19 Toxic Limiting Beliefs About Money and How To Overcome Them

Your beliefs about money are formed from many things. What you’ve seen from those around you, like family members and friends, can affect what you think today.

You may also have collected beliefs or thoughts about money from your own experiences with it. But those beliefs aren’t always the best ones.

In fact, sometimes they are toxic or limiting beliefs about money. How can you tell if you believe anything that is holding you back?

And if you do, how do you overcome these thoughts? Read on for ideas.

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What Are Negative Beliefs About Money?

Here are 19 common beliefs about money that are quite negative. See if you have ever believed any of them yourself. If so, know that change is possible. 

1. There isn’t enough money to go around.

This might be a thought that swirls in your mind from time to time. It is very limiting because it reasons that there isn’t enough money in the world for everyone.

That money is finite, and you can’t have too much of it. This belief can stop you from thinking you can earn more.

It may also make you think that something will prevent you from achieving more. 

2. I don’t deserve a lot of money.

This negative belief centers on you thinking that you aren’t good enough for money or, for some reason, don’t deserve it. This isn’t true!

You may have been led to this thought because of previous bad money habits, but that doesn’t mean you can’t learn and be just as capable of handling money well as anyone else.

Related: 11 Wealth-Building Habits to Start Today

3. Having money is selfish.

Sometimes people think the rich are evil. In actuality, there are nice rich people and mean ones, just like with everything else.

Having money is not selfish. You can still be generous and help others if you have money, maybe even more so than now.

So cash on its own doesn’t do anything. It’s what you decide to do that counts.

4. Wanting more money is greedy.

This limiting belief reasons you shouldn’t want to have more money because it means you are greedy. But if there is, in fact, enough money to go around, and you having more doesn’t stop someone else from having money, it isn’t greedy.

It is good to want to be successful and gain wealth. Money can help you do a lot of great things.

5. You need money to make money.

While this might prove true on some occasions, it isn’t true for all of them. And if you want to build wealth but have no money, this belief can stop you from getting started.

The fact is, you can start with little or no money and still become successful using creativity and hard work. 

6. You have to hold your money close.

Regardless of the amount you have, holding your money close can turn into greed and financial anxiety. If you didn’t have a lot of money growing up, you might be afraid to part with it.

If instead, you believe that you will have enough and that you can gain more money in the future, you can choose to take intelligent risks and help people with the funds you have now. 

7. Having more money means I’ll have more problems.

One of the most limiting beliefs about money is that it creates problems. Money doesn’t create problems; that’s just part of life.

But this is no reason not to have wealth, as money can also solve some issues. 

8. Money can’t buy happiness.

This is true to an extent. Money on its own can’t buy happiness, but it can give you a lot more choices and opportunities to do things you want to do.

Because of this, it shouldn’t be avoided but instead should be viewed for what it is. Not a happiness measurement, but a tool that can get you to where you want to be.

9. Money is hard to get.

If you think money is challenging to get, you might never try in the first place. This can keep you stuck where you are.

While earning money may take some work and time, it is totally possible and doesn’t have to be hard to get.

10. You can’t change your financial future.

This is a complete lie. Actually, you are the only one who can change your financial future!

You are entirely in charge of how much money you make, what career you choose, and how you educate yourself about money. You can change your financial future – for better or worse.

11. Money is the root of evil.

This expression is inaccurate, and actually, it reads, “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil.” Meaning that allowing money to become your most valued possession can negatively change you.

But that doesn’t mean that money is bad. You can also have money and be a generous and kind person. Just don’t make money the center of your whole life. 

12. I’m not good with money.

No one is born good with money. We learn how to handle it well or poorly from others and from what we know on our own.

That means you can educate and train yourself to handle money positively, just as easily as in a negative way.

While some may be born into good financial situations, and others aren’t, you can still take control of your future and learn all you can about finance. You can then learn to be not good, but great, with money.

13. Managing money is too much stress.

This is one of the limiting beliefs about money that is entirely backward. Actually, not managing money is stressful.

Money is part of our lives no matter what. So ignoring it or handling it poorly can cause anxiety. On the other hand, having a plan and organizing your finances may cause less stress.

14. Money was meant for spending.

Money is meant for lots of things. Spending is one of them, but if that’s all you do with it, you will miss out on having a sound financial future.

Money is also meant for saving, investing, and giving. There are many things to do with it, and being smart about how you handle it is a good idea.

15. I can’t save money.

Even if you have never saved a penny in your entire life, yes, you can save money! It is a matter of discipline and a plan, but it’s possible.

Saving money gives you many more options and helps you be secure with finance later on. So learn to save money to live life in the best way possible.

