I drove a Range Rover—the high end with all of the bells and whistles. I lived in a Mediterranean style “home” just shy of 6,000 square feet. I had a second home—a 3- bedroom condo off the water with a balcony. Financially, I wanted for nothing. My net worth put me in the top 5% of the world’s wealthiest.
I was miserable.
According to Merriam-Webster, the first two definitions of wealth pertain to abundance in value, resources, and supply.
So why was I miserable?
Despite having the “value, resources, and supply” in fiscal abundance, I was living an impoverished life in other aspects. A friend recently referred to my life before as “a canary trapped in a gilded cage.”
The abundance of dollars in the bank is neither good nor bad. It is our relationship with our “value, resources, and supply,” that determines a genuine sense of wealth. After all, there are those with millions in the bank who use money to control and manipulate others or who hide behind the “stuff” that money can buy yet remain miserable.
I didn’t begin to experience wealth until I left my figurative gilded cage. True wealth is not measured by dollar signs; true wealth is the feeling of ease and pleasure.
Think of the late billionaire, Jean Paul Getty (portrayed by the late Christopher Plummer in the film, All the Money in The World) whose 16-year-old grandson, John Paul Getty III was kidnapped and held for ransom. The wealthy grandfather refused to pay ransom to rescue his grandson, and in the end, the grandfather dies alone in a 72-room mansion, alone with his German shepherds.
Wealth is more a state of mind than a bank statement.
Since I flew out of my figurative bird cage, my bank account looks very different. I paid a fiscal price for my spiritual wealth, and I would do it all over again.
Wealth is knowing time and choices are yours.
Think about those days when, for whatever reason, you hadn’t eaten all day. Maybe you were stuck on a delayed flight; maybe it was a religious fast—regardless, how amazing did that first bite of food taste? The feeling, the sheer pleasure experienced in abundantly enjoying that morsel was an experience of wealth.
Regardless of the number in your bank account now, you always have the option to choose wealth, to experience a sense of abundance and ease.
Ease, freedom, fun—this is what we all want to experience.
I wish each of you dear readers, great wealth.