We Work Hard to Become Rich But We Forget to Live Life

I dreamed of a society where people stop chasing money.

But they told me I’m not practical. That it was impossible because we need money to live a good life. We need money to buy our needs and eat foods we want and travel the world. I get it. So maybe I was wrong.

Maybe I need to be realistic and find ways to raise my income so I can be… successful? I still don’t understand. I’m sorry.

Some of my friends gave up their passions, the things they love, and their freedom. They focused more on becoming rich. MORE MONEY.

They leave their families to work in a first world country with the hopes of earning more money in a short span of time. MORE MONEY.

And when they have the money, they will find time to do the things they love. And then, be with their loved ones. And then, have the freedom to do everything they want. They believe.

One of them told me, “If you have the money, it’s easier to do the things you love to do.”

Another said, “Someday, I will find time to do the things I love. For now, I have to do this (back to work).”

I admire the sacrifice, the determination, the risk. But I couldn’t help but wonder if the sacrifice was all worth it. I wonder if they can still find time doing things they love when they already spent a lot of time chasing money.

Can we regain the time we’ve lost? I don’t know. But if there’s a way, then tell me. I need it.

Because, often, time is more important than money. I’d rather spend money to buy time — more time.

And that’s the reason we want to earn more money. We believe if we have more, then we can have more time. Then things will be better. Doing things we love will be easier. Raising our kids will be easier. Spending time with our loved ones will be easier.

While that sounds practical, truth is, that’s not what’s happening. In reality, it’s the other way around — most super rich people have miserable families, full of anxiety and stress, and every area of their lives has become more complex than ever.

I’m not generalizing. But I’ve read a lot of stories. I’ve heard it. I’ve met some of them. And I can highly attest that anytime, they may go down the spiral of shit.

Because earning a lot of money (the right way) takes a lot of time, a lot of energy, and a lot of mental and emotional space. It’s stressful. Sometimes frustrating. Sometimes depressing.

And no matter how much we earn — thousands or millions or billions — we’ll always feel not enough.

We’ll always feel dissatisfied. We’ll always feel we don’t have time doing everything we want.

What is missing?

Are we supposed to be fulfilled with money, knowing we can now go back doing the things we love? Are we supposed to be happy with money, knowing we can now spend more time with our loved ones? Isn’t that the goal?

Because money is a moving target. Despite the huge earning, we all want to earn more and more and more. It never ends.

Suddenly we realize: We’ve wasted most of our time trying to become rich instead of doing the right thing.

What is the right thing?

It is to become a better person each day. Do the things that give us purpose and meaning. Save people. Empathize. And help make the world a better place for everyone.

Life is not about earning a lot of money. 

Is earning a lot of money matters? Maybe sometimes. But spending all your time to become super rich is a trap.

Work hard, but don’t forget to live life.

“Money is not the most important thing, but when you need it, there are few substitutes. So while I like the things money can buy, I love what money won’t buy. It bought me a house but it won’t buy me a home. It would buy me a companion but it won’t buy me a friend.” — Zig Ziglar

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Jade Panugan

I follow my curiosity and write to understand. I love to cultivate my passions, craft new ideas, nurture wisdom, and learn more about life. I believe we're here not just to pursue our desires, but also, seek understanding, help each other, and make a difference. If there's anything you want to discuss or share, contact me.