🤣 I read this slogan on the back of a matatu that was ahead of us in one of the famous Nairobi traffic jams. My first reaction was to laugh out loud.

But later on, I sobered up and thought it through. Some of us believe that money has an aversion to us. It comes in and for some reason departs very fast. We cannot quite figure out where it went. Normally this happens when we do not want to know where the money went. Mostly because we are not proud of how it was spent – paying back debt, spent extravagantly or on things that were not on our budget (physical budgets we had written down or virtual ones in our minds). As a result, we will blame the money for running away from us since the true reasons are not palatable for us just then.

The solution as offered by the slogan is to make sure you use money regularly that it no longer flies away in fear when given to you. You use the money quickly and frequently until it builds an unbreakable bond with you. Although this may sound like a lot of nonsense, it does have a kernel of truth to it. Sometimes when we receive cash, we get excited and act out the saying “like a child in a candy store”. We cannot wait to spend it. It is as if the cash itches your hands or your pocket. That is when we go off on shopatainment sprees (whoever invented malls should be banished).

We feel the need to “reduce the money to manageable levels” or buy the thing we have been longing for or promising ourselves to buy if we could ever afford it.

I think that saying should be put the other way round “Use money so you get used to it”. This way, you will receive money and still make sober decisions instead of pleading temporary insanity each time you receive some money – especially large sums.

Author of this article, Susan Nyakiamo is a personal finance coach.

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