Financial alignment recognizes that life gets out of whack and needs a good adjustment to course correct. Just like the human body which needs continual care and feeding to operate well, finances also need rhythmic and consistent adjustment to function with wholeness and sustainability. Financial alignment recognizes that you are a subject (not an object); therefore, all financial tactics, tools, and advice must be aligned with your subjective, human centric reality, personality, wiring, moodiness, and strengths.
In other words, a financial alignment plan must be flexible and thoughtfully threaded to the dynamics of your human existence or the life cycle of your organization. One person’s opportunity might be another person’s noose. One organization’s harvest might be another organization’s demise.
From my vantage point, rigid financial dogmas end up myopically missing the creative opportunities and gut intuitions that often steer financial patterns. Sometimes the most brilliant thoughts come through expressive brainstorming where new ideas percolate to the surface.
Knowing yourself deeply and studying your history, patterns, goals, and trends is the best financial foundation you can cultivate.
What makes you tick? What shuts you down?
What reality do you keep creating that is or is not working for you?
What meaning are you gathering by measuring this or that in your household or your organization?
If you are trying to assimilate financial advice that does not fit who you are, or how you operate, I would recommend taking a good look at other options. The popular financial messages (below) are ever so subtle and good sounding because they fit the dominant script of control and regulate. If you control and regulate then you will achieve the illusionary promises of a life without worry or anxiety or strife.
Here are some of the popular messages:
- You have to budget more.
- You have to save more.
- You have to calculate more.
- The solution is to change your behavior.
What are the promises if I budget, save, calculate?
I think of the bank billboard I frequently study as I stand in the teller’s line. Yes, I physically visit my bank to feel the energy of the financial messages. I want to stay alert on what I’m being ‘sold.’ The billboard is comprised of two beach chairs on a beach, perfectly situated, no flip flops, no drinks, no humans. This is the vision of retirement. Isolation? Freedom? No humans? I ‘think’ the billboard is trying to communicate a life with no worries. The problem is, the billboard communicates a life with nothing except chairs. I guess you get two beach chairs at the end of all that savings? For the record, I’ve never met a financial scenario or plan that eliminates worries or anxiety. Does money help with degrees of anxiety or stress – yes, it can – but, there is a limit to what it can provide.
Here’s the tricky part. Pieces of of these messages are true for some people at certain points in life. The problem becomes that these messages are not customized, pulled apart, and individualized. They are often served as gospel truth.
And, the larger problem these messages leave out is the goodness and necessity of wild energy that is hard to measure, calculate, or control. The innovator is silenced and regulated. The starter juices get squeezed out. The fire of creation is controlled. What also remains absent is the validation of power, networks, luck, spontaneity, and societal positionality in terms of how financial opportunities manifest. Lastly, these messages are generally not delivered with compassion, but instead with an authoritarian overtone.
Here’s the deal. It is very hard to live with the increasing lifestyle choices that have been ushered in with technological advancement and extension of capital. Yes, the options that have been created are tremendous. The growth that has advanced due to the infusion of cash in many sectors is spectacular at various levels. (i.e., I’m typing on a personal computer that supersedes the memory of an old mainframe – phenomenal advancement.)
But. The BIG but. Not everything is as it seems. And, stories are complex, multidimensional, and sordid.
People are getting lost, confused, and frustrated. In the midst of choices, it is hard to find the Way or Ways that mark a sense of belonging, connection, or being home in spirit. Financial plans try to fill those gaps that only personal soul work can do. In the frantic speed of digital downloads and auto deductions/transfers, households have stopped communicating about finances. Financial autopilot (everything is digital) creates lifestyle blindness. People survive without desire, vision, and passion. Money loses its meaning. Life loses its guidance. The course is set – by someone else.
And so, the story for some is one of paralysis, ignorance, or choosing extreme measures. Financial silence, stringent regulation, or chosen ignorance in households and in organizations becomes the norm.
Let’s NOT talk about it. (Silence)
Let’s control it. (Regulate)
Let’s NOT look at it. (Ignorance)
And, here in lies why I believe in financial alignment work.
- This work believes in changing the tone and the language surrounding financial discussions so that folks who feel ostracized by financial conversations might feel included.
- This work believes that your past, present, and future matters as you consider the twists and turns of your financial path.
- This work believes that changing financial language can resurrect a human experience that compassionately fosters subject matter experts. People (the subjects) are capable of being their own experts. With guidance, people can figure out what they want, need, and desire.
- This work believes that building customized, personalized financial tracking systems – whether simple or elaborate – must come from the ground of one’s life up. This is the only way sustainable, organic, and integrated growth and clarity will occur.
In other words, solid financial alignment follows personal or organizational consciousness. You work on your internal world and then you can guide your external existence. You study the patterns, trends, and vision of your organization and then you can consciously regain vision and focus.
Internal Work. External Change.
Seek Consciousness, First.
Guide Your Finances.
Craft Your Life.
Follow Your Newly Aligned Path.