What Is True Wealth?
When you hear the word “wealth”, what comes to mind? Maybe you think of billionaires, people with luxury cars and homes, or those who can jet off to exotic locations at a moment’s notice. Whilst these are all examples of wealth, they’re not the only ones. In fact, wealth can come in many different forms.
Money is Not the Only Form of Wealth
We often think of money as the primary measure of wealth, but there are other things that can be just as valuable. Wealth is actually defined as “an abundance of valuable material possessions or resources,” and money isn’t the only resource out there.
Think about it: what do you value in your life? Is it your relationships with your loved ones, your health, your knowledge, or your free time? These things are all forms of wealth in their own right, and they can be just as important, if not more so, than money.
Money is often seen as the simplest and most obvious form of wealth because it can be quantified. We know how much we make, how much our possessions cost, and how much we have saved in our bank accounts. However, this can also lead to a dangerous comparison game. We look at our neighbour’s big house and fancy car and immediately feel like we’re not doing as well as they are.
The Diminishing Returns of Money
In reality though, the amount of money we have doesn’t necessarily equate to our level of happiness. We may think that having more money will make us happier but studies show that after a certain point, the happiness derived from additional income begins to flatten out.
You might be thinking, “But wait, if I had more money, I could buy more things and have more experiences, and that would make me happy!” And you’re not wrong. Having some money is important, and it can provide us with a safety net, the ability to travel, and the freedom to enjoy life’s little pleasures. But as our income increases, the amount of happiness we gain from each additional dollar decreases. Eventually, we reach a point where we’re spending more money on the same things, just with fancier labels.
There’s even a negative paradox associated with having too much wealth. When we’ve experienced certain luxuries, we don’t want to give them up, even if they don’t necessarily make us happier. This can lead to a dangerous cycle of always wanting more and never feeling satisfied.
Knowledge as Wealth
You don’t just acquire knowledge to get rich. Knowledge is wealth in and of itself. Sure, you can leverage your skills and expertise to make money, but the real value lies in the knowledge itself. Learning for the sake of learning is a worthy goal.
There’s a certain joy in expanding your knowledge, whether it’s by playing a thousand games of chess or exchanging stories with others. Acquiring knowledge is an adventure that can be both challenging and rewarding. Whether you’re learning to play an instrument, mastering a new recipe, or honing your business skills, the joy of acquiring knowledge lies in the process.
So, go forth and explore the world of knowledge. You never know what treasures you might uncover!
Time Is Everything
If money is the most obvious form of wealth, time is its antithesis. A form of wealth that you can’t see.
We only become aware of the value of time when ours is almost gone. There are hard limits on our time, and unlike our money, which generally increases as we age, our time decreases.
You can’t buy more of it, and you never know how much time you have left.
Investing in the Wealth of Health
Let’s talk about two of the most important forms of wealth in life: health and relationships. They’re like distant cousins, but cousins nonetheless. We often take them for granted, especially when we’re young and our bodies feel indestructible. In uni, you can eat pizza for breakfast, lunch, and dinner without any worries. You can skip the gym and still feel like a superhero. It’s a beautiful time of life.
But like compound interest, the decisions you make about your health compound over time. The person who takes care of themselves in their youth will reap the rewards in the long run. On the other hand, the person who doesn’t, might end up regretting it in their later years.
The Wealth of Relationships
While health is critical, there’s another form of wealth that’s just as important: relationships. Money and possessions are meaningless without people to share them with. You can spend all your time chasing after materialistic pleasures but it won’t bring you true fulfilment. In the end, the value of time and good health lies in your capacity to spend them with the people you care about.
Experiences: Money Can’t Buy Memories
Life is all about experiences, isn’t it? From the big moments that take our breath away to the small ones that make us smile, experiences are the currency of life. As a friend once said, “The purpose of life is to experience things for which you will later experience nostalgia.” And I couldn’t agree more.
As humans, we are fortunate to live in an era where experiences are more accessible than ever before. We have the world at our fingertips. We can travel to the farthest corners of the world, learn new languages and cuisines, and meet people from all walks of life. It’s an amazing time to be alive.
But what’s the point of having all this wealth of knowledge and opportunity if we don’t use it to create lasting memories? As the lucky few who don’t have to spend every moment fighting for survival, we have the chance to build deep connections, pursue our passions, and simply have fun.
We Won the Timeline Lottery.
Think about it. Out of the 100 billion humans who have walked this Earth, we won the timeline lottery. We get to experience the world in a way that our ancestors couldn’t even imagine. We can do anything, meet anyone, and go anywhere. The possibilities are endless.
So, why not use our time, knowledge, health, and relationships to make memories that will last a lifetime? After all, experiences are all we have at the end of the day.
Money Can’t Buy Memories
The goal is a life rich in experiences, and sufficient in finances. Of course, some experiences cost money but the most valuable ones are priceless. Let’s just say you take a trip to Tromsø, Norway, would you remember the cost of your trip in detail? Probably not. However, having the experience of seeing the Northern Lights dance across the sky would be worth every penny and more.
It’s not about the price tag, it’s about the memories we create. And when we look back on our lives, those are the moments that will matter most.
So, go out and create memories. Take that trip you’ve been dreaming of, try something new, or simply spend time with the people you care about. Because when it’s all said and done, experiences are the true currency of life.