Money for My Dreams and My Family’s: It Takes Two Wings to Fly

Money for My Dreams and My Family’s: It Takes Two Wings to Fly

a flock of birds with dark wings, white bodies and red legs

Money for My Dreams and My Family’s: It Takes Two Wings to Fly. Let dreams fly–for yourself and your family. Image: Faisal Akram.

Money for My Dreams and My Family’s: It Takes Two Wings to Fly

Is What’s Best for Me Best for Everyone in My Life?

We are blessed to answer another wonderful subscriber question. Here it is:

Following my dreams and still being responsible to my family has been a huge struggle over the past few years.  Is what is best for me really best for everyone in my life?  I am in a job for the benefits and steady income at this time.  And I am at the point where I put hardly any thought or energy into doing something else or my dreams because I feel that responsibility so strongly.

I love this question: you can feel this subscriber’s deep love and deep question: Is what is best for me really best for everyone in my life? The answer is YES.

Look at the Structure of the Question: Money for My Dreams and My Family’s

What gave this post “wings” is how I saw the structure of our subscriber’s question. Let me explain. I try to translate the question into a shape or a structure. And as the subscriber was seeing it, it looked like this. (See the caption on this image I created myself for what it’s “saying.”)


The question looks to me like it’s saying, “My dreams pull me in one direction. My family’s needs pull me in the opposite direction.”


Question the Question

This subscriber’s question looks like it’s either/or: me or my family.

For many people, this is what happens.   These good, loving parents stop nurturing their dreams so they can focus on their families. They give up an essential part of themselves. Some never get it back, even when the children have “flown the coop,” and they have an “empty nest.”

The thing to do is to take awareness of the question. Question the question, whenever you hit a problem of any kind–and certainly a money problem involving other people, as money problems virtually always do.

Don’t take the question for granted. Questioning the assumptions underlying the question itself.

Once You Question, What Do You See?

Look at those bird metaphors: “flown the coop,” “empty nest.” We associate birds with flying. We associate the ability to dream with flying. The ability to manifest the future you dream we also call the ability to make something “fly.”

Our subscriber wants to fly and wants the family to fly, too.

Now look at those two lines pulling in opposite directions: what do they look like?

They look, to me, like wings.

Here’s How to Fly with Both Wings

The short answer to the question asked this week by our subscriber is YES. But I would be extremely remiss to ignore the unasked question: “HOW?” How do we nurture our own dreams’ and our family’s? Here is a short list:

  1. Understand that you are a member of your family. Just like the children, you have a right to thrive.
  2. Think, really think, about what makes you thrive. Step 2 is really just thinking. Allow yourself time to think, picture, research if you need to.
  3.  Ask your children individually, privately what will help them thrive.
  4. Have a family conversation about what it means to thrive once people in the family know how to say what they want and need. Talk about the difference between needs and wants, and find out what each person actually wants to help them thrive. It may not be what you think!
  5. Set aside monies, no matter how small, for each person to thrive and for you to thrive together. Help each other realize your dreams.
  6. Make it a priority to check in with each other about your dreams. Be sure your children hear about your achieving your own dreams. And hear about them doing so. If they don’t volunteer, ask. Have a family conversation like we talked about in step 4.

Both Wings are Needed for This Experiment to Fly!

It is not either/or. You won’t be happy if you thrive at your family’s expense, sure. But your family will not be happy if they “thrive” at your expense! I can’t even write that without putting “thrive” in quotation marks: if you aren’t  thriving, I bet your family’s “thriving” is coming at too huge a cost not to be seriously challenged over the long-term. They would be a lot thrivier (!) if you considered yourself part of your own family, and took your own thriving seriously! I know this is tough talk: this is a tough issue for conscientious parents.

This question is neither dire nor a conflict nor a problem. Let me cut to the chase: it’s a journey. It’s a laboratory for experimenting with money, and thriving.

*Today’s great question was submitted by a subscriber. I’m grateful to blog answers to questions from our subscribers, and proud to reward them for fruitful questions with free coaching. So maybe you should subscribe?!

  • Pingback:Everyone Has Money: Making Peace with All Donation Amounts - RAISING CLARITY
    Posted at 11:13h, 09 November Reply

    […] Money for My Dreams and My Family’s […]

  • cathy r.
    Posted at 18:33h, 05 August Reply

    Yes! I was struggling at a job which provided the necessities but was killing my soul. The stress was seeping into every aspect of my life. I barked at my loved ones at the slightest provocation. When I recognized how out-of-balance that life was, I asked myself what I really wanted to be doing. An opportunity appeared which required that I stop doing the job I did not enjoy. Even if we don’t have as much money as we had before, we have more time together and that time is more enjoyable because I’m not a stressed-out, growling monster. As a family, we prioritize needs and often forego wants which cost money. But we don’t have to forego wants which only require time…because we have plenty of time. Additional opportunities keep arising; the prison cell of my job kept me in the dark to so many options. I am performing as a singer/songwriter and actor. My daughter plays violin and is a visual artist. My husband is a visual artist. We have a mutual fan club. We support each other in our various arts pursuits and the mutual support has added a level of respect and enjoyment of each other which was unexpected and joyful.

  • Julie
    Posted at 14:02h, 03 August Reply

    This makes so much sense. I remember reading years ago that a mother needs not only to show her children what it is to be deeply loved and cared for, but also to model self-love and self-respect by honoring her own needs and dreams. Thank you, Beth, for creating a beautiful metaphor to help capture the essence of this truth.

    • Beth
      Posted at 14:50h, 03 August Reply

      Julie, thank you very much! It was astonishing to me that the way the metaphor came was as that first image of being pulled in two opposite directions. They looked like clock hands to me at first, actually–set at 10am and 2pm. Then I began searching for “obtuse angle” images in my copyright-free sources and one wise photographer had added the search term “obtuse angles” to his photograph of those birds!!! His genius, not mine, and I was lucky to benefit from it.

      • Nicole
        Posted at 15:16h, 03 August Reply

        WOW I love how the universe works sometimes! Thanks Beth

  • Danielle Capillo
    Posted at 12:59h, 03 August Reply

    Yes they are wings! I was forced out of the nest recently because I have put these questions out in the universe in more ways than one. And the answer is most clearly take flight and move to other opportunities! The Hawk came to me with the message to look for new opportunity and the Vulture to stop investing my worth in my current job. And the blue heron has been visiting me to remind me that being in a space in between is just where I need to be. Remaining a committed and faithful worker to my current job while looking for another job that fits me and my goals better.
    I am not flying yet but standing by the water waiting patiently for my next opportunity. Then I will take flight with great wings.
    Thank you Beth!

    • Beth
      Posted at 13:53h, 03 August Reply

      Danielle, this is amazing! And amazing confirmation to receive of my post–thank you!!!

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