MGU 208 | Financial Gaslighting

 

You may not have heard of the term financial gaslighting before, but chances are you have already felt its effects in one way or anotherDo you feel like it’s harder to live nowadays? That no matter how hard you try, you still find yourself struggling to provide more for your family? You are not alone. Keeping afloat in this economy as a single person is hard enough in itself. Starting a family is a whole another conversation. In fact, it has almost become a luxury for many people. As if that’s not bad enough, it’s made even worse by the way we are constantly made to feel like it’s no one’s fault but our own instead of being a structural problem that needs systemic solutions. Join Jason Wrobel and Whitney Lauritsen in another thought-provoking episode as they share their thoughts on financial gaslighting and how it is affecting the lives of ordinary households. 

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How Financial Gaslighting Affects The Lives Of Ordinary Households  

Here on the show, we sometimes have days where we need to pack the episodes into our schedules and cram it in like shoehorning shoes at the shoe store and making it fit. We’re doing thatWe have a day where Whitney and I have lots of appointments and lots of things. There are therapy and eye doctor. None of this matter. We’re giving you context for our day because it feellike we’re sitting down having coffee with you, dear reader. Hopefully, we can all do that soon. As we do, if you are joining us for the first time, welcome. If you’re a longtime reader, Whitney and I are very much voracious researchers. In that, we come across a lot of articles and we will text each other and say, “This would be great to talk about on the show.” In our research, we come across phrases that are used in the lexicon of society that we are sometimes unfamiliar with.  

We’re going to talk about a phrase that I had not heard until I read this article on Medium.comIf you’ve never been on Medium, there are these subchannels where authors will create thematic channels based on certain subjects they want to write about. This one is from AnInjusticeMag.com. The article on AnInjusticeMag.com, which is found through Medium, got to me because it used a term called financial gaslightingGaslighting, as far as I understand, is trying to devalue someone’s perception of reality by creating an alternate set of facts or an alternate reality that takes away any value their perspective has like, “You’re not crazy, sweetheart. I’m not cheating on you. You’re insane. Why would you think that? Those are mild versions. Gaslighting is invalidating someone’s perspective and reality. 

You can give the same amount of money to different people and their experience of it is going to be very different. Click To Tweet

It’s convincing somebody that the reality isn’t the reality. 

That is also invalidating. In either case, it’s saying like, “Whatever your perspective or reality, mine is more important and mine is the truth.” We see this a lot in political arenas. We see it happened a lot with conspiratorial theories. We did a whole episode on conspiracy theoriesWe’ve talked about gaslighting in different contexts but I’ve never heard of financial gaslighting. This is what got me, We Can’t Afford to Live Anymore, and the Rich are Gaslighting UsThis was written by an author named Jessica Wildfire. She’s got a lot of interesting sociopolitical articles. I don’t want to read the entire article because that would take up the whole episode. It’s more like I want to extract chunks and bounce this between Whitney and myself to dig in. 

This idea of financial gaslighting for a little bit of context is looking at how people that we regard as having it all together. In this example, the author talks about one of her friends she was having coffee with a few years ago. This person, who apparently is a tenured professor at Oxford, has major books, has done welland speaks at conferences told her, “I love my kids, but from a financial standpoint, I regret having them.” She gets into the commonality of how there’s an increasing amount of shame for successful adults who are doing well financially to say that they can’t afford the lives that they’re living. Getting into the socioeconomic factors of this quick before I bounce it to you, Whitney, and we’ve talked about how, in a lot of cases, the cost of goods and the cost of living has exceeded income over the past several years in the United States and many places around the world. 

She reflects that. She says, “Here’s something that might surprise you. The average cost of living in the United States far exceeds the average income of most professionals. We’re talking about nurses, social workers, firefighters, police officers, teachers, pediatricians, even engineers. She looks at the basic cost of living and how the cost of living has gone up between goods and services, rent, mortgages, that households with two incomes used to be able to spend cash on things like vacations and private school tuition, and those things, aren’t happening. Several years ago, The New York Times did an article on the average incomes and expenses of American parents with two children. Time and time again, they found that the people they surveyed for this New York Times article, even with two incomes, professional adults with these incomes barely had enough cash to survive monthtomonth because as professionals, they were paying $500 to $2,000 a month for childcare and different expenses. 

