You Are a Badass at Making Money: Book Overview

This article is an excerpt from the Shortform book guide to "You Are a Badass at Making Money" by Jen Sincero. Shortform has the world's best summaries and analyses of books you should be reading.

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Do you ever feel financially stuck or unable to make enough money to live the life you want? How can a change in mindset get you more money?

In You Are a Badass at Making Money, Jen Sincero gives advice on identifying your unconscious beliefs about money. Additionally, you’ll be able to think more optimistically about your finances.

Read below for a brief You Are a Badass at Making Money book overview.

You Are a Badass at Making Money by Jen Sincero

Do you feel like a lack of money is holding you back from reaching your goals? According to Jen Sincero in her You Are a Badass at Making Money book, the key to breaking out of a financial rut is thinking about money with greater optimism and confidence. She argues that by ridding yourself of underlying, limiting beliefs about money, identifying your aspirations, and trusting in the universe, you can become wealthy enough to live the life that represents your best, most authentic self. 

Sincero is a motivational speaker, success coach, and New York Times bestselling author. By sharing her experience going from a struggling freelance writer to a successful author and self-help expert, she aims to help others achieve their personal and professional goals. Sincero’s other books include her original self-help book You Are a Badass and its follow-up You Are a Badass Every Day

Shift Your Beliefs About Money From Negative to Positive

According to Sincero, the best thing you can do to change your relationship with money is to change the way you think about money. If you address the beliefs that hold you back from chasing your aspirations, nothing will stop you from achieving financial success. Sincero states that “financial success” means being able to pay for the things you need to live the life that represents your best self. It’s not necessarily outrageous wealth. 

For example, if you’re fulfilled by going to new places and meeting new people, financial success might mean making enough money to travel to multiple countries for several months every year. Or, if you’ve always wanted to start a family, financial success might mean being able to support a household comfortably.

In this section, we’ll examine how our thought patterns shape every aspect of our reality, including our financial reality. We’ll also explain how the subconscious self prevents us from taking the risks necessary to succeed financially. Finally, we’ll discuss some of the most common negative subconscious beliefs about money. 

Money and the Subconscious Self

To begin changing your unhelpful views of money, Sincero argues that you must address your subconscious thoughts first—those that you’re not actively aware of, but that still influence your behavior. You likely have positive conscious views about money—namely that your life would be better with more of it—but your subconscious views might reflect a different story.

You’re born without any inherent views on money, but as you grow up, your life experiences and the beliefs of the people who surround you impact you. Your subconscious catalogs these influences before you’re old enough to understand their nuances and contexts, and they become subconscious values that guide your behavior into adulthood. 

For example, say you grew up in a low-income household, but you had an uncle who made a lot of money and lived a lavish lifestyle. You often overheard your parents talking about how your uncle was selfish and didn’t want to spend time with your family after he achieved financial success. Therefore, you grew up viewing wealth as something that drives people apart and changes people’s personalities, and you subconsciously avoid accumulating wealth as an adult. 

Beliefs About Money That Hold Us Back

Now that we’ve examined the role the subconscious plays in our perceptions of and behaviors related to money, let’s take a look at a couple of examples of subconscious negative beliefs about money. Sincero asserts that many of us share these beliefs, as they’re a common part of societal messaging about money. We’ll also discuss her counterarguments for these beliefs.  

Belief #1: Money Is Wicked and Immoral 

According to Sincero, our society views money as something that’s inherently wicked. Therefore, it’s seen as immoral to have a lot of wealth. People who hold this belief will struggle to achieve financial success because, as we suggested earlier, when you think of money as bad, it won’t come to you. 

To support the idea that money is wicked, people point to unsavory actions and injustices that seemingly happen because money is involved. For example, someone with this view might use a story of a wealthy person embezzling money from his clients to become even richer as evidence that money is evil and leads to immoral actions. However, such examples are the fault of the perpetrators, not the money itself. Money on its own is neutral, and we’re responsible for giving it meaning

Belief #2: Being Wealthy Means Taking From Others

Another common negative belief about money Sincero identifies is that becoming wealthy requires taking resources from someone else. This belief makes us feel guilty about making a lot of money. 

However, making the money you need to be the best version of yourself doesn’t actually mean taking from others. The idea that it does stems from a harmful scarcity mindset—the false belief that there aren’t enough resources for everyone. 

In reality, any wealth you accumulate sets you up to help others because money gives you the power to implement beneficial change. For example, wealthy individuals can donate large sums of money to charities, scientific research, and other worthy causes. 

