There’s no denying the fact that we would all love to have lots of cash and lots of wealth. The entire financial system in a capitalist economy is designed to help us do just that – create more wealth. But the problem is this: money and wealth have a tendency of growing or shrinking just by the actions we take. And how we respond to the fickle nature of Lord Money and Lady Wealth can affect our happiness and peace of mind.
Here are 5 dangerous money behaviours to look out for:
1)Money Obsession – The stock market has tanked and wiped away the value of your stocks. You are distraught and unable to sleep, eat or work.
People whose thoughts are preoccupied with money are often unable to relax and have no hobbies besides reading the financial news. By tying your emotions too closely to situations beyond your control, you are in fact setting yourself up for major stress related illnesses. You also do not make rational decisions with your investments and are more likely to suffer even more losses as a result.
2)Compulsive Shopping and Spending – You saw a celebrity carrying a handbag that’s touted to be the “in thing”. You must have it – even though you already have 100 handbags.
Compulsive shoppers and spenders are often people who learn early in life to equate having things with being someone. They will often deny themselves basic needs – such as regular meals, healthcare and insurance, in order to purchase the clothing, shoes, jewelry, cars or other items that have come, in their minds, to define who they are. When compulsive spending becomes the main focus of your physical, emotional and spiritual energy, it can take a toll on your personal relationships and financial health.
3)Compulsive Credit Card Use – You’re a proud owner of 10 credit cards. You charge every purchase, big and small to your credit cards and even borrow from one card to pay another.
When you can’t imagine a life without credit cards, it’s a clear sign that you are yearning for a lifestyle that’s way beyond the reach of your normal income. Credit cards do give us the illusion of wealth, but when the minimum balances start adding up, your life becomes a vicious cycle of more debt and bills – with nothing left to build real wealth.
4)Compulsive Gambling – You love the thrill of betting. Heavy losses don’t deter you because you always believe that a big win is just round the corner.
It can be difficult to spot a compulsive gambler. Gambling nowadays is legitimized by the Internet with the ease of day trading – the buying and selling of the same stock within the same day. A gambler will continuously buy and sell stocks without any regard for their long term financial plan. Other forms of compulsive gambling are soccer betting and inordinate spending on lottery tickets. Psychologists believe that compulsive gamblers come from homes where there is inconsistent parenting. They tend to crave excitement and cannot tolerate boredom. Many gamblers and day traders have no safety net and cause lots of grief to their loved ones.
5)Wealth Addiction – No matter how much you have, you want more – chasing more money, more possessions and even more lovers.
One example of a wealth junkie is the Jordan Belfort character in the movie The Wolf of Wall Street. Whether rich or poor, wealth addicts have a restless quality about them, as they are always looking for the next money making venture without any clear objectives or goals. They ultimately take too many risks, get burned out and destroy themselves and their relationships.
These money addictions may be present to a greater or lesser degree in all of us. They blind us to things that really matter, such as relationships, happiness and health. The role of financial fitness coaching is to help you understand your self defeating habits and take charge of your money so that you can fulfill your true calling, desires and needs. Lord Money and Lady Wealth are merely your servants, not your masters. Use them wisely.