This is Part 2 of a series on the Economic “crisis”. In Part 1, I explained that if you’re currently stressed about money, you’re probably one of 4 kinds of people.

  1. You’re basically a homeless person. With an iPad (read Part 1 if you don’t get this.)
  2. You’re basically ok, but living in fear of losing what you have (Part 1 dealt with this fear).
  3. You’re basically ok, but you feel guilty for having more than others do (today’s post is the post for you.)
  4. You’re basically ok, but afraid AND guilty (you’re screwed. Unless you read both Parts 1 & 2.)

Aren’t we supposed to feel at least a little bit guilty?

Let’s face it. There are people out there who have less than you do. A LOT less. There are people who are struggling just to feed their families, who don’t have a proper place to live. Heck, if you expand your search globally, you can find millions of people who are worse off than you. And if you live in America, you can raise that number to billions. Wouldn’t you be a cold hearted bastard if you didn’t feel at least a little bit guilty? Aren’t we supposed to feel bad for those who are less fortunate? Isn’t NOT feeling bad the same as abandoning them? No. No. And No. Here’s why:

Your guilt does nothing to help anyone. Seriously, how is your feeling horrible going to help others feed their families? How are your pity and empathy going to raise Africans out of poverty, provide proper shelter to children living in Shantytowns, or give the homeless guy a place to plug in his iPad? The truth is, you can’t feel badly enough to make them feel better, and you can’t get poor enough to make them richer. This societal expectation that the proper response to what we perceive as suffering is more suffering, is…wait for it… bullshit. At some point, we’ve decided that a great way to measure the quality of one’s life experience is the quantity of stuff one has amassed, but that it’s also somehow inappropriate for one person to have more “stuff” than someone else, because obviously there’s only so much stuff to go around; so if one person has more than another, they should feel bad. They shouldn’t stop striving for more stuff, mind you, because obviously we all love the idea of having more crap, but when you do amass vast closets and rooms full of material wealth, you should have the decency to feel like an asshole.

Say what? Essentially, we’ve set up a system where if you win, you lose. And if you lose, you lose. There’s no possible scenario in which you get to feel good. Sure, you can take a vow of poverty, become a tree hugger and feel righteous, but if you don’t really WANT to be super poor, you’ll be a very angry, righteous tree hugger, who will then probably end up on TV and make all tree huggers look bad. Do we really want to continue to give credence to a system that will not allow us to be happy, no matter what? A system that essentially declares happiness to be inappropriate? Well, I don’t. I want to feel good, I want to help others and I want a Jacuzzi. I want to have my cake and eat it, too (possibly in the Jacuzzi.) And you should, too (but, um, not necessarily in my Jacuzzi. Get your own).

Guilt about money pushes the money away

Hopefully by now I’ve convinced you that your guilt does nothing to help others. But it also does nothing to help you. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. When you feel guilty about having money, it can push away the money, creating a never ending financial struggle in your reality. You may have more than others, but you don’t have nearly as much as you want.

Guilt is a two part belief – one part unworthiness (you’re not as good as others and therefore don’t deserve to have what you do), and one part thinking that there is a limited amount of resources and whenever you gain something, it means someone else had to lose.

This kind of belief can be formed in an infinite number of ways. Perhaps your mother used to take the “small” pork chop at the dinner table so someone else could have the “big” one, or made other similar gestures. What was probably a gesture of love would’ve almost certainly evoked guilt from you. You knew intrinsically that this kind of sacrifice wasn’t necessary. It just felt off. But you could’ve misinterpreted this “off” feeling to mean that she shouldn’t have had to make this sacrifice, because you were not worthy of it. When really, it felt off because there’s no actual scarcity and no one has to do without so that someone else can have what they want and need. This is a false belief – one that creates the scarcity!

Not convinced? Let me give you a few examples of how there’s always enough:

  • Every year, there is more money circulating through the computer systems around the world. If there was a finite amount, the amount of money would’ve stayed constant, adjusted for inflation, of course. The amount of value in the world would’ve been limited to natural resources. And yes, we keep mining and pumping out more, but not nearly enough to account for this huge influx of cash. Money simply represents value, and the value in the world has been increased by ideas, concepts, inventions, new services, etc.
  • Today, being a billionaire isn’t all that big a deal. We have tons of them. They’re a dime a dozen, really. A few years ago, that was inconceivable.
  • When we run out of one resource (like oil, or coal) we come up with a different way to produce the same result – often a better way. Solar panels provide power to millions of European homes (I’m sure the US will catch up). Electric cars no longer suck (check out the Tesla. Awesome), and the technology is no longer being squashed. They are actually becoming viable. There’s a power plant being planned in Scandinavia which uses sea water and osmosis to generate power (to be sold by IKEA, I presume).
  • Our global standard of living is the highest it’s ever been in the history of man (and certainly woman!)
  • Be honest: When you do a spring cleaning or when you move house, don’t you wonder where the hell you got so much crap? Crap that you don’t even really need? We all have way more stuff than we can even handle. How can you look at your overflowing closets and still believe in scarcity?

