Money Will Change You. You Can Take That to The Bank.
My mother once told me, “Money will change you.” I wanted to argue but on giving it a second thought, I couldn’t help agreeing with her. Money has changed me already. And you can rest assured that it has and will continue doing the same thing to you over and over again. While money can change you in both positive and negative ways, the latter is always more likely. It is hard to recognize the changes and even harder to readjust. No-one is spared, from the lowest income earner to the billionaire.
If unemployed, the day you earn your first income will be a defining moment of your life. The same goes for the day you make your first 50K, your first 100K, your first 300K, your first 500K, your first million…it goes on and on.
An increase in income comes with a sudden perceived increase in self worth and status. All of a sudden you can afford clothes you only used to window shop, eat at restaurants you would only fantasize about, drive a car that is currently being advertised at prime time and rub shoulders with folks you imagined to be gods. You might want to convince yourself otherwise but these things will go to your head at some point. It is never a question of “if” but “when”.
All of a sudden you feel that using public transport is a little too hectic; why go through the trouble while you can conveniently request a ride right on your phone? You suddenly realize that food at your former favorite “joint” is cooked with oil you don’t like. You can no longer get your haircut at a kinyozi—you prefer executive barber services complete with a massage and facial scrub.
It is not bad to enjoy your money. You work so hard for it, why shouldn’t you enjoy it? But that is not my point.
When you find yourself belittling people because of your new perceived status, it is time to readjust.
When you find yourself harassing the attendant waiting at your table in your new favorite restaurant simply because you have paid for the premium service, it is time to readjust.
When you find yourself treating people who are below your new perceived status in a degrading way, it is time to readjust.
When you feel that your partner or spouse is no longer in your social class and can’t tell you nothing, it is time to readjust.
There is good news. The more times money will change you, the more chances you will get to readjust and redeem yourself. The first time will be difficult. Your good friends and caring family members will warn you. You will be tempted to imagine that they are just jealous of your success but deep down you will question your conscience and it will remind you that you need to come back to your senses before it’s too late…before you lose everyone that gives a rat’s ass about you.
By the third or fourth time, you will have realized that you are not the first to climb that ladder. You will realize that it is not such a big deal after all. That nobody really cares. In fact, you will now be more cautious not to fall, for the higher you climb, the more your ass shows. The more your ass shows, the more likely it will be for onlookers to pelt stones at it. And the more hits you get, the more likely you’ll come tumbling down the entire height.
Originally published by the author on his Facebook timeline on February 13, 2018.