Go Ahead, Eat the Chocolate - Here’s Why
Financially recovery from a trauma such as divorce, widowhood and unexpected career transition pretty much throws all sense of balance in life out of balance. Here's what I mean. For many women, financial recovery can cause us to go into deprivation mode.
As we move through the process of recovery, trying to get our financial footing back on track and especially in the beginning stages, we will typically hold onto every single penny that comes in and deprive ourselves of even the simplest things. After all, we have to keep a roof over our heads, food in the fridge and ‘keep the lights on.’ I totally get that.
Not knowing how things are going to progress, it’s the fear of losing whatever it is we have left that causes us to want to hold onto every penny as tightly as possible. And the dollar amount and income is irrelevant. I’ve seen this with women with incomes in the low $40’s as well as women with 6-figure incomes and beyond.
In our minds, we are protecting ourselves, which is only natural, yet the reality is that we are actually depriving ourselves of even the smallest of pleasures, such as a piece of dark chocolate after dinner.
It starts with the little things and then eventually, we become so fearful of spending any money on ourselves, we get lost and stay stuck in emotional survival mode indefinitely. For some women, this can last for years and I don’t want to see this happen to you.
While it may seem insignificant, that little piece of chocolate represents a very important step in our financial self-care journey. Remember how we talked about how our physical, spiritual and financial selves are all intertwined?
This isn't just about satisfying a sweet tooth. It’s about taking care of a basic emotional need of not denying ourselves. When we’re not depriving ourselves, we can slowly, but surely, start to regain better balance in our lives emotionally and financially and move forward with healing.
So, go ahead, buy the chocolate and enjoy, even if it’s just a small piece after dinner. Like we really needed another reason to eat chocolate. (LOL)
Until next time,
Patty Gale is a Financial Therapist and the Founder and CEO of Fear.less Girl Financial, a personal finance boutique offering heart-centered financial therapy and advice-based planning for women navigating midlife.