Have you ever set an income goal for your business, to then immediately take it back because you feel greedy, selfish, or unworthy/undeserving of reaching it? If so, you’re not alone.
As a money mindset mentor and Success Coach, I spend the bulk of my time working with driven female entrepreneurs at all income levels—from those whose bank accounts are still in the red, to multi-seven-figure business owners.
My clients come from different cultural and financial backgrounds, they have a very diverse set of skills and gifts to share with the world, and they structure their companies in completely unique ways.
On a surface level, they could not be more different. And yet, most have two things in common:
- They want more money, and
- They harbor guilt and shame around wanting more money (or at least, they did when we started working together)
That’s right—these super-successful business owners simultaneously desire to increase their income (and impact), and judge themselves for it. And that stems from the conditioning we have (especially as women) to settle for what we have, and never ask for more than our share.
Now, don’t get me wrong, when you’re playing at the six or seven-figure level in business, you’re no beginner to money mindset work. Chances are, you’ve looked into the beliefs of the people who brought you up to see where your money story stems from, and even committed your money mantras to memory.
But this particular block is so deeply rooted and so persistent that it permeates our very essence as human beings.
Even as a money mindset expert, there are times when I experience judgment around wanting more money. As recently as a few weeks ago, I judged Kelly Clarkson’s ex-husband for demanding $436,000 per month in settlement payments following their divorce. But as I noticed myself thinking, “what use could he possibly have for that much money?”, I caught myself red-handed. There was a limiting belief at play here—and I immediately jumped into an exercise that would help me shift it. (You can read all about it here.)
All of this led me to thinking:
Why is it that we judge ourselves for being motivated by money?
Why do we shame ourselves and others for wanting more?
Why do we deflect and deny our desire for wealth and abundance?
Here’s what I know to be true: despite the narratives we’ve all been told about money (that it doesn’t buy happiness, or that the wealthy people who have it are soulless), wealth-building is one of the most spiritual and soulful things that we can do. In fact, it’s embedded in our nature.
Curious to see what I mean by that? Let me introduce you to a theory called the Impression of Increase.
What is the Impression of Increase?
Over millions of years, all animals have evolved to avoid starvation and predation, and ensure that their legacy lives on. Depending on the species, evolving to survive might mean becoming bigger, faster, stronger, more skilled at camouflage—or in our case, developing communities, storytelling, and opposable thumbs. (And, of course, a little system of value exchange we call money.) This evolution is a manifestation of a natural desire for more. In his 1910 bestseller, The Science of Getting Rich, Wallace Wattles calls this the Impression of Increase.
Wattles states that: “Increase is what all men and all women are seeking. It is the urge of the formless intelligence within them to find fuller expression… The desire for increase is inherent in all nature. It is the fundamental impulse of the universe. All human activities are based on the desire for increase. People are seeking more food, more clothes, better shelter, more luxury, more beauty, more knowledge, more pleasure—more life.”
According to this theory, as humans, we are pre-programmed at birth for continuous growth and advancement. We start out by learning how to communicate our most basic needs for sustenance and security, until eventually, we become responsible for fulfilling those needs on our own. And once our basic needs are met, we start looking for further ways to improve ourselves and our circumstances, so that we too can leave a lasting impact on the world while living our lives to the fullest.
The bottom line is, we naturally, spiritually, and soulfully seek more—and this manifests in every area of life, every scientific and artistic discipline, and every industry under the sun. Most importantly for us, it translates to our deep-rooted longing for wealth creation.
Here’s what that means for your money goals.
As humans, we are always being pulled toward perfection—not because we can achieve it by external means, but because the perfection that already exists within us is yearning to be expressed. This is where the “money doesn’t buy happiness” and “all rich people are evil” narratives that we’re so used to hearing come into the picture—and where a lot of people get confused and start to develop shame and guilt around wealth creation.
The truth is, money is energy. Having it doesn’t make you bad, and it also doesn’t make you good. It doesn’t have a moral value—it’s simply a tool that (good, bad, and middle-ground) people use to make energetic exchanges. It affords you the ability to have more options, and take more actions, so that we can experience the full potential of what life has to offer. At the end of the day, whenever you set a financial goal, it’s never really the figures you’re craving, but the freedom, security, and stability they represent.
And while it might not bring you happiness, it can free you from some of your fears and insecurities, so that you can focus the limited time you have left on this earth on pursuing your purpose—and use your unique set of gifts, skills, and talents to make a difference in more people’s lives, while also living yours to the fullest.
In fact, any time you start feeling guilt and shame around a particular money goal, for example scaling your personal income to seven-figures, I encourage you to check in with yourself and ask:
- Will raising your rates adversely affect people? Sure, some people might not be able to afford working with you at your highest-ticket price point, but what’s stopping you from creating lower-ticket offers at more accessible price points, and further increase your impact?
- Will making a seven or eight-figure income adversely affect the people around you? I’m not talking about the judgment you worry you’ll get from distant relatives and old high school friends, but the people closest to you who believe in you and wish for you to succeed. Won’t increasing your income indirectly increase their quality of life?
- Will an increase in income transform you into a more greedy, less generous person? It might—but only if you allow it to. Think about the contributions you could be making to the causes you care about most if your needs and wants were secure and guaranteed, and you had money to spare.
I think that once you answer these questions for yourself, you’ll agree with me when I say that acquiring abundance is not going to make you a bad person. In fact, it will support you in living your life to its full potential, which is our inherent purpose as human beings.
As Wallace Wattles teaches us in The Science of Getting Rich:
“It is perfectly right that you should give your best attention to the Science of Getting Rich, for it is the noblest and most necessary of all studies. If you neglect this study, you are derelict in your duty to yourself, to God and humanity; for you can render to God and humanity no greater service than to make the most of yourself.”
So there you have it, Lovely. It’s spiritual and soulful to want more for yourself—it’s in the very essence of our existence. Whatever money stories you’ve been telling yourself for years, I hope the theory of Impression of Increase can help you to rewrite them, so that you can liberate yourself from limiting beliefs and make the most of this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
Go ahead and set those money goals without fear or doubt. Own them, claim them, and take action to reach them. Abundance is your birthright, Lovely. Lean into how powerful that feels.
PS. If you’d like to explore more on this topic, I recommend reading this blog post about the biggest takeaways I had after discovering the theory of the Impression of Increase, or listening to episode 216 of the I Heart My Life Show, where I dive into this concept on a much deeper level to support you in elevating not only your financial abundance, but increasing your life experience on every level.