You don’t have to take from their pot to fill yours

When you get a raise, it isn’t because they gave someone else in your company a pay cut. When you buy an apple at the supermarket, this does not mean that a teacher will now go hungry. When you buy a house, you don’t make someone else homeless. As the demand increases, so does the supply. Of everything. We are constantly finding new ways to produce more. Whatever the public wants, the public can have. Whatever we can conceive of, dream up and imagine, there is someone out there who will find a way to actually bring it into existence. There is no scarcity. There is no limit. There’s an endless supply of Universal energy and it can be molded into whatever you want it to be. Your job is to allow that energy into your life and enjoy the hell out of it. And when you feel guilty about what you already have, you are not doing that. In fact, you’re doing the opposite.

When you feel guilty about your possessions, you are telling the Universe “I don’t like what I have. I would like to have less, please. What I have makes me feel bad.” Unless you’re a total Law of Attraction newbie, you’ll know that the Universe has no choice but to bring you more experiences that feel that exact same way. Not only will you never manifest anything that you truly want (because that would match the vibration of joy, and you’re not a match to that, you guilty bastard), but you’ll also meet up with lots and lots of sob stories that will keep you feeling as guilty as possible. People will come out of the woodwork to tell you about their hardships, how they don’t have enough money for food, clothing, health insurance. You will meet up with the worst of the worst, the most unfortunate of the most unfortunate. It’s like the Universe is saying “You think you feel guilty now? Wait until you see this! And this! And this!”

You can’t control the financial situation of other people (in fact, the poorer you are, the less opportunity you have to help them), but you can control how you feel. That’s it. That’s the only thing you can ever control. So stop feeling personally responsible for all the evil in the world, and start fixing your own vibration.

Stay out of the shit pit

You can’t possibly know why that family down the street is having the experience that they are. You can’t judge how it feels for them (only how you would feel in their place), or what their vibration is. And you can’t help them if you have nothing to give (again, your guilt doesn’t put food on their table, either.) Why worry about the fates of others? Why feel badly for them, or pity them (which is arrogant, when you really think about it). If you truly feel called to help others, you first have to get to a place where that’s actually possible.

Let’s say you see someone stuck in a pit of sewage. What do you think will be more helpful?

  1. You jump in with them, and commiserate with them about how much this sucks?
  2. You stay where you are, outside the pit, and throw them a rope so you can pull them out?

When you pity someone or feel badly for them, you are essentially jumping into that pit with them. If you truly want to help someone, make sure you get out of your own pit first. Only then can you really lend a hand.

  • What if you made enough money so that every time you saw someone in need, you could help them – not because of your guilt, but just because it felt good to do so?
  • What if every time you saw someone poorer than you, you held a vision of them, successful and prosperous and happy and therefore amplified that vibration of them so that when they’re ready to hear it, it would be easier for them to find?
  • What if instead of feeling badly for people who have less than you, you brightened their day with a smile and a joke? What if you treated them as equals, rather than people who need to be pitied and are somehow failing?
  • What if you stopped judging people by how much money or stuff they have and just connected with who they really are?
  • What if you became the one person in their lives who actually saw them that way, saw their potential, believed in them and let them know it? How do you think that would feel to them?
  • What if you started doing the same thing for yourself? What if you just started focusing on your happiness, on finding it and then sharing with others?
  • What if you finally gave yourself permission to feel good?

Now it’s your turn: is there someone in your life that you’ve been feeling badly about? Is there someone who’s been “making” you feel guilty? What’s one thing you can do to change your reaction to them? How can you change the way you look at them and interact with them? Let us know in the comments!


