By Merilfor Toneatto
The empowerment of professional women is at the forefront of our cultural conversation, ignited by movements that bring gender pay equity and workplace sexual harassment to the forefront.
Women’s economic empowerment is not just the right thing to do, it’s the smart thing to do. Closing the gender pay gap can add $12 trillion to global economic growth by 2025. For Canada, this could lead to $92 billion in GDP.
Yet despite women comprising half of the world’s population, and representing the largest growing market, we remain an untapped power.
What is holding women back from greater wealth and success? What are we missing even after acting on Sheryl Sandberg’s recommendation to “lean in”?
Through my training, working with my clients, and experience in the area of women and money, I realized one of the root causes of this issue: what holds many women back from making the kind of income they desire and deserve has little to do with their intelligence, motivation, or spirit — but much to do with their relationship to money. This was a key missing piece of the puzzle.
I have witnessed that regardless of age, educational background, and income level, many women privately struggle with valuing themselves and their worth, which impacts their ability to succeed in their career or grow their business.
Simply put, money is emotional currency for women. Money is tied to our sense of self-worth and self-confidence, and feelings of safety and security. These emotions can either move you forward or keep you stuck. Perhaps you have experienced money related challenges such as not charging and getting paid what you’re worth, feeling anxious about money conversations, or experiencing feelings of self-doubt or guilt when rising to the top of your career.
I created the 8 Holistic Principles, featured in my book Money, Manifestation & Miracles, to help women break free of dis-empowering beliefs, emotional blocks and patterns, which can then help you increase your income, impact, wealth and success.
By discovering your purpose, values and natural strengths, you can get into alignment with the best of who you are and everything that you do. This enables you to fully honor your self-worth.
Everything starts with your mindset, because mindset influences your beliefs and actions. Practice identifying a limiting belief about money and shift that belief by replacing it with a more optimistic belief. Repeat as needed to make the shift.
We all have emotional triggers regarding money. The four common emotions are fear, guilt, shame and anger. It’s critical to identify your top money emotion and begin to release it.
Often, we are unaware of the power of our words in creating our reality. Practice communicating about money in a more positive way by re-framing your language. Re-frame “I will never” to “I will” or “I can.”
Focus on aligning your purpose and passion with your greater “why” with money — i.e. your deeper reason for wanting to make more of it. This will deepen and anchor your vision, mission and connection to money.
Improve your money habits by developing self-responsibility, accountability and integrity with yourself and your actions, i.e., paying bills on time, using money for your highest good, spending and handling money with care, and earning it in a moral and ethical way.
Surround yourself in an optimal environment, including being with success-minded people and communities to support your growth. Other levels impacting you include your psychological, emotional and spiritual environments.
Pay attention to your money and financial activities and take steps to achieve your monetary goals by eliminating unnecessary distractions so that your goal becomes a priority.
By transforming your relationship with money, you can claim your wealth, pay forward your own successes and live the life of your dreams, one that is rich and fulfilling in every way — financially, spiritually, and emotionally.
Merilfor Toneatto is an award-winning leadership and coaching executive. She is CEO of Power With Soul and author of Money, Manifestation & Miracles: A Guide to Transforming Women’s Relationships with Money. After 15 years as a senior leader in the Ontario Public Service, she now empowers women to claim their wealth + rise as a force for good. Visit www.meriflor.co