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Stealing Left an Impression

April 23, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 180

When I was about 12 years old, I stole candy from the local candy store. I did not make it far, since the owner of the store met me at the door and confronted me. After my confession there, I thought I was done. But the store owner called my dad, who had a business across the street, and told him what I'd done. That was not a fun night for me. But my dad taught me a lesson that I am still thankful for to this day. He simply told me that stealing was lazy and that getting ahead in life would only happen with hard work and discipline on my part. My dad made me go back the next day and face the shame of an apology. Yet it was liberating as well.

This is one of the most indelible money memories I have in life. This one event has been a driving force (not a fear) in building a business and, more importantly, saving money. Whenever I feel like buying something I cannot afford, my dad's words enter my mind.

And that is what money memories are all about. We all have them, a money memory is one or possibly several lessons from our early lives that remain with us. They can be good or bad. For example, if you grew up being told by your parents that they could never afford anything (even if they could), you might not have a great relationship with money now. You might either hoard it now in fear of losing it, or you might spend lavishly with the mindset that you are going to enjoy the good life your parents never could. Conversely, if your parents handled money well, that could rub off too and you might end up in the same well-off position in life.

The key to understanding money memories is an acknowledgement that they exist. Many people do not save enough for retirement, but fail to realize they are following in their parent's footsteps (and the opposite could also be true). Each of us must be objective and look at what memories drive our current behavior. If we put those memories out in the open, we have a much better chance of success since we can reject the bad ones and reinforce the good ones. In my case, it has caused me to save more in life and not rely on others as much. It has also changed my view of how I conduct business, since I never want to feel like I am taking more than I am giving.

What are your money memories and how have they changed your life?

About Jon T. Meyer, CFP®

Jon T. Meyer, CFP® is the President of Boeckermann, Grafstrom & Mayer Wealth Management, LLC, a Minneapolis-based Registered Investment Advisory firm. Jon specializes in working with retirees and individuals nearing retirement to help them create the income they need in retirement by utilizing advanced social security planning, tax planning and investment strategies. For more information visit

Source: EzineArticles
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