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What Money Is

Many people have put more meaning behind money than there really is.   Some believe that money can bring them happiness, security, self-esteem and/or power.  However, money is just a piece of paper or metal.  By having a one dollar bill entitles the holder to one dollar worth of goods or services.  So, money can be described as an IOU. notice.

However, money has become more than just an IOU. in our society.  Money has become a driving force of our society.  Yet, an important question to ask is whether money drives our society or does society drive the economy with our collective thoughts.  Many believe that the economy controls their lives.  However, many economist agree that it is people's beliefs that is a major driver of the economy.  Over two-thirds of the GDP in the United States is driven by the consumers.  Thus, if the consumers are scared of their economic future, they will spend less, moving the economy towards a recession.  If the consumers are bullish of their economic future, they will spend more moving the economy towards expansion.

In addition to consumers driving the economy, beliefs that consumers learn overtime drive how they view money and wealth.  Some of these beliefs can lead people to a life of wealth or a life of poverty.  Unfortunately, many have learned negative beliefs about money, such as: 

  • You can not be spiritual and rich at the same time
  • Money corrupts
  • Greed is bad
  • Those with money have the power

Yet, money is neutral, neither good nor bad.  It is not what money does but our beliefs that influence how we view an event.  One could say that Andrew Carnegie was greedy because he made million of dollars while so many of his employees work hard for very little pay.  Yet, if it was not for Carnegie, we would not have the public library system or as many of the steel skyscrapers in New York and Chicago; two cities that have had a major influence on modern day life. 

So how does money affect you.  Everyone is different.  Yet, the main thrust is that beliefs can limit who you want to become.   If you equate money with greed, corruption, non-spiritual or power, then you will avoid having money due to the negative connotations.  This is because you will have a reason why it is o.k. to fail financially -- "I did not want to be rich anyway because it would make me greedy".  Why would you want to be one of your company's managers if it means selling out?

Think about:

What values do you put on money?

What values does your family put on money?

What values do your peers put on money?

Did your parents believe that to have money one needs to sell out to corporate greed?  If so, then you may find yourself having the same values and being stuck in a mediocre job because you do not want to sell out and betray your parents values.  Our parents and community serve as role models.  Guess what happens to inner city children being teased for being studious in school and wanting a different life?  Some buy into this teasing and make less of an effort towards their school work in order to not to stand out; the lucky few do not.

If you did not take on your family values around money, then what family values are your rebelling against?  If your parents believe that one's value is based on the money and job that they have and you hated how hard they worked while you were growing up.  Then you may end up at a dead end job as a rebellious act against having money. 

Whether we accepted or rebelled against our family and community values around money, these values have impact who we are today.  It is not the money that effects us, but our beliefs about what the piece of paper called money represents.

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