why money is important + I wanna be rich {here’s why}

I want money, lots and lots of money
I want the pie in the sky
I want money, lots and lots of money
So don’t be asking me why

I wanna be rich, ohh
I wanna be rich, ohh
I wanna be rich, ohh
I wanna be rich for a little love, peace and happiness
Every way rich
–lyrics from “I wanna be rich” by Calloway

*This post contains affiliate links*

why money is important // bring-joy.com #debtfree #frugal Tyndale William, 4 months

The love of money, is perhaps the root of all evil, but there’s no getting around the fact that money makes the world go round.

Because we no longer live in a barter/trade based economy, money serves as the main intermediary to get us those things that we need & want.

So love it or hate it, we’ve got to use it. And the best way to use it to our advantage is to learn to see money more objectively–as a tool.

Money, just taken at face value, is neither good or bad.

Just as a hammer that can be used to either build or destroy is not good or bad, money can be used in a similar fashion to build or destroy.

why money is important // bring-joy.com #debtfree #frugal

Yesterday I mentioned Meg’s post in which she talks about how there seems to be two options when it comes to body image.

Either: 1) be completely obsessed with body image or 2) the exact opposite, complete apathy–pretend like it’s not there, that it doesn’t matter.

She suggests that maybe there is a third option– acknowledge that however you’re formed or shaped is “really really cool.”

I think people can have a similar approach to money–that there are only two options.

Either 1) money, & the pursuit of money & things is everything OR 2) money, or any thoughts of money or things should be eschewed.

why money is important // bring-joy.com #debtfree #frugal

What if there is a third, more nuanced option, that says: 

→Money is a tool that can be used for a variety of moral, immoral, & ammoral purposes.

→ Money can be used to create stability.


→ Not only can money buy necessities like food, shelter, clothing, but it can also help enhance the quality of life by enabling individuals to buy things that add to their knowledge and experience (books! music! education!), that can make their lives easier and better (dishwasher, oven, blender(!), beds, toilets, showers, cars, digital goods), and of course can add to their health (hospitals, yoga classes, modern medicine as well as alternative therapies) & happiness (cupcakes–duh.).

why money is important // bring-joy.com #debtfree #frugal

Joseph and I were at a department store the other day. Just he and I. The kids were with a babysitter.

We had planned on playing tennis earlier but didn’t end up having time to do so. I mention this because I was wearing some ratty workout pants (at least 10 years old), a well-worn second-hand tee, and some shoes that had a hole in one toe.

I felt even shabbier surrounded by all the new & sparkly clothes at this department store & I couldn’t help but feel the weight of our debts, feel the oppressive nature of just having enough money to get by.

Don’t get me wrong.

We have always had our needs met & more (& for that we are so grateful), but the truth is, for the last ten years, Joseph & I have been in scarcity mode. Living paycheck to paycheck, often not having a paycheck, or having a rather paltry one (law school days).

And now that we’re in get-out-of-debt mode, we continue to live on a rather limited budget.

why money is important // bring-joy.com #debtfree #frugal

So I find myself day dreaming.

I think there’s a part of me that likes the minimalist mantra — things/stuff/money = not important/bad.

But the truth is, stuff matters. Money matters.

And the bottom line is, I wanna be rich. Money rich, that is. {I’m already all sorts of crazy-rich in other areas of my life.}

Here’s why money is important. 

I want my kids to take piano lessons. Violin lessons. Whatever lessons. This costs money. 

I want our family to be able to go visit our extended family in other states. This costs money. 

I want to travel, not just for traveling’s sake, but to show our kids the world & to explore & learn about the many wonders of the world in a real, tactile way. Also costs money. 

I want to provide my kids with the best books, to give them access to the best learning tools. Yup, costs money (though very grateful for good libraries!).

