We’ve all been told money sayings from well-intentioned friends and family. Maybe your mom responded to your new-toy pleas with “Money doesn’t grow on trees!” Perhaps a business-minded friend has explained, “You have to spend money to make money.”
These sayings about money are intended to be helpful guides on how you should manage and think about your finances. And they are repeated again and again, so much so that they are practically cultural norms.
In reality, though, these money sayings can be failing you in a big way. Here’s how.
“Money can’t buy happiness.”
One of the most common sayings about money is “Money can’t buy happiness.” This money mantra is supposed to help you realize that there’s more to life than money. In short, having money won’t lead to happiness.
But whoever first came up with this money saying clearly doesn’t have student loan debt. Anyone that has been face-to-face with being broke or overwhelming debt knows that a lack of money can sure cause a lot of unhappiness.
Money can buy happiness, in the form of providing security and offering more life options. If you look at famed psychologist Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, you can see how money can lead to more fulfillment.
Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is represented as a pyramid and states that until your basic needs are met (for example, food, shelter, and employment), you won’t be able to fully prosper, be creative, or fulfill your dreams.
It’s hard to focus on being creative and pursuing bigger goals when you’re worried about paying the bills. If you have enough money to take care of your basic needs, pay back debt, and enjoy life a bit, you’ll have access to more opportunities.
By earning and saving more money, you can use it to live your best life. You’ll have options on the table and can stress less when life gets tough. In that way, money can definitely buy happiness.
“Money is the root of all evil.”
One of the money sayings that I used to fiercely believe is “Money is the root of all evil.” I thought money and greed were the cause of the world’s pain and suffering. But in my journey to pay off debt and learn about money, I realized how much this particular saying held me back.
By subscribing to the idea that money is the root of all evil, I had no care for money. Because I didn’t care for it, I didn’t manage it well and didn’t try to earn more.
I hid behind this idea, thinking I was so noble for not valuing money. Now I see how naive I was. Eventually, I found myself broke and clueless about my finances.
Money, in fact, is not evil. It’s simply a tool that you use. Money itself is a currency — on its own, it’s not good or bad. Those are simply qualitative terms we ascribe to it.
If you subscribe to this idea, consider how it can be messing up your relationship with money. What you think about money affects how you spend and manage it, and thinking money is the cause of evil can lead to a path of carelessness and frivolity.
Instead, understand money is a tool to help you reach your goals. It can be used for good, too, in the case of donating to causes or pursuing your dreams.
“Money doesn’t grow on trees.”
This money saying is all about how cash is a finite resource, and that you must save and carefully manage what you have. While it’s a nice idiom to inspire frugality, it can also keep you trapped in a scarcity mindset.
Thinking that money doesn’t grow on trees focuses on just how little money there is to go around, and can lead you to pinch pennies. I’m all about saving a buck, but I think increasing your income is a far more powerful strategy.
When I was broke, I cut my budget to the bone and hit a plateau. Once I shifted my mindset and focused on earning more, my financial situation drastically situation.
There’s plenty of money to go around if you’re willing to put in the work. Instead of thinking that “money doesn’t grow on trees,” think of how you can plant your own money tree and make it rain!
Through side hustling, monetizing your skills, and tapping into your network, there are many ways to make money. You can get your slice of the pie, instead of focusing on how little money there is.
“You have to spend money to make money.”
If you’re starting a side hustle or a new business, there may be some costs associated with getting started. But if you’re smart about it, you can avoid falling further into debt.
Many people live by the money mantra “You have to spend money to make money.” Oftentimes, this justifies extra spending in hopes of earning more money. It’s a great way to feel good about spending money, but in reality, there are ways to save until your biz is profitable.
Learning how to get creative with expenses means that you take home more of it. I know many side hustlers and business owners that spend a lot of money because they can “write it off.” But that’s not the same as having it in your bank account.
I think this is one of the sayings about money that can get you in trouble if you’re not careful. Yes, you may occasionally need to spend more money to stay afloat, especially as you expand. But this money mantra shouldn’t be used as a blanket excuse to open your wallet. In some cases, you may spend money to make money and end up worse off.
Always weigh the costs first and understand what is worth spending money on and what is not. Look for cost-effective options before opening your wallet.
Money sayings may be doing more harm than good
These common money sayings are often treated as unquestionable advice to live by. While there are kernels of truth and some lessons to think about with each of these sayings about money, following them blindly could be failing you.
Take them with a grain of salt and understand money is a tool to enhance your life. Through budgeting, saving, and earning more, you can live life on your terms and master your money — instead of feeling ruled by it.
Interested in refinancing student loans?Here are the top 6 lenders of 2018!
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1 Important Disclosures for Earnest.
