In her book, The Overspent American, Juliet Schor identifies several "neurotic" spending styles. Competitive spenders aggressively try to establish and maintain status by keeping up with their particular "reference group." As mentioned in the primary reasons of indebtedness, the reference group of choice no longer lives in your neighborhood. They live in Television Land where style and success are defined. the problem is, for most Americans, the level of opulence portrayed in the media is simply unattainable. Other spending styles are described in the books, Emotional Business by David Krueger and Consuming Passions by Ellen Mohr-Catalano and Nina Sonenberg. They include:
Other beliefs are products of our childhood and the messages we received about money as we were growing up. Some of us were told that money is "the root of all evil". We heard fairytales about misers who hoarded their money only to meet a tragic end, pirates who sank to the bottom of the sea weighed down by treasure, and evil queens adorned with gold.
These stories and images help to shape our relationship with money.
Do we fear it?
Do we embrace it?
Do we need to spend it in order to realize its power?
Or do we understand that its real power is in creating financial freedom?