The Dangers of an Unconscious “Vow of Poverty”

Advisor Perspectives welcomes guest contributions. The views presented here do not necessarily represent those of Advisor Perspectives.

If you’ve ever lived in real poverty, struggling to meet your basic needs for food, shelter, and clothing, you know it’s not a “lifestyle choice” you would voluntarily opt to return to. If you were to ask people who are living in poverty whether they would like to continue in their current circumstances or transcend to living a life where their basic needs were met, it’s nearly all would choose in a heartbeat to move out of poverty.

Yet one category of money scripts – the unconscious beliefs about money that underlie our financial behavior – is described as taking a “vow of poverty.” It is more common than you might expect.