It is not the man who has too little, but the man who craves more, that is poor.
There is hardly a topic loaded with such emotion as money, seemingly at the root of all trouble including family fallouts, divorces and the end of longtime friendships.
Dave Ramsey once said that “you must gain control over your money or the lack of it will forever control you.”
There are numerous life lessons to learn over the issue of money. Self-esteem or the lack of it is closely intertwined with what we earn or what we perceive we are entitled to. Society especially measures the success of a person in terms of how money assets that person appears to have. Almost the entire spectrum of human emotions can be linked to money issues.
Money is an exchange of energy
The bottom line is that money is basically an exchange of energy. The nature of energy however is that it fluctuates and is impermanent. It can be extremely fickle. Fame and fortune can be accumulated and then lost overnight. Being wealthy does not necessarily mean that you have less fear and anxiety than anyone else.
A study by Boston College reported in The Atlantic revealed a surprising litany of fears and anxieties in persons with fortunes in excess of 25 million U.S. dollars.
According to the study the persons turned out to be “a generally dissatisfied lot, whose money has contributed to deep anxieties involving love, work, and family. Indeed, they are frequently dissatisfied even with their sizable fortunes. Most of them still do not consider themselves financially secure; for that, they say, they would require on average one-quarter more wealth than they currently possess.”
And this appears to be at the core of the problem that does not only affect the super-rich. In a scarcity mindset we are never satisfied with what we’ve got. We think all our problems will be resolved when we earn that first million. But then we are surprised when the anxieties and the fears are still there and we want another million.
Scarcity mindset versus abundance mindset
The sudden accumulation of money through an inheritance or a lottery win will merely amplify basic character traits. For some individuals, such a windfall can be a curse. Others see blessings of wealth as a special responsibility. Some individuals, I know personally, are principally giving away regularly a good percentage of whatever they earn and doing most of it anonymously. They see possession of wealth as coming with the responsibility of giving back to society. Using money energy in the right way opens up enormous possibilities, coming from the heart of an abundance mindset.
But our consumerist culture is indoctrinating us with a scarcity mindset that inevitably leads to a “never enough” mentality. It is a culture based on the satisfaction of external needs at the neglect of internal needs.
Numerous psychological studies reveal that the pleasure resulting from such a consumerist mindset soon wear off depending on the frame of reference the individual has. There is a saying that money can’t buy you happiness but that is true only to a certain extent. How much you earn determines the safety and security of the neighborhood you live in, what education your children get, whether you can buy healthy foods and your longevity.
Money is only one factor in creating satisfaction
The craving for money, especially if you don’t have it, can thus become so obsessive that it can destroy all the simple joys in life. What we do know from most psychological research is that we will remain unhappy if we make our happiness totally dependent on how much money we earn.
Happiness is the ability to deal with the fluctuations of life’s up-and-down cycles. An interplay of numerous factors makes us happy and satisfied human beings. Money is an essential part of it, giving us the means of exploring many new possibilities.
But human beings also have a deep need to be an essential part of a loving and caring community. Every person wants to be loved, seen, and validated.
It comes from the foundation of such things as nurturing good relationships, job satisfaction, health, and the ability to find joy and gratitude in the small things of life. It is why practicing a gratitude ritual or keeping a gratitude journal is so important. It is the stepping stone to an abundance mindset.
Time well spent is one of the most precious assets you will ever have. A higher frequency of vibrational energy flows from a passion that ignites your inner truth and fills your life with purpose and meaning.
Reino Gevers – Author – Mentor – Speaker