My title says it all really. This book completely changed the way I think about money issues. I wish someone had talked to me like this twenty years ago.
It isn't that I have money 'problems'. I'm well-paid and have a lot of stuff. And that's the key thing about this book. The author distinguishes between money troubles and money worries. The first, troubles, is if you have debts and can't pay them. That's something you have to sort out. But that is NOT what this book deals with. This book deals with nagging issues about how you as an individual (or me) views money. Right down deep, at relationship level. It is about values, priorities, relationships, envy, and the effect of childhood patterns on our thinking about money. It helps explore the hidden psychological roots of why we think the way we do.
And most helpfully, it shows how to re-position the way you see money in your life, by helping the reader expose what money represents for them; security? control? a way of feeling alluring?...
From reading this book, I have learned a great deal. My most important discovery was in seeing money as 'the potential means of acquiring something good' (rather than being 'good' in itself), and also of re-defining my 'needs' from survival needs to fulfilment needs. (eg whereas I used to say 'I don't need that trip to Paris because I won't die if I don't go', I now feel 'I need that trip to Paris because I have reflected and I understand that it is part of what is important for me to flourish as a person'.)
But this is a sensible book. Even when trained to think differently, we are also encouraged not to buy stuff we can't afford - even if we 'need' it.
This book may not appeal to everyone. John Armstrong is a philosopher, and his passion for literature and art comes through in his writing. It may feel a bit 'high brow' to some people. But I loved it.
Brilliant. Thank you John Armstrong.