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Does Hoarding Money Help or Hurt?

Meeting a money hoarder 5 years ago changed my life, for the better, thought it was a long road to liberation.

At the time, I was on the path to what I thought would bring me the financial freedom I was seeking, $40 million dollars was my magic number. When I had $40mm, then I would …

Oh, there were many stories of what I would do when I had $40mm in the bank generating 5% interest, throwing off the $2mm/year I thought I needed to be truly free.

Why $2 million? Because that’s what my companies were making (and spending) at the time and my thinking was — if I had enough in the bank to support those companies and my family without me having to work, I’d be golden. This thinking was flawed on so many levels that I can’t get into now, but I would have pursued this path had I not run into the man with a hundred million in the bank.

I thought for sure, this guy must be free, right?

Except he wasn’t.

In fact, he may have been the most “un-free” person I’d ever met. He was trapped by his millions.

All he could talk about was how much money he had and what forms of currency and banks he had it in. On top of that, he was still working like a madman to make more. And he really didn’t have any relationships of substance. He was hoarding money. It was a wake up call. I could see the path I was on clear as day. Bank accounts full of money and no real love or connection in my life.

What I realized by meeting him is that if I wasn’t free with $2mm of revenue coming into my companies, $40mm wasn’t going to do it either.

It’s up to us to liberate ourselves from the false thinking that has us trapped, not to earn more money expecting that to be the solution. Tweet It!

I had to find out what was on the other side of my belief that I needed to hoard all this money to be free.

So, I let it all go. I shrunk the companies. I moved to the farm. I stopped doing anything for money. I filed bankruptcy, rebuilt my life on a new foundation and discovered the path I now understand to be financial liberation — knowing you can earn what you need, when you need it, on demand, doing meaningful work in the world.

Hoarding money no longer became necessary from this place.

Today, I invest my excess in things that matter and make a difference — the well-being, care and education of myself and my family come first. The companies that support my work come second. Hiring people to address matters of consequence in our community, liked I did here come third:

If I have excess after all that (and I don’t currently), I’ll invest in land, water, energy, food and community.

I do see the benefit of having a cash reserve of some amount, which will differ for each person. For me, it’s quite small. Going to live on the farm with no back up allowed me to deepen my trust that I’ve got enough stored value in my services and the intellectual property I have created that, if necessary, I can rely on them to support me. But that’s not the case for everyone.

So, I’m curious — what is the minimum amount of money you would like to have on hand to back you up, if necessary? And then how are you using the excess to better the world around you? Leave a comment below to join the discussion.