Looking back from 1995 through 2017, there’s a graph that will link to via The New York Times showing how education costs have gone up 180%, housing costs have gone up 150%, healthcare 130%, while the median income has only gone up to about 118%. We’re seeing that all of these costs of living are far outstripping the rise in income since 1995 through 2017. It‘s interesting because she’s saying that starting a family now is a luxury. There’s an estimate income calculator that the author wanted to see how much it was going to cost to raise her daughter, and the average cost to raise a child from birth through age eighteen was $300,000. I don’t want to necessarily get into all of this. Before we talk about financial gaslighting, it’s setting up this parameter that the average adult is barely surviving, the professional adult like a teacher, an engineer, doctor, etc. 

MGU 208 | Financial Gaslighting

Financial Gaslighting: There is an increasing amount of shame for successful adults who are doing well financially to say that they can’t really afford the lives that they’re living.

 

This is interesting because it flies in the face of what we assume and what we see on social media of a lot of people purporting a life that is like, I have it all together. We’re doing great.” Statistically and according to this research, it’s showing that people are scraping by. I’m curious how that hits you if that’s surprising or if that’s something you’re like, “That’s what I expected.” When you hear about most professional adults, twoincome adult households barely getting by, how does that hit you? What’s your reaction to that? 

It’s interesting mainly because most of us only know what’s going on in our own lives because finances are kept pretty lowkey. Sometimes people will talk about not having a lot of money, but that’s so relative. What one person perceives as not a lot of money and barely getting by and another person could see those exact numbers and think like, “That’s a lot of money.” It’s fascinating from a psychological standpoint how we view what it means to have money or not like what it means to be rich. I’m more interested in that side of it. I’m not surprised. I enjoy seeing the statistics but it is super relative because there are many factors such as how much money you’re making, how much money you’re saving. Do you have debtand do you have higher living expenses? So much itaken into consideration. 

Another thing that I’ve heard is there’s a big difference for someone in their twenties. Their parents might be helping them out financially. That might be the case for people of all different ages. Somebody could have an inheritance and financial assistance of some sort. There are many factors. Even looking at somebody in the way that they’re living, we feel tempted to make an assumption because we’re putting ourselves in their shoes based on our personal perceptions of money. That’s where it starts to get dangerous and important for people to speak up and find ways to communicate where they’re at financially versus making assumptions or feeling like they have to live the way someone else is living. As we’ve talked about many times on the show, just because you have a certain amount of money doesn’t mean that you’re happy. 

It might mean that you’re more comfortable. That’s the general thing that many of us can understand as a concept. When you have more money, it allows you to pay for resources that could lead you to feeling perhaps less anxious, for example, but just because you have a lot of money, it doesn’t mean that you don’t experience anxiety. There’s only so much therapy, medications, herbal remedies, or treatments can do to help and anxiety can go deep. That’s part of this conversation too. You have to examine many different factors to understand how money is affecting somebody. Even this idea of barely scraping by could be different between two people because maybe that means that you’re not able to do some things that you’d like to do, but for someone else, that means that they don’t have enough money to pay for their bills, but then you wonder, “Could you move? Could you switch things around?” 

The circumstances play such a big role when it comes to money. That’s something that I’ve been fascinated about for a long time and reflect a lot on. I’m conscious about how I speak about money because I know that a lot of the things that are happening in my life have happened based on my choices. Some of those things have been based on circumstances that are not fully in my control like, “How I was raised, how I was taught about money, where I went to school, the privilege of going to the school that I wanted to go to, and the passion and interest I had about money. There are many factors about all of this that need to be taken into consideration. Ultimately, I don’t think we’re that equal as human beings because there are too many variables that could happen in terms of money. You could give the exact same amount of money to a few different people and their experience of it is going to be different based on all these different variables. 

It’s interesting to dig even deeper into this article, Whitney, because, to your point, the research and the studies they reference are not getting into the minutia and the nittygritty of the demographics. You bring up a valid point. Struggle and hardship for someone who is at the poverty line or below will perhaps substantively feel and look different than someone who is a billionaire who is worth $5 billion and loses $3 billion of it due to a financial market crash who is still a billionaire. This is all extremely relative, to your point, based on a variety of circumstances. The thing in this article, by and large, is not setting up the premise here of the cost of housing, living, transportation, goods, and food has been outpacing and exponentially increasing greater than the median wages. 

