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Money, Mental Health, and Happiness

How are they Intrinsically Linked to Crime Prevention?

Although wealth can cloud moral judgment (article), wellness is intrinsically linked to crime prevention (report). My theory, in short, is if we acquire money and attain wellness, criminal behavior will reduce. 

"Conventional wisdom suggests that “money can't buy you happiness.” And well-known research from 2010 had shown that people tend to feel happier the more money they make, only up to about $75,000 a year. But according to a new study out of the University of Pennsylvania’s The Wharton School, people’s well-being rises with the amount of money they make, even beyond $75,000."

"Several studies have demonstrated a cyclical link between financial worries and mental health problems such as depression, anxiety, and substance abuse. Financial problems adversely impact your mental health. The stress of debt or other economic issues leaves you feeling depressed or anxious." article.

Let’s talk about the power of money. 

"The Richest Man In Babylon" by George C. Clason

  1. Start thy purse to fattening. This point is actually the crux of the book: the classic principle of paying yourself first. Clason recommends saving at least 10% of all income earned. Even in his example of those who are paying off debt, he still advocates setting aside this one-tenth. If you want to save money for your future, you must begin by consistently setting aside part of your earnings today.

  2. Control thy expenditures. Essentially, this is learning to live within your means and avoiding lifestyle inflation. Clason deems lifestyle inflation to be an ‘unusual truth’ of humanity and states, “what each of us calls our ‘necessary expenses’ will always grow to equal our incomes unless we protest to the contrary.”

  3. Make thy gold multiply. Your wealth should extend beyond your income. Put your money to work by making smart investments and taking advantage of time and compounding interest.

  4. Guard thy treasures against loss. Here, the book encourages the protection of principle from loss. It is easy to criticize this idea, as most of us feel that investment vehicles that can potentially lose value, such as stocks, are an essential part of a balanced portfolio. However, if you take a bigger picture view, the lesson becomes more palatable. The penalty of risk is the potential of loss. Know your risk aversion and understand the risks in your portfolio.

  5. Make of thy dwelling a profitable investment. This is yet another debatable principle. Clason argues that it makes more sense to make payments that will eventually become equity rather than giving money to a landlord. Rather than getting sucked into renting vs. owning debate, I will defer to a Scrooge Strategy tip and say “run the damn numbers” and see which method makes sense for you at this particular point in your life.

  6. Ensure a future income. This boils down to retirement planning and insurance. Since insurance didn’t exist in ancient Babylon, Clason doesn’t dive into this point much.

  7. Increase thy ability to earn. Position yourself to make more money by improving your skills and making yourself more employable. Train yourself, go to classes, take jobs on the side; whatever you choose, set specific and measurable performance goals, and start working to earn more money now.


"Money: Master the Game" by Tony Robbins

This book is long but masterfully goes into the subject matter. Key points:

  1. The Market can't Usually be Beaten

  2. Fees are Dangerous

  3. Returns are Deceptive

  4. Fiduciary over Brokers

  5. 401k's need more Scrutiny

  6. Index stocks perform well over time

  7. Tax-Free Fixed Index Annuities perform well.

  8. Find low risk, significant return opportunities

  9. The Individual Control Financial Success


The Total Money Makeover says…

  1. Save for an Emergency

  2. "Debt snowball"

  3. Complete the Emergency Fund

  4. Build a Retirement Fund

  5. Save for College/Pay for College yourself

  6. Pay Off Mortgage

  7. How to Build Wealth


These books stress saving 10-20% of your income, getting out of debt, and diversified investing. Your state of mind will get you there, and you have options in attaining equilibrium with money; it's not just about acquiring stuff. Charity is one option, but you can find others. All of this requires a curious mind and the physical act of listening to or reading books/articles.

Daniel Micko, 770 Publishing
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