Last week a reader of my Sunday Newsletter sent me an email to ask me a single question. That question was, “How do I become rich?”
The word rich is used to describe people who have an abundance of money and material wealth. But just like there are multiple forms of intelligence, there are multiple forms of wealth, real wealth being something different from pecuniary wealth.
Your health is a more important source of wealth than money. You would never trade your eyesight or your hearing for money. You wouldn’t trade your ability to walk and run and drive for money either. You wouldn’t give up the ability to pick up your children or grandchildren and hold them in your arms.
Your health is an immeasurable form of wealth, even if you don’t recognize it as such.
Being loved and loving others is an immense form of wealth. The more people who truly love you, the richer you are. The number of people you love is another way to measure your real riches. When you die, your banker will not show up to your funeral, nor will your stock broker. Don’t look for these folks if you are ever sick or hospitalized either. You’re looking for the person who is going to sit next to you and hold your hand.
The greatest source of riches is love. Period. Full stop. If you have that, you have what you really need.
One way to measure your real wealth is to weigh your character. Who are you? What do you stand for? What do you fight for? How do you contribute? There are people who cannot sleep at night because they’ve betrayed themselves and others. There is no amount of money that can prevent them from being poor.
Who you are matters much more than what you have. It always has, and it always will.
The truth is that you can only be truly rich when you are truly grateful. And when you are truly grateful, you are already rich.
There is nothing wrong with wanting money and hustling to make as much as you believe you need to be happy. But there are more important things that bring you real wealth that must not be abandoned in pursuit of “being rich,” lest you gain the money and lose your real wealth.
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