The Difference Between Being Wealthy and Being Rich

March 29th, 2010

What cracks me up when watching a get-rich-quick commercial is how they constantly use the word wealth.  You’ve got these “cosmic wealth” “vibration wealth” or some other dung pile of verbiage.  They sit there in yachts, big houses, and a whole bunch of other “wealthy-looking” stuff.

But is having a lot of high-priced vessels of uselessness* the same as being “wealthy”?

I know a lot of people who are rich.  One guy I know in particular had (still has…as of this writing) all the usual trappings of wealth—the high-priced sports car, million-dollar home equipped with all the high-tech gadgets you could ask for, expensive furniture, the works.

You could say my friend had it all. But there was only one problem.

He was never home to enjoy any of it.

In fact, he typically worked 80-100 hours a week. He maybe got to ride in his sports car an hour a week. He never watched his large plasma screen TV.

But to those around him. He was someone to be envied. “Look at all that he has. If I had that, I’d be so happy.”

Who could blame them really. The problem though is that when most people think about wealth, they view it in terms of possessions. And those late-night info-mericials selling courses on real estate and other business opportunities only reinforce that idea.

But I define wealth differently. I define wealth as having the time to enjoy your life. The time to spend some time with the people you care most about.

Some people envy “the rich”. But I know better. I’ve seen too many of “the rich” work so much that they never see their kids and their house staff enjoys their homes more than they do.

That’s not wealth. That’s just having money. Wealth is not just having money, it’s having the time to enjoy it.

So, when you map out your career, don’t just consider how much money you will make. Think about how much time you will get to enjoy it.

P.S.

But don’t let those lame-o infomercials foll you with that “you’ll be sitting on a beach while money rolls in” junk.  Not only do 99.9% of them make you LOSE money..but that 1%who might actually make money at it (ahem–MLM–ahem) work those 100 hour weeks.

* vessels of uselessness-things that you have no use for, i.e. house with 30 rooms when only three people live there, a yacht that no one goes out on, a big TV no one watches, etc.

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