Is Counseling Worth the Money? Re-thinking money and how we spend it.


Before I can answer that question, I believe we need to talk about some underlying beliefs about money. Money is one of those interesting things where the majority of people are usually thinking and making decisions based on their finances and yet in many cultures, talking about one’s money is taboo! We all know that money, either in cash or digits on a screen, is not what we desire but rather what money represents.

I remember going to Nairobi, Kenya to do training with some amazing teachers who serve in the slums and doing a money exercise. My co-facilitator took out the country‘s largest bill and ripped it in half as a demonstration of our unconscious beliefs about money. As you can probably guess, most of them were shocked and looked like they were about to have a heart attack! Upon some self-reflection, the reason for such reaction is because money often represents more abstract values that we hold dear such as security, opportunities, and even identity.

Since money is so precious for most people, deciding what to buy really comes down to value or worth. Is this purchase really worth it for this price point? Spending money is usually not a problem if you feel like you are getting the value. For example, if you were to spend $10 on a piece of gum, most people would probably decline and say “What a rip off!” or “That better be the best tasting gum in the world!” But if you were asked to pay $10 for a brand new BMW sports car, most people would gladly give up their $10! Why is there such a drastically different response even though both of them require you to spend $10? It is because of the value you get in exchange.

Now let’s bring it back to counseling. Counseling is worth the money only if you get the value in return. What value may that be? We talked about how money often represents things like security, peace of mind, opportunities, and even identity. I believe that counseling can provide all of those things and much more! There is a Chinese saying that essentially goes “If you have poor health, then you have nothing.” What this quote is saying is that even if you have all the money in the world but you are sick, then even the things that are enjoyable are no longer enjoyable for you. What a shame! Being healthy both mentally and emotionally are crucial to being able to enjoy your life. It allows you to live fully and think clearly about living meaningfully. Knowing who you are and having healthy relationships is what life is all about; it is priceless. The best investment of your money is to invest in your healing and growth. Love yourself and others better by investing in yourself. For other entries, follow my blog

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