Nav.it has a very specific philosophy regarding psychology, life, and money. To sum it up and as Mr. Dupri said so eloquently: “Money ain’t a thang.” Let’s begin with the classic proverb: “Money won’t create success, the freedom to make it will.” Okay, this isn’t really an old adage — it’s a Nelson Mandela quote, and I love it because he was a society-shifting badass and it represents the Nav.it philosophy. Let me tell you why.
Challenges are a part of Life
Nav.it is all about nav.igating life and we accept that the human experience is complicated. Shit does happen. We fail, we succeed, we fall, we get up, and life keeps moving. It moves forward, maybe it appears to move backwards, but it surely keeps moving. And perfection? Ha! Humanity is starting to grasp that perfection is an illusion of our social construct and completely relative.
(That’s why it’s important not to have a fixed mindset. Check out more on it in the podcast here.)
The Psychology of Challenges
So while challenges are a part of life, medical advances over the past century have concluded we have this insanely complex tool to overcome and survive them. Our really amazing brains that can exhibit emotional intelligence.
Using 21st-century technology, psychologists and brain scientists are now able to study how the brain chemically reacts and changes when certain feelings, emotions and characteristics are exhibited. And while much of the 20th century was focused on defining the neuroses and pathologies that make us miserable, over the last 30 years there’s been more of an emphasis on the positive. In fact, science has confirmed not only what emotions and behaviors help us achieve happiness regardless of challenges, but how we can improve and increase our neural pathways (grow brain real estate!) to form habits and beliefs that contribute to decreasing anxiety, fear, worry and increasing self-efficacy, resilience and happiness. Is perfection attainable? Of course not. Is happiness as a state of mind available to us throughout our lives even with the peaks and valleys? Yep, every day.
Nav.it and Money
This leads us back to how Nav.it thinks about psychology and money. A plethora of studies show that certain psychological strengths — such as growth mindset, resilience, grit, perseverance, mindful self-awareness, self-control, and emotional intelligence — all contribute to increasing a person’s ability to “execute behaviors necessary to produce specific performance attainment”, i.e. self-efficacy, or the “confidence in one’s ability to exert control …one’s own motivation, behavior and social environment.” Manifestation, baby. It’s real.
In the current culture-speak, self-efficacy is when you #ownit. This is the empowered, self-assured, confident and knowledgeable person. This is when you are #woke and when you act #likeaboss.
If you look around, this language is everywhere from collegial groups (#LeanIn), to thought-leaders (#Oprah), to the social movements (#blacklivesmatter, #metoo) emerging to push our society forward.
The fact that this language and confidence is seeping into our social dialogue and gives us examples of people overcoming great hardships and injustices, gives me serious hope for the future. The more people develop the neural circuitry that enables them to consistently exhibit resilience and grit in the face of trials, the better our world will become. Cause #diversity, #chill and #love win the long game. Jamaica knew this all along and the U.N. just caught up.
Empowerment and Money
With these concepts in mind when Nav.it looked at current social empowerment undertones, we saw a gaping hole in one specific area of true self-determination. Money. Money is not the end-all, be-all of human achievement. On the contrary, we all know people that have relatively little of it but are wonderfully balance, honest, trustworthy, respectful, and overall the best of humanity. Money is purely a currency of exchange that allows us the freedom to choose our own destiny, it gives us a leg-up on opportunities, and makes the challenges we face in life hella easier. So basically money helps us overcome the survival challenges so we can move onto the psychological and emotional ones. That’s the blessing of being born in this country and we shouldn’t take that for granted.
Now, the data on financial literacy in the U.S., and particularly among young people, is abysmal. (We even interviewed a professor about it here.)Yet money determines our opportunities, lifestyle and social change. Managing money is a significant life “challenge” because our financial system is a labyrinth of pitfalls and ways to lose. It also seems our education system and our social values have deprioritized teaching young people how to navigate it.
On the flip side, the citizens of this country have access to insane amounts of credit and starting a business in our economy is relatively easy, so there is also a lot to possibly gain if you understand how the game is played. Unfortunately, the rules are such that the people who understand the maze have a chance to win enormously, and the ones who don’t often suffer unfairly.
What an ideal place, then, to explore all those self-efficacy traits that psychologists and neuroscientists say determine happiness. The financial system we live in is ready and able to give us challenges. The question is, are we equipped to exhibit the resilience, grit, perseverance, and self-determination necessary to navigate them?
Nav.it views money as a practical part of life that we don’t have a choice but to manage. We also believe that true empowerment (#lifegoals) and the pursuit of happiness (#psychology) in the United States only emerges when we feel confident and can provide for ourselves and our future without fear. So we’re creating products that work on self-efficacy through the management of money. Cause we think everyone can act #likeaboss and be, at minimum, the boss of themselves.
We’re changing the narrative around money but change can’t happen with a one-sided conversation. That’s why we’re excited to bring different voices and experts to share their wisdom. Send us an email and let us know what you think. And remember the nav.it money app offers you free tools for checking in and managing your money moves.
You can download it at Google Play and the Apple Store.