Money and the Enneagram with Margaret Smith


Jan 30

People are predictable, yet irrational about money. What surprises me, after facilitating thousands of women over the last decade to transform their financial suffering, is what a complex and often painful relationship everyone has with money. Understanding your enneagram of personality and how you relate to money can improve your happiness, family, business, community, and, of course, your bank accounts.

At the intersection of psychology and economics is human behavior.

“Money-Wise Women” guest Dr. Margaret Smith, holds a Ph.D. in business economics from Harvard University. She is the CEO of ProsperitySherpa, and is a certified financial planner, certified integral coach, and certified enneagram trainer. She explains how money is a mirror of our internal mindset, beliefs, and feelings.

“By letting money reflect back what is going on inside of us, we can use our relationship to money as a guide to greater prosperity and well-being.”

Margaret’s book, Money: From Fear To Love—Using the Enneagram to Create Wealth, Prosperity, and Love, provides a lucid description of different personalities and their unique behaviors with money. Through methodically interviewing over one hundred people in depth about their behavior, Margaret saw patterns emerge. The Nine Steps to Prosperity, Margaret’s forthcoming book, describes a specific process to develop a healthier relationship with money.

Margaret explains her motivation for going beyond what she learned in her Ph.D. program at Harvard. “I wanted to understand how this mythic market system could motivate people to make big sacrifices and do difficult things for the sake of money. None of what I learned in school shed light on this question. I realize now that we interact with this mythic market system in a way that makes sense for our instincts and personalities, but not our rational minds.”

The Enneagram can be used as a map for understanding what a healthy relationship to money looks like. In this book, Margaret defines the nine domains of money: budgeting, spending, earning, beliefs, knowledge, risk management, planning, wealth building, and flow.

My husband and I used her book to understand our distinct personality strengths and blindspots and how we can better cooperate. This book shed light on our tendencies and how to use our differences to create greater prosperity; after nearly 17 years together, we discovered new aspects of our personalities through reading this book.

In addition to describing in depth the nine money styles, Margaret explains the significant impact of the three instincts: self preservation, social, and sexual.

In this episode of “Money-Wise Women,” hear Margaret’s fascinating perspective at the intersection of economics and psychology. We discuss the need for a systemic shift on all levels, including the government, the culture, and our individual relationship to money.

Margaret says, “Social transformation begins with personal transformation.” We are complicit in systems of domination and economies of extraction, and we have power to catalyze personal and cultural transformation. Balancing on the knife’s edge, we acknowledge cultural and social oppression, while taking responsibility for what we can change.

“Social transformation begins with personal transformation.” -  Margaret Smith

There are a few key points of leverage, including our relationship to ourselves, our money, and our children. At these points of contact, we can direct our power to create a more regenerative culture with health and wealth for all. When you understand your unique motivations and personalities, you collaborate more effectively for true prosperity.

Dr. Margaret Smith

Margaret Smith holds a Ph.D. in business economics from Harvard University. She is the CEO of ProsperitySherpa, and is a certified financial planner, certified integral coach, and certified enneagram trainer. As an author and consultant, she works with individuals and small businesses to help them become more prosperous and financially sustainable. She also leads 3-day and 5-day workshops on “9 Money Styles, Prosperity and the Enneagram” in the U.S., China, and Europe.

This episode is sponsored by Brenda St Louis at




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