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Money is a great psychological invention.

July 28, 2010

Psychology calls money a generalized primary reinforcer (GPR). What it means is that for the benefit of your good life, good relationships and effective behavior money should be involved in everything you do, not just in business and investing. Here is an “old” dialogue between a weight control program participant and myself:

“Dr. Kinarthy, why do we have to pay some of the costs of this supposedly free L.A. County Mental Health workshop?”

“Mary, research has demonstrated that people who pay some of the costs of the program put more effort into losing weight.”

“I kind of knew that.”

“But, did you know that it is true about most activities?”

“No kidding.”

“Yes, if you raise your kids to pay a small amount of the cost of living in your household; show tickets, classes, sporting events, restaurant meals, clothing, presents, groceries, and so on, you create a better relationships with your children as they grow older.”

“Oh, my God, I was going to pay my son’s full tuition at the local community college tomorrow. What should I do?”

“Ask him to pay an equitable portion of it.”

Dear reader, if you ask, “If money is such a great psychological invention, why most people not use it in that way?”

“After reading this posting, the smart ones will.”

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