Long goes the tales of money and corruption hand in hand. For years money has been placed on its own little pedestal up there with the evilest villains of all times. That, my dear friends, is why money mindset is hella important and today we are going to talk about how money can’t buy you happiness… or can it?
Money is one of those things that I feel hesitant to talk about, my imposter syndrome sits up and takes notice. There is a lot about money I am still learning to grasp and learning to deal with.
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Hi, I’m your coach Jenn Summers! I’m the owner of LivingABossLife.com & The Living A Boss Life Tribe Academy where you can find all of our resources and courses. Be sure to check out our new monthly membership too!
Growing up I was accustomed to hearing words like “money is the root of all evil” “money doesn’t grow on trees” and of course “money can’t buy you happiness.”
I grew up believing that money was not a good thing. Money caused hate and pain and suffering. My money mindset was a very negative one. Growing up in a poor household I often heard “it’s not fair but it is what is, can’t change history.” After all the limiting belief of money can’t buy you happiness is thrown around like confetti at a wedding.
Honestly, I’m not sure how I managed to develop such a growth mindset living in such a fixed mindset household.
Everyone truly believed we were meant to be poor we were born into it. You can’t change your roots you just grow in place. Gosh, that breaks my heart.
Maybe you have grown up hearing those sayings too or maybe you yourself have said them and not really thought much of it. After all money doesn’t buy happiness right?
I’m here today to change your mind.
You can see a bit about dealing with money being the cause of stress and anxiety and how to stop worrying about money here. Worrying and stressing over not having enough money or which bill to pay all day every day does you no good. If that sounds like you please check out that post.
I remember pondering Money doesn’t grow on trees as a young child. Wouldn’t it be delightful if it did? I bet the skittles rainbow is nearby. Sigh money growing on trees… well, technically it takes trees to make money and making money is faster than growing it on a tree, haha.
The focus of this post is debunking “money can’t buy you happiness”!
My Money Mindset History
I’m not sure about you but my ultimate goal in life is finding happiness! I want my heart to feel joy and I want to be calm, confident, and have pure clarity in all that I do. I also want money not to be an issue anymore…
As I was telling you, growing up money was tough to come by and sparse around the house. My father had addiction problems which worsened our money situation. My parents separated while I was young but money was still an issue. There may not have been that severe addiction in our mother’s house but there also was no money mindset. That lack of money mindset meant we were broke and poor anyway.
I remember being picked on and humiliated over the lack of wealth growing up. Being called a welfare bum, presents coming from the garbage, eating expired foods and the list goes on.
I remember so many financial issues in my childhood that hurt my life and caused me some major issues as I grew older. Some of these were so traumatic to me as a child that I still struggle with them at 35 years old!
Example: Growing up, food was scarce at times and lacked variety. I remember weeks of eggs and rice and for years I hated both. Once groceries became my responsibility I would stock up on all the things I wanted growing up but never had. Then I would struggle to eat it. In fact, I would not eat it, I would save it I the cupboard or wait for whoever else in the house to eat it.
Somewhere deep inside of me, I was calling bullshit on money can’t buy you happiness. I just knew it could not be true. I was not happy and I had no money, therefore part of me hung on to hope.
Honestly, I don’t know if I even realized I had this issue for many years. Often times I would go hungry with food in the house because somewhere in my brain I didn’t want that pantry or that fridge to be bare. Once I had children it worsened and actually, I still struggle with it.
I buy our girls fruits, vegetables, yogurts and cheeses and snacks I dreamed of as a child and I struggle to eat it. I love fruit, but I don’t want my children to go without it. It’s like in my mind if it goes empty in my home I may not be able to replace it. I know this is irrational but most fears truly are.
I’m also terribly crazy about wasted food. It is a trigger I still struggle with. Like major struggle! People hear about children in Africa starving and going without food for days on end.
It is extremely heartbreaking but what people do not always realize is that people are starving here too. They might just be your neighbours.
