrases on repeat from your parents or carers or the people you’re close to, which only reinforces your belief in this statement.
You see if we hear something enough times, especially when we’re a child, then we take on these kinds of statements as facts.
But they’re not ‘facts’.
A belief that was taken on in error, from people who didn’t know how to question their beliefs.
Yet, when you consciously choose to switch these words to ‘How can I afford it?’ you’ve changed what was a set statement – what you have come to think of as ‘fact’ – into a question.
When you ask a question, you create space for there to be other possibilities.
A question forces you to think.
To think outside the box.
To think up different ways of being and doing life.
And in doing so, find ways that you can afford something.
What often happens when someone starts to interrupt the words ‘I can’t afford this’ with ‘How can I afford it’ they discover that they don’t truly want everything they think they want.
For if it’s something that they genuinely feel they need, then they’ll find a way.
What I’m saying, is that often we use the phrase ‘I can’t afford it’ as an excuse, to either:
- Avoid looking at whether we truly want that thing or not, or..
- To stay small and avoid the growth and expansion that thing can offer.
The words ‘I can’t afford it’, essentially stop your brain working.
You accept the words as truth, and go about your day, living in this constricted view of your life.
By asking the question’ How can I afford it? you open yourself up to endless possibilities.
It makes you access a new part of yourself that seeks out a solution; an answer.
In his book Rich Dad, Poor Dad, Robert Kiyosaki, writes how subscribing to the phrase ‘I can’t afford it’ is essentially a form of mental laziness.
And this is because it lets you off the hook.
Now you have a reason to not have what you want.
So you give up.
Sure, you can argue and defend the ‘fact’ that you can’t afford what you want, and in doing so, keep yourself stuck in your rut, or you can put your efforts behind a more empowering way of looking at things.
When you ask the question ‘How can I afford this?’ you are exercising your innate ability to create the life you want.
The more you practise asking yourself these types of questions, the more solutions you’ll find.
So this week I invite you to try this on yourself.
Every-time you notice yourself saying in your head or out loud: ‘I can’t afford it’, pause.
Take a breath.
Then ask the question: ‘How can I afford this?’
And just see where this takes your mind.
If you commit to asking this question every time ‘I can’t afford it’ enters your mind, you’ll interrupt the pattern.
The more you interrupt the pattern, the less hold this statement has over you.
And before you know it, you’ll develop this strong inner belief that you can afford that which you truly want.
Imagine what life would be like if you no longer believed that you couldn’t afford what you want.
Go on, just think about that for a moment…
And if you’d like to explore teachings like this in more depth, so you can finally make peace with money, then I invite you to check out my brand new course Money and Me.
The course takes you on seven delicious dates with money, so you can cultivate a healthy inflow, experience more abundance, and once and for all, release all that money stress that 2020 brought to the forefront for most people.
Doors open January 6, for a very, super special price, that will only be offered once.
The teachings in this course, are the result of 15 years of helping people overcome their money issues, all crafted into one powerful course, to help you enter into a healthy, loving relationship with money.
Where money is always there for.
Always available to you.
And always there to support you in living a love-rich life!
As always, I’d love to hear how you this blog has helped loosen your money beliefs.
Please feel free to leave a comment below, once you’ve tried on this exercise for yourself!