Why Your Debt Was Created as a Child and How to Grow Up

04/23/2015 10:29 am ET | Updated Jun 23, 2015

Did you know that one in five Americans don't think they'll ever pay off what they owe? Money is one of the greatest pressures in life, and we are back to going into debt after slowing down during the economic crisis. The average U.S. household credit card debt currently stands at $15,611. We are borrowing to finance new cars, college tuition, and other consumer goods. Money continues to stress us out, and every thought or idea causes a physical reaction in our body, lowering our overall health and happiness.

Your feelings and thoughts about money begin to develop at a very young age

Even before the frontal lobes and your reasoning ability are developed, your programming for money is created. That's because as a child, you took things literally. Your mom might have reprimanded you for putting coins in your mouth. Your grandma might have asked you to wash your hands every time you handled money because it could be covered in dirt, germs, bacteria or viruses. Of course you didn't know that they meant that money is dirty because of what's on it, not the money itself. The conclusion for your young mind might have been to think that "all money is dirty, therefore all money is bad." That literal thought stuck with you as you grew up and programmed your subconscious to avoid money, get rid of money, or hide money.

Your debt is a result of your money programming as a child

Maybe as a child, money has meant problems in your family. There was a lot of drama around money, savings, spending, debt, income, income goals or toxic money. As a child, you might conclude that money is the reason for your parents being angry, sad or upset. The subconscious might have turned it into "money makes all people angry, sad or upset" which in turn caused you to avoid money. Or if you have money, it might still make you feel angry, sad or upset, simply put, to not be happy. The stress about money may bring emotional and physical pain in your life.

If you don't feel good about money, then the negative energy associated with it will hold your body constantly in a fight or flight response. The energetic manifestation of your subconscious memories of shame and feeling that you are not good enough to be financially solvent and secure might burn out your adrenals and you never feel safe. You may always have a sense of danger that's driving all your actions and reactions.

Your past programming is creating your financial situation now

You may or may not be paying attention to your money. If you are in debt, chances are that you don't pay attention and a lot of that is unconscious. This old programming, just like on your computer, is outdated. It just doesn't run right, even if you try to find some work-arounds. You need to actually update and upgrade the program itself. But to do so, you will need to uncover and deal with that old program. Personal money mapping is the quickest and best way to become clear on your old programming around money.

It takes a lot to face things that bring us pain

Actually dealing with pain can seem excruciating. Some people rather stay in the current pain because it's familiar. You might dwell in avoidance rather than facing the shame, frustration, anger or hopelessness of your childhood programming. You don't want to be in pain. It's natural that you don't want to go there. But staying in that manifestation of old programming is exhausting and creates anxiety.

If you spend some time in that pain to figure out your childhood programming about money, the few simple steps I outline in my latest blog will change the programming and release the fight or flight stress response you experience. You can start feeling positive energy around your money and new ways to be in relationship with it and yourself. You can understand what money actually is (a medium of exchange with an assigned value), how people get money (jobs, careers, getting paid for skills, goods or services), and that money is good (because it's a medium of exchange with an assigned value that provides goods and services.) You can learn how to earn money and how to use, save or invest it wisely.

Money is good and it's good to have and spend money.

Start doing a tapping routine on your feelings around money (for more detail and instruction on tapping listen to this and watch this.

The steps of tapping will clear your negative feelings around your debt situation so money can become a supportive element in your life and you can reach the goals and pleasures you desire.

Take action, keep going, take back your power and shine your light!

Marilyn O'Malley is a certified life coach and trained at The Coaches Training Institute. As a Transformational Expert with over 5000 hours of working with highly sensitive and creative entrepreneurs and professional clients, Marilyn specializes as a Tapping Into Wealth & Success Coach and has over 30 years experience in the health profession. For more information visit

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