There’s an underlying belief in the world that having more money is the fixer of all problems. People think that any feelings of unhappiness in their circumstances would be alleviated by a raise in their income level.
However, money isn’t a life-changer. Quicksilver cash might upgrade the things in our lives, but it does very little to alter the course of it. As Tony Robbins has said,
“Money can’t change who we are. All it does is magnify our true natures. If you’re mean and selfish, you have more to be mean and selfish with. If you’re grateful and loving, you have more to appreciate and give.”
Indeed, when most people earn more, they simply spend more. Very few people are able to increase their income, joy and circumstances at the same time. Hence, Jim Rohn has a saying, “It’s hard to keep that which has not been obtained through personal development.”
If what you're seeking is a better and more fulfilling life, then this article presents a more effective way to do it. Here we go.
1. You Don’t Need More Money, You Need New Goals
“When you look at any individual person, you can know their projected future simply by looking at their consistent behavior. Your behavior is driven by your projected future.” -Benjamin P. Hardy
Goals are the driving force behind all behavior. Everything you do in your daily life is driven by a goal. You eat breakfast because you want to fuel your body and mind. You go to the gym because you want to feel and look good. You go to sleep because you want to be rested for the day ahead.
Therefore, if you changed your goals, you’d change your behavior and in turn your emotions and basically every other part of your life. As James Clear writes,
“The most effective way to change your habits is to focus not on what you want to achieve, but on who you wish to become.”
The kicker is that most people’s leading goal is comfort rather than freedom. They want a life that’s “easier” or more “carefree.” However, it’s a paradox that the pursuit of an easier life only leads to a harder one.
As Joe Polish has said,
“Life is easy when you live it the hard way, and hard when you live it the easy way.”
In essence, people are most happy not when they’re lying around and distracting themselves, but when they’re chasing adventure and advancing their life. As Brendon Burchard writes in his book, The Motivation Manifesto,
“In the hearts of humankind lives a natural instinct for freedom and independence, a psychological predisposition for self-direction, a biological imperative toward growth, and a spiritual joy in choosing and advancing one’s own life.”
2. Don’t Get Stuck in Your Present Circumstances
“The present moment by itself is too small, too hollow. We all need a future. Something beyond and greater than the present, at which to aim.” -The Triple Package
You may or may not be familiar with the story of George Q. Cannon. However, it goes like this: George Q. Cannon was a leader at the Latter-Day Saint Church a number of years ago.
As a young and impoverished man, it was a practice in his church for members to give 10% of their income towards growing the church and its mission. However, George approached his giving in an imaginative way.
Rather than paying 10% of his current earnings, he instead decided to pay 10% of what he intended to earn in the future. The result of this forward-thinking was clearly explained in a talk by Dr. Wendy Watson:
“When his bishop commented on the large amount of tithing poor young George was paying, George said something like: “Oh bishop, I’m not paying tithing on what I make. I’m paying tithing on what I want to make.” And the very next year George earned exactly the amount of money he had paid tithing on the year before!”
The lesson isn’t that you need to give away 10% of your future income. Instead, young George’s story is a perfect illustration of what happens when you move beyond your present circumstances and instead act from your desired future.
He wasn’t caught up with his present problems of having to pay 10% of his income. Instead, he proactively decided the problems he wanted to have and then figured out how to solve them. The words of Darren Hardy are incredibly telling,
“A person’s life can generally be measured by the size of the problems they are trying to solve.”
Oscar Wilde has similarly said, “Anyone who lives within their means suffers from a lack of imagination.”
What you focus on expands. You can’t move beyond your present circumstances if you don’t think beyond them. “This is as good as it gets” is not a saying that you want to live by.
Having more money doesn’t guarantee anything. Most people will spend years chasing money only to realize it was a meaningless pursuit. As Sir John Templeton has said,
“If you’ve got a billion dollars and you’re ungrateful, you’re a poor man. If you have very little but you’re grateful for what you have, you’re truly rich.”
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