Difficult times don’t bring out the best in people. Is hard to ask a sinking person to think about anybody else other than saving himself. The economical crisis is showing the real character in the people around you, and in ourselves.
Producing value for others is not an easy task. For most people, their lives are completely tied up to their jobs. Their jobs provide the security of sustainability and affordability of social anesthetics like shopping sprees and Friday’s dine out.
My questions today revolve around: why do we all live so attached to the pursuit of money? Why is it that we believe that with more money our life would be easier, safer and better? I have the impression that most people in their death beds don’t look back and say: “I would try to live longer so that I can make more money”.
I believe that the reason behind it is that we believe that with more money, we would be able to live a relaxed life of comfort and pleasure, and we would easily get rid of all pains. However, if that was true, lottery winners would be the happiest people in the world, but they aren’t.
A life in the pursuit of “more” is a life full of absolutely nothing. If I live my life as if I was awaiting for a destination I would miss my life completely.
The worst part about it is that we convince ourselves that our only problem is lack of money when in reality deep inside we know that the real lack is faith.
If you take two people and send them to a deserted island: To the first one you give a million dollars and to the second you give a solid reason to live, who do you think that would last longer? The millionaire will end up giving all his money away to the other one in exchange for “comforts.”
We are like money hungry robots with junk-filled garages. We associate so much pleasure to the act of getting that we have forgotten how does it feel to give something to somebody else. We want so much the things that we want we can’t find pleasure (dopamine) in the things that we already have. In fact, studies show that some people buy things, and never open them. It is clear that the pleasure of “having” is not the same as that of “getting.”
We want to work hard to get more money. The more money we get, the more things we buy. The more things we buy the less money we have. So now we have to work more in order to get more things.
In the end, we end up with neither money nor life. It is a pretty clever distraction. Our garages end up full of trinkets: plastic and shiny metals, until it is time to throw them away so that we make some space: for other stuff.
If we pursue money because we want it to buy things, we in essence become the kind of person that wants to be comfortable, that wants to not have to work. By becoming this person, you don’t create value for others and therefore you end up making less money but at the same time wanting more money.
Have you ever noticed that people that have plenty of money also are not really interested in buying things? The reason is that in order to have money, you have to be able to 1. Make money and 2. Keep it. If you make money, but you spend it, you’ll end up where you started.
So keep this in mind: if you want to be able to make money and have money, you must focus on giving. Giving your time, your money, your effort, your sweat, your creativity and yourself to help others. In that effort, you’ll find yourself, not wanting things that make you comfortable anymore. And therefore you’ll keep the money that you make.
Finally, when you work hard at something you love doing for others, you’ll discover that one of life’s biggest blessings is exactly that. Being able to contribute to others in something you enjoy.