Fundamental Lessons of Money (They Didn’t Teach You in School)

In this article, I'm going to share with you some ideas around the subject of money.

More specifically, we’ll go over some common myths about money.

We’ll also look at just exactly what money is and what are some fundamental principles you should consider, if you want to earn the amount of money you need to create that quality of life that you desire – and deserve.

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And while you may already know most of the things I'm going to say, I think it’s worth revisiting from time to time the fundamentals, because as you and I both know, what’s common sense is not always common practice, right?

To begin, they say that money is like good health, in that we’re concerned about it to the extent that we don’t have it. Isn’t that true?

Now why is that? Why do some people get to enjoy a life of abundance, wealth and prosperity while others don’t? Well, there are many reasons for that and I’m not willing to give a simplistic answer to a question of such complexity.

But what I can tell you with almost 100% accuracy is that the primary reason you’re not doing as well financially as you know you could lies in your belief system.

It lies in the stories you tell yourself around money. In the way you’ve been “programmed” to think about money.

The reason I say that is because the relationship you have with money will determine the level of wealth you’ll be able to create in your life. Let me repeat that. The relationship you have with money will determine the level of wealth you’ll be able to create in your life, makes sense? Now why is that important?

Here’s why:

The "Belief-Attitude-Action-Results" Cycle

lessons-of-money-1

The quality of your beliefs in ANY area of your life, will determine the quality of your attitude, which will determine the quality of your behavior (the actions that you take), and the actions that you’ll take will eventually determine the quality of your results in life, and your results will reinforce your belief system, which will again determine your attitude, which will determine your behavior, which will determine your results, and on and on and on in a constant cycle.

Now let me pause here for a second. I want to make sure that you fully grasp the importance of this concept. If you really give it some thought, you’ll probably be able to explain your whole life and the place that you find yourself in right now by using this simple framework, am I right?

Can you see how important this is?

I really hope that you can see that the number one thing you should focus on in every area of your life – whether that’s your finances, your health, your relationships, your career or your business, everything – is your belief system, your philosophy of life, your mindset.

Because if you don’t have this critical element in place, the rest doesn’t matter.

But hey, we’re not done yet because it gets even worse.

Here's the BAD News...

You see, most of us grew up with families that weren’t wealthy and even worse than that, we grew up with families that thought that wealthy people were bad people.

They also had negative feelings toward money. They were upset at their bosses or whoever owned their company. They were always avoiding conversations about money in order to avoid any conflicts.

Does this sound familiar?

In fact, there are statistics that show that the number one thing that causes problems in relationships is arguments around money. So, there’s clearly a lot of bad programming going on from an early age on this topic.

Here's the GOOD News...

Even though it may not be your fault that you grew up in a family or environment that promoted an unhealthy relationship with money, you can and it is your full responsibility to now take control of this area of your life and figure out the game of money once and for all.

With that being said, let’s take a look at some common myths surrounding the subject of money.

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Myth #1: Money is bad. money is the root of all evil. money is unimportant.

First, a popular belief people have is that money is bad, that it is the root of all evil and that it is unimportant.

Sure enough, as we mentioned already, this belief determines their attitude toward money, which leads to poor behaviors, which leads to poor results. And I say this with great love and respect – but that’s just a fact of life.

Here’s the thing: I suppose that those who believe that money is the root of all evil have been misled by a quote from the Bible, which says, "The LOVE of money is the root of all evil." [1 Timothy 6:10, King James Version (KJV)]

I think you and I both agree with that one because if you make money your love, you know that you’re certainly in trouble, right? 🙂

But how about the importance of money?

To argue and split hairs to the effect that money is not as important as other things is to miss the point completely. Nothing will take the place of money in the area in which money works. Think about it:

The food you put on the table, the clothes you wear, the bills you pay, the medical care and the education you can afford are all things that require money.

And I know you’ve heard this a hundred times already, but let’s make
it abundantly clear: Money is NOT bad, and it is vitally important.

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Myth #2: Money Won't Bring You Happiness.

On the other side of the spectrum, there are people who believe that money won’t bring you happiness. And yes, to a certain extent, that’s true. What I mean by that is that money, by itself, will not bring you happiness.

But what science shows us is that if you take the same pool of money, and you invest it in experiences, in adventures, in your personal growth, in memories – those things and experiences will bring you happiness.

And as far as I’m concerned, money has brought a lot more happiness than has poverty.

Look, the point that I’m trying to make is this: Money is just a tool. That’s it. And you’re either its master or its slave. This is something that you've got to decide for yourself.

But just remember that the moment money has power over you, you’re on the sure path to slavery. When you use money and don’t let money use you, that’s the path to mastery and freedom.

