A myth is something that is commonly believed by some people but is actually false or untrue. Granted, even things that are untrue can “feel” true. Or, we convince ourselves that they are true because the alternative is too unpleasant and may force us to rethink the things that we do in our lives. Money is an odd entity because it is the focal point for so many different values, emotions, and lifestyles. It is what drives some people to do what they do, and it is something that makes others absolutely miserable. Here are a few thoughts on money myths and how they impact society as a whole.
MONEY IS EVIL
Is money truly evil? Some would argue that it is because of what it does to people. However, does money “make” people do things, or does the nature of people make them do things? You could argue that money is guilty by association because it is often hanging around when other people get busted. However, money is just a thing. It does not have a will of its own and it cannot move from place to place on its own. Money is currency, which means that it is a means to buy and sell items and services, regardless of their identity. Currency can come in many forms, which can include personal favors and social influence. Therefore, money is just a method, but not necessarily a motivation in and of itself.
MONEY CAN BUY HAPPINESS
I heard a comedian once challenge the concept that money cannot buy happiness. His argument was, in essence, have you ever seen a person on a jet ski that wasn’t smiling? In many ways, money can buy a certain level of comfort, but that comfort has to create some level of consistent satisfaction. For example, if you are content to have a warm house and a good book in the winter, then perhaps the money to afford those things can buy happiness. If you need to go on a bigger and more elaborate winter sports vacation every winner, then perhaps your desires will never be satisfied by money.
Overall, we should respect the power that money has over us as humans. Money may not be evil by itself, but we often have to ask ourselves if we can handle the stress and pressure of money. In addition, what is our focus in life? Is it money, or is it something else that will give us more personal satisfaction in the long run?