How we think about money is affected in great part by our upbringing. You might have had strict parents, for instance, who taught that money is the root of all evil.
Marisa Peer is a known expert in rewriting people's internal programming, helping them live a life of greater freedom, fulfillment and prosperity. Hear what she has to say about changing a deep-seated belief system about money.
02:57 – Getting to the root of money mindset. How does upbringing plant the seeds of our relationship with money?
07:41 – The stories behind the beliefs. Childhood dramas form the basis for adult scripts.
13:09 – What you should and shouldn’t say to your kids. Children need to hear the right messages from their parents.
20:28 – The question of tech exposure. Is the younger generation too tech-dependent?
24:05 – Rewriting that childhood programming. There’s hope – we’re not stuck with our belief systems.
28:00 – Are fantasy and make-believe bad? Marisa offers her take on the stuff that’s imagined.
32:40 – Where positive thinking doesn’t click. Why is the news so negative?
35:26 – Addressing the fear of what could happen. When things are great, but you think they won’t last…
38:06 – When the bad stuff drives you to succeed. Why do so many driven people have difficult pasts?
43:32 – Want more of Marisa? Here’s where to go.
46:30 – Things kids pick up. Children absorb more than you think.
This episode’s guest is something of a celebrity. Therapist Marisa Peer has made a name for herself helping people reprogram their mindsets and live better lives.
What sets her apart from other therapists is her technique of getting straight to the causes of mistaken beliefs, which very often are emotional, and are planted early in our upbringing.
Getting to the root of money mindset
Something James would like to touch on in their talk is money mindset. Why is it that some people can make money but not keep it?
The stories behind that are very interesting, says Marisa, and most start very early. It might be a grandmother saying, A fool and his money are easily parted. Or someone might have money and never know who their friends are. It might be a dad dying of an ulcer because he works all the time.
Children download this like software. And they take things literally. So if they hear, Oh, those posh people. They sold their soul to the devil, they may decide that to be good people they shouldn’t have money.
She had a client, for instance, a child of divorced parents, whose mother was always telling her to lie to her dad for money. He would always give it, but she decided then that when she grew up, she would never ask anyone for money.
That same client now has trouble billing her customers, and it’s obvious where the block came from.
Marisa’s own father had once promised her money to buy trousers on her 13th birthday. When she reminded him, he threw the cash at her in a rage. She remembers thinking, I’ll never ask anyone for money. I’ll make my own money. And for years she would never let men buy her anything.
Now, however, she’s realized the stupidity of that belief, and while she does make her own money, she loves when her husband buys her stuff. So your beliefs are yours to change, she says. You just have to question them and realize where you got them from.
The stories behind the beliefs
What caused Marisa to change her belief system and, as one of her book titles suggests, tell herself a better lie?
Her own story is funny, says Marisa. Her mother was a beautiful woman who should have been a dancer, but instead married Marisa’s father, an eminent head teacher. Every day, she and her siblings would watch their mother become hysterical, lie on the floor and break dishes. She was often taken to the hospital, loved being there and having visitors.
Marisa would see her father step over her mother on his way out to work, and she thought, that’s what you do. When it all goes wrong, you need a job that’s so engrossing, it takes away the pain.
Her sister saw the same scene and thought, you better find a husband who loves you more than you love them, because then they’ll never step over your prostrate body and go to work and ignore you.
Their brother looked at the situation and thought, never marry a beautiful woman. They’re hysterical. You don’t want to take that on.
And so Marisa’s sister married men who loved her far more than she did them. And her brother picked a wife who wasn’t stunningly beautiful and hysterical.
As for Marissa, she chose a career that was deeply fulfilling, but for the longest time she had trouble maintaining relationships. She carried this belief: relationships always go wrong. She loved and was loved by some amazing people, she says, but she was always planning the end, believing it wouldn’t last.
That was until a client told her, Marisa, you have saved my marriage. My wife and I are so happy. Your husband is a lucky man. She hadn’t the heart to tell him she didn’t have, and had never had, a husband. But she thought she really ought to sort that bit out.
So Marissa took a look at her past and her programming, and, she said, extracted her false belief about relationships. Everything changed on a dime. She married her husband, through whom James got to know her, and they are, to date, very happy.
When it comes to money, says Marisa, beliefs are set very early. She’s worked with many rock stars who’d say, Yeah, I just got rid of it all. I never felt I earned it. I just kept buying stuff. 70 percent of lottery winners are completely broke in three years. The only lottery winners who keep money are ones who already had some in the first place, or the ones who managed to get a very clever planner.