The moment money has power over you, you’re on the sure path to slavery. When you use money and don’t let money use you, that’s the path to mastery and freedom.

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Think of it this way: A knife can be used to spread some peanut butter on a slice of bread, or it can be used for terrible consequences, like killing someone. I know that’s a terrible analogy, but it proves my point. It’s the same with money. You can either use it for good or for bad.

You’ve heard them saying that it’s not about what you have. It’s about what you do with what you have. But you see, these choices will come primarily from who you are as a person.

It's not about what you have. It's about what you do with what you have.

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That's why I personally believe that money will only make you more of what you already are. That’s also why I encourage you to stop focusing on what you have or on what you’ll get. Instead, focus on who you’re becoming along the way.

Money will only make you more of what you already are.

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Myth #3: Money Solves Problems.

Here’s another misconception many people have, and that is that money solves problems. Well, not really.

If you don’t have the knowledge to manage a thousand dollars, you’d better stop praying for a million dollars and start learning what to do with a thousand. The best thing you can do is to start early, when the amounts are small.

So many times I hear people say that I’ll start investing when I’ll be a millionaire. Or I’ll start saving once I hit the six-figure mark, or I’ll start contributing a portion of my income to charities or social causes when I become rich.

No, no, no, no, no. It doesn’t work that way.

If you don’t have the habit of doing it when the amounts are small, you won’t have it when the amounts are big either, makes sense?

This is the same reason why lottery winners and people who inherit their money go broke so early on in their life. It’s because they lack the knowledge, the skills, the habits and the mindset required to keep and build wealth.

So remember that it’s your thinking and your financial education that solves problems. As the saying goes, “Money without financial intelligence is money soon gone.”

Money alone doesn't solve problems. It's your thinking and your financial education that solves problems.

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What is Money?

Now let’s take a look at just exactly what money is. In simple terms, money is the fruit of our labor. Money is what we receive in exchange for our service.

Money is the fruit of our labor. Money is what we receive in exchange for our service.

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So that means that the amount of money we will ever earn now and in the important future years will always be in direct proportion to the amount of service we render.

In other words, as my mentor Jim Rohn would put it:

You don’t get paid for the time you spend on the job. You get paid for bringing value to the marketplace. And if you’re not very valuable, you don’t make much money.

It’s that simple.

Think about it, that’s actually quite a relief, right? That means that you don't need to change your boss, your colleagues, your country, the government or the economy. All you have to do is to change yourself. Because if you will change, everything will change for you.

Let me say that again: All you have to do is to change yourself, because if you will change, everything will change for you.

You don't need to change your boss, your colleagues, your country, the government or the economy. All you have to do is to change yourself. If you will change, everything will change for you.

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How to increase the value you bring to the marketplace

We know for a reason that everyone of us serves a portion of humanity. So if you want to increase your income, all you have to do is to find ways and means of increasing your service, therefore increasing the value you’re bringing to the marketplace, makes sense?

Remember:

Your rewards in life will always match your service. Another way of putting it is that if you want to have more, you've got to BECOME more.

As Jim Rohn would say:

Learn to work harder on yourself than you do on your job. If you work hard on your job you can make a living. If you work hard on yourself you can make a fortune.

You do that by developing new skills in your primary field of interest. Develop your expertise. Discover ways to become more productive at what you do.

Learn how to leverage your strengths and how you can have a bigger impact on other people's lives. Build your character. Work on your attitude. Surround yourself with people who are playing the game at a higher level than you do. Read empowering books. Listen to some audio programs. Attend seminars, events, and masterminds. Work constantly on improving yourself. 

If you'll do so, you'll never have to worry about money again. Period.

As Warren Buffett famously said, "The best investment you can make is in yourself. Nobody can take away what you've got in yourself, and everybody has potential they haven't used yet."

This is such a simple concept but it’s so often overlooked. And it's equally true whether you're an employee, or an employer.

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Conclusion

Finally, as we’re getting to a close, let me make a side note: Don’t let money alone define you.

It might seem at this point that I don’t put any value on material things. But that’s certainly not what I’m trying to suggest.

To say that I don’t value material things would be rather foolish and self-delusional at best. So it’s not that I have a problem with material things. The problem comes when we emotionally attach to these things. When we personally identify with these material possessions. When we let material things represent who we are.

My invitation to you is to acknowledge money for what it is: it is just a tool. And recognize its importance. But don’t ever let money represent who you are.


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Daniel Cerescu

I'm Daniel Cerescu, and I'm the guy behind this blog. Even though most of the material on this website is free, I aim to make this free content better than anyone else’s paid stuff. My mission is to inspire and empower those who refuse to settle for anything less than an extraordinary life to live with passion, lead with purpose, and make their mark on the world.