Appreciating Differences - Jack Falt - Ottawa area, Ontario, Canada

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Book Review by Jack Falt

Linder, Ray, What Will I Do with My Money? How Your Personality Affects Your Financial Behavior, Chicago, IL: Northfield Publishing, 2000, ISBN 1-881273-33-4, 211 pp

This book does a very thorough job of covering all aspects of handling money and the psychology behind it. The book is divided in three parts: the meaning of money, your personality and money, and mind over money. The author is a registered investment advisor and also on the ministry staff of a church. The author sees it as important that we look at how money affects the physical, mental, emotional, and as well the spiritual domain in our lives. All through the book there are examples and anecdotes to illustrate the points made with an occasional biblical reference.

In our culture and in many others, money plays a powerful part in our lives and it is one of our life tasks to learn how to handle money. The book begins by looking at our beliefs about money and helps us sort out the real from the fanciful. Money is tied into our values and our self-esteem, and it is important to know what money really represents in our lives.

As with so many other topics our personality type will have a profound impact on how we view money and how we use it. The book covers the basics of personality theory and then looks at how our preferences, types, type dynamics and temperament affect how we handle our money.

The final section of the book puts the concepts about money and personality together and looks at how they play out in real life. Our personalities has a major impact on the way we spend money. Our needs, motivations and values all are greatly determined by our type and temperament. In a marriage relationship this is further complicated by a whole new set of needs, motivations and values of the other person. We need to learn to talk about our needs, motivations and values and this requires communication skills as well as a knowledge of our partnerís type.

As adults we need to earn money and that involves finding work that is challenging and interesting. This too is determined by our personality. The author devotes a chapter to suggestions about finding a suitable career.

Just having money does not mean we will be happy. So the author has us look at the difference between needs, wants and desires. It is not about having what you want but wanting what you have. Many rich people live unhappy lives and many poor people are quite happy. It comes down to examining your values and knowing what is important in your life.

There is not a lot written about money from a personality type perspective and I feel this book fills this void very well. There are two other books that are money related. One looks at how introverts can earn more money and another looks at money from the professional investment point of view. This book is geared to the everyday practical aspects of handling your money while being very conscious of how your personality is affecting your decisions. This book is well worth reading and would make an excellent basis for a workshop on psychological type and money.

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