Wealth Blog Post

Is Your Financial Perspective Helping or Hurting You?

George Grombacher September 1, 2022

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Is Your Financial Perspective Helping or Hurting You?


Is your financial perspective helping or hurting you? 


Do you know what your financial perspective is? Let me take a step back. 

Perspective is defined as “a particular attitude toward or way of regarding something; a point of view.” I like to think about perspective as “How you look at something makes all the difference.” It’s my goal to help you think about and explore your financial perspective; or how you think about money. 


As a financial advisor, I’ve been helping people reconsider their financial perspectives for 20+ years. I’m honored to be named to Investopedia’s list of the top 100 financial advisors many years running. 


Long ago, a traveler came upon a worksite where three stonecutters were working. Curios what they were doing, the traveler approached the first stonecutter and asked, “Excuse sir, can I ask you what you’re doing?” The man glared up at her and said, “What does it look like I’m doing? I’ve got the worst job in the entire country. All I do is cut these stupid rocks all day. My hands hurt, my back hurts, my head hurts- everything hurts!” “I’m sorry for your trouble, I hope things turn around for you,” said the traveler, and she moved onto the second stonecutter.


“Excuse me sir, can I ask what you’re doing?” said the traveler. The second man looked up at her with a very serious expression and said, “I’m working to become the best stonecutter in the entire country.” “That’s an incredible goal, I wish you luck in achieving it,” said the traveler, and she moved onto the third stonecutter. 

As she got closer, she thought she heard the man whistling a cheerful tune. “Excuse me sir, can I ask what you’re doing?” Said the traveler. The man looked up with a gleam in his eye and said, “I’m building a cathedral.”


Three men doing the same work, but having completely different experiences. How you look at something makes all the difference. 


And this is true for every aspect of our lives, including money. 

A positive financial perspective serves us. A negative financial perspective can limit our ability to achieve our full financial potential. I’m going to help you explore your current perspective on money, and make any necessary changes. 


Here’s what we’ll cover:


  • What keeps us where we’re at?


  • Recognizing our patterns


  • Checking your perspective


Let’s get started.



What keeps us where we’re at?



Inertia is “a property of matter by which it continues in its existing state of rest or uniform motion in a straight line, unless that state is changed by an external force.” We all remember Newton’s first law of motion as “An object at rest stays at rest and an object in motion stays in motion with the same speed and in the same direction unless acted upon by an unbalanced force.”


What keeps human beings stuck? Specifically, what keeps us financially stuck? I think there are three forces at work:


  1. An uncertain future

  2. Everyday stress and anxiety

  3. Historical shame


In order to break free and move towards a better future, let’s unpack each of these.


An uncertain future


Dealing with uncertainty is a cornerstone of the human experience. It’s wisely said that we can’t control the things that happen to us, only how we respond to them. So much of our lives are uncertain: our health, the economy, and the stock market, to name a few.


If we’re not comfortable and equipped to handle uncertainty in our lives, we procrastinate. When we procrastinate, no action is taken, nothing is created, and no progress is made. Because money has time value (the longer we wait to pursue our financial goals, the harder they are to reach), procrastination becomes a silent and slow killer of our financial objectives. 


Learning to focus and take action on those things within our control is a key to overcoming uncertainty. 


Everyday stress and anxiety


We’ve all got a lot going on, and feel like we’re pulled in too many directions at the same time. There are many demands on our most important resources of time, attention, and money. It’s easy to get overwhelmed. 


When we feel overwhelmed, stress and anxiety creep into our lives. We feel like we should do more. When we’re not able to do everything we feel we should do, we feel guilty. These feelings can trap us in a vicious cycle that keeps us from pursuing our financial goals and objectives.  


Accepting that we have limited resources and working to prioritize where they ought to be allocated is how we break free from everyday stress and anxiety.


Historical shame 


We’ve all done something dumb with money. But since money is still taboo for many of us, we don’t talk about our struggles. Combine that with our perception that everyone else seems to do great with money, our shame deepens.


It’s a perfectly human emotion to feel shame about poor decisions. But allowing that shame to prevent us from making positive moves is unacceptable.


Moving past shame requires we address it head on. To own any mistakes we’ve made, and to move past them. 



Recognizing our patterns



We follow predictable patterns, meaning we do things the way we do them. 


My morning routine is almost identical every day, as is my evening routine. My wife and I have very structured routines with our kids, which is good for them and for us.


Human beings are creatures of habit. We love Monday Night Football, Taco Tuesday, and many go to church on Sundays. Some are productive and serve us, while others are negative and hurt us. 


With how we handle money, we ‌also have habits and patterns we follow. Major breakthroughs can happen when we realize our patterns and consciously work to nurture the good and get rid of the bad.


If you keep doing what you’ve always done, you’re going to get what you’ve always got. Is there anything truer than that?


Einstein famously said, “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.” Something we’ve all been guilty of. Why does this happen?


Our brains and bodies want to keep us safe. They crave the predictable. They crave patterns. In order to break free of patterns that are keeping us “safe,” we need to identify our patterns. 


What are your money patterns? Spend some time thinking about your daily routines and habits. 


  • Aside from your essentials, are there things you’re always spending money on? Are there things you refuse to spend money on?

  • Why do you do the work you do? Is it out of necessity, or do you like it?

  • Do you stay in career roles for certain amounts of time?

  • What are your patterns around entrepreneurship, if any?

  • Are you saving and investing money? Why do you make those savings and investing decisions?

  • Are you a financial risk taker?


What other money habits and patterns can you identify? The idea is to recognize any negative patterns, and to eliminate or replace them with good ones. 



Checking your perspective



Recently, I read how a pair of Mahatma Gandhi’s glasses sold at auction for $340,000. While I don’t have an opinion whether that’s the correct price, I wonder what the value of his perspective would be. Our perspectives are how we see the world. Fewer things are more important than that.

You and I look a lot different from outer space than we look in our bathroom mirrors. 


That person on the internet you think is a total moron might look a lot more reasonable across the table at a coffee shop. 


Each of these perspectives is real, but they vary widely from one another. One is not necessarily better than the other, they’re different. When we recognize how our view of a situation or place can change, we can shift our thinking about it.


A healthy perspective 


“Whether you think you can, or you can’t- you’re right” – Henry Ford


Do you believe you can be financially successful? Is the stock market a place to make money, or is it a rigged game? Does money make people better, or is it the root of all evil?


Being able to look at yourself in the mirror and to take an inventory of your life is a key to a healthy perspective. Will you allow negative past events to define you, or are you a survivor? 


You are someone who can be financially successful. Combining the right perspective with a solid strategy can get you where you want to go with money. 






You and I have enough time to do most anything we want. But we don’t have time to waste. If your perspective needs changing, make the changes. Get started.


If you’re ready to take control of your financial life, check out our DIY Financial Plan course. 


We’ve got three free courses as well: Our Goals Course, Values Course, and our Get Out of Debt course. 


Connect with one of our Certified Partners to get any question answered. 


Stay up to date by getting our monthly updates.


Check out the LifeBlood podcast.



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