While I was working out with a friend of mine recently, I asked him what he was doing during the upcoming weekend. He said, “Tonight I’ve got to do something really hard. I have to collect money from a friend.”

Apparently when a friend of his was on the verge of losing his home, my friend loaned him a decent amount of money. When I asked my friend if the guy ever paid him any of the money back, he said he had only received about $150.00 of it. The friend never brings it up.

I asked what kind of person the guy is who borrowed the money. My friend said, “He’s one of those guys who preaches an abundant spirituality and the law of attraction.”

I started laughing. I said, “That’s really interesting. He borrows money that he never pays back, but yet he preaches abundance and the law of attraction. He basically preaches everything he isn’t.”

This is something that a lot of people do. They preach what they’re not, because it is what they want to be.

You’ll have a person who talks about spirituality and the law of attraction. They’ll preach about how doing good deeds comes back to you ten-fold. Yet they will be the person who, when you look deep into their character, don’t follow this at all.

They will be the person who doesn’t pay you back if you lend them money. They are the person who keeps score every time they do something for someone else.

You need to really listen to what your message is to others. What is the message you preach to the world and tell people you are all about, and what is the message you actually follow? Do you follow what you preach in your life, or are you just preaching to everybody because you so desperately want to be that person? I tell people all the time to stop the outward preaching and start the inner work.

There is one other lesson to be learned from my friend’s situation: Never lend money to friends or family. If a friend or family member asks you for money, you tell them “I don’t lend money to people but, because I love you, I will give you this money and I don’t ever expect you to pay me back.”

The second you lend money to a friend or a family member, it changes the dynamics of the relationship. So often, people take advantage of other people’s good nature and never pay money back. This ends a lot of those relationships.