Earlier this week I talked about your net worth and about your liquid net worth. After writing that post I realized something. It’s a truth that you probably don’t want to hear.
Some of you are letting your self-worth affect
So was I.
A while ago I wrote an article about Money and Confidence as A Way To Living Your Best Life. It talks about how my low confidence was affecting my spending habits, in order to let people like me.
That period I had an extremely low net worth – I was over $25,000 in student debt. After I’ve realized that people like me for me, not for how much money I have, my spending habits changed dramatically. This resulted in my net worth going up slowly but surely.
When I finished studying my net worth was only $10,000 negative instead of $25,000.
Progress over perfection right?
For most people, it’s our nature to want to be liked and accepted. What is also in our nature is comparing yourself to others. What’s easiest to compare? Things you can objectively measure. Things like houses, cars, and salary. That’s our measurement nowadays of who is living a valuable life.
What did we do? We tied self-worth to net-worth, resulting in judging the value of our lives based on how much we own.
Your Net-Worth Is Not Your Self-Worth
When we change our thinking around the link between net-worth and self-worth, we can free ourselves and pursue a life that doesn’t revolve around what you make or what you own.
How Can I Do This?
Realize That Time Is Your Most Valuable Resource
Money is not the most valuable thing in the world, time is.
When you are giving away your time to a person, you will be of most value to them.
If you’re having friends or family that only give you nice gifts but never spend time with you, will you still consider having a good connection with them? Probably not.
Make a habit out of giving away time to others. Build connection. Be real.
Focus On Things Unrelated To Money
Building further on the previous point, you need to focus on things unrelated to money.
What things are unrelated to money, that make you feel good?
Write those moments down. You want to associate your self-worth with those types of experiences.
If you have a hard time thinking of something, think about what your ideal day looks like. What would you do when you would be retired?
You Are Unique
Also, realize that you are different from everybody else and that’s exactly what’s making you valuable.
Be proud to be you and be comfortable with yourself. Try to say true to yourself and don’t behave differently around different people.
Don’t try to hide. You are unique in the most amazing way!
Embrace Your Imperfections
When you realize that you’re unique, you should also embrace your imperfections.
No one on this entire planet is perfect. Everyone has struggles, challenges, and imperfections.
When you accept your imperfections and step into your true power, you can interact with people on a whole new level!
Once you’ve realized what the things are that make you feel valuable and unique, create more of this in your life.
When you get to know yourself and what makes you live your best life, stick to that.
My happy place is writing, I love doing it even though I know I am not perfect and it takes a lot of time.
Why do I keep at it? Because it brings so many other things to my life like fulfillment and joy.
Pursue New Challenges
Find things that you like doing and do more of that.
There will be dozens of challenges coming your way. Don’t back down from them.
Feel the fear and do it anyway.
Live with the expectation that you will do great things because you will!
If you need more motivation, see my 11 motivational money quotes here.
Surround Yourself With Like-Minded People
Once you adapted your new money beliefs, it’s important to surround yourself with people who have this new mindset as well.
It means choosing to be around people who have the same values and beliefs as you do, people who support you, and people who cheer for you. You want to discuss your money-related things with them as well!
If you currently have people in your life that are not like you, that’s okay. Say no to your friends that you feel like you’re seeing enough, and make space for people you want to hang out with.
Create A Money Mantra
I’m a big fan of affirmations. Every morning I get up at 6 am and do my money affirmations. You want to know which one I’m using, you can read my 88 affirmations to attract wealth and abundance here!
Note that it’s still important to celebrate your successes, monetary and non-monetary.
Remember, that your true self-worth is not affected by your net-worth, it’s up to you to decide what your self-worth is. Start increasing it today!
Did you let your self-worth affect your net worth in the past?
This article was published and syndicated by Radical FIRE.
Marjolein is a financial consultant who has built over €4,000 monthly passive income and saves over 70% of her income. Read Radicals’ inspiring story, from stuck in the 9-to-5 to loving life. Feel free to send Radical a message at the bottom of this page
8 thoughts on “Don’t Let Your Self Worth Affect Your Net Worth”
I think in our FIRE community it is too easy to compare to others and define your net worth as your self worth. It takes other things to make up your self worth though.
I definitely still tie my self worth to my net worth. For example I feel like I accomplished something great when I see my NW increasing over a certain time frame. However it shouldn’t be tied, at least not 100%. There are so much other things to tie your self worth to.
Society values material possessions and we often judge each other on our apparent wealth e.g. four by four car, Mulberry handbag, expensive holidays. The truth is that many of those things may being paid for by what my mother called ‘the never never’ i.e. credit. I think that looking as though they are wealthy gives some people confidence and they value themselves in this way. For me education, an interest in the world, and generosity and kindness are things by which we should value others and ourselves. Belonging to the FI community gives one a different perspective on life and makes one realise that all of those material trappings are not the route to happiness.
I love the message in your title and these actionable tips. I’m passionate about personal finance and blogging, but I might start following some musicians and authors again just to expand my mind and focus on some things “unrelated to money” on social media for awhile.
We’re all a lot more than our relationship with money.
Yes I agree with you – it’s very hard to not tie your self worth to your self-worth. Especially since your net worth is a number that’s easy to measure, so seeing it go up makes it feel good.
But if there will be a recession in the future and your net worth goes down, it doesn’t mean that you are worth any less in terms of self-worth. I think this is a lesson we will learn when the time comes!
YES you are so right, we judge each other on ‘apparent wealth’ instead of on the things that truly matter and make us happy at the end of the day. Like you outlined, the FI community is a great place to get the priorities straight & I’m happy to be part of the community.
It does ‘makes one realise that all of those material trappings are not the route to happiness’, very well said! Glad that we have our priorities straight and can live for what is truly important to us!
Being surrounded by like-minded people can be great, but it’s good at times to be looking outside of the circle for some different perspectives and wisdom. It’s true, we are a lot more than our relationship with money. I am under the impression that the PF community is also starting to realize this more and more!
Awesome post, Radical Fire! I think it can be potentially unhealthy to tie our self-worth to our net worth.
Like you asked above, what happens when your net worth drops during a recession? Let’s say, it happened to drop 30%, due to circumstances beyond your control. Does your self esteem drop 30% as well?
I like Savvy’s advice to follow people outside of the FI community. If you are not careful, you’ll get caught up in the comparison game, which is unwinnable.
As one of my favorite rappers, J. Cole, once said, “No such thing as a life that’s better than yours.”
Thank you Jerry!
Yes I agree, it’s very toxic to have your net worth and self worth linked. On your net worth you have less control, so all the more reason to focus on them separately.
It’s important to get a different perspective, consulting people outside the FI community can be a great way to do that.
“No such thing as a life that’s better than yours.”, that’s a truthbomb right there!
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