Earlier this week we asked if you would rather do what you love or be paid more, most people seemed to be in between. This brings up the question of what money means to you and what your attitude towards money is. This is an article published last year, good time to revisit it.
Money is an important part of life, it affects us in all areas of our lives either directly or indirectly. Money affects our relationships, our career choices, education and so on, but what is even more of importance is our attitude towards money. How do you feel about money, what thoughts come to mind when you think about money, how do you use money… and most importantly why do you have the attitude? This is not so much about how important money is to you, but more about the underlying reason and emotions about money.
What is Money Attitude?
We have believes and attitudes about everything of importance to us, we have an attitude towards religion, war, fashion etc. and of course we also have an attitude towards money. Money attitude is your beliefs about money; what does money mean to you, what does it represent? How do you feel about money? How much does money influence your non-financial decisions? Money attitude is your way of thinking about money.
How is Money Attitude Established?
Everyone has an attitude towards money, for some money is a central issue, for others money is just a tool, yet some use money to control things and people. How do we develop our money attitude? Is it a learned behavior and can we change it? As with many attitudes and behaviors money attitude is mainly a learned behavior (although psychologists will continue the nature vs. nurture debate), how you perceive money will heavily depend on your childhood and the environment you grew up in. Did your parents fight about money? Did a parent control the other with money? Did you have wealthy parents who lend you their credit cards? Your past experience and environment is the biggest factor to you money attitude, the good news is that money attitude is a learned behavior and what is learned can be unlearned.
Your Money Attitude
Given that money affects many areas of our lives it is important for you to have a good understanding of your money attitude. Have you ever taken some time to analyze your emotions about money? If not than this is the perfect time to analyze your money attitude, get a better understanding of your perception of money, how do you feel about money?
Why Care About Your Money Attitude?
Our emotions control most of our behavior, these can be desirable behaviors or undesirable. Many of the choices we make in life from marriage to careers and education all stem from our emotions. Making financial decisions is not any different than any other decisions we make in life; do you feel that it is important to show how much money you have? Maybe your parents grew up during the war and great depression and you have learned importance of saving for a rainy day. No matter what your money attitude is, if you want to have a better understanding of you finances, control your finances and make changes to your undesirable financial behaviors than you need to understand your money attitude.
Without understanding how you feel about money and where those emotions come from you will not be able to successful make changes to your financial life.
What is your money attitude? Have examined your believes and emotions about money? Has understanding your money attitude helped you with your finances?