Sunday Independent (Ireland) - Business & Appointments - - FRONT PAGE -

Joan Free­man, the In­de­pen­dent sen­a­tor who was also a can­di­date in the re­cent Pres­i­den­tial elec­tion, says that it was her up­bring­ing, rather than a spe­cific piece of ad­vice, which in­flu­enced her ap­proach to money.

“I came from a fam­ily where there were eight chil­dren and where we lived in a house with two be­d­rooms and one box-bed­room,” says Free­man. “Money was never ter­ri­bly im­por­tant to us. We never felt a lack of it, but we had no aware­ness of money ei­ther. Other things were far more im­por­tant. That’s the en­vi­ron­ment I came from and the mes­sage which I took from that en­vi­ron­ment was never to give money any power.”

Free­man cites a quote from Jonathan Swift, the au­thor of Gul­liver’s Trav­els, which states that ‘a wise per­son should have money in their head, but not in their heart’. Free­man is a big be­liever in this ad­vice. “We’ve got to sur­vive and we need to earn a liv­ing,” says Free­man. “But don’t make money your goal. We need to see that other things are more im­por­tant. That’s been my ethos all my life.”

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