Mahatma Gandhi taught us that your beliefs become your thoughts, your thoughts become words, your words become actions, your actions become habits, your habits become your values, and your values become your destiny. In short, the things you believe in will determine the destiny you will achieve.
If you have negative beliefs about money, they will likely cause you a lot of financial problems. Here are 10 bad money beliefs that you NEED to get rid of now if you want to increase your chances of becoming financially successful.
10 Bad Money Beliefs that will make you a Financial Failure
1. “Money is the root of all evil.”
This is the most common limiting belief people have about money and it most likely came from a wrong quote. The full quote is not “money is the root of all evil”, it’s “THE LOVE OF MONEY is the root of all evil.” Imagine if you found a thousand dollars’ worth of gold in your backyard, would you think it’s evil? Imagine if you invented the cure for cancer and you earn millions of dollars from your discovery, would that make you evil because you have a lot of money? This is where the “money is evil” negative belief falls apart. Money is neither good or evil, it’s simply a symbol for the value you create. While some people earn money through theft or crime, most people in the world earn it by doing good. Just think of all the business owners, doctors, entertainers, programmers, office workers, and other professions in the world. They earn money from the good that they do, and you probably do so too. The more valuable your profession, the more money you will earn.
The lack of money is the root of all evil. — Mark Twain
2. Rich people are greedy.
In general, you won’t become what you don’t want to become and since none of us want to be called greedy or “evil”, none of us want to become anything associated with those. Unfortunately, those who think being rich will automatically make them “greedy” will likely subconsciously sabotage their efforts. They will likely waste windfalls or make terrible business decisions when they start earning more, and they will likely stay at the level of wealth that they are comfortable with (“just middle class, not rich”).
Another reason why people think this way is because of envy. Some of them think their rich friends should give them lots of free stuff, but start hating them when they don’t. Think of it this way as well. How would you feel about a “friend” who only hangs out with you because they want your money? You’ll probably start avoiding them. Guess what, the moment you refuse their abuse, they’ll probably start calling YOU are “greedy”. Imagine that. They want the money YOU earned for yourself and your family, and they’ll call YOU greedy if you don’t give them the money YOU earned.
3. “It’s better to be poor and happy than rich and sad.”
This is a common theme in noontime soap operas in the Philippines. The villains are almost always rich people with lots of family problems, the protagonists are almost always relatively poor but have perfectly loving families. Decades of shows containing the same theme has probably made most Filipinos think all rich families are dysfunctional. I can tell you that’s not true since I’ve known several rich friends with happy families back in college (I was a government scholar in an expensive university), and I know several poor families who have a lot of problems in life as well.
This is a common excuse people make for their own financial failure. They say they would rather be “happy” than rich (are they really happy?), when in reality being happy has nothing to do with being rich or poor. While you can be poor and happy, you can also be poor and depressed. You don’t need to settle for those. You can be happy AND financially successful. Don’t forget what usually happens to those “poor” protagonists when they finally succeed at their business goals and dreams. They become RICH.
Whatever may be said in praise of poverty, the fact remains that it is not possible to live a really complete or successful life unless one is rich. No man can rise to his greatest possible height in talent or soul development unless he has plenty of money; for to unfold the soul and develop talent he must have many things to use, and he cannot have these things unless he has money to buy them with. — Wallace D. Wattles
4. “Money can’t buy happiness.”
This is yet another excuse people make. Sure, money can’t buy happiness, but it can buy a lot of other things: a good home for you and your family, good food so you don’t starve to death or die from food poisoning, medicine when you get sick, tuition fees for your children’s education, plane tickets so you can travel and see the most beautiful places in the world, and many more. While money might not directly buy you happiness, having more than enough of it can make it easier for you and your family to live a complete and happy life. After all, it’s difficult to be happy when your family is living in the streets and dying from hunger.
Money can’t buy happiness, but neither can poverty. — Leo Rosten
5. “We’ve always been poor.”
Some people tend to think that just because things have always been a certain way that means there’s nothing they can do to change it. The skinny person will always remain skinny, the poor person will forever remain poor. Well it doesn’t have to be that way as long as you desire to change things for the better and you’re willing to put in the work. The skinny guy can become a muscular athlete, and the poor person can become rich. They just need to take specific steps plus a lot of time and effort in order to achieve the things they desire. The levels of success may differ (billionaire vs. middle class, olympian vs. hobbyist athlete) but the possibility is always there. We can all become more financially successful and aiming to achieve our dreams would often do us all good.
Empty pockets never held anyone back. Only empty heads and empty hearts can do that. — Norman Vincent Peale