We like to think we are rational beings, but when it comes to money, emotions drive our behaviors. That’s why budgeting feels so hard.
When it comes to managing your money, almost everyone knows what they should do, yet there’s something that holds almost everyone back from breaking bad financial habits.
The secret is addressing the personal values people associate with money.
Financial therapy is an entire field of psychology that is dedicated to helping people navigate the emotional drivers that influence decisions people make when it comes to money. It adds a psychological component to financial advising.
According to The Art of Money financial therapist and founder Bari Tessler, financial therapy is allabout discovering the why behind our financial choices.
Tessler says successful financial therapy focuses on addressing these three areas.
Digging deep to heal: Everyone has a unique money story, and that’s where the money healing process begins. It’s about exploring how your personality and your past influence your current financial behaviors.
Practice what you think/feel: This is where you begin learning new ways to interact with money. Instead of the typical negative approach, where you’re told what not to do, financial therapy is instead an expression of self-care and mindful intent.
Charting the course: The finals stage is the big picture money map, in which you define what a good money decision means and plan how you will follow through for all purchases large or small. Tesler views it as a way to identify how money can best support the life we have and the life we strive for.