I’ve loved coffee since at the age of 18, when I discovered that in Costa Rica coffee is cheaper than water. A lactose intolerant bean since a tender age, I wasn’t on the latte train until much later than my coffee drinking counterparts. Though I have long envied the swirls and sways of white cream mixing with dark black coffee. So, I imagine I probably hugged the first barista who told me almond milk was an option for an additional charge. I feel the giddiness of that first moment in every latte I order. I still feel like it’s the newest treat in the world even though non-milk lattes are a life staple to me now.
So this morning as I approached an unfamiliar counter and spotted a non-milk option on the menu, I couldn’t help but order a coconut milk latte instead of the drip coffee I’d intended. And then, I did the same thing I do every time I order a coconut milk latte, torment myself with the relentlessness of a mosquito in the middle of the night.
Each time I make the order, that first delicious sip is both preceded and followed by, an immense guilt. Guilt over having blown another $5 that I’ve somehow convinced myself will further erode the chances of me every being financially stable, owning a new car or having kids. Guilt over the frivolous nature of my quick decisions. Guilt over my lack of strong willpower when it comes to choosing something basic over something decadent.
But today’s latte also came with something new and it wasn’t one of those glorious mini cookies you sometimes get, it was insight. Lately I’ve been intensely fixated on my financial standing. I’ve noticed that every single time I spend money I’m overwhelmed with dread and fear and remorse. So much that I sometimes wonder if I could become a breatharian* to save on food bills. My guilt overtakes every nice experience I afford myself. Raw chocolate cake? Well that certainly wouldn’t taste the same without being soaked in the sweet drizzle of remorse.
My financial fixation has me in manifestation mode. In my mind, my pursuit of abundant manifestion involves me welcoming the Universe’s gifts with only high-vibration, positive thoughts, acting as the high powered magnet that I know I am. But the reality is much, much different. Each purchase - which happens a few times per day - is tightly sandwiched by guilt bread. And it’s a dense sandwich.
Since this method of manifestation has yet to shower me with its riches, I thought it safe to try something different. What is the opposite of hating that I spent money? Could it be gratitude? Why wouldn’t I be grateful that I get to drink this dope coconut latte? Grateful for this organic juice? Grateful to have clean laundry? This theory went into practice. When I was grateful for it, the latte tasted better and I savoured every sip. I enjoyed the experience. I had, after all, purchased it for this reason, not so I could walk around berating myself for my beverage choice. Not only does that method of being just plain suck but energetically, what kind of signals have I been sending the Universe? When I spend I’m losing something I’ll never get back? Well shit. That's not what I want. How bout ‘I am grateful and I appreciate all of the things I receive from the you.’ I mean, it certainly has a nicer ring to it. This is what I’m working with now. Gratitude instead of guilt. It’s about to become my new gauge for where I need more gratitude. Where I'm throwing around pointless guilt-bombs, I know I need to be throwing a gratitude-bomb instead. They land better.
*someone who survives off air instead of food and water