I want to be able to be very generous with our money and support charities & causes that we feel passionate about. (Though as you know, we’ve always continued to tithe, no matter our income.) Need money to do this. 

why money is important // bring-joy.com #debtfree #frugal

I want to have more money to buy organic produce, which is important not only for my family’s health but for the environment as well. Money needed. 

I want to have more money to support ethically sourced and eco-friendly products, from everything to food, fashion, and furniture. Need money for this.

I want to not just be debt-free, but to have money in the bank for a rainy day (more like, at least 6+ months of rainy days). Money also applies here. 

I want to be financially prepared for retirement when that day comes. (Because as you know, we have $0 in retirement right now, which scares the pants off of me.) Money definitely needed with this goal. 

I want to be able to buy things I or my family needs & even some of the things we want, without being restricted by cost. Money helps facilitate this. 

I want to be time rich and money richinstead of one or the other. (Though as I learned from Amy Andrews’s book Tell Your Time (affiliate link), you can enjoy more time regardless of income just by doing a few simple things.)

why money is important // bring-joy.com #debtfree #frugal

Maybe I’m crazy because I want all of these things, and actually believe I can have them

Crazy or no, I believe in this dream. Of financial security & independence. Of living life untethered by debt.

We will be debt-free. I have to believe this, I have to work towards this goal every day.

And someday in the not too distant future, I’m going to be able to say: I am debt-free and money rich. 


further reading:

Want to know more about why money is crucial to everything from what we eat to how we live? Read Economix: How Our Economy Works (and Doesn’t Work) in Words and Pictures, by Micheal Goodwin. It’s the most engaging & interesting book I’ve found that explains the importance of money as well as dissects the history of economics in a very not-boring way.

Also, for some awesome no-fluff time management/life purpose guidance,

check out Amy Andrew’s ebook, Tell Your Time

↓ It’s a quick read (only 30 pages) & comes with several printable worksheets. ↓
(&, it’s only $2.99!)

tell your time


related bring joy posts:

how to create an abundance mindset {no matter your income}
debt snowball update
get out debt: 5 steps

What will you do when you’re debt-free?
Or if you’re debt-free, tell me what you’re saving for, what you’d love to do with your money. 

Thanks for coming to bring joy today!

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  1. Pingback: Poor Me? | With Love From Colorado

  2. Kelly
    on May 24, 2014 at 4:27 am said:

    Wow, I think you’ve been reading my mail! This is exactly what has been on my mind and heart lately. I don’t want to just eke by… I want my family to live abundantly! Yes to all the things you wrote – I want to say yes to the music lessons, to travel and taking vacations, to being able to give charitably, to having a rainy day fund, saving for retirement(!), organic produce, locally/ethically made products… etc. etc. etc.! I’m just seeing an ever increasing chasm between this and the reality of our lives at this stage. Something will have to change. And soon…

  3. Katie
    on May 24, 2014 at 4:06 am said:

    I love this. The hard part for me is wanting money for all those great reasons you listed, and wanting those things really bad, and then still being able to see all the wonderful blessings I already have. It’s a tricky balance – but it can be done!

  4. lfwfv
    on May 22, 2014 at 7:23 pm said:

    Love this post, and I think I want to eat Tyndale. Or cuddle him for 10 hours. Whichever you’d prefer 😀

  5. Joya
    on May 21, 2014 at 3:39 pm said:

    Oh, that precious face! What a little Angel he is!!

  6. Emma
    on May 20, 2014 at 4:19 pm said:

    I really enjoyed this post. It seems it’s pretty much frowned upon or thought of as selfish to say that you want to be rich, but really, who doesn’t?!
    As what you want to do with your money shows, it’s definitely not all about you. Money opens doors, matter of fact. I know I couldn’t have got to where I am today had I not had the opportunities which money gave me.

    • Janae Wise
      on May 21, 2014 at 8:58 am said:

      “I really enjoyed this post. It seems it’s pretty much frowned upon or thought of as selfish to say that you want to be rich, but really, who doesn’t?!”
      Exactly. Who says to themselves: “I want to live paycheck to paycheck. I want to have financial insecurity. I want to only be able to provide the most basic of needs for myself & my family.” NO ONE, that’s who.