It gets to the point of this article about the financial gaslighting. That’s the hub of what I want to discussI want to read a little bit from Jessica’s article because she says, “The wealthy engage in financial gaslighting. This is done in response to people who are not wealthy. I don’t know if you want to call those middle-class, lower-class, or people at the poverty line, but the section of this article talks about what wealthy people say to people that are struggling. That’s what I want to say in the context of this gaslighting. Gaslighting is when you construct a fake reality to excuse yourself from your own potentially sinister actions and behaviors. Abusers do it all the time. She purports that, “Hoarding wealth is a kind of abuse that the wealthy inflict on the entire world to excuse it and their behaviors. 

In many ways, the wealthy are squeezing everyone else out of opportunities to move upward economically. Click To Tweet

They construct a series of lies that allow them to blame everyone for their own financial problems. It’s pretty easy to distract someone from systemic inequality and make them feel guilty about their financial situation. That’s not their own fault. You have to talk about flat-screen TVs and smartphones even if those make up a tiny fraction of someone’s monthly budget. You call them lazy and tell them they spend way too much time watching their favorite shows on Netflix. The wealthy browbeat them for not investing in stocks or not pouring money into volatile assets. The wealthy shame them for working meaningful jobs that contribute something to civilization instead of becoming rich so they can somewhat opt out of the economy altogether. You accuse them of resenting wealth and then tell them they have a poor attitude toward money, or maybe they’re a bad manifester. 

You pump them full of fairytales. Tell them about how someone made a fortune from nothing, then finally you tell them that money doesn’t matter and that no amount of it will ever make them happy until they learn to love themselves. This works wonders because it confuses the hell out of peoplesufficiently gaslighting someone over their finances, and then they don’t know what to think anymore. That is the point. There are millions of desperate people out there. If they have a job, it doesn’t pay enough most times. Here’s the advice that they’re getting from wealthy people. Invest in stocks, start a side hustle or two, go viral on social media, start your own company and become an entrepreneur, or spend less money. The author says, “No offense but all of this sounds like throwing a drowning person a paddle made out of lead. It might look helpful in a caption but it’s not. It does nothing but shift responsibilities from government and economic structures to overwhelmed, overburdened individuals.  

Last point I’ll make“It’s great to make extra income off a side hustle or turn your talents into a job that doesn’t exist yet. It’s great to be exceptional but being exceptional by definition means that not everyone can be. You don’t solve poverty and wage gaps by expecting everyone to be a genius. The economy needs baristas, cashiers, servers and farmers. Society needs police officers and schoolteachers. It needs nurses and social workers. When someone gaslights them about their financial situation because they can’t pay their bills, they’re pretending that we can live in a world without them. The truth is we need these kinds of people far more than we need lifestyle vloggers or social media influencers. The solution to widespread financial desperation isn’t to turn everyone into millionaires and YouTube and Instagram models, it’s to pay them more.  

That’s the end of the article. This is interesting, Whit. Before I bounced the tennis ball back to you, I’ve heard this language from specific people we know. The reason that I wanted to bring this article up is not to have a discourse about the mechanics of the mindset around money but I’ve heard some of these phrases from people you and I know who are wealthy. They’re like“You have a bad attitude around money. It’s limiting you. You have a toxic attitude. You need to meditate on it. You should work with this financial person and get a healthier attitude around money. You’re not a good manifester. I’ve heard these phrases from people.  

Every time they phrase it, I walk away from these conversations feeling a strange mixture of emotions. On one hand, I’m like, “Maybe I’m a bad manifester, I do have a bad attitude around money, or it’s my fault.” On the other hand, sometimes, I want to punch them in the face because I’m like, “It’s easy for you to say when you’ve lived the lifestyle you’ve lived, you had the privilege you’ve had, and you’ve had the advantages you’ve had to look at everyone else and go, ‘You have a bad attitude around it. You should change your mindset.” There are a few people in particular in my life that I realized are coming from a perspective that doesn’t take in all of the variables you mentioned, Whitney. 

