How many times a week or a month do you suffer from a headache? Maybe some of you have a headache every day. Also, I am sure that most of you don’t invite or buy a headache. It occurs automatically.
Usually, we take a tablet or two to stop the headache. Others apply a balm to their foreheads. And a few people prefer to sleep so that the headache can pass away naturally.
Anyone that has experienced a severe headache would definitely know that, at times, we wish to even bang our head on a stone or wall in the hope that the pain would stop somehow.
While we have a headache, we don’t feel like eating or drinking anything. In fact, we don’t feel like doing anything at all. If someone comes to us, we could respond with some irritation or even because we’re angry that the person has come to us when we’re suffering a headache. One of the most common reasons for headaches is lack of sleep.
Normally, a headache caused by ordinary reasons such as allergy, constipation, travel or when we cry or strain eyes to watch TV or use a mobile or computer or even read something, will go away in 30 minutes or even lesser.
However, if you’re suffering from some serious medical condition, you might experience a headache that just doesn’t go away naturally or with medicines. Similarly, headaches caused by migraines, skull injuries, uneven blood pressure or even other serious problems can last very long, including for months.
And in other cases, people like us can suffer headaches almost daily due to work pressures and tiredness. A daily headache can also mean that we’re suffering from some allergies, usually due to some strong smell, scent or odour such as paint or perfume or smoke and other such reasons.
Therefore, if you have frequent headaches, I would strongly suggest that you consult a good doctor immediately. It could mean that you have some serious medical problem.
Now, you are aware of the differences between the two most common headache types. One is short-term and occurs rarely. The other happens every day, and sometimes, even medicines don’t help, which means you could need medical treatment.
But my article is not about these kinds of physical headaches. I am not a doctor to speak about such headaches.
Instead, I will talk about the headaches that we buy.
How Do We Buy Headaches By Lending Money To Friends?
Buy our headaches? Yes, exactly. I mean buying our headaches like we buy anything in this world and our life.
Surely, you would like to know, how do you or I buy headaches? How much do we pay for these headaches? Do headaches have any value?
So, let me explain to you what I mean by the headaches we buy.
The problems that we pay money to own are the headaches that we buy.
Such problems that we pay for can be anything: from a bike or mobile that we buy on loan but can’t pay instalments or a house we find hard to maintain due to the costs. We buy these things without considering the costs we have to pay to their owner.
And the worst such headache that we buy with our own money is giving a loan to someone. Just pause and think about it.
How many times have you given money to someone, regardless of whether it’s a small amount such as Rs.500 or a large amount running into thousands or even lakhs? And how many times have you not been able to get back your money easily?
We’re humans and live in a family and society. Therefore, it is natural that at some point in time, our family members or friends, colleagues or neighbours will come to us and ask for some money as a loan.
In fact, we may also have taken a loan from someone but might not be able to repay it. Or, we might not wish to repay. In such cases, have you ever considered that you’ve created a big headache for the person who was kind enough to give you some money when you needed it?
Maybe you have repaid or not repaid for any reason. But you have made the other person regret that they gave you a loan because it became a headache for them too.
In this article, I will explain how a loan becomes a headache that we buy and how to avoid it because you can’t get medical treatment for headaches caused by a loan you’ve given or taken. Instead, only you can resolve it.
Here’s how a loan becomes a headache.
The Psychology of Loans
Whenever you give money to anyone or even borrow money from someone, there’s a sense of pleasure.
When you donate money to a charity, you experience that sense of well-being. This happens because you’re actually joyful for being able to help some worthy cause or some unfortunate people or even comply with some spiritual teachings.
Similarly, when you give a loan to a relative, friend, colleague or acquaintance or neighbour, you get a certain amount of pleasure or happiness. This happiness results from the feeling that you’re able to help someone during their times of need.
And when you get a loan from someone or somewhere, such as a bank, you feel happy seeing a large amount of money in your hands. Such a loan suddenly increases your buying power.
Remember, a credit card is also a form of a loan. Or, your loan can help you to pay for something that was desperately necessary, such as medical treatment and hospitalization of a close family member. You feel happy because your need has been fulfilled.
Human nature seeks happiness always. We want to be happy at all costs. And giving or taking a loan is part of this happiness.
Honestly speaking, there’s nothing wrong with giving or taking a loan as long as it doesn’t become a headache. But we have to understand in the first place that we’re responsible for allowing a loan- whichever way- to become a headache. Hence, only we can find its cure.
When Lending Money To Friends Become Headaches?
Let’s, therefore, see when a loan becomes a headache. Are there any warning signs that a loan is about to become an expensive headache? In fact, we all see warning signs that a loan will become a headache, but we ignore it.
Therefore, here’re some signs and symptoms or rather signals that you should seriously consider before borrowing or lending money from friends.
1. Nature of Relationship
The first thing to consider before you give a loan to someone is your relationship with this person. Obviously, you can’t refuse a loan to your parents or brothers or sisters and in-laws if you’re married. But this doesn’t mean that you should automatically give them a loan.
That’s because a loan can actually ruin your relationships, especially if the person that borrows money is unable to repay on time or as promised. In fact, money is the No. 1 reason why perfectly healthy relationships can be damaged seriously in a very short time.
Therefore, the first thing to consider when a relative asks you for money is whether they really require the loan. You can do this by simply finding out why they need the money.