Some rock stars, Marisa says, make so much money it seems impossible they’d get rid of it all. But they sign ridiculous contracts that they don’t read. They don’t understand because they don’t understand money. Even if you have a lot of money, you need to understand how to make it work for you.
You need to get over thinking that asking for money is vulgar. Don’t talk about money, never mention money. It’s not what people do. Of course it is. And the best thing about money is if you have a lot of it, and do good things with it, then you’ll have even more money, because all the guilt about having it goes away.
What you should and shouldn’t say to your kids
James recalls taking on a lot of programming from both his parents and his grandparents, who he spent a lot of time with. And some of it was good, and he credits it with placing him in a better situation now than some of his peers.
But he did start to read self-development books, and realized that a lot of the things that people say to their kids are extremely harmful. As a parent of five kids, he’s been around a lot of other parents in playground settings, childcare settings, at the park. And the way people parent, he says, is often frightening.
The things some parents say, the little lies they tell or the way that they try and manage their children, can be so damaging to the child.
Marisa will be pleased to hear, says James, that his daughter, riding in the backseat of their car, says, Daddy, I am enough. And he responds, Yes, you are, Sweetie, you’re enough.
How important is it, he asks, for parents, entrepreneurs, whose children see them ignoring them, absorbed in their computers, to be aware of the money mindset programming that’s happening to their kids?
You realize, says Marisa, that children will conclude, Mommy’s always working, or Daddy’s always working, because he likes work better than me.
It’s very important that you say, Daddy goes to work, and Daddy loves his job, but he loves you more. Daddy’s job is a bit like your playtime. You have to make your children see that you go to work because you like it, but you like nothing on this planet better than them. And then one day they will actually like going to work.
And when your kid wants a new toy, you should never go, I don’t know where the money is coming from, you’ve got enough toys. Say rather: Darling, if you want this toy, we’ll have to find a way for you to get this toy. So you’re going to have to get 500 stars. And then find something for them to do to get the stars to get that toy.
It might be doing certain things around the house. You can monetize something as simple as picking up your shoes and placing them in the cupboard. What’s important is that they do something to earn what they want. And don’t give them hideous chores like cleaning the toilet. Then they learn, Oh, I’ve got to do what I hate to make money. And that’s not good either.
Give them something that makes them feel quite proud and that they can do, even if they can’t do it very well. Because then they learn they can do stuff that’s quite fun, and earn money doing it, and go out and get the things they like.
And you’ll find, says Marisa, that when they get the toy, they’ll care less about it than the fact that they can earn something. So you can have them do things around the house and say, you’ve got all these stars, you can pick a day out. You can pick an evening to decide what’s on television, what’s for dinner, or maybe there’s this little thing that you really want.
So avoid saying things like, we can’t afford that, money doesn’t grow on trees, money’s evil. I can’t find the money. Think about the associations you’re making when you communicate with your kids.
The question of tech exposure
Now, in James’s field of online business, people work a lot on computers, and their children will likely have a fair bit of access to tech. How much does Marisa think that should concern parents?
It’s interesting, Marisa says, that a lot of tech giants won’t allow their kids Wi Fi in their bedroom because they know how addictive it is. And a whole generation now are always on their phone.
The hardest thing, she says, is that so many kids have only online friends. Five hundred followers, 900 friends on Instagram. But when they have a bad day, no one turns up to take them for ice cream or to the mall.
Some people date but never meet, or even speak on the phone. They just text.
It used to be, if you were bullied at school, you could go home at four o’clock, and have a break until nine o’clock the next morning. Now, trolling is a 24-hour day thing.
Given, there are good things. Marisa’s mother, for instance, can chat with all her grandchildren on Zoom or FaceTime. But Marisa does worry about the kids who do everything online, even date. It’s really wrong, she says, something that’s not going to end well for a lot of people.
Rewriting that childhood programming
If people are living on beliefs they absorbed when young, asks James, can they rewrite that subconscious program and change their life?
We can always rewrite our programming, says Marisa. Always. You have to come out and ask, Why do I believe that? Who told me that? Men don’t like strong women? That’s not true for Michelle Obama. Why am I believing this?
When you question a belief, you already don’t believe it. So question your beliefs. Challenge them, and then change them.
Men love strong women. And they don’t leave you because you get old. That’s a crazy idea, because they get old too. People don’t dislike you if you have money. Is it lonely at the top? Indeed, it’s very crowded at the bottom. It’s good to be among the best. Confidence is really sexy.
People like it when you say, I’m really good at my job. We want our pilots, our surgeons, our teachers to say, I’m amazing.
