Some people say money is the root of all evil, but I think money is only as damaging as the people who have it. Money doesn't cause evil -- it just finances it.
In my opinion, money needs a new rep. If you're a nice person who got a raise for your hard work, don't worry. It's not good to be greedy, but it is important to be financially secure.
I should know. I recently put in my last student loan payment without any support from my family. I killed myself with work during school and after graduation to do this. And I learned a lot of lessons along the way.
One was that financial security is necessary to being an adult. Making and spending "green" responsibly is the new black because if you can provide for yourself, you can do anything and don't need anyone. Money fills more than just your wallet; it gives you a sense of accomplishment, independence and self-esteem.
Women hear a lot more about about finding a significant other than they do about finding a significant income. But you can't get your heart hustled when you're out hustling for cash.
From the mouth of Lady Gaga:
Some women choose to follow men, and some women choose to follow their dreams. If you're wondering which way to go, remember that your career will never wake up and tell you that it doesn't love you anymore.
Love fades. And so does money -- but getting a little yellow around the edges doesn't reduce its value. And no matter how much you value love, you can't pay your bills with a hug.
And though women still earn 78 cents to a man's dollar for the same work, the gender wage gap is shrinking. It's no wonder that Rihanna, Beyoncé and Alicia Keys love to sing about getting paid. Money is magic. Money is possibility.
Here are all the ways having money trumps having a significant other:
Having money means not relying on anyone.
This is so important that it's worth repeating. Financial independence gives you confidence that no one else can take away. It allows you to hold your head up high and know that you can hold your own.
Money brings you adventure.
Everyone wants to travel, but traveling without money is impossible. Even if your friend invites you abroad, I'm betting she's not going to foot the bill.
Not sure who said this, but the Internet loves it: "Travel is the only thing you can buy that will make you richer."
And it's true.
It's hard to feel pain when you're busy making it rain.
Making money -- and becoming more independent -- can make you forget about smaller worries and concerns in your life. Also, money can fix a lot of your pain. It's not a universal cure -- money still can't buy you happiness -- but it can make you very comfortable.
You don't care about the haters.
Opinions don't pay bills, baby.
Your thick wallet shows that you can get sh*t done.
You used to get gold stars in school; now you get holiday bonuses at work. Werk!
You turn your disadvantages into advantages.
You see every struggle as an opportunity.
You know how to hustle.
You know the value of your talents and limit the favors you can do. You don't work for free.
Money is necessary in today's society.
Everything costs money -- even the paper you use to wipe your ass. Like the writer Rita Davenport once said, "Money isn't everything -- but it ranks right up there with oxygen."
Having an empire state of mind and success is f*cking sexy.
I mean, seriously, what is hotter than a high credit score? "Miss Independent" by Ne-Yo wasn't inspired by some broke bitch.
You can't buy love, but you can buy everything else.
Who needs BAE when you have Benjamins?
If you cry yourself to sleep at night, make it be on a Tempur-Pedic bed.
Who needs tissues when you have nice sheets?
When you have your own money, you don't need a sugar daddy/mama.
Money only impresses people who don't know how to provide for themselves.
When you're financially stable, you're (probably) more mentally stable.
I don't think you're going to have a mental breakdown over the excessive amount of cash in your account. (Unless you made it by, uh, questionable means -- à la Walter White.)
Age may be just a number, but a salary is a different story.
Got my mind on my money and my money on my mind.
Getting paid beats getting laid.
The pleasure lasts longer, too.
You might not be able to buy happiness with money, but you can buy pizza.
And that's practically the same thing.
People who are not on your financial level bore you.
Successful men and women surround themselves with other likeminded, goal-oriented individuals. They don't allow stagnant, lazy energy into their space.
After all, our 20s are our time to grind.
You have the most energy to hustle when you're young. A lot of us also don't have families to support yet, so this is our time to build a nest before finding our love bird.
Now get back to work.
Because time is money.