The dance between addiction and money stress


(You can also listen to this podcast from iTunes, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Breaker, Pocket Casts, and RadioPublic)


Sometimes, as life happens, we lose sight of why we do what we do.

More often than not, as we take a bit of time to recall why we are so busy doing things, we may discover that the busy-ness is usually to deal with or avoid some stress and fear.


Hindsight view is 20/20 – so clear.

Looking back, I could see how the achievement addiction I had correlated with the unconscious belief I had about money. These two fed each other in my subconscious mind in a vicious cycle for years until I experienced burnout.

What a start it was to dismantle these two unconscious forces in my life then.


Let me share with you my story.


Due to the traumas that I experienced in my birth process and growing up (you could hear more of my story in this episode), my unconscious core need was to secure support and connections to feel safe. This need will continue to stay on until I die, in different degrees and forms.


When I was four years old, my father had a severe car accident. We were grateful he didn’t die, yet the close encounter with death impacted our family deeply. Since then, my parents raised me as their first (alive) child with the intention that if anything ever happened to them, I’d be able to take care of my siblings.


I grew up fast, consequently. The unconscious strategy that I went for then was to learn as many life skills as possible to save myself and help others attain safety. There was this feeling that I would be safe when everyone was too.


Over the years, these life skills became my strengths and, eventually, my personality.


I ended up naturally in roles and situations which required me to face crises. Crisis always brings with it an invitation to transform. This continues until today as I feel at home to play a role as an enabler of a transformation. In the past, I did this for organizations. These days I do it for individuals. Such opportunities happened so often in my life, even way before I started to enter the workplace.


Up to the end of 2008, I paid a high price in this path, however. I didn’t allow myself to ask for help, and I stretched myself so thin for so long. As I was doing everything to keep “everyone safe”, I put myself last. Thirty-four years of existence doing this led me to burnout in December 2008.

In hindsight, I could see that the achievement addiction I had was my continuous efforts to experience the feeling of safety and connections.

It was shocking to realize it at first. Yet I made peace with it. In that, I made peace with what happened and the choices that I made, consciously and unconsciously.


So, how did the money stress fit into this?

Up to the burnout, I had an unconscious habit of sharing what I earned with the people I cared about, especially my parents. This was the same unconscious strategy that I had to feel safe. I shared what I have so everyone can feel “safe”.


My parents never asked me to do so. I just did it. They appreciated this although they were very concerned that I didn’t save the money for me. I remembered telling them not to worry about me.


The truth was, now that I could see it, the hidden (unconscious) reason why I was not saving enough for myself was that I was very uncomfortable with money as energy. I’d even label it as a fear.

This fear came from what I observed in my extended and immediate family system that became an active unconscious program in my subconscious mind – the beliefs such as “money ruins family”, “money breaks relationships”, “money induces distrust”, etc.

In my subconscious mind, money was a threat to my core needs, which is to attain support and connections with others.


Can you see how these unconscious beliefs and programs about money that I had made me feel unsafe?

In the past, whenever I earned money (and making money was never an issue), I felt unsafe. To feel safer, I had to work even more. Work was the primary way to attain a feeling of safety.  This goes on and on and on that, it became a vicious (unconscious) cycle for years.


Then burnout happened. It was an invitation to stop, rest and reset. It was an invitation to start over.

I can see how all these are connected.


For so long, money was more of a stressor than it was a welcome resource. For a long time, the beliefs I had about money fed the achievement addiction that I had.


Thankfully, this has changed since!!


And this is what this podcast episode is about.

Ilana JankowitzMy conversation with Ilana Jankowitz, a Certified Mindful Money Coach and NLP Practitioner based in Zurich, Switzerland, is about how our existing money beliefs, habits, and patterns (represented by the Archetypes) contribute to the stress and fear we have.

We are also discussing financial abuse, how addiction and money stress correlates and rooted in the same wound and what needs to be done to change these. Ilana gives us some practical tips and tools to help you be more aware of your existing archetype as the first step in changing your relationship with money.

Ilana helps entrepreneurs look for new opportunities and grow their businesses by showing them how to develop a great relationship with money and set in motion the action steps they need to take to live their true purpose.


Enjoy and remember to share it with others.






00:00     Welcome

03:45     Introduction to Ilana Jankowitz of Mindful Money Coaching and her personal story in transforming her limiting money stress, belief, fears and destructive habits.

10:00     The difference between Financial Planner and Mindful Money Coach.

12:46     What archetypes in money coaching mean and what they are. Why it is helpful to know to change your money mindset.

20:30    Example of how the archetypes play out in our money decision. How these archetypes show up in us.

26:05    How (unconscious) guilt sabotages our efforts to change our money mindset.

31:00    Financial abuse – what it is and how it plays out in our life, the inner work to be done to move into a healthier relationship. The common root cause of addiction and money stress and what to do about it.

45:55     Steps to change your money mindset and available supports to help you. Do the Money Mindset free quiz

49:00    Summary of this discussion. How to stay in touch with Ilana Jankowitz.


I’d love to hear from you. Please write to me at for input, feedback and suggestions. Thank you!


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Copyrights etc.:

Music used in this episode: “On My Way” by Kevin MacLeod (

Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License