What is wealth? If you do a quick Google search and click on images you are instantly bombarded with lots and lots of pictures of gold, stacks of cash, money trees, people rolling around in cash, dollar and pound signs, piles of money getting bigger etc etc.
But is it all about money?
The Wikipedia definition, which is also brought up through the Google search, says that ‘Wealth is the abundance of valuable resources or valuable material possessions.’
A wealth of knowledge is not a material possession but is of course a valuable resource. As is time.
If you search wealth quotes and click on images (I’m a visual person!) you end up with some conflicting messages of what true wealth is, of course these messages are an individual’s personal view or experience of wealth and wealth generation. The conflict is that many are about not needing money to be happy, that character and trust are the truest measures of worth, a few have tips and tricks to generating cash too. My personal favorite is ‘So many people spend their health gaining wealth and then have to spend their wealth to regain their health.’ It’s a strong message in my eyes as many of us jump on a treadmill and never stop to think just exactly how much we actually need, we don’t consider how much is enough, we just keep going because that is what society expects of us. More, more, more!! And to what expense, our health, our relationships?
My reflection on this is that only you can decide if you are wealthy in a way you would wish to be. But you have to take the time to figure out exactly what it is you want, what is important to you? REALLY important to you, and this IS important.
Will Smith once said, ‘Too many people spend money they haven’t got to buy things they don’t want, to impress people they don’t like.’ Maybe not all of us are spending money we don’t have but I think a lot of us can put our hands up to trying to impress others every now and again, keeping up with the Joneses or even simply worrying what other family members will think we should be doing/achieving etc. WHAT DO YOU WANT? And what do you enjoy?
Going back to the subject of time, which I hinted at earlier, surely this is the most valuable resource we have. It is a leveller too – all of us have exactly the same amount of time (OK – so some of us outsource tasks which frees up more of our time but you see what I am getting at) what will you do with your time? When you get to the end of your life will you say, wow I wish I had spent more time at my desk, scrolling through Facebook or watching Eastenders or will you wish you had spent more time learning about a subject that interests you, seeing the world or being with family and friends? Only you can know what truly makes your heart sing.
Don’t waste your time working towards some other person’s goal. Take time out to sit with your thoughts for a while and decide what truly makes you happy. As Howard Thurman once said, ‘Don’t ask what the world needs, ask what makes you come alive, because the world needs people who have come alive.’
Surely then, true wealth is an abundance of what you personally define as a valuable resource for yourself. Mine would be having the time to walk my boxer dog Brunel which gives me a healthy pursuit and a sense of wellbeing, recharging my batteries and leaving me in a better position to tackle the other tasks of the day.