Money Isn’t Evil
“Money is the root of all evil.” This common quote actually comes from the Bible. 1 Timothy 6:10: “For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. And some people, craving money, have wandered from the true faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows.” Paul (author of Timothy) isn’t saying that if you have money or want money you are evil. He is saying that money can’t be your number 1 and you must always love God more than money. Money isn’t evil nor does wanting it make you evil.
Moving on from religion, people just seem to have this view that anyone who is wealthy must be a bad person. I was at a wedding this weekend speaking with some people at my table about what we all did and where we lived. One woman from New York was a “nonprofit artist“. I’m not sure what that means but she said the CEO of her company makes $3.1 million dollars a year and has people working for him that make $29,000 a year.
See Post Stop Mindlessly Going To College
She then went on to tell me how “disgusting” and “vile” that was. I was able to hold my tongue but wanted to say, “Who cares how much he gets paid? He is employing thousands of people and he should get paid well. And those people at the bottom don’t have to work for him. They agreed to work for him for those wages.” Now I have no idea if this woman’s CEO was evil or greedy but just because he is rich doesn’t automatically make him evil.
Being Poor Is Not Virtuous
People also tend to have these mixed feelings about money and they need to get over it if they ever want to be financially free. It seems like everyone likes money and is happy when it comes to them but then people feel guilty for wanting it. They like being able to go on vacations but then talk bad about the people sitting in first class for spending so much.
Stop thinking that there is a limited amount to go around and it is somehow nobler to only take a little bit of the pie so there is more for others. Some people are just afraid to put themselves out there and take some risks so they say things like “money can’t buy you happiness” and “there is more to life than money” to justify staying at the same job and stressing about money every month when the bills are due.
Get Over Your Fear
Let us get past these negative feelings about money. Write down any negative thoughts you have about money. Then go through each one and rationally decide if it is true or not. Does being poor serve the world? Is it really impossible for you to earn more? Can you be a wonderful person and be rich? Will you be better equipped to serve the world if you were poor or rich? Is it wrong to ask for a higher salary, rate, price, etc? Does it make you a bad person to want more? Is it okay to love money? Is there anything inherently evil about having money? Once you get through these negative feelings about money, start changing your attitude to an attitude of abundance. If you can do it without throwing up in your mouth, try saying “I love money and I’m excited about earning more of it”.
Please don’t misunderstand any of what I’m saying here. Greed is a terrible, horrible thing that can start wars and ruin families. You must never let your desire for money come before your religion, family, friends, health, morals and ethics. My message is that if you ever want to reach your potential, you are going to have to be okay with having money. If you feel like earning a large salary makes you a bad person, then you will never do it. Don’t let “good enough” be good enough. Go for great.
The Bill Gates Example
Here is a closing example of how you can have some money and still be a fantastic, kick-ass person and how the more money you have, the more fantastic and kick ass you can be. Bill Gates (richest man in the world) is worth around $80 billion ($80,000,000,000). Yes that is a totally crazy amount of money that no normal person could ever wrap their brain around. For a little perspective, you could spend $3 million per day for your entire life and not run out of money.
Now, before we all go attacking Bill demanding that he share that money with us because “nobody should have that much”, let us look at what he has done. He has the largest, most valuable charitable organization in the world, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which has about $44.3 billion in assets (the NFL is valued at $45 billion).
Bill, along with Warren Buffet, have pledged to give away at least half of their wealth to charity. He employees around 118,000 people per year. He helped thousands of other people become millionaires and even billionaires. And, oh yeah, he is the reason we all have such awesome computers that we take for granted every day. He earned his money and deserves every penny and the world is better because of him and his charitable contributions.
Don’t Play Small
I leave with the famous quote by Marianne Williamson as I believe it is fitting.
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
What do you say? Is it okay to love money and want money? If you had a more positive attitude about money would do you think more of it would come to you?