The Truth About Money That Will Blow Your Mind

We all have pet peeves. Mine is the misuse of words and phrases. Call me a syntax snob. And here’s one phrase that annoys me: Money is the root of all evil.

I know you’ve heard that before. And if you did, you heard it wrong. The original phrase is: the love of money is the root of all evil. Did you catch that distinction? Money is an inanimate object, and evil belongs to humanity. Let’s not put the blame on the Benjamins. What would we do for some beachfront property or the ability to “make it rain” like Mother Nature? That’s the real question. How far would we go to pursue the cash flow? Another good question: why does this post suddenly sound like a rap song?

Don’t get me wrong, I am not endorsing the vow of poverty. I enjoy a good shoe shopping splurge on occasion, but balance is crucial. I refuse to be consumed with money, or to be stressed by my lack of it. That’s where the problems start. I say that as a woman who’s lost sleep over finances. I’ve worked soul-sucking jobs for paychecks that impressed me. I’ve let money be the main thing when it should have been much less important. But that was before I adopted this mantra: I will always have what I need.

I fully believe that statement. Life is a balance of holding on and letting go, and when it comes to money, most of us could stand to let go. As a single mom, I used to worry that I wouldn’t have enough. Who can’t relate to financial stress? I’d constantly fear small catastrophes. But even when bad things happened, we always made it though. That was when I learned to trust myself and my ability to find answers/resources even when they weren’t readily available. I understood that “If one chooses to pray to a rock with enough devotion, even that rock will come alive.” ~ Deng Ming-Dao

Yoga has taught me some things about money. Yes, I am about to drag yoga into this, because the balance, courage, and self-discipline I learn on my mat affects every aspect of my life.

Mind-Blowing Truths Yoga Taught Me About Money

Money does not equal stability. Sure money is a lot of things. What you earn may determine what you wear, where you live, and whether you drive a jalopy with two dented doors or a luxury vehicle. But money is not stability. Your bank account may keep you afloat, but it can’t preserve your health, keep your kids safe, or make your marriage magical (although it could technically buy you a good bit of counseling if you needed that).

Money won’t make you more compassionate, and experts say compassion is the key to health and happiness. In fact, depression and anxiety are linked to a state of self-focus. But those who give, whether love, time, or money, are significantly happier. Read the research here.

Self-Care is not about spending. I’ll be real here…I don’t mind spending money. Around the holidays, I drop cash like it’s hot. I have to remind myself that I am neither wealthy nor willing to pay five years’ worth of interest on a single shopping spree. When it comes to self-care, we like to think that spa days and new shoes are good for the soul. And while that kind of self-care is pretty sweet, it’s not essential.

Self-care goes deeper than slingback sandals on sale at the mall. Self-care is an inside job, something that brings genuine joy rather than temporal satisfaction. Contentment has nothing whatsoever to do with cash. Having more things won’t make a difference if you’re ignoring your soul needs. Why did it take me so long to figure that one out? I could have saved myself a whole lot of closet space.

Bottom line: There’s nothing wrong with wanting more, but we ought to be sure we appreciate what we have now and that our “want” doesn’t grow so big it becomes a need. Our egos will always insist upon more, pushing us towards selfish means and into perpetual cycles of striving.  That’s where dissatisfaction lies.

As for me, I don’t need Prada. I prefer these yoga pants.

Mantra: I can always save money, but money can never save me.

 

26 Comments
  • heidi williams
    July 4, 2016

    Wow, this post wasn’t at all what I was expecting. I have never really been about money. Which has led to problems for sure. I like a simple life so I enjoy just having enough to live and a little to enjoy life. I totally agree with you.

    • Rica Lewis
      July 4, 2016

      It’s a stress-free existence, isn’t it, Heidi? At least in terms of money 🙂 Thanks for reading and commenting.

  • Raymond Baxter
    July 4, 2016

    I can relate to this Rica, so much. I have an ex-friend that thinks he’s the king of the castle because he was born into financial stability. Not wealth, but stability. And because he has the cash to throw around he hasn’t sat down yet and thought about what’s important in life. Money only solves financial things, like you say, not wellbeing 🙂

    We’re struggling, we have stared in the eye of bankruptcy a few times lately but we have a happy life. Money doesn’t fix all our problems, but it makes it easier.