There is no harm in asking this question because you have every right to know what this money would be used for. If your money were used for some good reason by your relatives, it would be better to give it to them as a gift instead of looking for repayments. That way, you save the relationship against any damage.
If possible, you could also offer to pay the amount of the loan to them in instalments. For example, if someone needs medical treatment, you can simply say that you would bear all the expenses and they needn’t worry.
But if they need the money to buy a fancy TV or a bike or a car, you can simply offer the money and tell them to repay you in instalments, without interest, of course.
However, remember that such a policy is useful only with close family members that matter. Because sometimes, a relationship is worth much more than money.
2. The Reputation of the Person
Now, I will tell you what to do when you’re lending money to friends or colleagues, neighbours or someone else you know. Here too, it’s best to find out how close they are because the loan you give could sometimes only become a headache.
This, in turn, could spoil your relationship with a best friend or superb and helpful colleague or a wonderful neighbour that runs to assist your family when necessary.
Therefore, remember the first rule: never commit to giving the loan immediately when someone asks. Instead, make an excuse to delay giving the loan, at least by a day or two.
This gives you some time to find out about the person's reputation. Of course, the person would be educated and come from a good family too.
Yet, it makes sense to find out whether they’re into something like gambling or addictions or carelessly playing with stocks on the stock market.
In such cases, you would surely find that the person that comes from a respectable family and has a superb reputation has been taking money from many other sources too.
They’re actually using their reputation and background to get more and more money to satisfy their gambling or alcohol, or drug addiction or play on stocks despite losing. Or, they might need that money for some love affair.
Finding out whether the person really requires money and whether they are repaying other lenders on time is very important. By doing so, you won’t lose your friendship and nor will you lose money.
3. Ability to Repay
Remember, a person comes to you and asks for a loan because they have some confidence that you might lend the money. Fair enough. But find out whether the person that asks for money has the ability to repay the loan.
This is yet another very important point that can help you to save any relationship and prevent the loss of your money.
To know the ability to repay, you would need to know the lifestyle of a person. Obviously, they will have a salary. But are they living realistically and within their means? Or are they overspending and require more and more money than their income?
Usually, this will be clearly seen. Because we can estimate how much salary someone would be getting simply by knowing where they work and at what designation.
Also, ask the person that is asking for the loan how they plan to repay you. Usually, an honest person will ask you for some time to repay the loan. Others will say that they will repay you immediately or give some very vague reply.
I don’t really approve of this system. But very often, a person that needs money can offer you some collateral. Like, they might keep something valuable like jewellery with you as a guarantee.
There’re several risks in keeping collateral with you. The first risk is that the precious stuff they keep could be fake. For example, the borrower might ask you to keep some gold ornaments as collateral.
But how would you know that those ornaments are actually made of gold and command a price that could cover the amount of money you give?
Secondly, the borrower can accuse you of theft or illegal possession of their property. In such cases, you could land serious problems with the law. And thirdly, if the borrower doesn’t repay, you might be unable to sell these ornaments or forfeit them as collateral for your money due to legal hurdles of the law too.
5. When You’re the Borrower
Now, let’s look at these four points from the reverse side. What happens when you’re borrowing money? How would you prove that your relationship with someone really matters? This is the first point you should consider before asking for money from relatives.
The second thing to do is to find out whether you really need the money. For what are you taking a loan? If you can justify the loan and need it for something very urgent, there’s no harm. But your lifestyle has to be in sync and clearly indicate that you need the money for something really important and urgent.
Furthermore, always prove your ability to repay. To do so, tell the person whom you will approach for the loan about your total income. And clearly tell them how and when you plan to repay.
If possible, show them that you can save the money and repay the loan. If it is not possible to repay all the money at the same time, ask the lender to provide you with the facility to repay in instalments.
You can give them bank checks in equal amounts as instalments. Remember to provide a date on the checks. And ensure that the lender can deposit them in their bank account and they get honoured.
Also Read: Best Online Personal Apps In India
Another Kind of Loan
One more kind of headache that we buy with money is when we stand as guarantors for any loan for someone we know.
Often, the person can be unable to repay the monthly instalments of this loan. In such cases, the bank or the lender reserves the right to put a lien on your salary as the guarantor.
This means the bank or lender can legally claim the money from you and your bank account.
This is also buying a headache. In fact, it’s buying a much bigger headache because you will be responsible on two fronts- the first is recovering your money from the person, and the second is keeping the bank away from taking money from your account.
When do People ask for Money?
So, let’s see when people ask you for money. The first thing is when you get sudden money, such as winning the lottery or when you inherit something.
People expect that you’re rich now and will not refuse a loan. The second case when people ask for money is when they see you’re well-off and prospering in life.
They believe that you would have surplus money to give as a loan and will not miss the amount, even if they don’t repay or delay the repayment.
And thirdly, they will ask you for money only when they are fully confident that you wouldn’t refuse. This happens when people see you as weak, or you’re seen as a person that can’t say no.
You can avoid buying these headaches and suffering only if you know these few things I told you. It is not bad to give a loan. But allowing it to become a headache is a bad thing and a problem. The person that takes a loan has to swallow their pride and ego when they come asking for money. At the same time, giving a loan doesn’t mean you have bought that person.