If you ask someone to name a rich person, a filthy rich person, Bill Gates will often fall within the discussion at some point. Gates is known worldwide and gained his fame through the success of Microsoft. The interesting fact is that in almost every interview with Mr. Gates, the money he made is not what made him happy, it is the money he gave away.
Why Is Giving So Rewarding
This article is not to get into hard science about the benefits of giving. Instead, focus on the fact that money will not buy you happiness. What you do with that money will buy you happiness though. Ive met many people, those with a significant income or amount of wealth, that were chasing more money. Why? They couldnt find that spot that made them happy.
The way for them to find happiness did not lie in earning more money, it actually would come from what they did with the money they earned. Here is the thing; we all strive for something in life and money is going to be the foundation that makes that thing happen in most cases.
For example, I wish to be available for my daughter until she moves out of this house and gives me my freedom. I found an avenue to do that; writing. While I may not make as much money as I would if I pursued other avenues that I was interested in early in my life, I am happier because I am able to be at home for my daughter. When she gets out of school, Im there. When she wakes up, Im there.
Bill and Melinda Gates found their happiness by spreading their wealth throughout the world. They spend most of their money on helping those most in need. This is even more interesting because it seems to come from a truly heartfelt desire to help.
What Makes You Happy?
Your own reward will come when you find what will make you happy. It wont be easy for some. For others, they have known all along. I would argue that there is no person that will find true happiness just in making money. Those that think that it is what will make them happy are after something else. They like the expensive things in life. The issue is that in most cases, the amount of work to earn enough to buy those things is not going to leave time for life in general.
There is no magic number to what you need to earn. Instead, find a job that you enjoy, a career that you love, and live within your means. Make the sacrifices, financially, to live the life that you want to live. If you are struggling to find that one thing that gives your life meaning, keep searching. At some point it will become clear. It took me over 30 years to find my own goals. Bill and Melinda found theirs after leaving the corporate world. You may have to make a significant leap, and friends and family will think you lost your mind, but without risk, there is rarely a reward.
Image Source: BBC