I need to be doing other stuff, so let me get my behavior science nerd hat out on MONEY. Human brains are NOT dumb. We just don’t like our learning histories and conflicting emotions.
Household toilet paper provides fleeting enjoyment (maybe at best ZERO enjoyment & only acts to stave off problems/discomfort from ACK NO MORE TP). Glittery space unitards last FOREVAH!!!
Money is a conditioned reinforcer. We aren’t genetically programmed to need money or have a relationship to it. This is unlike primary reinforcers - things like water, food, warmth, or even social interaction. Money acquires meaning to us because it gets paired with something else. As I titled my other forum journal, “Money can be exchanged for good and services.” Money = we get a thing we like (yay!).
You can build an association with the conditioned reinforcer that makes it as strong and powerful as the primary ones. Sweet! Except now you’re all MY PRECIOUS…so it’s easy to forget that you can’t eat money.
Taking it further, our relationship with money is SOOOO complex. The way you experience money as reinforcing is different when it’s all YAY! Good thing happened and that gave us Money which then leads to Good thing we got from Money! vs. Bad thing happened that gave us Money that leads to Relief from BAD SHIT happening. (Coincidentally, toilet paper operates the same way).
That’s part of why I got money + I spent it on YUMMY FOOD or SHINY can feel easy or good (to some people) and I got money + Now my brakes work so my car won’t crash or my YUMMY FOOD hasn’t spoiled without refrigeration does not.
Our brains start to explode when good things AND bad things get mixed together: sometimes a thing leads to GOOD results and sometimes it leads to BAD results OR when you have to deal with BAD thing to get a GOOD thing, our relationship with getting the GOOD thing gets “poisoned.” Our brains get conflicted. Do want? Do not want? That’s what money is.