Related: How Much of My Paycheck Should I Really Be Saving?

16. If I have too much money, I’ll lose my values.

Money does not give values. This goes back to the negative belief that money is evil.

In fact, money doesn’t do anything on its own. We give it value and choose how it is spent and saved.

So no, being wealthy will not make you lose your values. You are in total control of that.

17. I can’t love my career and make a lot of money.

If you love what you do, it must not make you any money, right? Wrong!

You can find a career you enjoy, make a difference, and make money simultaneously. There are about a zillion ways to make money, and you can still create wealth even when you like your job.

Related: High-Income Skills You Can Teach Yourself Without College

18. I’ll never have enough money.

Some people view money as security, but thinking that you’ll never have enough isn’t true.

You need money to live and be prepared for the future and emergencies. Beyond that, recognize that you do have enough. 

19. My family has always been poor. 

Just because history says one thing doesn’t mean that’s the future. Past doesn’t dictate present or future.

Instead, choose to believe that no matter how much or little money your family has, you can select your own financial destiny. Next, it takes putting in the effort and figuring out the steps to change course.

What Are Limiting Beliefs Examples?

Here are two of the main examples of limiting money beliefs.

Money Doesn’t Buy Happiness

While it’s true that money doesn’t buy happiness, it can purchase resources and opportunities to make your life easier and build a good life for yourself and others.

So saying that it can’t buy happiness may be correct, but that doesn’t mean it has no value. And believing this could stop you from even trying.

Money Is Evil

While it is true that money can be used for evil, it can also be used for great good. Money is neutral; it does not have good or bad characteristics. It’s what you do with it that counts.

What Beliefs Do You Have About Money?

Everyone believes something about money. It can be harmful, positive, or a mix of both. If you think any of the above toxic beliefs apply to you, it’s time for a change.

Believing negative things about money doesn’t stop it from existing. It prevents you from being able to improve your finances.

Instead, work to remove negative money beliefs from your life and choose to believe new, positive things about money. That it is helpful, it’s okay to want to make money, and it can be a good thing.

How to Throw Away Limiting Beliefs About Money?

If you have limiting beliefs about money, it’s time to toss them. But how? Try these ideas.

Examine the root of the beliefs that are holding you back. 

There is a reason you believe the things you do about money. It might be a root of fear, a scarcity mindset, or something else.

Find out what has led to your wrong beliefs about money, and understand that it doesn’t have to define you going forward. Whatever has caused you to believe negative things about money, it’s time to let it go.

Then you’ll be able to make room for new thoughts that can help you become wealthy, generous, and successful.

  1. Recognize that money has no moral value. Not good or bad, it just exists. We are the ones who decide what money does, so you can use it for incredible good and for excellent opportunities. Since that’s the case, it’s a good idea to become wealthy.
  2. Recognize that money is a tool to be used to your benefit. It can provide you with a home, a car, education, travel, and many other experiences. It is something to be used for good.

Learn how to manage your money.

The first step to help you take action over negative money beliefs is learning how to manage your money. Then you can learn to make more. 

First, set up a budget. No matter the income you have, begin by organizing it and using it to the best of your ability by creating a budget.

You can do this by using an app or workbook, listing your expenses, paying them off as they come up, and saving a decided amount of your paycheck each month or week.

Get educated about money

To do the most you possibly can with your finances, you must become educated about money. Start by finding a few finance channels on YouTube.

From there, check out some basic money books from the library. Then continue by adding podcasts, reading blogs, and consuming finance information as much as possible; just make sure it’s coming from credible sources.

Take the time to learn about saving and investing, too. That way, you can apply it to your life and learn to make your money work for you.

Money can be used as a safety net and help you in retirement when it is saved and invested properly.

Anyone can overcome their limiting beliefs about money and improve their financial future. 

No matter what has led you to believe what you do about finance, you can reverse negative thinking about money. You can begin to live with a positive money mindset and break down limiting beliefs so you can live your best possible financial life.

Even if it takes time and seems challenging, continue to remove old thoughts about money in favor of new ones. Educate yourself and decide what you want to believe about money now that you have more knowledge.

You are capable of overcoming your limiting beliefs about money, no matter what.

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Steffa Mantilla

Certified Financial Education Instructor

Steffa is a Certified Financial Education Instructor (CFEI) and the founder behind Money Tamer. Her 12-year background in operant conditioning and positive behavioral change training is used to help people find effective motivators to change their harmful money behaviors. Steffa explains the reasons “why” behind people’s financial behaviors and how to successfully change them. After paying off over $80,000 in debt through budgeting, she now teaches families how to get their own finances in order. You can learn more about her here.

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