What does living a Wealthy Life mean to you? Is it about impressing other people, measuring up to societal or social or familial expectations?
Sometimes we get caught up in comparing ourselves and our journeys with those of other people. We focus on the “gaps,” on what we don’t have, or on how what we do have somehow isn’t good enough. There is this phrase, “Keeping up with the Jones” that means keeping up with the neighbours. If the neighbours got a new car, your parents or your grandparents might have thought about getting a new car. This mentality, of searching and striving to measure up to someone else, will absolutely hold you back. Let me explain why.
What we have to keep in mind is that though we can look at many apparently successful people, for example celebrities, often it’s only a matter of months or years later that you hear how sad their family or personal life has actually been. If you’ve listened to celebrity news, there is an endless trail of people that we have put on a pedestal, because they looked rich and successful, yet their lives had deteriorated into drugs or alcohol.
And if we were to look deeper, we might realise it was because they were unhappy or insecure and they were filling a gap. There was something missing, or something wasn’t right, even though they looked so glamorous and rich. You may even know of a person or couple in your social circle who fits this pattern. I want to help you examine where those ideas of wealth might come from, as well as offer alternative ways of thinking about success and wealth.
A more satisfying way to consider you have a Wealthy Life is that point when you have taken the time to identify, hone and accomplish a style of life that has meaning and fulfilment for you and those you love.
It’s not about the size of your bank account, the newness of the car that you’re driving, the size of your house, the prestige or glamour that may surround you. And if you think that it is, then you are going to be forced down a path where the gaps between you and whoever you have on a pedestal just keep growing. If you remove the concept of the pedestal and replace it with the motivation to achieve what actually matters to you, then that’s the only measurement that counts. That is a measurement made of elasticity and magnetism; it pulls you forward because it’s towards the life that you want to live.
Your house and what it looks like to other people is unimportant, because this is the anchor point of your home, your family, your life. This is the physical location of your Wealthy Life. This is the place where you are happy. This is your garden, this is your front door, your pictures, your memories on the wall. And that can’t be measured against what someone else has. What matters to them may well be different. Where they want to live may well be different. What they are prepared to spend on a house may well be different.
Do you spend your time, your money, your energy on things that will lead you towards the Wealthy Life you want to live? Well, if you have read past articles about the importance of Clarity and Control then probably yes. And now you can see why those are the first two Principles, because they are skills and subtle shifts in the way that you’re thinking that contribute to the crystallisation and sharpening of your focus about what it is that you really want.
When you focus on what drives you forward and you know what measures to take to achieve your goal, then you can start to take stock of what assets you have. And most of us have more resources than we realise, especially when we do away with comparison.
There is no way if you are focused on your own definition of success and making daily strides towards your own Wealthy Life, that you can be focused on gaps. The idea of understanding your Resources is a focus on what you have, not a focus on what you don’t have. And you have more than you think. The issue is whether your resources are actually aligned with the life that you want to live.
Do listen to this week’s episode of my podcast A Wealthy Life with Vicki Wusche here and here. And as always, we would absolutely love to hear your thoughts!