Manifest Your Aspirations for Wealth

Once you begin working on the way you think about money, you can begin actualizing the financial success you aspire to. In this section, we’ll discuss three of Sincero’s strategies for financial success: 

  1. Define the reasons behind your financial aspirations.
  2. Believe in the universe.
  3. Commit to your dreams.

Strategy #1: Define What You Want and Why You Want It

To achieve financial success, Sincero asserts that you must clearly define why you want the money and what you want it for. Having a general desire to be wealthy isn’t enough, as you’ll likely have to take a lot of risks and push yourself to reach your financial goals. To overcome the fear and difficulty that comes with these challenges, you need something powerful to motivate you to keep going. Having clear reasons for wanting to accumulate wealth will serve as that motivation. 

The more specific you can be about your reasons, the more real they’ll seem, and the more emotionally tied to your financial goals you’ll be. As we stated previously, emotions push us to act, so the stronger you feel about your goals, the more likely you are to take actions that make them a reality. 

For example, maybe your dream has always been to travel, so you motivate yourself to make money by imagining the joy and excitement you’ll experience when you visit far-flung destinations. You might define this dream further by writing down all the places you want to visit and the things you’ll do there. Or, maybe you’ve always dreamed of opening your own coffee shop and community space. You think about how more money will allow you to fulfill this dream and feel satisfied every day knowing you’re working toward doing something you love. To define this dream further, you might write down some ideas for names for your shop or make a list of the drinks you’ll serve.

Strategy #2: Believe That the Universe Will Provide What You Need

Once you identify your financial goals and how more money will benefit your life, Sincero states that you must nurture your belief that the universe will provide you with everything that you want. You must always be open to the opportunities the universe is ready to provide for you and have faith that you’ll reach your goals, even if you don’t yet know how. 

According to Sincero, one of the best ways to engage positively with the energy of the universe is by practicing gratitude. The universe wants you to become the best version of yourself—being grateful shows that you understand that and you wish to send the love back. If you put out loving thoughts and feelings via gratitude, the love of the universe will come back to you in the form of success and opportunities. 

Additionally, being grateful means you can approach any situation in a positive way, including difficult ones. Every situation can be a chance for positive growth. When you have setbacks and painful experiences, you can look at them as learning opportunities instead of failures or misfortunes. This keeps you moving forward toward your goals, financial or otherwise, instead of holding you back in a mindset of bitterness or discontent.

To practice gratitude, Sincero suggests writing down 10 things that you’re grateful for before you go to sleep every night. Second, note down five things that are upsetting, frightening, or irritating in your life right now. Then, write down a reason to feel gratitude toward these five things. 

Strategy #3: Commit Fully to Your Financial Goals

Once you place your trust in the universe’s ability to provide what you need, Sincero argues that you must commit fully to your dreams and financial goals. Committing fully means letting go of your contingency plans and making a conscious decision to pursue the path that helps you acquire the money you want.  

Committing is important because it shifts your mindset—when you focus all your energy on meeting your true goal instead of spreading it between your different contingency options, you begin looking for ways to make it come true. You’re more willing to take risks, and you have to believe that it’ll work out. There must be at least some chance of the plan working out because you wouldn’t have chosen it in the first place if you didn’t believe it could work.

Take One Immediate Action That Will Help You Reach Your Goal

If you’re struggling to commit to your financial goals, Sincero suggests choosing one action that will put you on the path toward building wealth. This action should be something that you can do presently and that feels out of your comfort zone. For instance, taking out a loan for your new business might be the first uncomfortable but necessary step toward acquiring the wealth you desire. Another example could be quitting your stable job to go back to school for a new, more lucrative, and more enjoyable career path. 

If any limiting subconscious views about money arise because of this first action, write them down. Additionally, if you identify any limiting views, allow yourself to feel any associated emotions, recognize the emotions, and release them

For example, you might hold the subconscious view that sticking with a seemingly stable career path is more important than doing something you enjoy but that’s less stable (even if you could eventually make more money doing it). When you pause and think about how this view has hindered you, you might feel disappointed that you spent so long doing something you disliked. You might also still experience some fear that you’re making the wrong choice and throwing away a solid career. 

After identifying the subconscious views that were hindering you and processing the resulting emotions, visualize the positive things that might happen as a result of you taking this action. For example, you might imagine yourself getting your dream job after graduating, or you might envision buying all the things you’ve been saving up for when you have a higher-paying job. 

You Are a Badass at Making Money: Book Overview

———End of Preview———

Like what you just read? Read the rest of the world's best book summary and analysis of Jen Sincero's "You Are a Badass at Making Money" at Shortform.

Here's what you'll find in our full You Are a Badass at Making Money summary:

  • How your limiting beliefs about money are holding you back from wealth
  • How to rid yourself of your underlying beliefs about money
  • Why being wealthy does not mean taking from others

Katie Doll

Somehow, Katie was able to pull off her childhood dream of creating a career around books after graduating with a degree in English and a concentration in Creative Writing. Her preferred genre of books has changed drastically over the years, from fantasy/dystopian young-adult to moving novels and non-fiction books on the human experience. Katie especially enjoys reading and writing about all things television, good and bad.

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