A Letter to My Kids: Money Isn’t Everything

by Don Smith

All products and services featured on this site are independently selected by our authors and editors. If you buy something through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

You have seen mom and I talk about money many times, and I've told you that we aren't going to do or get certain things because they cost too much. You've watched me work hard, and get stressed out at times over little slips of green paper. You've heard me talk about the importance of saving for a rainy day. You've seen me write articles and coach people on how to earn more money.

Money Can't Give You a Hug

What I may not have told you enough times is that money isn't everything. It can't bring your grandmother or your dog back. It won't give you a hug when you need it, or care when you have a good or a bad day.

It won't giggle, reach a tiny hand up, and grab yours while smiling and make you forget the troubles of the day for a moment as you did for me as a baby.

Money is an inanimate object, a tool only, neither good nor evil.

Yes, money is necessary, so I'm not telling you to sit on the couch in my basement for the rest of your life :). It can buy experiences like those vacations we took last year, provide you everything you need to live, and make things a little easier.

It can allow you to quietly help a loved one who desperately needs help due to an unexpected illness or disaster. It can give you the freedom to do what you want rather than what you feel like you have to do to keep food on the table. So don't completely write it off.

Don & Lauren talking on the beach
Money helped buy this time with my daughter on the beach. It's a tool, neither good nor evil.

Money Doesn't Equal Happiness

But more important than money is your health, happiness, and relationships. While you should never ignore your own basic needs or let people take advantage of you, happiness tends to come not from being greedy and continually asking what's in it for me, but from reaching out to help others.

Look up and outside of yourself if you want to find true happiness. Never trade your integrity, relationships, or long-term happiness for little strips of green paper. There are not enough dollars in the world to make it worth it.

Yes, money is necessary, but it is FAR from the most important thing in life. It's not a yardstick by which we should measure our worth. No amount of money will change the love I have for you, things like that are not for sale. Never forget that the most important things in life can't be bought, and that money isn't everything.



About the Author 

Don Smith

Happily married with five kids, Smith owns a technology company, is the founder of this site, has served on the board of directors for multiple companies, and loves playing soccer, hiking, and mentoring.

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}

A hospice nurse was once asked “What are the most common regrets you hear from your patients on their deathbed?”  The number

Read More
Make Your Dreams a Reality in 5 Steps

I largely exited a phase of my life over the past few days. I spent months prior exploring various theories concerning government,

Read More
How Can You See the Light if You Travel Deeper Down the Rabbit Hole?

Recently whenever anyone follows me on Twitter, I've been giving them a shout out and saying thanks. It's a lot of work

Read More
The Power of Saying Thanks

Most people claim to love some good old fashioned R and R but do everything possible to avoid peace and quiet. Why?

Read More
Do You Fear Peace and Quiet?

Glancing through our most popular posts today, I was a little appalled when I realized that the article, “I've lost my passion for life. How

Read More
Don’t be too hard on yourself. Successful people go through hard times too.

This post may be confusing to follow at first. But understanding the spirit of the concept allows the ideas discussed below to

Read More
Do You Know the Definition of Forgiveness?

A few weeks ago, I wrote about saving versus earning more to build wealth. Many of you wrote in saying how much

Read More
Your post on building wealth is too simple

I feel really good today because I grew quite a bit yesterday. As you may recall, I faced 4 separate experiences triggering

Read More
Going through Life or Growing through Life?

There was an old lumberjack well known for his speed at cutting down trees. One day he was challenged by a younger,

Read More
The Lumberjack Story: One Secret of Highly Productive People

My mom had a multi-millionaire baker in her. My family believed her baked goods were out of this world. But when family,

Read More
Take Your Talent to the Limit

“Truth is for earnest seekers, not for those of idle curiosity.” ~ Babaji Re-read that line again. Babaji is a figure shrouded

Read More
Do You Treat Truth Seeking as a Passing Fad or Life Pursuit?

“We need a replacement speaker for the conference Saturday, the guy who was supposed to do it isn't going to be able

Read More
Will You Be Prepared When Opportunity Knocks?


Get new articles and course discounts from leading providers every Friday in your inbox with your free subscription!