To qualify, you must be a U.S. citizen or possess a 10-year (non-conditional) Permanent Resident Card, reside in a state Earnest lends in, and satisfy our minimum eligibility criteria. You may find more information on loan eligibility here: https://www.earnest.com/eligibility. Not all applicants will be approved for a loan, and not all applicants will qualify for the lowest rate. Approval and interest rate depend on the review of a complete application.
Earnest fixed rate loan rates range from 3.89% APR (with Auto Pay) to 5.87% APR (with Auto Pay). Variable rate loan rates range from 2.47% APR (with Auto Pay) to 5.87% APR (with Auto Pay). For variable rate loans, although the interest rate will vary after you are approved, the interest rate will never exceed 8.95% for loan terms 10 years or less. For loan terms of 10 years to 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 9.95%. For loan terms over 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 11.95% (the maximum rates for these loans). Earnest variable interest rate loans are based on a publicly available index, the one month London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR). Your rate will be calculated each month by adding a margin between 1.82% and 5.50% to the one month LIBOR. The rate will not increase more than once per month. Earnest rate ranges are current as of Month/Day/Year, and are subject to change based on market conditions and borrower eligibility.
Auto Pay discount: If you make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic, monthly deduction from a savings or checking account, your rate will be reduced by one quarter of one percent (0.25%) for so long as you continue to make automatic, electronic monthly payments. This benefit is suspended during periods of deferment and forbearance.
The information provided on this page is updated as of 08/21/18. Earnest reserves the right to change, pause, or terminate product offerings at any time without notice. Earnest loans are originated by Earnest Operations LLC. California Finance Lender License 6054788. NMLS # 1204917. Earnest Operations LLC is located at 302 2nd Street, Suite 401N, San Francisco, CA 94107. Terms and Conditions apply. Visit https://www.earnest.com/terms-of-service, email us at email@example.com, or call 888-601-2801 for more information on ourstudent loan refinance product.
© 2018 Earnest LLC. All rights reserved. Earnest LLC and its subsidiaries, including Earnest Operations LLC, are not sponsored by or agencies of the United States of America.
2 Important Disclosures for Laurel Road.
Laurel Road Disclosures
Savings example: average savings calculated based on single loans refinanced from 9/2013 to 12/2017 where borrowers’ previous rates were disclosed. Assumes same loan terms for previous and refinanced loans, and payments made to maturity with no prepayments. Actual savings for individual loans vary based on loan balance, interest rates, and other factors.
Application detail: 5 minutes indicates typical time it takes to complete application with applicant information readily available. It does not include time taken to provide underwriting decision or funding of the loan.
Instant rates mean a delivery of personalized rates for those individuals who provide sufficient information to return a rate. For instant rates a soft credit pull will be conducted, which will not affect your credit score. To proceed with an application, a hard credit pull will be required, which may affect your credit score.
Total savings calculated by aggregating individual average savings across total borrower population from 9/2013 to 12/2017. Individual average savings calculation based on single loans refinanced from 9/2013 to 12/2017 where borrowers’ previous rates were provided. Assumes same loan terms for previous and refinanced loans, and payments made to maturity with no prepayments. Actual savings for individual loans vary based on loan balance, interest rates, and other factors.
3 Important Disclosures for SoFi.
4 Important Disclosures for LendKey.
Refinancing via LendKey.com is only available for applicants with qualified private education loans from an eligible institution. Loans that were used for exam preparation classes, including, but not limited to, loans for LSAT, MCAT, GMAT, and GRE preparation, are not eligible for refinancing with a lender via LendKey.com. If you currently have any of these exam preparation loans, you should not include them in an application to refinance your student loans on this website. Applicants must be either U.S. citizens or Permanent Residents in an eligible state to qualify for a loan. Certain membership requirements (including the opening of a share account and any applicable association fees in connection with membership) may apply in the event that an applicant wishes to accept a loan offer from a credit union lender. Lenders participating on LendKey.com reserve the right to modify or discontinue the products, terms, and benefits offered on this website at any time without notice. LendKey Technologies, Inc. is not affiliated with, nor does it endorse, any educational institution.
5 Important Disclosures for CommonBond.
6 Important Disclosures for Citizens Bank.
Citizens Bank Disclosures
|2.47% – 6.99%3||Undergrad & Graduate||Visit SoFi|
|2.47% – 5.87%1||Undergrad & Graduate||Visit Earnest|
|2.47% – 8.03%4||Undergrad & Graduate||Visit Lendkey|
|2.95% – 6.37%2||Undergrad & Graduate||Visit Laurel Road|
|2.48% – 6.25%5||Undergrad & Graduate||Visit CommonBond|
|2.72% – 8.32%6||Undergrad & Graduate||Visit Citizens|