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  • Hey Melody, what a beautiful name. :’)
    Thank you for this article, it is reeeeally helpful, I will have to read it like for 10 times until I will feel the wasted energy coming back to me -if I make sense-. I mean, it won’t work for the first time, I have to practice to stop this guilt and sorry for people. It’s been a long time (3 months) since I started feeling sorry for people, so this shit is kinda stuck in my head haha. I always felt sorry for Africans, people who make war or people with disabilities -mental or physical. But then I realised that NOT all Africans are starving, and not only Africans. People make war because they want something from the other country, besides that that’s their own problem. People with disabilities get help too – I appreciate those people who help them so much. :’D – The thing was that I imagined that they feel so horrible and stuff. But my psychologist has told me that Africa is a very peaceful place, noone hurts them, and they usually never have mental problems like depression, so they are okay. They have a mom, who loves them, a home where they live their lives. I have to stop thinking of them, like seriously. I mean, I have so many problems… My parents are divorced, mom is ill, I have no friends, I have depression, so… It’s very important for me to stop this guilt and focus on myself. Thanks again for the article. :3

  • What if those struggling are family members and close friends? it seems that everytime I get things together and start being happy with my life and the things I’ve worked hard for ,someone in my immediate circle falls into crises and the weight is immediately put on my shoulders. I feel depressed because I do not make enough to help them with their troubles. In most situations either I pay my bills and keep a good credit standing or I help a family member in a similar position. Before I would of chosen a family member over my self without thinking twice but things have changed. I have a common economy with my partner and a newborn. I feel so guilty I can barely sleep at night. How can I enjoy a meal when I know a that a sibling, a best friend or even a parent might be struggling to make ends meet?

  • I just read this and I wish I had read it a long time ago. I had a “friend” manipulate me into letting him stay with me when he was between apartments. It was supposed to only be for 2 weeks and then he wouldn’t leave or make any effort to find a new place to live. He always tried to make me feel guilty by saying things like “Normal people don’t have clothes in their closet that they haven’t even worn yet” (despite the fact that I know a LOT of people who do and I ‘ve had weight fluctuations) or “Normal people don’t have a bunch of food in their refrigerator” and meanwhile he would do things like eat a whole box of my cereal at once and never replace anything he ate or help with any bills.
    Do you have any tips on how to deal with people like this and prevent this from happening in the future? I did feel guilty and want to help and I let this person’s friends beg me to let him stay and even his mom thanked me for him not having to move back in and I wound up in a huge mess.

    • Hey Late,

      My advice on this is rather simple. It sounds like everyone was thanking you for taking this huge user off their hands. It wasn’t a thank you for being such a good person, it was a thank you for not making them deal with his mess. Loser gots to go.

      Having said that, it’s clear that you have an issue with guilt – you want to help and you don’t want to be the bad guy and you’re afraid of making a mistake and judging someone to be a user when they may actually need your help. And so you err on the side of giving, even when you no longer want to. You put them first, just in case.

      But here’s the thing: you can’t ever put them first. When you do, you will always resent it. If you help someone, let it be because you truly want to, not because you feel obligated to. If you don’t feel truly inspired to help (and then it will feel great), you may not actually be doing them a favor at all. Perhaps this young man needs to hit rock bottom before he can feel empowered enough to take care of himself.

      Watch my video on a negative sense of entitlement, and I think you’ll get an insight into this individual’s psyche. You can find that here:

      It’s not your job to save the world. Learn to say no and honor how you truly feel. And then, when you do feel inspired to help others (and you will, because you clearly have the intention to), you will actually help them. And you’ll both feel better for it. 🙂

      Huge hugs!

  • Melody,
    Thank you for this article about feeling guilty about having more money than others. For the last 15 years I have been working hard to clear my financial block. I am an intutitve and I remove emotional blocks for my clients, but I was having a very difficult time finding my emotional/financial block until I read the words “vow of poverty” i your article! It was as though the tumbler on my mental safe finally got the last number of the combination-something clicked. The next words that came to me were, “BE JUST LIKE JESUS.”

    I’m sharing this with you in case another reader was religiously conditioned without knowing it. In my mind “being just like Jesus” has so many powerful righteous connotations that can quickly limit someone with a righteousness that is not always appropriate in this day and age. Financially, being just like Jesus can conjure up the image of Jesus flipping tables in the temple (Yes, Jesus was the original table flipper and not Teresa Guidice from the Real Housewives of New Jersey) and condemming the traders and money changers. This is such a powerful, controlling and obviously limiting image and concept to have wedged in my mind- from childhood conditioning no doubt.

    Your candid and direct article was perfect for breaking through my financial block. I knew I had a guilt about money and I have extracted several other issues surrounding money: issues of slave mentality ( African American slaves were not allowed to have or own money once upon a time), greed, betrayal, jealousy and even the fear of being stolen from, or killed for money. What a mental mess!

    However once I found your article, it was the missing piece of the puzzle I have been looking for. I just wanted to say you wrote a tremendous article! I will refer my clients to your site. Keep writing. You have a new fan!

