Saturday, August 2, 2008

I do... or do I?

We all have a relationship with money. For most of us, its like being in a fickle relationship. Sometimes we love it, hate it, or feel apathetic towards it. Our moods change as it comes and goes from our lives. It's like that saying, "If you love something let it go. If it comes back, it's yours." This can also be applied to money. But with money, just because it came back doens't mean it's staying.

Don't marry money because it knows no loyalty

We base our general attitude on our past experiences with it. But whether we love or hate it, when it gets down to it, we need money. So we might as well reconcile our past emotions or attitudes we have and try to get along with it.

Sometimes we feel money is cheating on us - going out when we don't know, lying to us, saying it'll be back, then we can't find it. We try to call it and it doesn't answer so we leave a message. And it never calls back. Other times we love money. It feels so good to hold it in our arms. We get a sense of security and a warm feeling inside when it's home.

With all these emotions, how should we treat this psychotic relationship? I try to remember that money is a tool not a personality. It feels indifferent and has no memory and doesn't care if its near or far. Not to talk behind its back, but money gets around. Money is something we can use to achieve goals. We must remember that we can use money to help, and we can use it to hinder. But most importantly, whatever worth we give it, we must not forget that we need to value people more.

In contrast with money, people do have memories, emotions and they do care. People get happy and sad by the way you treat them, and visa versa. Those around us will not forgive your good or bad relationship with money. Suze Orman, a well-known financial advisor, always says, "People first, then money, then things." This is a good maxim to live by. We must not let money get in the way of how we relate to people. People have the most value, and although peoples attitude towards you will change, they also provide much more than money can.

I could have a million dollars, a huge house, nice cars and expensive wine to drink, but if I have no one to share it with, does it really have value? We must work together with integrity and comeradery to reach our goals. Using each other really only sets us further back.

I once heard from a wise man that you should be wary when lending money to friends, because you may lose both. So when faced with decisions where people and money are involved, remember to take a step back and think for a second. Make sure you know where the real value lies.

Good living to all.