EMAIL #99 - 29TH, NOVEMBER, 2020 - THE REAL VALUE OF MONEY
I am counting down to the big #100 next week and today I am excited to be writing about one of my favourite topics, money!
"Normal people have a big TV. Wealthy people have a big library." Unknown
A simple but accurate definition of money is, "a convenient means of interchanging various forms of value". So, money is merely an arbitrary store of value, it is not value itself (notes and coins don't have any real intrinsic value). Different monetary currencies have different values; for example, a British pound is worth twice as much as an Australian dollar. The interesting thing when trying to define money is, how to measure or define value? (Value is both a noun and a verb and has numerous meanings, which would take several hundred words to fully define.) The main point is that money is simply a store of value and that value has many different forms, such as, goods + services, knowledge, time or even positive emotions.
Mark Manson defined money as "Money is merely a vessel of exchange. You make money by creating experiences or products for others. You then give your money to others to receive experiences or products in return." When you buy something with money, you are buying the experience of owning it and you are buying how it makes you feel. For example, when you buy a trip or holiday for your family, you are really buying the opportunity to experience something new or exciting with your family and to strengthen your relationships with one another. So, money is simply a means of exchanging experiences, which takes a bit of time and thought to fully get your head around!
"Money is a tool. Used properly it makes something beautiful. Used wrongly it makes a mess." Bradley Vinson
Hopefully; the more something costs, the more joy or happiness you experience by owning it. However, this is often not the case because money and the acquiring of money can have a negative experience attached to it. The spending of money is largely positive, but the earning of money can often be negative. Earning money can require working long hours of hard work under stressful conditions and the value you receive when you spend your money often does not live up to your expectations.
Money is a touchy subject for a lot of people, and it is often misunderstood and believed to be the most important thing in life. Unfortunately, our self-worth and a significant part of our identity is closely linked to how much money we make and our financial success. So, money becomes an integral part of our ego and a primary focus for our goals and personal success.
"The real value of money only emerges when we leverage it as a tool towards success rather than making it success itself." Mark Manson
Money can also be the creator of stress and insecurity. For a lot of people earning money is stressful and even painful. It is normal then to spend money trying to relieve the stress and it's easy to get stuck in a never-ending cycle.
Another commonly misunderstood aspect of money is the relationship between money and wealth. Wealth is the long-term effect of having money and security. True wealth only occurs when the ways you earn money and the ways you spend money are aligned with one another, i.e., money is earned through positive experiences and spent on positive experiences. Ultimately wealth and wisdom are closely aligned, and it is difficult to have one without the other.
Thanks for reading,
Stay safe and seek wisdom.