The role of money in different dimensions of our lives

Written by Lisa Pallavi Barbora

Lisa Pallavi Barbora is a Senior Consultant for Content at WFAN. Lisa is also a founder of In her earlier avatar, she was a National Writer and Consultant for HT Mint - a premier business journal in India.

December 22, 2020

There are innumerable ways to look at money and its role in your life. For many of us it’s probably just a means to an end for others it may hold the path to security and freedom in life. However, you may define the role of money in your life, we must all be aware that it is more than just a tool for transactions.

Think a bit more about it and you will realise that many facets of your life and many interactions are influenced by money.

You needn’t grasp them all in a bid to make sense of its role, but there are three such parts of your life where the influence of money can have a material impact in your daily life as well as in the way you view your future.

These three parts are your personal self, family and community. How you interact with money in these three levels can help you immensely in achieving a satisfying money relationship.

Money and your self

What are your first thoughts when it comes to money and yourself? It could vary from what you need to buy or spend to your investments towards your retirement kitty. However, these are just your uses of money and not really how it affects your inner self. There are several ways to view this, in this blog let’s touch upon two things. Firstly, let’s try to understand that your wealth and how much you earn is in no way linked to your self worth.

If you do end up equating your position relative to others in your life, based on your wealth, you may remain in the unsatisfied zone for way longer than you expect.

There will always be someone who is wealthier and monetarily more successful and continuing to play catch all your life will only keep your self esteem low. Secondly, use your monetary resources to help yourself, invest in yourself. Keep upgrading your skills that assist you in your professional and personal life. Do it without the expectation of a monetary benefit at the end, rather with the idea of becoming more proficient in what you do. This will not only make you more satisfied but also help you delink all rewards in life with only monetary gains. As you get better at what you do, partly also because you are investing in yourself, recognition and financial gain will follow automatically, so will renewed confidence.

Money and family

Immediately, the word responsibility comes into our minds. As adult members of a family, we feel responsible for everyone’s well-being and money is a tool to help you fulfil that responsibility. It’s more than just that. You have to assess the limits of your responsibility so that you don’t unwittingly use the monetary aspect to end up with negative consequences. It’s true that having adequate financial resources will help you take care of your children’s education in the best possible way, their food and health needs and their basic living expenses too. However, don’t confuse this responsibility as your only duty and don’t stretch your abilities beyond yourself to fulfil it. Your primary responsibility towards your family should be to give them your time. If the pursuit of making more money is negatively impacting that, then rethink how much you want to allocate towards all these needs. Secondly, if you have more than adequate for all your family’s needs, what you do with the excess is also important. Using it to simply satisfy all material demands from family members may also have adverse outcomes. You want the young members of your family to understand the value and utility of money rather than get carried away by its luxury.

It’s a fine balance to manage money and family, but if you get it right there are benefits which will follow.

Money and community

Believe it or not this is the easiest of the three parts to manage. Your relationship with your community matures when you begin to involve your money as well. We are more than just our independent selves and belong to a community of people. Some are friends, some coworkers, some just acquaintances, some strangers and some who depend on us for their livelihoods. No matter what your connection with the person standing next to you, sharing is a way of enhancing your bond within a community. Sharing needn’t always be about monetary giving. However, at times the nature of giving necessitates a monetary transaction. Be it for the betterment of one individual or the collective community, sharing some of what we have will always result in a feeling of abundance that no other action can seek to achieve. It’s simpler than you think because this aspect of your money life is more or less at your discretion, you are not struggling with trying to please family members or present a form of yourself to friends, this is just about you and how you want to contribute to those around you.

To enable you to have a positive outcome or desired outcome in any of the three facets discussed above, you must first acknowledge the role money plays and then nurture it. Don’t shy away from this awareness of how money fits into the various dimensions of your life, the more you understand and embrace it, the closer you will get to achieving satisfaction in your relationship with money.

Begin the new year by taking this first step and defining your money relationship in all the important aspects of your life.

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