LOST AND FOUND is a dazzling, provocative and in fact radical template for liberating ourselves from old patterns, and transforming how we feel and behave about the precious resources that should, and ultimately can, sustain and support our lives. If it seems impossible to read a funny, brilliant, irresistible book about money that you can’t put down, turn to the first page of Lost and Found.
A note to my readers:
“When my husband and I lost thirty years of our life’s savings a few years ago, I was devastated. One of the first things I did was to use what I’d been teaching for years–a particular way of working with my mind and heart–to bring myself back to myself. I needed to find out what was on the other side of not only my loss, but any loss. What I found was so much greater than what I’d lost, and that was how and why I started writing LOST AND FOUND.
Within a few weeks after hearing about the loss, I began getting very interested in the relationship with money, and almost immediately saw that it had everything–and I mean everything–in common with the relationship with food. If, as Zen teacher Cheri Huber says, the way we do anything is the way we do everything, then it followed that the way I thought about and spent money was exactly the same as the way I (once) thought about and ate food. This, believe me, was not exactly a comforting revelation.
I’d never really considered that I had a distorted relationship with money because I had enough to eat, pay rent, have health insurance, buy chocolate. Since my relationship with money did not even begin to approach the extremes of my relationship with food, I thought that money and me were fine. I knew I was somewhat anxious about it, and I knew I perpetually feared that I was not going to have enough, but since I wasn’t in credit card debt, and wasn’t acting out my feelings about money in any kind of obvious way, I figured that all was fine.
But what I found out after I lost my money was staggering. If I could put big neon lights around the word “staggering,” if I could do cartwheels when I say it, if I could get across how stunned, and yet how illuminated I felt when I began exploring my relationship with money, I would do that now. I hardly have the words to tell you what it was like to see the exact same patterns with money as I’d once had with food. I splurged the way I once binged, and budgeted the way I once dieted. I lied about the money I had in the same way that I once lied about how much I ate. I rationalized buying sweaters on sale in the same way that I once rationalized eating broken cookies (because when the cookies break the calories break).
Then, when I began talking to other people about their relationships with money, it became almost instantly obvious that talking about and exploring the world of money is more taboo than food ever was. Most people seemed as if they’d rather talk about the intimate details of their sex lives than talk to me about money. Most people didn’t even realize the burden, the anxieties and the shame they were carrying about their relationships with money–and how that was affecting everything they did, said, felt. And so I became increasingly more fascinated with the financial arena because I saw that it wasn’t about the amount we have, it was about what we tell ourselves about money. Just like with food, it wasn’t about anything, not anything, out there. It was always, and is always, about our own stories and the suffering we endure when we believe what’s not true.
As I began exploring my relationship with money, I learned more things about my relationship with food (which, of course, was another staggering thing, since I thought I’d gone all the way with food). And what I learned with food applied to money, and the very same tools I’d developed to deal with food helped me with money.
It’s a different life now with me and money–not because of the amount of money I have, but because my whole relationship to it has changed. I no longer feel as if I am groping around in financial darkness; I no longer get a headache anytime someone starts talking to me about money. I am in an ongoing exploration about the whole question of enough. Remember that old adage, “You can never be too thin or too rich”? It’s not true.
I wrote LOST AND FOUND because I wanted you to know what I discovered. I wanted you to be able to have the knowledge and the tools to not only come out of the darkness with money, no matter how much you have or don’t have, but to turn the light on inside your own mind, your own heart. Money, like food, is something you touch, think about, and deal with every single day, and so its effect on your well-being is profound. And because of its presence in our lives, it, like food, is both an expression of our beliefs about worth, joy and enough and a doorway to the heart of your heart–and what you are truly worth.
I can’t wait to hear what you find when you read LOST AND FOUND. I want to know what you discover about your own value. I want to know what you understand about having and being enough that you didn’t know before. Write to me on Facebook. Come see me at one of the LOST AND FOUND events. Together we will find what can never be lost: the bright center of your very own life.”
For more information, please visit www.geneenroth.com
Eckhart Tolle speaks with Geneen Roth about her awakening process and the inspirational books she has written. Geneen also leads a special guided meditation. Click here!