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When I meet people who are struggling with money, I’ve often heard them say “I’m not good in math,” as if they have an insurmountable disadvantage to creating their new relationship with money.

I’ve met rocket scientists, math geniuses and accountants who are amazing at their job and do great by their clients, but couldn’t manage their own money out of a paper bag. I’ve also met those whose jobs don’t really need math at all, yet they are excellent at handling their money. (Income level and corporate ladder hierarchy are not indicators of how well a person manages their money either, but that’s for another blog post). I want to debunk the “I’m not good in math” fallacy as it relates to money for once and for all.

You learned almost everything you need to handle money from a numbers perspective in grade 1. Yes, that’s right. If you can count from 0 to 9 with your eyes closed, you know enough about the numbers part to manage your money (decimals were taught around grade 6 or 7, and those are handy too). You also learned the “math” part at a young age: addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. With those handy tools that you are already quite familiar with, you know the “math” part of money. To top it off, you can use your trusty sidekick, Mr. Calculator, for all your heavy lifting. You can keep him handy at all times because, unlike math tests in grade school, you are allowed to rely on him whenever you want.

I write this not to trivialize the difficulties a person experiences when struggling with money; I want to illustrate that it’s not the MATH part that gets people in financial trouble. When the math is off, like when your bank account is in the negative, it’s the indicator that something is wrong… but it’s not the cause.  When money is put into our hands, it is no longer about math, it’s about meaning. You see, money isn’t logical… it’s emotional. If you are dealing with personal money issues, a Ph.D. in Math won’t help you, nor will an Accounting degree or an MBA (I tried that and I ended up with more debt to cover the cost of the education!). If it were truly about nothing more than math, all math professors would be gagillionaires. Well, that’s not the case!

If it were only about math, over one third of jackpot lottery winners wouldn’t be broke within five years. If it were only about math, we’d all spend less than we make and no one would have money problems, and Healthy Wallet would have no need to fill.

We all have unconscious beliefs wrapped around our money that make up our money story. The bigger your financial stress, the more non-serving money beliefs you have buried in your subconscious. To break free of them, you first have to peel back the layers and uncover the belief system that is driving you. Only then can you reach financial clarity and start down your new path to your financial goals.

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 Mortgage Agent Lic. M16001744 -- iBrokerPower Capital Inc. (The Mortgage Centre), Brokerage Lic. 10538