We all had that dream growing up right? You know the one, having loads of money, the big house, nice cars in the driveway, multiple holidays across the globe, designer clothes. The one when you had made it, you were finally on the map, you were rich! So how’d that one turn out for you?
Being rich is a fantasy many of us dreamt about in our younger years, and some still do now I’m sure, even though we’re all grown up. That feeling, that urge to have all the money in the world, or certainly enough to make all of those dreams come true, and some. We grew up knowing we needed to work hard for our cash, to work 50 hours a week for a good salary, to climb the ladder to the top of the corporate tree where the big bucks really do actually grow. We buy our first house, our first car, we dress smart, we go on holidays, we get used to the disposable income and we are always in search for more of it. But is that having goals or having greed?
The number one definition of ‘Rich’ in the Oxford English Dictionary is “Having a great deal of money or assets”. Now whilst this is of course the first thing we think of if someone claims to be so, as we grow older, or certainly as I have, the definition changes somewhat, to more of a spiritual meaning, than a materialistic one.
Of course money is required to live, to eat, to pay the bills and to reap the rewards of our hard work. Some with money will live the affluent, extravagant lifestyle, which they’re entitled to, having earned it and others will merely enjoy the freedom it gives them, the ability to do what they want when they want, which sounds like a dream in itself. But for me, nowadays, after all of my life experiences to date, being rich translates to so much more than having bucket loads of the paper stuff in the bank.
If someone asked you your net worth, what would you tell them? The combination of your savings, investments, assets and piggy bank coins? That’s what most would go with. Me? I’d steer off course. My net worth would be a combination of all the things that are important to me, the things that I have built up in my life thus far that don’t have a photo of the Queen on, the things that make me the person I am today and that others can’t actually see from the outside, only by those that know me well. The things that reflect how rich I am in life, rather than in money – Personal worth over personal wealth.
Love, happiness, gratitude, kindness, love, compassion. My values, my authenticity, my achievements, my family. These are all the things that I have created over the years, which money cannot buy, yet still make me enormously rich.
They say money can’t buy you happiness and I totally agree with that statement. It helps, it can give you those momentary ‘fixes’ when you need a pick-me-up, or when you just fancy doing something spontaneous it’s great to have it, but whilst it may get you closer to that smile, it is not the only thing required to keep it on your face, or in your heart.
Do you push through life with your end goal being to get a better paid job, a bigger house than your friend, a better car than your neighbour, a fancier 5* holiday, or do you push to be a better friend, a better parent, a better lover, and ultimately a better person? I’ve seen it myself with friends. For those who are addicted to the thrill of the bank balance, money gained can mean love is lost and nothing, including no amount of money can replace that, no matter how rich you are. It doesn’t come back with next months pay check, when it’s gone it’s gone, and these are the people who are rich, but also very poor.
Having said all of that, I agree that money is needed, but it’s not all we need, there are so many things in life that are worth so much more than one’s wealth. Yes, I want nice holidays and to travel and make memories, but I also want to grow old, and live knowing that all my years were full of rich experiences, with love and laughter, and that I spent my time doing the things that mattered to me with those I loved, something I can’t get back once it’s gone, not like money, which comes and goes.
Being rich in money is one thing, but being rich in life is a completely different ball game, and I know which one I’d rather be playing.