A lack of groceries in the house is a trigger for me as well and a constant nag in my mind. I fear that my kids will go without, that I will not be able to provide for them.
The Day My Money Mindset Changed
During my pregnancy with our twin girls, I was taken off work very earlier, my husband had to leave his job from out of province to come home and care for me and our oldest daughter.
We travelled 5 hours twice a week for specialist appointments, all on my sick leave income for 3 months. There came a point where we could not afford groceries. My greatest fear had come to fruition.
As I stood in line at the food bank, I was sure they would turn me away and say no, I should have saved more money and I should have planned better. When they told me to go to the next line to get the food I cried, I cried hard, I cried so very loud.
My heart was filled with so much gratitude, so much gratefulness and so much humbleness. That experience has left a lasting effect on me. I’m no longer embarrassed that we needed help. I am proud that I let go of my pride so my daughter did not need to go without. I’m glad I experienced that moment that showed me how much it hurt and how much work I had to do to stop it from happening again. I am grateful for acts of kindness that change the world and it makes me feel powerful paying it forward.
Money can’t buy you happiness unless you fix your mindset.
My finances might not be perfect but let me tell you, I could feed our family for 3 months of hardship if I needed to.
Alright, now you know a lot about my money mindset roots. Let’s dig into the reason you came here.
- If money can’t buy you happiness, then why does it make the world go round?
- If money can’t buy you happiness, then why am I stressed that I’m in financial distress?
- If money can’t buy you happiness, then why are financially stable people happier?
The truth is money sure the hell can buy happiness. Anyone who tells you otherwise is also suffering from building their positive money mindset.
How does a money mindset buy you happiness?
First off what does happiness mean to you? Define it:
- is it the stability?
- is it less stress?
- is it the ability to be unchained?
- the ability to try new things?
- the ability to buy something on your wish list?
- to pay all your bills?
- a vacation?
- or maybe to buy a home of your own?
A poor money mindset is related to many obstacles in our paths that hold us back and keep us from being happier.
I’m not saying you won’t be happy until you are rich, I’m saying you need to understand your own money mindset and how to live WITH money in order to feel the money happiness we often ponder about. You also need to stop waiting for happiness and be happy right now, read more here.
A Money Mindset Gives You Clarity
Having a money mindset is something that needs to be earned and affirmed. Especially if you come from a background where money has been difficult to come by.
If you are struggling financially I want you to try out this financial goals workbook. I truly hope it helps you and gives you some good insights. These strategies were eye-openers for me and it contains my favourite step it out goal example.
This workbook will help you assess how much money you need for basic monthly expenses. It will also show you how to break down financial goals so that it is not overwhelming.
Having a money mindset allows you to be clear on your financial goals and know exactly what you need and what you are comfortable with and what would make you feel financial freedom.
Knowing these numbers provides clarity and the ability to plan and impose a financial security blanket.
Clarity is essential to happiness.
Emotions triggered by clarity create a happy mindset filled with security, calm, inner peace or whatever it is that you believe financial freedom will bring you.
A Giving Money Mindset
For years, one of my financial goals has been to give back to The Ronald McDonald House Saskatchewan, we spent the better part of a year living there when our twin girls were born. It was a long difficult road but the RMH eased our financial burden with affordable housing.
We also were blessed with support from Telemiracle (A Saskatchewan based fundraising program that helps medically challenged families) they made it possible for me to be out of the province with our daughter when she flew out.
What they did for my family eased my financial burden when I could not even focus on money during this difficult time and I truly want to give back to them.
I have set a long term giving back money mindset based plan for myself as well.
Dental care is extremely expensive here, especially for children. This has been something that has made me feel like an absolute shit mom time and time again. Having $1500+ for a dental bill is just something we can not easily manage let alone for 3 kids each.
Some day I hope to help start a foundation for children of Saskatchewan to get free dental care. I know the pain of not being able to provide this care for my children and the consuming guilt to put this essential care on hold and I want to take that away for another parent.
