I wanted to write on this topic because, as you probably know, we just witnessed a record Mega Millions lottery jackpot. Millions of people played and only a few (as of today) hit it REALLY big. I don’t know if you heard the story of one of the big hitters from Maryland. Just to give you a brief summary, a McDonald’s employee (Mirande Wilson) participated in a lottery pool with her fellow coworkers. She went out and purchased the tickets with the pool money. From what I hear on Good Morning America, everyone did $5 tickets and according to Wilson, she bought a separate $1 ticket that was the actual winning ticket. Now, as you probably can guess, she does not want to share in the winnings, claiming that the winning ticket was NOT a part of the pool.
So I ask again, does money change a person?
Now, I don’t know where the truth lies in the above story, but I do know that money has a way of changing a person’s heart and character, especially in a windfall. What is it about money that has that type of effect on a person? I know you are familiar with the phrase “the love of money is the root of all evil” and I believe that to be true wholeheartedly. How else can we explain how the dark side of many people is exposed when money is involved?
Money and the effect on mood and behavior
I just read an article from Elle magazine that quoted someone saying, “my mood also depends very strongly on my earnings. Money is my laughing gas.” Wow!!! So to me, money is the source of happiness for that person. And I’m sure if anything or anyone stood in the way of his or her earning potential, that mood would go south probably VERY quickly.
Let’s think about this clearly before we stick up our nose and say that person is out of touch and needs to get their priorities right (because that was my initial thought). I think about my own situation and my finances, including the upswings and downtimes. The months that I receive a bonus or have extra cash I feel pumped and the adrenaline is in full force. There’s a sense of control and freedom when the money is acting funny (he-he). Then there are the days and months when the budget is extremely tight and I feel my sense of financial control is out of reach. I’ll admit (even if you won’t *smile*) that I can see where money could affect the mood. Now with that said, I have to say I don’t stay in that “negative” space for long.
Money and Family/Friends
Dave Ramsey adamantly suggests NEVER lend money to family or friends. His philosophy is Thanksgiving dinner tastes different when you owe money to your master (meaning a family member). Some may disagree with this notion, but you have to admit there is some validity to it. Have you ever loaned money to a family member or friend and saw them buy a “luxury” item while they still owed you money? How did you feel about that? Did you brush it off or did you give them a glaring look? I’m in a situation now where someone owes a friend of mine and when I see the debtor eating out at restaurants it bothers me. Of course I won’t say anything, but the feeling is definitely there.
I titled my blog Lend not Borrow in order to help people gain a more powerful position in their finances. The bible says the borrower is slave to the lender. Being in the position to lend money allows you to afford the ability to help someone in need. Being in the position of borrowing money brings more vulnerability into your financial world and I’m all about FINANCIAL STRENGTH- Woo-hoo!!!
Rule Your Money and DON’T let it Rule You!
I believe money changes people because they have allowed it to rule their lives. I’m so determined to be in a financial position where I live a debt free life with more than enough to live a life a comfort with the financial capabilities to help others. I am a strong believer in giving back, whether it is my time or money. Dave Ramsey says “you have to live like no one else in order to be able to LIVE like no one else.” I’m READY are YOU???
Special Annoucement: Just a quick shout out to Yakezie and all they do! A great network of financial bloggers! I’m proud to announce that I have taken on the 6 month Yakezie challenge Let’s GO!!!!!!