Wallets are clunky. If you put one in your back pocket and hop on a bike, they either fall out or jab into your rear end.
If you're a woman, you might own a purse, and then your wallet is secure. But do you really want to wear a bag at all times?
What if there were a way to keep your money and a few credit cards without taking up so much space?
You'll be glad to know there is. It's a called a money clip, and it's been an accessory in the pockets of many great figures both real and fictional.
In fact, Tony Robbins, life coach for the most powerful and rich, carries three $100 bills in a money clip.
You'll just have to scroll on down to find out.
1. A Little Bit of Money Clip History
Paper money hasn't been around forever. And while, yes, we can point to some small uses all the way back to 7th Century China, bank notes didn't really take off until the late 17th century.
And even then, bank notes were handwritten. Nobody printed paper money. Printing presses were used to make large volumes like Bibles and the like, not mere certificates.
Coins were the only real method of carrying around and counting wealth. And most people relied on a coin purse to carry their wealth with them when needed.
In the 18th Century, the Bank of England began printing partial notes. These ranged from 20 Pounds to 1000 Pounds.
During the American Revolution, the Continental Congress began issuing paper money to fund the war effort. And from then on paper money evolved as the United States formed and founded first a National Bank and then a Central Bank in 1781.
With a need to carry bills around, you would think the money clip showed up around the same time as the dollar bill. But it didn't.
It wasn't until the early 20th century that the money clip came into being. People were beginning to amass wealth and they needed a way to both carry cash and show it off.
In lieu of string, they relied on clips for their money. This both tidied up their money and made them look rich.
The Great Market Crash of 1929 sobered the nation. And men began carrying what little they had in hidden places such as a wallet or a folio. While some still carried money clips, they faded out of popularity.
2. Why Carry a Money Clip Today
Today the wallet has become a catch all. Even with the advent of mobile digital technology, physical objects still represent currency or the access to currency (credit cards).
And loyalty cards are the bane of wallet carriers. Do we really need a loyalty card for every business we visit?
Wallets are like little black holes attracting things which will never escape. And the wallet grows as it sucks in various things.
Even Jerry Seinfeld once remarked to George Costanza, "[Your back hurts] because of that wallet. You've got a filing cabinet under half of your [rear end]!" Jerry merely confirmed the obvious. Wallets are unhealthy.
But enough about wallets. Why carry a money clip instead?
Less Temptation to Overburden Your Pocket
When you've over stuffed your wallet, what's one more receipt or loyalty card?
But with a money clip, you can only keep a small amount of anything. A receipt or two. A credit card. A few dollar bills.
You're not tempted to pick up another loyalty card and you'll most likely throw away the receipt. It's wallet stuffing therapy without the massive clinical psychology bill.
So, if someone already commented on your fat wallet recently, you might want to consider a high-quality money clip. You'll quickly find your load is lighter. And when you're tearing up asphalt, every once counts.
A Money Clip Is Safer Than a Wallet
Imagine this, you're walking through a crowded street in Manhattan. Someone bumps into you. You check your back pocket and your wallet is gone.
By the time you turn around, you have no clue who stole your wallet. Your I.D., your credit cards, and your money are in that wallet.
Now, if you had only a money clip with some cash and nothing else in that pocket, you'd only be a little bit poorer. Your identity would be secure. You wouldn't have to cancel your credit cards.
There's a hole in our story, of course. Wouldn't you carry your credit cards and I.D. in your money clip? Not if you're using your money clip for security.
Ask yourself this: do you really need a wallet to carry an I.D. and a credit card?
You can carry a wallet and a clip. Some people do. But we say why even bother? Put the I.D. and card(s) in your front pocket and the cash in your back.
A thief who steals the money will be satisfied while your access to cash/credit and your I.D. are safe and sound.
Tony Robbins and His Clip
Why would you carry three crisp one hundred dollar bills in a clip? Are you trying to convince everyone around you that you're rich?
The people around him might think Tony Robbins is just showing off his success. And in a sense, he is. But it's not for the benefit of others. It's for the benefit of himself.
No matter who you are, the psychology of success comes down to visualization. You have to imagine yourself in a position of success before you achieve success.
For Tony Robbins, carrying three $100 bills in a clip is his way of reminding himself what success means. It's an ever present reminder that success is always within his grasp.
If you want to reach for success, carry a symbol in your pocket to remind you of this. And the visual cue of paper money might be exactly that.
The money clip isn't anachronistic. It's even more useful today than it ever was in the 20th century.
If you're looking for a badass clip, check out our selection. You're sure to find a better way to carry your money on the road.