These 3 giving back goals of mine are examples of debunking the money can’t buy you happiness. Being able to give back to something that is important to you, and being able to help someone else is a way I believe that money can buy happiness.
Not all experiences require money, I have had some truly amazing free experiences or some super budget friendly experiences that left a major impact in my happy memories.
But money does it make it easier to take vacations, or take time off work to enjoy the experiences you plan.
Now you don’t need to be rich to enjoy experiences. You just need the right money mindset to start saving up money and banking some time off hours.
My friend Jenny has some amazing resources on her blog for planning the perfect getaway. Be sure to check out the Traveling Party Of Four!
Money can’t buy you happiness debunked
They have done studies to see how poverty affects a person’s wellbeing and it is blatantly clear that a low-income family is more likely to be less happy. There are a lot of stressors and pressures put on an individual who has trouble meeting their financial needs.
You know that feeling of happiness and relief when you finish paying the bills?
That feeling of pride for being all caught up on the bills or even just paying an outstanding bill?
If money can’t buy you happiness why does that feel so damn good?
Gosh, that feeling is something that is not taken for granted in this household. Growing up with little to no money mindset skills within our home I have had to learn from scratch.
I truly failed a few times and picked up the pieces to keep trying again.
All that being said if you do not start being happy now and finding a reason for happiness before reaching your financial goals you are still going to struggle to be happy when you do.
Sure, you could win the lottery and boom full of happiness! But that happiness is brought on by a major change happening and it is short-lived.
Winning the lottery actually can come with a lot of stressors in itself. Paying taxes on the large amount won, dealing with long lost 25th cousins from your aunty’ uncle’s side 32 times removed (if you figure that out let me know haha), having buyers remorse, etc the list goes on and on.
If you are one of my avid followers you will know that my family and I love to play the lottery game. The great thing about playing the lottery game is that it is totally fun for the whole family as long as everyone remembers these are hopes and dreams and not to get depressed that they are not realities.
The lottery game is a great way to see what your financial goals are. When we play we try to think as hard as we can about what we truly want. Things sure have changed in the last 13 years for Josh and me. Our money mindset has grown and having a family has changed our perspective tenfold.
We both come from a background of money struggles. We were so proud when we got our mortgage for our first home and how smart we were to get out of paying monthly rent. In 12 years we would have it paid off and enjoy the fruits of success.
We were not prepared for emergencies by any means, a funeral, a high-risk pregnancy, a year in the hospital, having to leave my health care job and before we knew it our financial plan had gone up in flames.
With all of that our lottery money mindset game changes immensely. Our number one priority is to be debt-free, pay our bills a year in advance, have an emergency fund that could provide for us for 6 months, money for the kids for college/ university, medical relief money, a vacation, perhaps a home with a room for each of the girls.
Looking at those dreams from our lottery game it helps a person look into their financial goals and can help kick start a plan we can do right now to start getting that dream without winning the lottery.
So what do you think? Money can’t buy you happiness or can it?
I hope you enjoyed this perspective of a money mindset with a ‘buying’ happiness quirk to it. Yes, I know money can’t buy you happiness, but a money mindset sure can!
If you would like to take your financial game to the next level check out these resources I have put together for you. If you are grabbing the workbook you will find these inside too!
Dave Ramsey is well known for his financial strategies. He is a leader in the financial industry. Check out this book I’m reading right now: The Total Money Makeover
Jen Sincero has a lot of inspiring books that my friends have been recommending to me. My next book is her Your A Bad Ass At Making Money
I have not started this one yet, but I have heard good things about it. If you want to help your children start out on the right foot financially pick up a copy of Make Your Kid A Money Genius (Even if you’re not)
I also discovered this site that offers free online financial courses to help you with all your financial needs. Check out Money Mentors here.
Thank you so much for coming today!
Take Care and Chat Soon,
Living A Boss Life