“It’s Not About the Money” Book Review

A few weeks ago, my desire to get my financial house in order prompted a visit to my local library. Once there, I discovered Brent Kessel’s book, It’s Not About the Money: A Financial Game Plan for Staying Safe, Sane, and Calm in Any Economy. 

Typically, financial books which take a new-age approach are a real turn-off. Those books usually include many anecdotal accounts of families struggling with their finances while offering a few realistic solutions regarding wealth building. Kessel provides a different angle on money and spirituality. He classifies people into eight primary archetypes. They include: “The Guardian,” “The Saver,” “The Pleasure Seeker,” “The Star,” “The Empire Builder,” “The Idealist,” “The Caretaker,” and “The Innocent.” Kessel artfully crafts the archetypes without passing judgment or alienating readers. Each archetype allows readers the space to critically examine their habits with money. Kessel urges readers to find balance. Ideally, we should all strive to inhabit the positive characteristics of an archetype.

According to Kessel, the key to understanding one’s archetype(s) is discovering one’s Core Story surrounding money. As a “The Pleasure seeker” who uses the money to enjoy experiences in the present, I am no better or worse than “The Saver” who believes in putting money away for a rainy day. The only difference is motivation. According to Kessel, when it comes to money, most of us are either primarily motivated by fear or worry. Breaking free of this negative thinking will enable readers to use cash in more positive ways.

The book is broken into two major parts. The first half consists of readers learning about their Core Story and individual archetypes. The second half deals with concrete ideas on money matters (investing, insurance, taxes, savings, cash flowing, philanthropy, etc.) based on one’s archetype. I highly recommend It’s Not About the Money because it’s easy to understand and difficult to put down. Anyone looking to relate positively to their money will do themselves a favor by picking up the book!

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