This post is part of the 📖 The Psychology of Money series.


Today, I am reading Man in the Car Paradox chapter from the book The Psychology of Money: Timeless lessons on wealth, greed, and happiness written by Author, Morgan Housel.

TL;DR! 💬

Doing well with money isn’t necessarily about what you know. It’s about how you behave. And behavior is hard to teach, even to really smart people.

In The Psychology of Money, award-winning author Morgan Housel shares 19 short stories exploring the strange ways people think about money and teaches you how to make better sense of one of life’s most important topics.


Yesterday, I finished reading the seventh short story Freedom from the book The Psychology of Money.

Man in the Car Paradox

no one is impressed with your possessions as much as you are.

When you see someone driving a nice car, you rarely think, “Wow, the guy driving that car is cool.” Instead, you think, “Wow, if I had that car, people would think I’m cool.” Subconscious or not, this is how people think.

There is a paradox here: people tend to want wealth to signal to others that they should be liked and admired. But in reality, those other people often bypass admiring you, not because they don’t think wealth is admirable, but because they use your wealth as a benchmark for their own desire to be liked and admired.

If respect and admiration are your goals, be careful how you seek them. Humility, kindness, and empathy will bring you more respect than horsepower ever will.

That’s it for today. Tomorrow, we will read the next chapter Wealth is What You Don’t See, spending money to show people how much money you have is the fastest way to have less money.

What we learnerd so far
  1. No One’s Crazy

    Every decision people make with money is justified by taking the information they have at the moment and plugging it into their unique mental model of how the world works.

  2. Luck & Risk

    Nothing is as good or as bad as it seems. More important is that as much as we recognize the role of luck in success, the role of risk means we should forgive ourselves and leave room for understanding when judging failures.

  3. Never Enough

    There are many things never worth risking, no matter the potential gain. Knowing when you have “enough” is an invaluable skill. Building a sense for “enough” is remarkably simple: Stop taking risks that might harm your reputation, family, freedom and independence.

    Don’t forget that being loved by those “whom you want to love” is invaluable than risking everything for money.

  4. Confounding Compounding

    Good investing isn’t necessarily about earning the highest returns. It’s about earning pretty good returns that you can stick with and which can be repeated for the longest period of time.

  5. Getting Wealthy vs Staying Wealthy

    Good investing is not necessarily about making good decisions. It’s about consistently not screwing up. There are a million ways to get wealthy and plenty of books on how to do so. But there’s only one way to stay wealthy: some combination of frugality and paranoia.

    Getting money is one thing. Keeping it is another. If you have to summarize money success in a single word, it would be “survival”.

  6. Tails, You Win

    Gains come from a small per cent of your actions called “Long Tail Events”. You can be wrong half the time and still make a fortune. Remember, tails drive everything. Just do the average thing when all those around you are going crazy.

  7. Freedom

    Controlling your time is the highest dividend money pays. The ability to do what you want, when you want, with who you want, for as long as you want, is priceless. It is the highest dividend money pays.

  8. Man in the Car Paradox

    If respect and admiration are your goals, be careful how you seek them. Humility, kindness, and empathy will bring you more respect than horsepower ever will.

Buy or not to buy

If you want to be wealthy and then stay at the totem pole forever, you must immediately read this book. I bought several copies of this book to gift friends and family. It’s an easy read with a lot of anecdotes and real-life lessons. I already implemented several hacks in my life whistle taking investment decisions.

The Psychology of Money

Author(s): Morgan Housel

Short Blurb: Doing well with money isn’t necessarily about what you know. It’s about how you behave. And behavior … Read more
Buy from Amazon

Part 10 of 23 in the 📖 The Psychology of Money book series.

Series Start | The Psychology of Money: Timeless lessons on wealth, greed, and happiness - Day 9 | The Psychology of Money: Timeless lessons on wealth, greed, and happiness - Day 11



Amazon Associates Disclaimer! 💬
As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. I make a tiny commission if you buy using one of the links above at no additional cost to you. I use the money to buy another book 📖 to review or grab a beer 🍺 Super duper thanks 🙌