The Water Container.
So often over the years I have said that money is really important to living a full life, and then qualified things by saying that many people can spoil their life by keep amassing money at the expense of enjoying their life.
Rich is a relevant perception, to who is asking the question. Someone with nothing will think that maybe a $1000 can be regarded as rich, and then someone else will feel that rich will mean having the most money.
I think that joining the game of trying to get the most is a sad state, and I have met and interviewed some seriously wealthy people, and most of them say that if given their time again, they would ease up and really start doing the things they want to do at a point that they now know is ample wealth.
Whatever way we look at money, a surplus of it is of absolutely no use to you, and if you cannot find it in you to give it towards helping others, then it becomes stagnant.
This is one of the hardest things to get clear when changing your mindset, because lots of people just think of a huge amount of money, and think that obtaining this will make you a different person and allow you to enjoy yourself and live a fulfilled life.
It could be worth then looking at the richest woman in the world as of today. Gina Reinhart the mining Baroness is worth almost $30 billion, and is embroiled in a family dispute over her money. One must then ask the question, has the extraordinary amount of money brought her happiness?
I don’t know any details of her personal life, but I am sure that this situation is taking up a lot of her time and she would rather be doing something else. So with all her money, because she is not in control of her time, she is having to do things that she would rather not be doing.
It is evident then that having very large amounts of money, brings with it some pressures, from many diverse areas. It would be safe then to say that far from solving problems, it can throw up a lot of other problems.
I have never actually had an analogy that could explain a surplus of money, but last night I suddenly thought of one that may work.
If we were given a container that filled with a certain liquid ( representing money )was enough to keep us in a lifestyle that we wanted for our whole life, what would you do when filling it?. You only get one visit to the tap.
Some people may start filling it and then get impatient and run off with the container only a quarter or half full, they will then either have to live frugally to make what they had last, or they could live very well for a given period and then suffer at other times.
Others will stand there and although it is a bit of a pain and quite strenuous to keep hold of the container, they will fill it to three quarters full, and say that will do. These people could divide the content of the container up over their life and be OK, not quite living the high life, but OK.
Then you will get the ones that go through the pain barrier and wait until the container is full, these people will have a fulfilled life and have enough to keep them living a very comfortable lifestyle with not too many problems.
A very unique group, will go through the pain barrier fill the container and then keep trying to get more liquid into the container, and every time they try and move away, they leave the tap running into the container to just make sure that there is no possible way they can get any more in.They are frightened to leave because they really do not believe that what is in the container will be enough. So they spend their lives all the time having enough, but scared to do anything just in case it is not.
At the end of their life they are still standing at the tap trying to get more in the container and suddenly they realise that they have actually not done a lot of the things that they wanted to do.
I think that knowing how much we need is such an important part of life, and removing the fear of lack is a major part of being able to relax. Having reached the ripe old age of 64 years young I can tell you that living well and creating money is much more fun when you are content and relaxed, and although the amount needed to live confortably is quite substantial, it is in no way prohibitive.
I get so many people who say that they would be prepared to sacrifice everything to have a huge amount of money, and now I can have a great mental picture of them standing at the tap with their container overflowing stuck in one position with no way to enjoy themselves.
I hope this little analogy helps you put into perspective what we need to get through life and also explains that to fill the container requires different disciplines. The more effort you are prepared to put in to filling the container the better your life will be.
I really hope that you are not one of those people who are afraid to leave the tap.
Go fill your container.