Contentment is the most important money principle

In the last couple of years, I've seen many women struggle with their finances. The question is why do so many of us women struggle so much financially especially when study after study shows how good we are with money?

There are many factors but the one constant that I've seen is most women are on a never-ending quest to be happy. They want to earn enough money to be happy.

Many of us appear to be calm on the outside, but inwardly, we are frantic emotional basket-cases. We worry so much about money that money dominates our thoughts as we daydream to have a bit more money in our accounts. Just a couple more...

Driven by that thought, we work long, exhausting hours to make more money.  It’s never ending wild goose chase because each time you reach one financial goal, your perceptions of how much is enough has expanded to fit your increased income. Each financial gain just moves the bar indicating financial happiness one step further away.  I know this because I've lived it. Every time I've reached one goal, the finish line seemed to move too. Crazy right?

What’s weird is that no one questions this path to success, even though there are so many examples of burned out, depressed, unhappy women who have followed it. Even research shows that even those who seem to have the most still lack contentment. They have hands full of money but happiness slips through their eager grasp. 

So what exactly are we looking for? I would say contentment

Sadly, our culture encourages discontentment and all the miseries and heartaches that go along with it. We are living in times of economic uncertainty and in a society that puts value on financial security. And money or the lack of it, often determines whether or not we are content with ourselves.

The truth is, our attitudes toward money and possessions reflect the quality of our relationship with God and reveals where our true affections lie.

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We give money so much power in our lives.

You likely know at least one woman whose self-worth is measured by her income or material possessions. But people who measure their self-worth by the net worth never feel "valuable enough."

And it's not just wealthy people who define themselves by the size of their bank accounts. Many people live beyond their means in an attempt to feel "good enough." But going deeply into debt to create a fa├žade of wealth backfires in the end.

Your identity is upheld by the capacity to realise your life purpose and live it.

So that means that your identity is also not tied to the amount of money you have and your purpose isn’t to get more things to take the sting out of life.

There is a quote from Brennan Manning that reads, “Define yourself as one radically loved by God. This is your true self, every other identity is an illusion.”

Think about it: Your true family and friends don’t care about what kind of job you have or how much you make. All they care about is your happiness. Treat yourself as you would want your friends to treat you, because you should value your happiness before any job, paycheck, or boss. Period.

Growth is key

Knowing that you are rich just because of who you are, isn’t the stopping place, it’s the starting place to creating a life of true riches, meaning, purpose, and value…and that, dear woman, includes money.

I'm not saying you shouldn’t try to get more money. If you can earn more, do so, and whatever you gain, be content with it. But the effort to improve your financial situation should never outpace a feeling of contentment and gratitude for your current situation.

When you are content, you are not restless, irritated, annoyed, anxious, troubled, or striving. You are not whining. 

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Instead you maximize the all that you have been given. Your work hard. You save well. Your pursue advancement. Your invest wisely. You don't sacrifice your family or your faith or your health or the welfare of others to achieve your financial goals. There is a flow that happens when you are in elements. 

You are at peace. Grateful. Satisfied.

But is contentment possible in a marketing-rich, pleasure-seeking culture?


That is why it's so important to make time for things that will connect you to your inner source of strength, to be able to hear what's in your heart. Connecting with what is inside prepares you to deal with the outside world with calmness and peace. 

Take to heart what the writer of Hebrews said: “Keep your life free from the love of money, and be content with what you have, for He has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” (Hebrews 13:5).

The fact is none of us are born intuitively content; rather, we learn to be content. 

To learn how to be content, begin by analysing what triggers your desire. Are you yearning for what everyone else has? Or do you spend time thinking about all the stuff you could buy if only you had more money?

The next next step to take is to align your heart with the truth: believe in your God-given worth, intrinsically. Not because of what you have, but regardless of it.

If contentment is the most important money principle, how is your money serving your purpose on earth?