Ask Adrienne: Money 1

A lot of people ask me about money. The following is a small sample:

How to get money

How to invest money

How to be debt free

Best ways to save money

Why save

And all sorts of questions along those lines.

I am not an stock broker, banker, financial adviser, or any sort of investment guru. I am completely debt free. I don’t have a car payment, student loans, credit card debt, or owe anyone any money. I have a savings account, stocks, mutual funds, 401K, Roth IRA, and am quickly approaching my mid 20s.

I have never been handed money, gotten an inheritance, or grew up affluent. I paid for college, my first car, my first computer, and did not get financial help when I moved out on my own when I graduated from college at 20.

Money seems to be an international craze. Some people want money for clean water and food, some for a new house, others for a plasma tv. Some people want only enough to be comfortable while others want every cent they can get there hands on. But, what is money?

In the US, money takes the form of dollars and cents and is associated with the color green. Canada’s money looks pink. There is the Yen, Pound, Euro, Rupees, Francs, Rand, Pesos, Schilling, Marks, Lire, and probably 100 more. But what is money really?

Money is a form of trying to create a standardized barter system. You do something of value for someone and in return you get a piece of paper that says now you can get something of value from someone else. When you are in debt, you have used a lot of value and not provided as much value back. When you have extra money, you have provided value (in terms of work, loaning money via stocks, etc) in excess of what you “cashed” in.

In my experience, most people don’t really want money. They don’t really want a million dollars sitting in their bank account. They only want a million dollars to the extent of what they can buy with it: a house, a tv, PS3, Wii, or food.

So to get money, you have to provide value. It’s not necessarily real value but what society perceives as valuable. Something valuable to me might have little to no value to you and vice versa. For example, I write this in a sparsely finished room lite by a 20 buck lamp I got on sale with a high efficiency light bulb. To me, style who cares? But energy efficient, that has my attention.

Lets take a cardiac surgeon and trash collector. American society clearly values someone who can do heart transplants more then the person who picks up trash. Why? Perception. It is often perceived that a doctor goes to school, studies hard, and learns to save lives; whereas, a trash collector did not have to go to school, study hard and is not responsible for saving lives. But is that true? How many people would die if we could not do heart transplants? How many people would die without trash pickup?

Right away, we would see already sick people get worse and die if all cardiac surgeons vanished and could not be replaced. No trash pick up? No problem… for a couple weeks. Before long, bugs and rats would become an issue and with rats come disease and sickness. Remember the black plague?

My point, society needs both jobs. While one is considered white collar and the pay is in the hundreds of thousands, the other is low class and pays slightly better then minimum wage.

So the big secret? Do something of valuable.

This is fist part of a trilogy on money. So stay tuned.

Adrienne :)

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6 Responses to “Ask Adrienne: Money 1”

  1. Uncle says:

    Liked the post- Good take on things- :)

  2. Can’t wait for 2 and 3.

    So logical and reasonable… so unlike me.

    Great post!

  3. Adrienne says:

    Thanks guys

    I am working on the next one. I will have it posted by the end of the weekend.

    Adrienne :)

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