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Financial Troubles and Not Enough Income, whom to blame?

Updated: Jul 27, 2023

In the previous blog, I spoke about the wrong ideas about money that were planted in our heads since we were young, indirectly affecting our decision making and forcing us to stay in what we think is our comfort zone “Our Jobs”. Let’s dig a little deeper into this subject today.

Since we were kids, we had that big pressure on us from our family, neighbors, and society that any grade less than “A” in school is not acceptable, and maybe, many of you have lived the stage of school grade comparison between you and your same age cousins and friends, and it sounds like this, “look at your cousin, he/she got an excellence grade in school, is he/she better than you? No, I want you to study harder and get higher grades than everyone, make me proud son!”. After you pass high school, everyone starts convincing you that you must be either a doctor or engineer, since this is how you will make everyone in your family happy and proud, and at some point, you heard this “X country needs engineers/doctors, and their salaries start from X amount, take your degree and go that country, find a job and you will be very rich and happy”. For an 18-year-old student, that sounds just like a solid plan, this is the dream! So you followed that path, graduated and got a job, and you know the rest.

The problem with that approach is that the older you grow the lass happy you become, responsibilities increase, commitments are huge burden, and whatever salary you make and no matter how much saving you keep, most of the times, it’s just gone and you don’t know how and where? Your car suddenly broke, someone in your family is in huge need of money, you must travel urgently in high season to do some paperwork somewhere in the world, and the list can go on. But can we blame our parents for that? The way I see it is no, because they wanted the best for us, and that was the best they could think of. Think of it, almost every one of us don’t tell our parents how stressed we are in our jobs because we know they worry, but whenever they visit someone, they always showboat about their educated son/daughter who is working in a big company with “high salary”.

But again, why aren’t we able to pick our financial situation up despite our good income? The answer lies in our lack of financial education, and the financial mistakes we make every time to impress society. Does financing a brand-new luxurious car on the bank sound familiar? Or moving to a bigger house and new furniture when you got promoted? Or paying $ 1000 every time a new version of some phone is released? It’s not our fault, it’s how we were raised, we always have to be the best and impress everyone, even though it may hurt our pockets.

To add to the above, it’s worth mentioning that the same environment that led us to those financial mistakes, is the same environment that taught us that rich people are bad, money is evil, don’t discuss money while we’re eating, investing is risky, and all the BS we’ve heard about. When I grew up, I came across self-made rich people, and guess what, they were willing to help, and they were very nice. Think with me, how many times did you hear the sentence “we can’t afford buying this”? In Robert Kiyosaki’s Rich Dad Poor Dad book, he stated one of the smallest differences in the way rich people view money, is that they never say the above sentence, they simply ask “How can we afford this?”. The first statement blocks your mind from thinking, making it a fact that we’re not able to buy something, while the second statement makes you think of ways to generate more income to be able to afford what you want to buy. You have also heard a story somewhere from a friend, relative or one of your parents about someone who had lots of money and invested it in stocks or business and lost all his fortune. These stories, of course, will make you skeptical and scared of investing your money so you don’t lose them like that X person, because “Investment is risky, it’s always safer to stay in your job and have your salary deposited to your bank account every month”, even though we all saw how the last pandemic proved that our jobs are never safe! Whoever tells these stories neglected the fact that investing by itself is skills and art, let me prove it. If you have a 5-year-old son, you can’t ask him to go out cross the local street and reach the local grocery store to buy you a pack of cigarettes because it’s dangerous and risky. When he’s 10, you will send him but you will stand on the balcony watching him to make sure he’s fine, but when he turns 18, you can send him to the same grocery store, to cross the street and you won’t even call to check on him. What changed here? The grocery store is the same, the street is the same, it’s the skills that he learned that made the risk drop from very high to almost zero. He learned to look both sides of the street before he crosses it, he understood the traffic laws and he can apply them, but there is still a tiny risk of a drunk man or a driver who lost control over his vehicle’s brakes that can cause a disaster. Yet, this doesn’t stop us from sending our sons or going ourselves to that grocery store.

What I want to say is that it all goes back to how we think and how we view things, the better we understand money the better decisions we can make.

What stories about people who lost their money have you heard of? And what wrong ideas about money have been planted in your heads as kids? Leave your answer below in the comment section.

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