Money and Emotions

3 Ways to Master Their Connection

As a young boy my Mom would tell me, “Brian, you are never satisfied!”

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There is truth to that statement as well as positive and negative experiences in life that accompany it. The positive is that I had (and still do today) ambition. It was difficult for me to be content with the status quo. The negative side is that I lacked contentment (and still do today). I dreamed of and desired things I didn’t have. I enjoy the fresh aroma of a newly opened package. Are you picking up what I a putting down (a quotable from the first “Airplane” movie)?

You and I are emotional beings. It is how God created us. God gave us emotions and in His original plan, they were meant for good. Emotions kept under control serve God’s purpose — love Him and love others (Matthew 22:37-40). Uncontrolled emotions are harmful when they become a rampant rudder of our life’s ship.

I believe money and emotions are powerfully connected. As you can see with the Uncle Ben Franklin quote below, money has a huge emotional impact on our society.

“Money has never made man happy, nor will it, there is nothing in its nature to produce happiness. The more of it one has the more one wants.” — Benjamin Franklin

Have you been faced with these money experiences?

  • Have you bought something to “treat yo’self” because you had a bad work week?
  • Have you spent money because you were trying to get back the money you foolishly spent?
  • Have you been angry because you didn’t get the raise you needed to afford the new truck you just leased?
  • Have you been riddled with anxiety because you don’t know if your check will clear the bank?
  • Have you given extra money to a cause or to a person because you felt guilty that you missed their fundraiser or birthday party?
  • Have you felt sad because you just can’t break the cycle of living paycheck-to-paycheck?
  • Have you been distraught with worry because you weren’t sure how to pay for college for yourself or your child?
  • Have you ever returned something from someone because you did not love them anymore?

The experiences above bring about emotions we would rather avoid; however there are bright sides to our money emotions, too.

  • Have you purchased something for someone because you loved them? (opposite of above!)
  • Have you done the snoopy dance in the parking lot of your employer because you received a huge pay raise?
  • Have you shouted thanks to God because of the extra check you were able to write to fund a ministry or a missionary?
  • Have you ever rested in your easy chair, looked around and with a large exhale said, “Thank you, God for these blessings?”
  • Have you won the World Series of Poker and were excited about the big payout?
  • Have you paid off your mortgage in a way that you never felt possible because God delivered a miracle?

Our money emotions are more than just “you got to know when to hold ’em and know when to fold ‘em” or “Money Can’t Buy You Love” or “For the Love of Money” songs.

Our emotions are here to stay because God made us that way. Read this quote from Sonja Parker. It illustrates that no matter where we go or how much money we have to our name that our emotions follow us, good or bad.

“Money can get rid of your financial problems, but it won’t get rid of your emotional problems.”
— Sonja Parker

Over the years, I learned that when my Mom spoke about my satisfaction, she was referring to my emotional state. Even today, I get jazzed up about the good stuff that happens regarding money, but I also become challenged when things don’t go “my way”. I encourage us to remember that money is a tool that God provides us to live. If we would also remember that money and emotions are connected, you and I can live a much more contented lifestyle.

Here are 3 ways that we can master the money and emotions connection:

  1. Don’t fret them
  2. Learn to expect them
  3. Put them into practice to your advantage

Check out next week’s post to learn how to put the spiritual and emotional sides of money into practice for our advantage!

Join the conversation by answering these questions:

What positive emotions have you experienced this week about money? What negative emotions?

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.