How do you feel about money?

By John Polakowski

We all have opinions and feelings about money. We love having enough — or more than enough — money and hate running short or living paycheck to paycheck.

Financial Information and Service Center, a program of Goodwill, offers free Power of Money workshops. Participants can discover proven ways to build a budget that works, spend less and save more, reduce debt, prepare for unexpected expenses and have financial peace of mind. These three-week classes are held on consecutive Tuesdays from 6 to 8:15 p.m. at the Goodwill Community Campus, 1800 Appleton Road, Menasha. To register, call 920-886-1000 or go online to

If we find ourselves in a pattern of having continuous debt, we often have self-defeating attitudes and beliefs about money. As Diane Harmony points out in “5 Gifts for an Abundant Life,” when we feel fear and believe that we do not have enough, that’s what we receive in return. We might feel embarrassed or depressed about that situation. What can we do about it?

One option is to explore our attitudes and feelings about money. Many of us grew up without learning about saving and using money wisely. We face an amazing variety of financial choices, including credit cards, debit cards, secured cards, check cards, payday loans and much more.

Try to recall your first experiences with money as a child. How did your parents or caregivers handle money? Did you or they treat money with gratitude or with fear? Did you think about needs and wants? Do you fall into the trap of believing that love, popularity, acceptance or appreciation equals money, especially if you have difficulty expressing your feeling about money?

As you wrestle with these questions, here are a few simple activities to do to help yourself develop positive feelings about money.

Write or say, “thank you,” for every check you write or bill you pay. Find an affirmation about financial abundance and write it down. Then speak it out loud, preferably in front of a mirror. State it with gratitude and acceptance. One example would be: “I am excited to know that my financial needs are being met!” Another would be: “I know that I deserve to have enough money!” Start a gratitude journal where you write a list of things you feel grateful for each day. You’ll find yourself having more positive energy, including about the flow of money.

In “It’s Not Your Money,” Tosha Silver states that the more we release blame, resentment and shame, the more we will be open to receiving. She gives this advice: “Instead of complaining that we’re always broke, we need to think about what we need and let it come.”

Here are some of her suggestions to get into the flow of money: give something away, pay for someone’s meal, do whatever it takes to feel prosperous, insist you do have enough and be grateful for what you have.

One of the daily steps Tosha tells us to take is to say, “It’s easy for me to receive.” What a pleasant way for us to develop a positive attitude about money!

About Goodwill: Goodwill NCW is a nonprofit human services organization whose mission is Elevating People by Eliminating Barriers to Employment across 35 counties in north central Wisconsin. The organization includes 27 retail stores and training centers in communities from Manitowoc to La Crosse, 24 human services programs, unique shopping experiences at its boutiques and Appleton outlet store, plus online shopping at It offers four Donation Express sites and 10 convenient donation bins throughout the Fox Cities. Goodwill NCW is a Platinum Level member of, the world’s largest source of nonprofit organization information. Visit

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