Help With Money Step 1 – Making Peace With The Past

Future Past + Presence

Quick Recap: I found myself £1,400 overdrawn, I joined the Man Versus Debt website, I purchased three finance books: Your Money or Your Life by Vicki Robin and Joe Dominguez, The TOTAL Money Make Over by Dave Ramsay and I Will Teach You to be Rich by Ramit Sethi, I took the very best advice they had, I created 17 Needy Helper financial steps and here I am sharing them with you.

The first step is called Making Peace With the Past and it is an idea that came from the first book I read called our Money or Your Life by Vicki Robin and Joe Dominguez. This step is designed for you to start feeling a little bit more powerful when it comes to money.

Financial Step 1: How much money have I earned in my lifetime (gross)?

At first this task may seem unachievable because your mind will start to ask questions like, “where am I going to find all of that information?” But it is important to remember the point of the exercise before you succumb to that little voice.

This exercise will give you a clear picture of how powerful you are at bringing money into your life. It eliminates vagueness or self-delusion in this area, instills confidence, facilitates goal setting and most important of all it is good practice for any business to know this; and you are a business.

When you understand why you are completing this task then you can see that you do not need to have the accuracy of William Tell. In the UK we have a piece of paper called the P60 and it is given to us annually by our employer. It tells you how much money you have earned and how much tax you have paid. I have most of my P60’s filed away in my own filing system, and for the ones that were missing I could estimate my income. Then for the years prior to my railway life I once again made an estimation of the money that has gone in and out of my pockets. Outside of my working income I included loans, mortgages and money that I have made through gambling and gifts.

Action: Treat your life like a business and create your own personal filing system for paperwork appertaining to finance, health, insurance, house, etc.

One of my bucket list goals is to one day become a millionaire, and this exercise showed me that I have very nearly been one! Between my birth and my 37th birthday I have earned close to one million pounds. My estimated figure came to £919,614,30 and I know the actual figure will be somewhat higher than this.

Lessons I learned

1. I have the capacity to earn a lot of income.

2. I have very little to show for the money that has passed through my fingers.

3. I have to start investing now.

4. Materialistic goods have not given me the happiness I thought they had.

5. Money has not given me the happiness I thought it would.

Photo courtesy of h.koppdelaney (cc &


  1. Hi Lee,

    Very good article and also excellent advice. However, putting it into practice is not often the hard part, it is the sticking with it, after you have begun to see some progress.


    • Lee Davy says:

      Hi Pat,

      I am making some excellent progress. I have my first budget scheduled for June and I am so excited about it. Stay tuned to the blog and I will share everything with you.


  2. Hi, I look forward to hearing more from you. It is a bit scary to see how much we’ve brought in and what we have to show for all that money.

    • Lee Davy says:


      It is a sobering exercise. I must admit when I first did it I thought what is the point, but it made me realise how wasteful I have been, how fortunate I have been and how illusory the benefits of money really are. I mean don’t get me wrong I want to earn a lot of money, but I will using it for much better things than to buy myself the very best electronic gadgets or boozing down the pub for example.


  3. Hi Lee,

    Like the “Lessons Learned” section best 🙂 Though the totaling up of all income was very interesting.


  4. That was definitely a thought-provoking article! Thanks for sharing your experience with us along with a bit of sage advice!

    • Lee Davy says:

      Hi Sandra,

      I am glad that you got something from it. I am going through a financial renaissance at the moment and will share every step with the readers of this blog.



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