Wealth means slightly different things to different people. To some, wealth is about possessions, being able to afford designer clothing comfortably, for example, or owning a private jet. To others, wealth is more about lifestyle than assets, the things that money enables you to do such as traveling widely or taking early retirement.
The problem is that because wealth means different things to different people, we all have a different idea of the amount of money required to achieve a wealthy life. Relatively rich people are dissatisfied with their wealth because they are constantly pursuing more – they always know someone who has more than them, so they never feel that they have reached the top.
Judging by everything you read on the internet, achieving massive wealth should be relatively simple. All you really need to do is come up with a highly original business idea, reduce your current spending and invest wisely – right?
Well, okay, looking into a bridge trust is probably a good idea if you want to protect your money and it’s true that the more money you have, the better the investment opportunities become. Equally, if you want to amass a lot of cash, one of the simplest things you can do is stop spending! But you have to ask yourself what all this means for you. Is money really all you care about?
What You Do With Your Wealth
If having lots of money in your bank account is all that’s important, you wouldn’t mind living in a tiny apartment, wearing threadbare clothes and eating leftovers. But for most people, wealth is about more than the numbers – it becomes a signifier of success. This means that wealth itself is irrelevant compared to what you do with it.
According to the fulfilment curve, you should have enough when you are able to afford the basics, extra comforts and luxuries. This means that once these things are fulfilled, extra wealth accumulation becomes excessive. If you enjoy buying stuff and there is no real limit to your spending, you will inevitably end up living surrounded by junk – expensive junk, no doubt, but junk nonetheless.
The answer is to retain a purpose. What are you going to use your wealth to do? In such a privileged position, you have so many options to enrich your life. There are lots of ways to do this (many are actually free) but the most important thing you can consider is how you might be able to help others. There’s no doubt that money changes lives and despite your run to the top, realizing that you are capable of giving so much away without any negative impacts to your own lifestyle is an incredible insight.
Understanding Different Kinds of Wealth
It’s easy to focus on money when we talk about wealth because we are usually either talking about the numbers adding up or what those numbers can be exchanged for. But there are other kinds of wealth too.
Social wealth is about feeling connected to those around you. While a bit of money might help with this, ultimately, social connections are more about sharing friendship and ideas that it is about where you go out or what you do together. Similarly, time wealth can definitely be bolstered by steady finances. This is about spending your time wisely, choosing to experience new things and really making the most of your life. Finally, physical wealth – your health. Being in good health should always be taken as a blessing.
When you begin to understand that financial wealth is just one way to measure your success or achievement as a human being, you will hopefully begin to live a more conscious life. In other words, valuing friendship and time as much as money will put your physical assets within a new, more balanced context.
What Does Wealth Mean to You?
So, considering all of this, what does wealth really mean to you?
For some, wealth is the ability to work part time and spend more hours socializing and experiencing new things. They don’t need financial wealth beyond that which facilitates this lifestyle. For others, spending time at work isn’t an issue because this is where they feel they add most value and where their friendships are based.
We will always be concerned with status, ownership and jealousy for what others have. But by understanding that beyond a certain point, financial wealth is nothing more than a number on a page, perhaps you might start a more worthwhile search.