    • Wow Masheri,

      Thank you so much for taking the time to write this comment and give me this feedback as well as sharing your own story. We all carry a tremendous amount of beliefs with us, many of which we picked up from our surroundings, family, culture and community. None of them make rational sense, but we have them, just the same.

      I’m so glad that this post helped you. And I’m certain that your comment will also help others who come here identify some of their own beliefs. Often, just naming those thoughts helps to create a shift. 🙂

      I hope to hear from you again!

      Huge hugs!

  • Hey Melody,

    Very interesting post. I think you’re right about not feeling guilty about having something others don’t. Sometimes you just can’t help it. I’d love to help everyone around the world who doesn’t have as much as me, but I know I can’t. And it doesn’t help anyone to feel bad about it.

    I think it’s good to get rid of that scarcity mentality too. However, while scarcity usually doesn’t exist, it does sometimes. For example, not everyone can buy an original Van Gogh painting. But in general, most things aren’t really scarce at all and it’s better to get rid of that mentality like you suggest.

    • Ah yes, not everyone can buy a Van Gogh painting, but everyone can get what it was they think they needed the painting for. I know that sounds like an argument for minimalism, but it’s not. It’s just a different perspective. Why do I want the painting? Is it really just because I enjoy looking at it, or is there another reason? Why does it have to be an original? Is it because of the status? To gain approval or admiration from others? Once you go down that rabbit hole, there’s no telling what you’ll find. 🙂


  • Hi Melody,

    Feeling fear because the world is in ‘Crisis’ is not helpful for us and it is a single sided view from the western rich world. For poor people living in East Europe or in China, there is no crisis. They have ‘Growth’

    Feeling guilty about having more than the ‘poor’ others is the other side of the emotional illusion. It is only if we associate ourselves with our ‘stuff’ and our high standards of living, that we feel guilty that we have more than them. The truth is that we can only live our life the best we can – and that’s what we have in common with them.

    I agree fully with you that you should not feel guilty for others. Guilt is the illusion that we are better than them. It is a false perception and we should change our perception and balance our own emotions.

    Thanks for sharing!

    • Hi Marc,

      Thanks so much for adding your valuable comments. I’ve come to the conclusion that pity is actually kind of an arrogant emotion. It denies the other person’s power. This doesn’t mean we can’t help, but we should do that from an inspired point of view, not from a pitying one. Seeing others as “less than” never really helps anyone. There are countless examples of how well meaning “help” actually left communities worse off in the long run because it disempowered people. It’s the whole, “Don’t give a hand-out, give a hand up” principle. 🙂

      Huge hugs,

  • Hi Melody! I hope you don´t mind me not answering your call directely (if you do, I´ll change my attitude in the future!).
    Basically I agree with your explications about our potentialities concerning money and other values – reality is no zero sum situation. As we can´t help a sick person by giving some of our physical wellbeing to them, this doesn´t apply to financial wellbeing either. Excellentely explained!

    Our collective and individual feelings of guilt are like a cultural achievement which came with our recognition of human rights and ideas of emancipation. So they are (generally) a relict of a formerly progressive worldview – conceiving inequalities as a manmade iniquity to be conquered.
    Due to our sense of justice, we are well trained to deal with them by suppressing our own needs and wants. Long long tradition. There are still many spiritual teachers out there, who preach us to be of service to the world (means, there might be a conflict in need, which has to be resolved a certain way) as an indispensible component of our own enlightment and wellbeing. It´s a tricky thing to turn away from other peoples perceived hardships then – but it´s time.
    The hard part of it is, and here is my response to your call, if people are concerned which are very close to you, generally family. How can you not get affected by their hardships and pains, even if you know that they are self-inflicted and come from a calamitous belief system? You are affected, and generally it´s deeply held in your blood line, most of us have a family history of acute shortage and loss. So many of us (conciously or unconciously) carry an engergetic burden of an unspoken degration of hardships and humilitations with us – don´t we? I feel it that way. We have to go way back to look at our wounds and flawed beliefs. Even if we don´t feel guilty about other peoples hardships, we don´t want to walk alone, don´t want to leave them (their belief system). You can loose what you leave. I did.

    Very important subject. Thanks!

