Connect authentically with your finances

Written by on July 27, 2018

Business Report published an article recently addressing the fact that Millennials’ basic living expenses were getting them into debt.

Getting out of debt is mandatory. Figuring out how you got there in the first place, and why, is optional. And this applies to all South Africans, not just the Millennials. It takes insight, patience and perseverance.

The article confirmed that our Millennials are hard hit by student loan debt, as well as the wealth divide. They’re also found to prioritise travel, dining and fitness over saving for retirement.

And, according to the Reserve Bank South Africa’s consumer debt exceeds an alarming R1. 71 trillion; plus, our public debt surpasses 50% of GDP, and the Rand was trading at just under R14 against the dollar at the time of writing this article. To boot, our economic woes play out against a backdrop of entire industries that are geared toward perpetuating an unhealthy relationship with money.

So, South Africans may be forgiven for wallowing in despair under these circumstances. Though, there’s never been a better time for us to cultivate an authentic relationship with our money, starting with getting to know ourselves really well.

Awakening to who we really are makes it easier to identify our blind spots, and to take responsibility for our choices and circumstances. And our finances are no exception. In fact, the state of our finances speaks volumes about who we are and is a key indicator in our quest for significance and purpose.

Like any other significant choice made, the financial choices are also dictated by two critical aspects regarding our human existence; the measurable physical and neurological state of style preference, and the immeasurable non-physical state of intention, attitude and values (including self-value).

Rather than allowing ourselves to spiral into self-reproach because of having made bad choices, we should view this as an opportunity for introspection and effecting a 180° change. This is where brain profiling can play a significant and enlightening role – ensuring that our choices are informed and that they contribute to a more meaningful future.

It often takes just one decision or unforeseen circumstance for us to change lanes into treacherous territory. We’re all susceptible. However, what really matters is to uncover which of the two aspects mentioned above – or in which ratio (if both played a role) – determined the decision taken.

As National Savings Month draws to a close, we should aim to do more than just keep our proverbial noses clean financially. It’s imperative that we gain crucial insight into what drives our financial choices. And it starts with getting to know ourselves really well.

Dr Kobus Du Toit
Registered Brain Profiling Practitioner, Life Skills Teacher

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