I start every coaching engagement with it. 

I weave it into every speaking engagement, even when I’m unable to walk people through it entirely.

And more than likely, if you’re a part of my email list community, you’re familiar with it, too.

The “it” to which I am referring is the Financial Wheel exercise.

As you may know, I created this exercise over 20 years ago. And sure, aspects of it have evolved over time. But its purpose has remained the same: To get people to…

  • approach money more by design rather than by default
  • be more proactive and strategic with their money; 
  • give their money direction.

In the unlikely event you haven’t done the exercise before, or perhaps you’d like to do it again – click here. Here’s why I’m making this suggestion…

The exercise, very broadly, focuses on the four things you can do with your money – regardless of where you are on the income and wealth spectrum. 

It’s designed to get you to shift your focus beyond your current financial reality, by inviting you to give yourself permission to consider what could be possible. (Something I know quite a few folks have a hard time doing…)

And, as I like to remind people, the Financial Wheel exercise is not designed to be done once

Because, well…there’s nothing about your life or business that is static! 

Your circumstances and the context thereof, your wants, your needs, and your goals…they change. 

These changes typically have an impact on the role of money in your life and business, as well as what you need and want money to do for your life and your business.

Embrace Simplicity

Granted, I am a bit biased but I think the Financial Wheel is pretty powerful. In part because its profundity is found in its simplicity. (To get an aha, all you need is a piece of paper, pen or pencil, and approximately 20-minutes of focused time. #justsaying)

You might experience a few ahas from the exercise for any number of reasons; it could be because the exercise: 

  • is an invitation to (re)consider your financial vision;
  • highlights your goals – the ones you are actively working to achieve, as well as those that (unintentionally) slid to the back-burner, or the ones you are just now discovering;
  • got you excited about newfound ideas and opportunities to close the gap between where you are right now, where you’d like to be in a few months or years, and/or where you’d like to be further into the future;
  • brings to the forefront your beliefs about money, so that you can determine if those beliefs are supporting you and propelling you forward, or…if they are actually holding you back. 

You might even get excited about the challenge/s the exercise “asks” you to confront…

  • The challenge of changing your behavior and how you make choices
  • The challenge of setting boundaries (for yourself and related to what others expect of you); 
  • The challenge of tapping into your creativity
  • The challenge of practicing more discernment.

The exercise also tends to highlight the good choices you’ve made with your money, along with the good money habits you practice. Because acknowledging your financial strengths is important given our cultural tendency to dedicate a lot of space to reminding you of what you do wrong with it.

Your Longest Relationship?

I also think the exercise is powerful because it…

…gives you insight into your current relationship with money, as well as the one you ideally want to have.

I like to remind people that your relationship with money is one of the longest ones you will have. And if you think about your relationships that are of any significance, be it in importance and/or length of time, the dynamics of them have changed — over time. 

Your relationship with money is no different.

So when you do the Financial Wheel, whether you realize it or not, you actually end up ruminating on your current relationship with money and dreaming about the one you want. 

Doing the exercise is a chance to evaluate and observe what’s working for you and what you wish to change moving forward. (You do this with other relationships, right?!)

One person who recently completed the exercise said this, “…[I] feel a bit more empowered about where to focus my energy.” 

What would it take for you to feel more empowered about where you’re focusing your energy when it comes to money? To feel like you are, indeed, making the best, smartest choices regarding the role of money in your life and in your business.

What’s changed with you and for you in 2021? What do you want to change with you and for you in 2022? 

At this time of the year, when you’re reflecting on the year that is coming to a close and getting ready for the year to come, money likely looms large as a major factor in the choices and decisions you’re making and planning to make. 

And more than likely, your perspective on the role of money in your life and business, as well as what you need and want money to do for your life and your business have shifted — even if just slightly. 

This exercise can be revelatory for entrepreneurs and small business owners, because it reveals if your business model, sales process, and pricing strategy combine to really prioritize the health of your personal finances. 

Ultimately, the Financial Wheel is designed to help you feel more confident and be more deliberate and strategic about the choices you make with your money — particularly if you embrace the notion that money is never just about money!

So, let one of the gifts you give yourself this holiday season be the opportunity to gain new insights about you, money and your relationship with it. Especially if you can use a tool that gives you a practical and accessible way to:

  • evaluate your behavior, choices, and results in key financial areas; 
  • determine what, how, and when to make changes, and whom to involve in the process;
  • recognize the impact of your values, beliefs, preferences, expectations, and habits on how you experience money, make small and large financial decisions, and react to setbacks and successes.

From my perspective, there’s no better time than now to do (or re-do) the Financial Wheel exercise!

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