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5 Types of Financial Problems that are Based in Emotional Baggage

During this odd time of quarantine and Covid you may have had to review your finances. Even with the virus raging along you have to eat and pay the rent or mortgage, car expenses and so on.

One of the biggest contributors to depression, anxiety and anger or resentment are money problems. Feeling overwhelmed by bills and the needs of a family can be enough to make you want to pull the covers over your head and stay in bed. Financial problems can keep you up at night.

I talk a lot about emotional baggage and how it creeps into all of your life arenas. Your finances are no exception. How you think about money is huge in terms of your security and creature comforts. How you view money and how you treat your money are often caught up in emotional turmoil. If you engage in cognitive distortions in other areas of your life it is likely that you do so with money also, making it difficult if not impossible to get into a moneymaking mindset.

Money is simply a tangible item required for existence. We all need it, it is not a dirty item nor is it shameful to want it. You need it to survive. Yet there are many beliefs out there that make it one of the most controversial topics in society.

Relationships fall apart all the time over finances and the arguments over spending. Avoiding honest money discussions can be devastating to your family.

Explore your financial beliefs and where they came from.  Are you afraid of money? Ashamed to say you like it a lot? Do you feel “cheap” if you tell your children “no” when you can’t afford something they want? All of these things contribute to your financial world.

Here are 5 indications that your money world is baggage based:

1. Overspending or shopping too much (retail therapy). This type of spending often stems from a need to self soothe or a need for some excitement. You may feel like you deserve “a treat”.

2. Spending to impress the neighbors or coworkers is easily seen through and has the opposite effect on others.  This kind of spending usually stems from self esteem issues.

3. Supporting or enabling family members who are not pulling their weight or guilting you into feeling you should help them.

4. Believing that you are “not good with money”. This is simply a belief or part of a cognitive distortion you hold.  Anyone can learn to handle their money. This belief can stem from a fear of finances or lack of confidence in yourself to make sound financial decisions. It can also stem from the desire to ignore a seemingly complex task and hope that it turns out all right!

5. Treating money like a taboo topic that you should not talk about or share with others. This belief can prevent you from asking for help with your finances or sharing important details with your spouse or partner.

In order to manage your money you have to know all the details of your money and finances and then you have to have a plan. This plan is an integral part of the Life Blueprint that I talk about.  If your dreams involve travel, retiring early, saving for your child’s education or owning a home then your money world is critical to your ability to achieve.

Learning how to fearlessly manage your money is doable. Drawing boundaries with others who may be wasting your money is necessary but can be sticky. Finding a way to soothe yourself that doesn’t involve thousands on a credit card is much healthier in the long run. Feelings of security can outweigh feelings of trying to keep up with our neighbors.

If you think that dysfunctional patterns are interfering with your life, self esteem and/or finances please go to my website through the link below in my bio, take the Dysfunctional Patterns Quiz and download the Dysfunctional Thinking Patterns (Cognitive Distortions) free resource and checklist.

Feel Good For Life!







5 Types of Financial Problems that are Based in Emotional Baggage

Audrey Sherman, Ph.D.

Dr. Audrey Sherman is a licensed psychologist, coach and the author of the book Dysfunction Interrupted-How to Quickly Overcome Depression, Anxiety and Anger Starting Now. Her expertise is in defining, describing and transforming dysfunctional behavior and thought patterns learned in childhood or beyond that keep you anxious, depressed, angry, stuck in unhappy and unproductive relationships, jobs and more. Dr. Sherman developed the Dysfunctional Patterns Quiz and other free resources to help you determine the effects of these on your life. She works with individuals, conducts live and online workshops and trains others in her programs. To learn more about Dr. Sherman, you can visit her website.

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APA Reference
Sherman, A. (2020). 5 Types of Financial Problems that are Based in Emotional Baggage. Psych Central. Retrieved on September 22, 2020, from


Last updated: 11 Aug 2020
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