It doesn’t take in how we grew up, our family’s attitude around money, whether or not we grew up in poverty and had to struggle. It doesn’t take into account certain advantages of your color, your race, your ethnicity, and your religion. Again, there are many factorsI’m bringing this up because I’ve heard these phrases from people. I don’t know why people say shit like that. Is it because, on some level, they want to help you, they want to shame you, or both? I’m curious if you’ve been on the receiving end of some of these gaslighting phrases and what your emotional response is to this.  

MGU 208 | Financial Gaslighting

Financial Gaslighting: Gaslighting leads us to believe that the poor create their own poverty when in fact, poverty is created for most people and they are forced deeper into poverty by the societal frameworks that we have.

 

I haveI’ve gone all different perspectives on finances over the years. One article I want to reference that I was looking up when researching this term financial gaslighting is on a website, Financial Fairness For SinglesIt’s indepth. It was written in 2018. One part that I thought was interesting was a quote from Shea Emma Fett who said, I believe that gaslighting is happening culturally and interpersonally on an unprecedented scale. This gaslighting is the result of a societal framework where we pretend everyone has equal while trying simultaneously to preserve inequality.” The article goes on to say that a huge reason that this is happening is because of the lack of critical and balanced thinking on how financial issues affect segments of society. 

There’s a lot of gaslighting when it comes to the middle class, married people, and families with children. This website is centered around single people being perceived as equal. That’s interesting too that this article goes through gaslighting of the disadvantaged. There are a lot of interesting points here. One of them going back to something you said, Jason, is this idea that the poor create their own poverty, when in fact, poverty is created for most people and they are forced deeper into poverty by decisions and policies of the wealthy, rightleaning politicians and society in general. To your point, not all of this is within our control. Many of us are raised to believe it. Many of us want to believe that we have control, but there are a lot of policies and societal frameworks that we have.  

You brought up social media. Being so deep in this world of influencer marketing and social media marketing is not so simple. There are a lot of people that are attracted, as we’ve spoken about a lot of times, they want to find a simple solution and a simple definition of something. They want to believe something. People who get some reward for perpetuating that will continue to perpetuate these ideas like, “If you want to be successful, all you have to do is X, Y, Z.” I see this all the time. It’s no secret to anyone who reads regularly that I spend time on TikTok. TikTok is always interesting to me because it’s a fascinating view on society. You’ll see different sides of things like this conversation. 

It’s unrelated but related to my point here is weight loss, for example. You see people that are promoting body positivity and saying, “You don’t have to weigh a certain amount in order to be beautiful, respected, and loved. Yet society, now at least, does reward people for being thin. There’s thin privilege. Some people are fighting against that and advocating for body positivity and acceptance of people of all sizes and all different types of appearances, but then there are people perpetuating it. Every time I go in TikTok, I’ll see both sides. I’ll see the women that are like, “You don’t need to wear makeup. You don’t have to look a certain way. I’ll also see people that are perpetuating the weight loss secrets, the makeup techniques, and the skincare routines. 

It’s all part of that capitalistic viewpoint of you changing yourself so that you can be appreciated. Speaking of finances on that note, Jason, I sent you that TikTok of this woman who tallied up how much money she spends a year to maintain her appearance. The total was about $30,000. If you read the comments, people were asking her about what she does for a living. She says nothing. She’s a stay-at-home wife and her husband is paying for all that. Different story, but husband’s paying for $30,000 worth of beautyrelated expenses so that she can maintain her appearance for him. Ultimately, she says, I don’t even feel that satisfied with how I look.” It’s like“What world do we live in? That’s capitalism right there. 

If you can’t live on $1 billion, you have a serious problem. Click To Tweet

Constantly trying to convince us that we don’t look good enough so we spend all of this money. Where do we even get this money? That money could go to many other places. Many people do not have $30,000 to spend on themselves, and yet they’re being fed these messages from social media, from other people that they need to keep up all the time. It’s sickening. The gaslighting you can see in elements of this where it’s incredibly confusing. We don’t talk openly enough about money. Many of us have no concept of what other people are spending and how much they’re making. The other point is that in terms of financial equality, that’s challenging, especially in the industry that we are in as content creators in the social media field. None of us even know how much to charge for anything. It’s all made up. 