      “I know I couldn’t have got to where I am today had I not had the opportunities which money gave me.”
      Absolutely. Money makes the world go ’round!

  7. Laurie
    on May 20, 2014 at 1:23 pm said:

    I love the saying, “Money can’t buy happiness…but it sure helps!” Oh, and I just found this one online: “Whoever said, ‘money can’t buy happiness’ is either poor or wealthy beyond their wildest dreams.” 🙂 I’m debt-free…well, I guess I do have a car payment…but I frequently find myself dreaming of winning the lottery. (I’ve joked with my boss that I’d like to put “win the lottery” as a goal on my yearly performance plan.)

    If I ever do win the lottery, I would quit my job, travel, and basically do whatever I wanted to do whenever I wanted to do it. I would just loll about for a time, but I think I’d get bored of that and want to work in some job or profession that would help people. However, I’d be working because I wanted to and not for pay, which would make all the difference.

    • Janae Wise
      on May 21, 2014 at 9:10 am said:

      I love the saying, “Money can’t buy happiness…but it sure helps!”
      SO TRUE> so true.
      “However, I’d be working because I wanted to and not for pay, which would make all the difference.”
      Absolutely. But hey, you’re a librarian. I thought all librarians loved their job 😉

  8. Candace
    on May 20, 2014 at 12:32 pm said:

    Thank you so much for this post. I have been feeling the same way lately, and feeling a little guilty about wanting more money. Your thoughts really helped me to understand mine better.

  9. Daisy
    on May 20, 2014 at 11:41 am said:

    I am at the same point! I want money! Not to hoard or to collect lots of stuff or to feel better than others or anything like that but to live fully and to share with the world. I’ve been reading books for ages on this but haven’t taken enough or the right steps. I’m at the point of “You know what? I’m tired of this. I want to be rich!”. I’m just starting, though, and recognize I have some blocks I need to face, but I am facing them and am determined to move forward–not just for myself, but for my family. One of my next steps is to find–or create–a mastermind group. (I found one, but I don’t think it’s going to meet my needs.)

  10. Meredith @ Unexpectedly Magnificent
    on May 20, 2014 at 11:07 am said:

    Sing it, sister. We recently adopted a dog and I would love to stay home with him. Unfortunately, we need the money my job provides. If only we could win the lottery…

  11. Erica { EricaDHouse.com }
    on May 20, 2014 at 10:44 am said:

    I am so intrigued by the consumerist mindset of our generation. So much so that if I *ever* get around to finishing the proposal for the nonfiction work I’ve been dreaming up a good portion of it would be dedicated to this topic.

    I am extremely frugal/non-materialistic but I want lots of money to buy experiences/security (not things.) I need money to get out of the anxiety of living paycheck-to-paycheck, and so I can travel, help out others when I can, and prepare for my childrens futures (should I have any.) I own one purse that I paid $8 for at Walmart two years ago. Most of my non-running shoes are embarrassingly old. I’ve virtually stopped spending money on any ‘thing’ I don’t really need, but I’m not making enough now to currently do things I’d love; train for a triathlon, take yoga classes, go out to explore new places.

    There is such a stigma associated with wanting to make more money. I think you perfectly addressed how there is a happy medium to one’s relationship with finances!

    • Caroline @ Fighting For Wellness
      on May 20, 2014 at 4:03 pm said:

      Yes to all of this- I try to save money every month for the future- I put it in a bank account and pretend I don’t have it. I try to not really buy things I don’t need. But, like you, I like experiences- I want to travel, do races, etc…

      • Janae Wise
        on May 21, 2014 at 9:05 am said:

        “I like experiences- I want to travel, do races, etc…”
        YES! And those things cost money, especially the travel bit..