Gloria Steinem once said, “We can tell our values by looking at our checkbook stubs,” (or our electronic bank or credit card statements)! I am thinking a pie chart app that would categorize monthly expenditures might be helpful in understanding ourselves and our money ways.
It takes a little courage to start this project, but an analysis of the results is likely to mirror more than the essentials of living. For some, there may be little to analyze after housing, food, gas, insurance, utilities, medical bills, and taxes are paid. In families with children, this process is infinitely more complicated. In some families, contributions to church and community are a part of the essentials list. In many families, there is no list at all; the process is a mysterious juggling of bills and the hope that the month will not outlast the paycheck. But, for all of our circumstances, an understanding of our ways with money can tell us important things about how we view ourselves and our relationships.
For some, money is a mirror of how powerful we feel. In some relationships, whoever has the money claims the power. For some, money is a mirror of self worthiness or lack of it and may be reflected in receiving or not receiving medical care and maintenance. For some, money is a mirror of addiction and becomes a futile way of filling up a void. For some, money is a mirror of gratitude and belief that what is shared is multiplied.
Wherever we find ourselves in relation to money, it can be a starting point for dropping illusions and embracing the plan that most reflects who we are and who we want to be.