    I just want to be comfortable. To not worry where rent is coming, or our next paycheque. That would be nice. It’d improve our quality of like 10 fold 🙂

    • Rica Lewis
      July 4, 2016

      I always love your perspective, Raymond. You’re a humble and sensible man. Thanks so much for reading and sharing your wisdom.

  • Peggy
    July 4, 2016

    Oh my god. You have no idea how much I love this post! Another kindred spirit who gets that money is a tool and not an emotion. My money goes where my priorities are: Making memories, traveling, and I’m pretty sure I can open up my own bookstore or library from my office. (some people buy shoes…I buy books! LOL)

    Love you girl! Love this post!!

    • Rica Lewis
      July 4, 2016

      Ha ha, being that I just left Barnes and Noble Bookstore with a bag full of hardcover gems, I totally get you! Thanks for reading. I can’t wait to get my hands on your poetry book!

  • Gina Leslie
    July 6, 2016

    Great post. I really enjoyed how to refrain the way we need to think about money and compassion.

  • Leelee
    July 6, 2016

    One of my preschool students went around for the last few weeks constantly chattering about this exact quote. He would then try to explain it, which was kind of hard for a kid who doesn’t understand the value of money yet. Don’t tell him, but you gave a better explanation.

    • Rica Lewis
      July 6, 2016

      Ha ha! Wow, sounds like the kid is pretty advanced for his age! Thanks for reading, Leelee!

  • Julie
    July 6, 2016

    Great perspective! You have such a healthy relationship with money. I have more of a love hate relationship with it so this is a great reminder to me. I had no idea that the real phrase is the love of money is the root of all evil.

    • Rica Lewis
      July 6, 2016

      Thanks, Julie! I’m glad I could clear that up for you 😀

  • Charlotte
    July 6, 2016

    Wow, I totally get this and <3 this so much. I couldn't agree more. Life seems very empty when we try to fill it with material possessions. And I might never have excess but I have all that I need–the necessities in life and all the things that fill my days with purpose and meaning. Can't put a price tag on that 🙂

    • Rica Lewis
      July 6, 2016

      Yes! Love your attitude, Charolette. Thanks for reading!

  • alexandra
    July 6, 2016

    Great post! Money is important only because it means safety and that I can have more adventures. But the money itself isn’t the important part.

    • Rica Lewis
      July 7, 2016

      So very true, Alexandra! Thanks for sharing your thoughts. 🙂

  • GiGi Eats
    July 8, 2016

    You could be ROLLIN’ in the dough but still super depressed. Money certainly doesn’t ALWAYS BUY YOU LOVE – that’s for sure!

  • Carol Cassara
    July 13, 2016

    Thanks for giving us the correct citation and for your common sense outlook. On money. And other things.

  • Molly Stevens
    July 13, 2016

    Happiness studies show that earning about $75,000/year is the sweet spot for happiness and more than that does not add a lot to the happiness scale. Of course, being in hopeless debt and making that amount of money could still result in stress and unhappiness, but I agree with you that the mantra should be, “I’ll always have enough.” And I have always had enough and more actually. I count my blessings that money is not a stress for me today. I’m not wealthy but I am rich.

    • Rica Lewis
      July 13, 2016

      Awesome, Molly! I think some of the most miserable people are those who have too much. 🙂

  • Silly Mummy
    July 13, 2016

    Wise words. I think for people who literally don’t have any money, don’t have enough to survive, money is obviously important and undermining their quality of life. But, for everyone else, yes there are more important things. Having a lot of money will neither make you a bad person nor a happy one. Having less money won’t ruin your life or make it less enjoyable than the life of the really rich.

    • Rica Lewis
      July 13, 2016

      All great points, Silly Mummy! Thanks for reading 😀

  • Leanne
    July 13, 2016

    My husband and I lead a very simple life and that allows us both to work part-time. We keep our debt down and don’t buy anything on credit – you just don’t need all the stuff that is pushed onto us by advertising etc

    • Rica Lewis
      July 14, 2016

      Very cool, Leanne! I bet you and hubby are very happy, too.

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