Things I Wish I Knew About Money

We all have things we regret in life. Whether it was wearing that outfit, quitting that job, or spending money that you didn’t really have to spend. Attitude and our way of thinking about money can either help us or hurt us. I am going to tell you some things I wish I knew about money and then maybe it wouldn’t have been such a painful lesson for me. If only I would have known.

Things I wish I knew about money:

It’s not evil.

Greed of money, or anything for that matter is what is evil. Greed is one of the 7 deadly sins for a reason. Allowing money to literally rule your world is obsessive and dangerous. Chasing money every day of life is also exhausting and when you get the money you then say that’s not enough; I must get more. It is never enough and you will never satisfy that thirst by chasing it.  If all you love is money and all you want is money then you will be unfulfilled forever. That is a sad life.

I can always make more.

Opportunity is there every day of your life.  You need to be open to it so that you will recognize it when it comes your way. Also, don’t be afraid to make the leap when your opportunity is presented. If you miss it or have missed it then don’t worry too much because opportunity will come around again. It most likely will not present in the same way but it will be there. Sometimes you will need to get yourself in a better position to receive. No big deal. Just do whatever you need to do to be ready. Let’s also not forget about the little things where they ad up to bigger things. Take on the little opportunities and let them add up to larger opportunities. Start small and build using consistency and discipline. You can always find ways to hustle, get creative and get resourceful.

Spending is overrated.

If you think about it you will see that actually spending money doesn’t bring you real pleasure. Sure, that item you bought may bring you a moment of pleasure but will it stand the test of time. Spending all of your money and not having any left is not fun at all. I would rather not spend my money on junk.  I now value my money more than I used to so I take my time spending it.

Money is actually fluid; it is not static.

You can save it, yes, but you can’t hoard it forever. I guess you could maybe collect all the dollars and coins you could get your hands on then stash it in your house. But what happens if your house catches on fire. Your entire collection would go up in smoke. Just think about it for a minute. Can you see yourself on an episode of Hoarders where people are trying to walk around and over your piles of money? It sounds pretty ridiculous, I know. In real life, you have to spend some of it in order to survive and live somewhat comfortably.  But you don’t have to spend all of it and discomfort is good for you.

It can grow on trees.

 I can see you now looking at me like I have officially lost my mind but fruit and pine straw are just two things that come to mind quickly with generating income from trees. If you have land that you are not using then you can grow pine trees for a long-term investment. You will need several acres of land though so don’t think you can do this in the suburbs. How this works is that you plant on like 100 acres of land. After a few years the trees will produce straw and typically someone known as the straw man will make you an offer for the straw.  The straw man will rake the straw and then sell it to the people in the suburbs for a profit. After abut 15 to 20 years of growth you should be able to thin your trees and get a little money from that.  After another 5 years you will be able to clear cut and start all over making a nice little retirement and passive income for you.

If you are not interested in pine trees or you don’t have that much land then you may be interested in fruit.  You will need to get with your local agriculture extension office to get some help on being successful with your planting and harvesting.

You have more abundance then you realize, you are just being careless.

When you don’t pay attention to spending and you just spend money on anything because you have the money. You will think you want that candy bar but in reality, you are paying money to eat something that is just going to come out of your rear as poop.  So therefore, you are literally paying for poop. This phenomenon happens in other areas of your life as well.

Always strive to live on a 40-hour week minimum wage budget, not that you have to, but strive to because you may be in a position where you have to one day. 

Life happens. It is less devastating if you live in a more minimal way so that it isn’t devastating when you lose your job consequently losing your 3000 sq. ft home and your BMW and having to move into a mobile home or small apartment and drive a 10-year-old Honda civic. That didn’t happen to me but I have been put out on my rear and had to recover.  It was devastating to me and I have never been that low in my life. Now I always have a plan. I also know that even if my plan doesn’t work it will still be ok. I can, and do, live on much les than I earn. I am prepared to be thankful I have a roof of any kind and that food is a blessing. Everything else is just a bunch of crap you are tied down to. I just don’t need all that excess, and you don’t either.

