When I was a young girl I used to love going to Darien Lake and riding the Viper roller coaster.
I would ride it over and over. I just couldn’t get enough of it – the thrills, the squeals, and the sensation of my heart dropping into my belly.
Then, sometime around 12 years old, that all changed for me. I couldn’t ride the Viper anymore. I could no longer stomach any ride that involved sharp drops, fast turns, and flipping me upside down. I was officially done with all rides that sent my head into a tailspin rendering me physically sick.
Roughly 10 years later however, I decided to climb aboard another roller coaster ride.
This roller coaster was different … well, at least I thought so initially.
It has some of the same characteristics as the Viper – the slow climbs, sharp drops, wicked fast twists and turns. It will even flip me upside down as it sends me into another spiral.
But this roller coaster’s thrills and excitement come masked as anxiety and frustration … sometimes even anger and disbelief. All of which still leaves me feeling sick.
Funny thing is – I have no recollection of ever having bought a ticket for THIS ride. Even funnier – there have been times when I could have sworn that I had exited to the left to get off the ride, only to realize that I had actually gotten back on for another go around!
Seriously. It’s time to get off this roller coaster ride.
Or is it?
Well … let me tell you what I’m done with first.
I’m done with cheap thrills disguised as sharp income fluctuations and negotiations of self-worth. How about you?
Excitement packaged as financial family drama, meaningless work, and senseless debt cycles are no longer appealing.
You know what I mean, right? This roller coaster is really about having a love-haterelationship with money. Where one moment you’re feeling great about your work and your relationships, you feel great about yourself, what you contribute, and the value you receive. Then minutes later something happens and you find yourself lost in upset, your peace and happiness seemingly stolen.
Love-hate relationships aren’t solely reserved for those that struggle with debt, lost a job, went through a divorce, or just lost a loved one.
You may be someone that has achieved financial independence yet struggles each day in your work because you aren’t sure that your work is in alignment with your core values, leaving you to question your integrity. You want to spend quality time with your family or your philanthropic endeavors but, your success has swallowed you whole. No matter how much money you make, no matter your contributions, you still feel undervalued and unappreciated … you still reach for more – thinking that more will fill you up instead of leaving you empty.
If any of what I described feels familiar to you, then I would say that you too had purchased a ticket on the same roller coaster ride. And you too, have a love-haterelationship with money … even if it may not appear that way to you. But, don’t let appearances fool you.
You may be asking at this point, how do I get off this roller coaster ride with money?
My answer to you is this …
It’s not about getting off the ride.
It’s about making peace with it.
Think about it. Think about the world in which you live. There are so many factors that are not within your control that trigger these sharp ups and downs.
You can’t control the economy or the market. You can’t control tax policy, insurance regulation, or even who ends up in office. And you certainly cannot control another person and the choices he/she makes.
But, you can control how you respond to everything and everyone that makes up your world.
Which means you have within your control how you choose to see your roller coaster ride.
If there’s anything that I have come to learn so far, it’s that more than likely I’m not meant to get off this roller coaster. The ride will continue because of the kind of world in which I live.
But, I don’t have to feel sick. I can learn to appreciate what this ride is teaching me, about me. What money is teaching me, about me. And how every lesson brings me back to remembering who and what I really am – and that I already have everything.
Here are a few thoughts and ideas to help you make peace while you are experiencing your roller coaster:
When all is said and done, it’s not about the ride itself. It’s about whether or not you rise above the ride and choose to experience the ride in a better way … a happier, more peaceful way.
Oh … but, don’t be surprised that when you do make peace with your roller coaster ride, you may be given the option to exit!