It is so confusing because there’s no union and no standard rates. It’s all made up every single time. I don’t even know if I’m getting paid fairly or not. I don’t know if I’m getting more or less or about how much I should make because there is no should. You wonder how many other jobs are like that. Where do they even determine how much somebody should be making? Not to mention all the factors of our people being discriminated financially against their age, gender, race and education, all these other factors that go into itThere’s not a lot of equality that I see when it comes to money because of all of these different positions that each of us are in. It feels like one big mess. 

To your point and to the articles point about the systems that have been structured and the laws that have been enacted to give a disproportionate financial advantage to people that have different assets, if someone is a homeowner, they get a different set of deductions on their annual taxes. They can take out a home equity loan to fund other things in their life like buy a car or improve the home. If you are married and you’re a homeowner, you get even more deductions because you get the deductions on the mortgage payments, you get the home equity that you can access, and then you also get different deductions by being in a married union. Different people get different advantages because the laws and the economic inequality are structured that way. What does this mean? This puts pressure on people because if you’re like, “If I want to take advantage of all of the economic loopholes in society, there’s all this pressure to buy a house now. I better buy it in a nice neighborhood, so I have even more equity in the house and it appreciates more. I feel all this pressure to get married because we’ll get these huge tax deductions, it will be better for us. I’ll be able to put them on the insurance. 

If you think about it, society, in many waysis pushing us into certain structures because we feel more protected. It’s true, you can grow your wealth differently. If you’re a homeowner, you’re in a married situation, yohave stocks, and all these things that the rich gaslight people that don’t have these things, but then the barriers to entry are there. As an example, in the LA market, real estate is still one of the ways that wealthy people build their wealth. You buy a property, whether it’s commercial or it’s residential, and you rent it out. You make passive income that way. The thing that’s happening here in LA and in different cities that I keep reading about is that the middle class is being eradicated. It’s being destroyed in the sense that friends that are going and looking at houses who have the ability with a down payment and credit to buy a house are getting outbid by people who are coming and paying millions of dollars for house in cash.  

If you are a person who even has the slightest amount of ability based on your credit history, having a down payment, and having income. In many cities, you can’t even buy a house because ultra-wealthy people and investors are coming in and paying cash. The point is the wealthy, in many ways, are squeezing everyone else out of the asset class because unless you have the liquidity and the cash to do it, in many situations, you can’t even do it. You can’t even become an investor. I’m not saying this to be in victim consciousness. This is what’s fucking happening in the world now. It’s becoming difficult to take advantage of these laws and these systems because they’re skewed to keep giving the wealthy more and more. What happens when you transfer all this wealth and all of these assets like art work, stocks, IRAs, property, and houses? It’s almost like this mutant Pac-Man that keeps gobbling and gobbling. You get this giant creature that can’t be stopped. 

MGU 208 | Financial Gaslighting

Financial Gaslighting: Be kind and compassionate to other people. Recognize that you might not fully understand their circumstances and how they got there.

 

The question is“What do we do about this? It’s not ultra-wealthy people are going to be like, “We’ll stop gobbling up assets and making all this money. Here you go, people. Have some money.” It was Robert Reich who posted about how Jeff Bezos could give every single American a $4,000 check and still have as much money as he had before the pandemic started. Who’s going to do that? There is no billionaire that’s going to do that. They don’t want to get rid of it. What do we do? We’ve talked briefly in the past about universal basic income of giving people under a certain amount of income each year, a monthly stipend of this is what you’re going to live on. 

Some of the principles of universal basic income are interesting. Some people might say, “That’s socialism. That’s going to create a bad structure of society. We need to keep things capitalist.” For the people who say things, “We should keep things the way they are,” are the ones who are benefiting from it. That’s why they don’t want things to change. From a solution perspective, there’s UBI, Universal Basic Income. Bernie Sanders introduced an interesting piece of legislation that I don’t know is going to go anywhere that said, “Once you reach a certain income bracket which is up to $1 billion. Anything beyond that, we’re going to take that money and donate it back into social programs, the underprivileged, and people in poverty. Once you get to $1 billion, you’re cut off. You can’t make any more money beyond that.  