Marisa thinks we should be telling kids, You’re not better than anyone. And they’re not better than you. But tell me what you’re gifted at, because everyone has a gift at something.
Are fantasy and make-believe bad?
What is the advice regarding Santa Claus? Is it okay to tell a child what you know is a lie and then for them to find it out later? Will they start to wonder what else they can’t believe that you’ve told them?
Marisa loves Roald Dahl, who said only people who believe in magic ever get to see it and experience it. And he lived in a world of make-believe. That was wonderful for children. You wouldn’t say to your kid, You can’t read Harry Potter. Harry Potter made kids love reading. And Marisa thinks a world of make-believe is a wonderful thing, when your life isn’t great, and you can escape it.
It’s no different to saying, I’m watching Star Wars as an adult, or I’m getting lost in this novel, Lord of the Rings.
Marisa thinks a world where everything is correct and true and accurate is a very sad world, because how do we know what’s true? What’s true is what you believe to be true.
“Our beliefs become our energy.”
Our beliefs become our energy. If someone says they beat cancer by visualizing natural killer cells destroying the cancer cells, why does that work? People have died who believed they were cursed, and medical intervention could do nothing about it.
A thought you think becomes real. If you think an embarrassing thought, you blush. If you think about eating, your stomach rumbles. If you think about something sad, your eyes will fill up with tears. So does it matter if it’s real? What matters is, our body makes it real. And so Marisa doesn’t think there’s anything wrong with the world of make-believe.
Addressing the fear of what could happen
What would Marisa say to the entrepreneur who thinks things are going great, but have this anxiety it could all be gone tomorrow?
Again, that’s programming, she says. No one can have it all, something’s got to give, you’re never safe when you work for yourself.
If you have an entrepreneuring mind and you can build a business, you can build another one, and you can build another one, because now you have a template of building a business. And rather than worrying that it will all go wrong, you need to keep thinking, what did I do?
“Some of the smartest people don’t even do anything new.”
When Marisa wrote her first book, her agent said, That’s great. But where’s the next one? Oh no, said Marisa, I could only write one. Now she’s written her eighth book.
Some of the smartest people don’t even do anything new. Spanx wasn’t new control underwear. But Sara Blakely made it better. To be an entrepreneur, you don’t need to invent something, you need to look at what’s out there, go, I could make this better. I could improve this.
When the bad stuff drives you to succeed
James has encountered a lot of people who experienced some trauma in the past. And he often sees this in very driven people, people who want to go out and succeed. There seems a link between setbacks at an early age and a desire to make $10 million a year or to have control, to be the driver now. Can Marisa comment on this?
She thinks people with a horrible beginning have that “I’ll show you,” attitude. People say, You will never amount to anything, and you think, I’ll show you.
Then there are people who come from very controlling parents. They often grow up and think, I’m not going to work for anybody. I’m going to build my own empire, and no one’s going to tell me what to do.
You can see that, she says, in Rupert Murdoch’s empire, and in the Kennedy family. Very rigid parents often bring up children who are quite the opposite.
Marisa’s version of controlling her own ship was to take therapy and change it. Einstein always said to simplify the world. She thought, why not simplify therapy? Why does it have to be so confusing? Why does it have to be so long? You don’t build a lengthy relationship with your dentist before he treats your toothache. Why shouldn’t that be the same way with therapy?
“When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.”
James recalls Wayne Dyer, who said, When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.
Things kids pick up
Marisa commends James for being a great dad. There’s nothing better, she says.
It’s the number one best thing, says James, to be parent to his kids. His oldest son, who was teaching selling at work, told him how familiar the material was to him. He felt like a natural. And he shared some fantastic training he’d put together for his team.
James remembers how his son would sit with him while he was reading his sales books and teaching his sales teams. That programming was all inside him.
We’re always impacting our kids, says Marisa. She became a therapist because she’d seen how her dad helped people. And her daughter, now an artist, says Marisa has always shown her how to have a brand and her own message.
“Influence your kids in the best way.”
Kids are like sponges. And if you know you influence, just influence them in the best way.
Want more of Marisa?
Some people listening might be interested to learn more about Marisa. She has eight books, including Tell Yourself A Better Lie, which James has read and enjoyed. There was so much he says he could relate to in it from a marketing perspective. Where can people find out more?
If you want free audios on getting rid of money, relationship or wealth blocks, says Marisa, go to marisapeer.com.
If you want to learn to do what she does and to become an RTT therapist, which doesn’t involve three years at college or any background in therapy, because the training is very thorough, then go to rtt.com.
And if you want to join the I Am Enough movement and get lots of stories, or bracelets that say I’m enough, go to iamenough.com.
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