“Normal is getting dressed in expensive clothes that you buy for work and driving through traffic in a car that you are still paying for – in order to get to the job you need to pay for the clothes and the car, and the house you leave vacant all day so you can afford to live in it.”
We hear famous icons like Drake saying “started from the bottom now we’re here” but do any of us really think about what that means? My assumption is that people like Drake are getting exposure and fame because they started with little and worked their way to fame and money. However, why do so many people get respect and fame for working their way “up” yet no one gets recognized for working their way “down”. Does up really signify good and down really signify bad? I was thinking about this in the car the other day and I haven’t been able to stop thinking about it since.
From what I’ve learned there is a direct positive correlation with happiness and appreciating “the little things”; the things you become aware of when you don’t have much. Let me tell you why…
I was fortunate as a child. I never had to worry about food, always had the best clothing, the newest toys and came from a pretty fortunate family. We could afford expensive clothes, the nicest cars, beautiful huge houses. My parents were happy, we were happy, so we thought.
The economy has way too much power to alter a families stability these days. It crashed, and we lost everything. The money, the cars, the houses. Some would call it horrible, but I call it a blessing in disguise. Now, I can’t speak for my parents because they were the ones facing this loss full force. They did their best to keep the impact from affecting my two sisters and I. But we could still see it. It forced us to relocate. When we moved, it was to a much smaller house and cheaper cars. In the beginning they felt like they let us down because they weren’t able to provide the same “lifestyle”, but they would soon discover it was the best thing that could have ever happened. What we all gained was much greater than the material things that we lost. I have a feeling there are a lot of families that can relate to this.
Are singers and actors like Drake really happy with all of their fame and money? We see so many famous people hit a plateau from getting arrested to overdosing and unfortunately even dying. There has to be some kind of symbolism in this that we need to bring to attention. Should we really be idolizing these kinds of people? Are they really as happy as they present themselves to be, or are we just seeing the highlight reel of what they want us to see?
Sure, downsizing everything we had wasn’t a choice. My parents live a simple life, work and bills no longer consuming their lives. They are able to take random vacations to see family and friends. They are not at the mercy of money because of ridiculous mortgages and car leases. Life has become more about experiences and being with people they love rather than the items they own. Now somebody tell me…what is so bad about this so called bottom if you have all you need? This goes back to my last post (See: How to Become Rich by Making Your Wants Few).
I’m sure you’re wondering, How did I get to this realization if I didn’t live it first hand? Well the fact is, I did live it. I AM living it. I had all of those expensive things that my parents provided me with. And I love them tremendously for it because now I know what I’m not missing out on. Materialism. I don’t need all of those fancy things to be happy. Thank you, Mom and Dad for freeing me from the black hole of our society.
Lets not teach our kids that they need to achieve a certain level of wealth to achieve happiness and self worth. Rather, lets teach them to look within themselves to find what they want to experience in life, and let the money come second. Lets not teach them that we are defined by what we own but by how we live our lives.
We were not born to just go to work, pay bills, and die.
We are way more than that. Stop giving credit to the ones who aim to achieve riches and fame for self verification. Lets give credit to the ones who find “wealth” in meaningful things like spending time doing things you love with people you love. Not celebrities who trick us into believing money and fame is happiness.
Know value not price.
This is what I’m learning to be the key to happiness.