    • Of course not Sara! LOL. You can comment any way you like. 🙂

      I’ve partially addressed the issue of being affected by our family in this video: Can the Negative Thoughts of Others Influence Us?. But you bring up a really important point – that we don’t want to walk alone. And when we release our own beliefs and our family doesn’t, can it lead to a split? Well, yes, it can. I had very little contact with several members of my family for years – we always seemed to rub each other the wrong way, and I couldn’t grow out of this old energy while I was around them. So I left. I’ve since reconnected with them and they react very differently to me now (even though I was the one who changed). But I had to take the risk of leaving and losing them for good in order to gain perspective. There’s never any guarantee of an outcome, and I can’t tell others what to do, but for me, how I felt and my own well being ultimately had to take priority. I could not stay unhappy just to try and make them happy (doesn’t work, anyway). They were not the source of my unhappiness, but they are also “carriers” of many of my old belief systems, and so while I was around them, I couldn’t break free. Now, they still have those beliefs, but I no longer do. So I can be around them without being triggered. It’s fascinating, really. We can’t suffer enough to alleviate someone else’s suffering. All we can do is concentrate on our own happiness and then, if possible, uplift those that we left behind to do so. It’s like you’re climbing out of the family pit. You’re going to have to leave them (sometimes, quite literally) for a while, in order to become well and only then, can you possibly help them out of that same pit (if they will let you). The only other option is to stay in the pit forever.

      I always love your perspective!


      • Hi Melody and Sara,

        What an interesting discussion! For many of us, becoming an adult includes breaking with old beliefs. Thus the incredibly difficult teen years – plus wacko hormones thrown in just for fun. Menopause can be a bit the same way, empty nest, unbalanced hormones…

        One of my daughters needed physical distance; for awhile she went to Kenya, the furthest she could get and be on the same planet. At the time, I didn’t understand at all and was terribly hurt. Ten lonely years later, we came around to an amazing adult relationship. Her independently achieved perspective enriches my understanding of everything. What an honor to be her mother!

        Nobody needs to be the bad guy here. Just different.

        More hugs,

        Mary Carol

        • Hi Melody and Carol, thanks for your responses both!
          “You can´t suffer enough to alleviate so. elses suffering” hits the nail on the head for me.
          In my experience there is no benefit in compromising, persevering or trying hard, when you feel hurt most of the time; turning away is the only option then (asap!).
          And, against all the odds, it doesn´t feel better with time, but the feeling of horror gets clearer and clearer about what you had been bearing for so long, which is a healing experience for me.
          Yeah: don´t get trapped in the illusion of sacrifice for the benefit of anything. There must always be a better solution, though we may not always find it in time. (But losses will be compensated with interest for sure, if you keep it rolling :-)).

  • My favorite line of this post:

    “At some point, we’ve decided that a great way to measure the quality of one’s life experience is the quantity of stuff one has amassed,…”

    How true, and how sad. But not that hard to change, personally, one garbage day, one trip to the thrift store, and one garage sale at a time. Easy and drastic way to downsize: change countries with only what you can put in the back of your truck. Kind of like a quantum leap of vibration. Woohoo!

    Hugs and shiny happy puppy days to all,

    Mary Carol

    • I’ll do you one better, Mary Carol: Move to another country with only what you can carry on your back, LOL. I’ve done that several times and it’s really liberating. Of course, I’ve since accumulated a bunch more stuff and furniture, but I could easily get rid of it all tomorrow and move on. When you’ve let go of your possessions several times, you realize what’s really important. And it ain’t “stuff”. It’s memories and knowledge and connections with people. Friendships and love and smiles and happiness. No big screen TV is going to give you that. A Jacuzzi might… ;D


  • Melody, what a wonderful exploration of a complex issue. Thank you!

    I especially love the list at the end. Giving can be more work than receiving, but so worth it. Each suggestion comes down to giving without strings, giving without lowering your vibration. Yeah!

    One point of clarification: We’re living today so abundantly because we are using stored energy. Millions of years of earth-time went into creating the oil, coal, etc we blithely burn up daily. When it’s gone, in human-years-time, there’s no more. The best we can do, both for ourselves and for the planet, is as much as possible use today’s energy to fill our needs. Let the sun dry our clothes. Use glass and cloth instead of plastic (an oil product). As you mention, solar and wind energy are current energy, endless, and don’t deplete anything.

    One of the things I especially love about your blog is that people participate from all over the world. We are so connected as a planet. To me, that’s the best possible outcome of technology.

    Namaste to all, and thank you again, Melody,

    Mary Carol

    • Hi Mary Carol,

      I totally agree. Technology is allowing us to realize our connection more and more. Really, I see what’s happening now as a marriage of all the best parts of past eras: We are returning to simpler times in many ways, rediscovering natural foods, living in harmony with the earth, sole proprietorships instead of huge conglomerates, but also using today’s technology to give us the comforts and ease we didn’t have in the past. A marriage of consciousness and technology. What could be better? And yes, I know that this change hasn’t happened everywhere yet, it’s just starting, but if you look for it, you’ll see evidence everywhere. Yay! What an awesome time to be alive. 🙂


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