The very word can bring up stress, thoughts, panic, dread, anger.
When it seems like money isn’t with us in abundance, or we have to work very hard for it, it definitely brings on fear for many people.
But what about when we’ve got enough, but it’s not about that. It’s about someone not paying us back, or paying their bill, or giving us what we believe we’re owed.
The other day, I caught myself having a thought about someone I perceived as having a good job (he told me he works full time, although he didn’t sound thrilled about his position). He had asked for a discount on our session. I had said “yes”.
We did a whole mini-retreat which is three hours to go through an entire worksheet (I do these at a discounted fee of only $75 per hour and his fee was lower). His preference was to work on the phone, not skype, which is totally fine. He wasn’t super familiar with The Work and he felt upset about his junk-food eating. Which is one of my favorite topics as you know….eating battles and compulsions.
The work was interesting. Although I had the feeling he wasn’t too impacted by it.
And afterwards, he didn’t pay his bill. To me.
Maybe he thinks the work we do together isn’t worth it. Maybe he thinks I shouldn’t charge so much. Maybe he doesn’t care about bills and money and paying them on time. Maybe what I charge is so low by comparison he thinks of it as nothing much and forgets about it.
Guessing, guessing, guessing.
And a deep inward stressful thought: he doesn’t care about me.
I’ve had this thought when a friend who borrowed money didn’t pay me back. I’ve had this thought when I find out someone makes a huge salary, but still asked me for a scholarship discount. I’ve had this thought when my grandma sent $10 and she could have sent $100. I’ve had this thought when a date wanted me to always pay half of the dinner and theater tickets. I’ve had this thought when my husband doesn’t offer to pay any of the bills for the back-yard building/remodel project we’re considering.
That person doesn’t care about me.
They think I’m OK whether I get paid, or not paid, or make the payment, or don’t. They think I have no concern about money. They assume I don’t mind. They think I’m ignore-able. They want to keep their money to themselves.
Such a fascinating stream of thoughts, once I sat down and began to inquire.
I think I know what they’re thinking about me. Holy smokes, talk about making assumptions.
I knew I needed to inquire. Because that’s what would bring the most awareness, one step and one thought at a time.
He doesn’t care about me.
Is it true, in this situation?
He even texts that he’ll get to it right away. And I see nothing. And never saw anything again. He vanished. With an unpaid already-discounted bill.
How do you react when you believe the thought “he doesn’t care about me” and it has to do with money–either they aren’t paying, they aren’t generous, they’re demanding more, they’re refusing to give, they don’t want to share.
A old friend of mine had this thought about her husband during the divorcing process. It was a screaming stressful thought “he doesn’t care about me!” If he did, she felt, he wouldn’t withhold money. He’d divide things up equally.
The sense of being jilted or dismissed, or having no power whatsoever over what’s happening with money can be infuriating. Terrifying.
How do you treat money when you believe the person holding it in their hand doesn’t care about you?
I hate it. I hate that I need it. I want to eliminate it from this relationship. I think I should work with people without expecting payment for anything. I should ask for donations, not set amounts or fees. Then this client could pay me nothing, and that’d fit into the program. I wouldn’t feel so angry.
Who would you be without the belief he doesn’t care about you?
It’s weird. I see a bill. I communicate. I do the best I can. I realize I know nothing about what happened, or what is happening in his mind. I notice I appreciate silence–which is what he’s given me. I’m aware I don’t need his particular bill paid in order to survive, or be happy.
Almost all people I’ve ever worked with bring their payments with them to the sessions, or pay beforehand. Overall, people are attentive, caring, generous, and clear about their fees and paying them. It’s remarkable.
We apparently use money for a clear exchange of needs, services, trades, support–and it mostly works brilliantly well. People handle their money beautifully, and send it to me with apparent ease. They write and ask the fee for things, they get their questions answered, they send the number I mention, they ask for the link to pay. I am able to live without doing other labor….for the past 4 years.
Turning the thought around every way: 1) I don’t care about him. 2) I don’t care about myself, especially when it comes to him and his bill and this situation. 3) He DOES care about me.
How could these be true?
I consider them, one at a time.
I don’t care about him? True. The lack of the payment becomes the entire focus. I consider his work on junk-food eating but don’t know what he got from it. I didn’t ask. I think of him as an uncaring user. I picture an unhappy loser in my mind, even though I’ve never seen him before. I don’t care about why he isn’t paying. I just want the fee, then I’d forget about him.
I don’t care about myself. Wow, very true. I accepted an extremely low fee for a 3 hour session. I’m not valuing my time. I don’t do these kinds of almost-free sessions anymore. I couldn’t afford to do The Work with people if I accepted such low fees, I’d have to work another job. I didn’t respect my own boundary from the very beginning when I said “yes” to a huge discount.
I also didn’t care about myself because I kept thinking he must think the session was worthless, and that’s why he isn’t paying–even though I don’t know that is his thought. I’m assuming no payment means no worth, and feeling sad about that.
He does care about me. How could this turnaround be true?
He reached out in the first place and asked for a session. He stayed with me on the phone for 3 hours. He answered the questions, and asked a few as well. He explored, and then left.
People come and go. It doesn’t mean they don’t care. How would I know? He has his own life to live, which is far away and doesn’t intersect with mine except for those 3 hours….out of however many thousands of hours in my lifetime (and his) this isn’t much crossover.
Maybe I’ve been spared? Maybe so has he?
Who would I be without my story of caring, and money, and bills and payments?
Communicating clearly, and then being done with it. Saying “no” in the future if there’s another request. Not being wishy-washy with boundaries. Asking for what I want. Not having an internal fit if I don’t get it (questioning that it’s necessary).
Allowing the universe and reality to show me what to do next time. Everything very simple.
Questioning my beliefs about money, bills, invoices, payments, receiving, scholarships, gifts, service, needs, support, and caring…I become free. And very, very clear. It’s OK to not work for free. It’s OK to be direct and at east with exchanges of money.
It’s OK if someone over there isn’t reliable (in my opinion). It shows me how to do business cleanly, with integrity…not with magical hope-thinking that they’ll supply payment.
How could it be FANTASTIC someone doesn’t make a payment they apparently agreed to make? It shows me how to be so beautifully crystal clear, and to serve, and how my joy with this work is not diminished by payment or lack of payment. I get just as much thrill from the Help Line where I volunteer as with those who are making payments for sessions.
“This is very exciting. And if your mind isn’t in his business, you would be amazed at the space that opens up for you, the power that opens up to solve your own problems…It’s the truth that sets us free to act clearly and lovingly, and there’s such excitement in it.” ~ Byron Katie in Loving What Is
Who am I without my story?
Woman enjoying questioning thoughts about money. Seeing the perfection in exactly the way it is. Reality rules.