The Psychology of Money: Affluenza, an Unhealthy Relationship with Money
Money is the single most transformational substance in our society. It is seductive, alluring, fascinating, and perceived as greatly desirable. It is everyone’s dream.
But can this dream turn into a nightmare?
Many of us live in affluent times. Never in history have so many of us been swamped by so much material choices, rapid technological developments and the opportunity for many of us to acquire large sums of money. In the USA last year, only 136 trillion dollars were passed down from one generation to another. Despite the perceived comforts and rewards that go with wealth, it creates many challenges. It is not surprising that Affluenza “dis-ease” and the subject of Wealth Psychology have emerged in recent years and are gaining increased recognition.
In simple terms, Affluenza is an unbalanced or unhealthy relationship with money or success. Some of the signs of Affluenza include:
- Feeling that no matter how successful you are or how much you have, you always need more
- Feeling or thinking that you are entitled to or deserve more than others
- Being unable to delay gratification or tolerate frustration
- Exuberating your own self-importance, or in other words, others are viewing you as self-absorbed, egotistic, vain or selfish
- Being addicted to chaos
- Thinking or worrying constantly about money
- Being extremely sensitive to rejection or failure
We have all met people who are obsessed with money and success and cannot rest until they have it. Other people have only a high regard for external achievements with little regard for personal qualities such as kindness, integrity, sensitivity or thoughtfulness, to name only a few.
Having four or five of these characteristics is enough to have an unhealthy relationship with money, wealth and success. It all depends of course upon the degree and extent of these issues and how much impact they have on your life.
Dealing with the effects of affluence, more often than not, is difficult and debilitating. Money presents different sets of challenges: it magnifies the roles between the genders, it creates a strong illusion of power and control and interferes with true love and relationships. All of these result from Affluenza.