The economy has invaded the minds of many. There are those who value everything according to its economic value.
Theoretically, money is useful because it is a language that everyone understands. Thanks to him, we can understand each other with all kinds of people, even those with whom we do not share habits or interests, and carry out profitable exchanges for both parties.
However, as history progresses and societies find new ways to produce all kinds of goods and services, unwanted consequences related to this element of cooperation appear. The obsession with money is an example of this.
Why does the obsession with money appear?
If we listen to all that many famous quotes, reflections and slogans that speak about happiness as something that is beyond the economic power that one has, it can seem strange that there is an obsession with money. There are many things in life that can make us feel good: why focus so much on something that in theory is just a means of exchanging things? As we will see, there are several causes that explain it.
The association with pleasure
Psychologists have long ago discovered something very revealing about human behavior (and, indeed, animal behavior in general). When we associate a pleasant stimulus with an action, in a given context, we have to repeat it, even though we are not aware of it. Rationality is undoubtedly a very important element in our daily lives, but its power is very limited, and it cannot change these tendencies.
For example, in the same way that the phobia of birds can occur when having a bad experience having one of these animals nearby, if we learn to relate pleasure to an element, even if that element itself does not have to provide it to us in another situation, we will wish to contact him again.
With this in mind, let’s think for a moment about the omnipresence of money. It is an element that is present practically by obligation in the life of any person, but that takes on special importance at the time of commercial transactions. Except in the case of scams, these are experiences that can produce a lot of pleasure, especially in the case of expensive purchases to obtain products that were not had before.
We all remember the illusion we have felt at some point in our lives when obtaining products such as cameras, nights in luxury hotels, a car, etc. These are times when you can get to experience the excitement and nerves that spark anticipation. It may even be that at some point in life we organize an entire day around making a special purchase.
This is one of the reasons why an obsession with money makes sense: it is very common for it to be present in situations where we feel good. But he’s not the only one.
Instability and changes
In theory, the obtaining and spending of money obeys, or obeyed until recently, two different facets of life: the personal and the professional. You earn income on your work side, and you spend it on your personal, in most cases.
However, with the development of the capitalist mode of production, there is an increasingly blurred boundary between these two areas. For example, it is common to take work home or even work during vacations. Similarly, schedules, in many workplaces, have little meaning, and the ability to communicate constantly thanks to the use of laptops and smartphones means that many tasks can be performed almost anywhere.
Also, there is more instability in working life. The work model based on obtaining a job that lasts several decades has expired, and today it is common to fear to keep a position, or to assume that a job will only last a few years, or even months.
Against this background, the obsession with money is only a symptom of what is happening: the only common thread that structures our day to day, in the absence of a fixed schedule, is the flow of gaining and losing economic power. As it is common even to spend to be able to work, the economic is seen as something fluid and unpredictable, a part of life that you always have to pay attention to. The risk is always there, and that is why there is reason to think about the state of the bank account every week, even if you have a good economic status, since the certainties do not exist.
The obsession with money is an example of how, little by little, the economic and the professional has totally entered our mentality when it comes to perceiving things in our private lives. In these times we constantly think like entrepreneurs, precisely because reality is teaching us that everything is for sale and that everything can put at risk what we took for granted.