Things actually cost more than just the purchase price.

Maintenance is a b!$$$.  It cost money to maintain things unless you are going to just rash it and replace it. I don’t imagine that you would do that for your car so when you buy one you need to think about gas, insurance, tires, brakes, replacing transmission and such. Factor all that in to the purchase price and then decide if it is worth the money and if it will bring value to your life. Whatever you do, don’t let yourself get in a situation where you are making a car payment on a car that doesn’t run and you can’t afford to fix it.

The person with the extra big house and really nice brand-new cars has a lot of credit; not necessarily a lot of money and success.  Is that person you?

You never really know what is going on behind closed doors. People will maximize their amount of credit not realizing that they are actually tying themselves down to a master (the debtor) but instead think about how great this car looks and feels and now I’m the $h!t because I have the car that says I am. I deserve to drive this car and live in this house. No idiot, you have credit and debt with sleepless nights and stressful days full of anxiety. Not to mention you left no flexibility in your finances for anything that may come up in life like having to go out of town for a funeral.

Your self-worth is not related to your ability to spend money, whether it is money you have or don’t have.

Your self-worth is inside you. You can’t buy it, lease it, or borrow it. It is you and only you. Things you buy are just items you buy. Your worth as a human is intrinsic and can never be extrinsic. Stop believing the marketing crap that is geared to make you think you have to have this item or this purchase in order to have value or happiness or to get laid. None of that is true.

Money is really powerful and can impact someone is a positive way that would change their life in a good way forever.

Buy someone lunch or coffee. Use money to feed people that can’t feed themselves. Just help somebody out. There are numerous people in your own community that just need the bottom realm of Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs. Be nice and help someone out sometime. You never know if that person in need could be you. “It will never be me,” you say, yeah, it will totally be you.

Money doesn’t really buy happiness.  Happiness is a feeling and money is an item, a tool, that is used to acquire goods or services that you may need.

Money in itself doesn’t buy happiness but giving it away can. When you buy something you may feel a happiness in the moment of the newness and excitement of the purchase, that’s all fine and good, but will you still feel that way 6 months from now? Most likely you won’t. You may even forget you purchased it in the first place. You may dislike it because it didn’t do for you the way you thought it would. Happiness will never be found in a purchase and you cannot rely on money to give it to you. You must discover how to generate your own happiness from inside you.

Just because it is expensive, doesn’t mean it’s valuable.

Seriously, overpaying for crap is just ridiculous. Just because it is $100 vs $50 doesn’t mean the less expensive one is of any less quality. Value is placed on the item by you. If it is worth $50 to you then it may be a good value but if you can pay $50 instead of $100 for basically the same thing then why would you? Brand loyalty is not going to take my money from my pocket and you shouldn’t let it take yours either. Shop off brands and stop worrying about the label. If you are concerned with having the brand name label on your bag or shoes then at least learn how to not pay full price for them.

Emotional spending is the equivalent to lighting paper dollars on fire and watching them burn.

Emotions lie to you. They cannot be trusted. They are temporary and don’t hold validity. Reign yourself in and put down the credit card. Because if you don’t then the emotion you will be feeling when you are now in that debt is 10 times worse. Walk away and take some time before you get so excited that you just have to have it. Yes, that new car smell is amazing, but that car payment isn’t amazing at all. When you have to pull your money from your pocket and give it over to the bank month after month then it really takes all the excitement and joy right out of that new car smell. Not to mention when a shopping cart scratches it.  That is not a good feeling at all.

Most of the time, it’s about money.

But not all the time. Sometimes that person at work is being a dick because they are jealous and have a low self-esteem or they are aggressive in their quest to get ahead for power. For some, it is a race and it is about making more and more money. It’s not even about you. Conflict around money is more common then we think too. Think about how many marriages end in divorce over money. You must find fulfillment in your life and give yourself a purpose.  Living life with a purpose is where happiness is really located.  It’s not the holy grail and it’s not that hard to come by.

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