Capitalists were going apeshit over there, “There’s no fucking way. We can’t limit people.” If you get to $1 billion, you’re good. Why do you need $100 billionIf you can’t live on $1 billion, you have a serious fucking problem. Some people might view my comment as like, “You’re throwing the wealthy under the bus and you’re hating.” No, greed is the issue. I don’t know that wealth per se is the issue here. More specifically, it’s inequality and greed. In my mind, that’s the more specific issue with all this. The thing that I wonder is what’s it going to take to tip the scales back into a more equal distribution of resources in our world. That’s why I brought up UBI and the taxation of the ultra-wealthy because if this keeps going the way that it’s going, it’s going to result in not a great society because there’s going to be a small group of people with a ton of money, assets, land, and property and then everyone else is like crabs in a barrel to survive. 

I don’t think that that’s a healthy way to construct society because it creates desperationsickness, and mental health issues. I don’t know that I have an answer. To the reader, we often don’t have answers. Our episodes are generally an exploration of these topics. My concern is if this keeps going, it’s going to have massive, unhealthy implications for the rest of humans in society who are not in the wealthy class. It’s going to do serious damage to people. That’s my major concern with itI don’t know what else to say at this point. Any final thoughts or solutions you might have off the top of your dome? 

Wealth is never the issue. It’s inequality. Click To Tweet

Certainly, not solutions. I’m not a financial expert, so I’m trying to fend for myself. That in itself is a lot of work. Having more compassion for other people and trying to understand what other people are going through is important. As we talk about often on this show, recognizing that we can’t make assumptions and judgments on others for how they spend their money, how they make their money. Even what I was saying about that woman, the video I saw in TikTok. If she feels comfortable spending $30,000 on beauty regimens and her husband wants to pay for that, it’s not that I’m calling them out or anything. It’s more the societal implications that hasI don’t have an issue with the individual doing whatever they want with their money but the fact that there’s so much pressure on us to spend money, to make money, I’ve sent you also videos and things that I’ve seen about how men are raised to believe that their worth is all based in their money. 

That’s where so much of the issue liesI’m trying to untether myself from that and set more clear boundaries. Just because somebody believes that I should live a certain way and do a thing, that’s their perception, that doesn’t mean that how I’m living and how I’m doing things in the money I’m making and how I’m spending, it doesn’t have anything to do with those people. Those are their opinions. Ultimately right now, I’ve talked about in the show how I’m working my way out of debt. I think about what life will be like. Is it going to be that different? I probably know where I’m at until about halfway through 2021 and then there’s a big question mark. I go through many ups and downs with money. I would love to stick to reach my goal of paying off my debt by the end of 2021, which I’ve talked about. I think about like, “It would be so nice to have some more financial flexibility to donate to more charities. How can I contribute beyond myself? Once we take care of ourselves and we put that proverbial oxygen mask on ourselves, can we start to help others? 

Sometimes we can do both simultaneously, but it can be tricky. A lot of us have gone through all sorts of challenging situations during the pandemic, our government is going through a big transition now that we need to have patience around, and we also need to stand up for what we want and let our voices be heard. I also don’t think that we should judge people that have a lot of money. Personally, I don’t have a problem with Bill Gates, Elon Musk and whoever else. I’m not going to make this whole judgment about them being better than me. I don’t understand their finances. Who am I to say they should be donating money to other people or cutting us a check? I don’t know how that works. They somehow got to that place. They’re making the best decisions that they can. 

I personally see the best in other human beings and want to trust that they’re not some evil force out there that is selfish and keeping all the money to themselves. I don’t think that serves us to get into that mindset. I want to stay in my own lane, focus on what I need to do to get by, help other people, and try to understand and raise my awareness. It’s a lot to learn about money. Money is truly complicated. It’s based oour motions. Many of us are fighting against traumas, lack of education, and overwhelm. I deep down believe most people are doing the best that they can with their money. Even the people that are doing shady things. One thing that came up to my head was, I went into my PO box and was asking how the employees were doing. I’ve developed a relationship with themI don’t know how it came up, but they started talking about how unemployment was fascinating to watch because they were catching some people that had PO boxes there that were getting multiple pieces of mail under different names. 

They were suspecting that there are people cheating the unemployment system. I don’t know if that’s true. They don’t know if it’s true but reflecting on it is like, I’m sure some people are scamming the system, but are they doing that out of emotional desperation? Probably. Who am I to judge? It’s frustrating to see people take advantage of systems because you’re concerned that those that take advantage of these things are going to screw it up for the rest of us who aren’t taking advantage of it. I also have compassion for people that steal things and commit all these forms of theft. There’s so much financial desperation out there. Some people don’t know how else to get by. A lot of us are unaware of how other people are suffering. It’s unfortunate that there is gaslighting and that there’s so much judgment from even our friends, that whole mindset of, “You need to shift your perception and get into a higher vibration. 

Maybe that works for some people. There are some people that truly believe in visualization and manifestation. I’ve gone through those periods as well. I don’t believe them, but I haven’t found them to work for me. When someone makes it seem it’s that easy, I’m like, “That’s great. That’s worked for you, but it hasn’t worked for me. I’m not going to depend on it, not going to sit around like I have before thinking I can manifest my way to financial comfort.” I often don’t know how I get into certain positions financially. Sometimes, I’m in a place of abundance and I’m like“This is nice.” There was a period earlier this 2021 where it seemed like money was coming to me from all these sources like unexpected check, new job opportunities, people wanted to hire me. It was flowing to me. It’s awesome, but I don’t know how long that will last.  

I’ve also gone through phases where I didn’t have a lot of money and no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t make it work. It felt frustrating and scary. I’m grateful for those experiences because they’ve taught me that sometimes it isn’t fully in our control. Sometimes it isn’t as easy as it seems. It does feel frustrating to see people make it seem like it’s so easy when we, as going back to what I said that there are many variables. That’s how I want to leave this off. It’s to encourage everybody to be gentle with yourself, to be kind and compassionate to other people, recognizing that you might not fully understand their circumstances and how they got there. 

It’s okay if somebody wants to handle their finances differently than you. If you’re frustrated about a systematic perspective on finances, political issues, and policies then go get involved with the policies. You can petition. You can get involved with your local community. You can educate yourself on what’s going on with the government and see where you can make a change. There are avenues and outlets for you. That’s a much better outlet for your time and energy. Don’t waste your time judging other people. Use that time and put it into making a change. 

That’s wonderful advice and a great note to end on if you believe in something like a $15 minimum wage federally across the entire nation, universal basic income in your community, or redistribution of wealth through different tax structures for the wealthy to put more money back into our local communities. As Whitney said, advocate, vote, find out which politicians and which bills and which things you can get behindI’m passionate about this topic in the sense that I would like to see more opportunity, fairer wages, and a redistribution of wealth in our society. I believe that if we don’t do some of these things, there is a potential for some complicated, destructive things that might happen in our society. That’s my opinion sociologically. To that point, we’re curious, as always, dear reader, what are your perspectives? Not just on finances or how you perceive money, we always love to hear those things, but specifically the subjects of wealth and equality, the gap in between class structures, classism, and a lot of these factors that are perhaps making it difficult for people to do better in life. 

MGU 208 | Financial Gaslighting

Financial Gaslighting: Get involved with the policies, educate yourself on what’s going on with the government, and see where you can make a change there. It’s a much better use of your energy.

 

We’d love to hear your perspectives on it, especially if you are in the finance industry, you’re in the political field, or you study sociology. We always love to hear other people’s perspectives on these complicated and uncomfortable topics in the human pantheon of life. We’d like to dig into these things because Whitney and I are ignorant to a lot of things. When I use the word ignorant, I don’t mean that as a negative thing. Ignorant to me means lacking knowledge or perspective on things. We don’t know what we don’t know. It’s one of the reasons we do this show, to explore these topics.  

If you have perspectives, email us, our direct email is, [email protected]comYou can also give us ideas for upcoming episodes. We have some readers and fans that do that, “Could you talk about this subject?” If there’s anything that’s burning in your loins that you want us to explore and discuss, shoot us an email or a direct message on all the social media platforms. We have a Facebook group. We are on Instagram. We’re on TikTok. We also have a newsletterIf you want to receive our weekly newsletter, go to our website, it’s Wellevatr.comYou can sign up for our weekly newsletter. With that, I’m off to a therapy appointment because Lord knows I need it. Whitney, it’s always a pleasure, my dear. We adore you. We appreciate you, dear reader. Thank you, as always, for getting uncomfortable with us. We’ll see you with a brand new, fresh episode soon!

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