“As he is capable of performing a journey upon his own feet, but yet would prefer to mount a carriage, just so a man will be capable of being poor, yet will wish to be rich.” – Seneca
It is the freedom that wealth buys us that most of us crave. The ability to choose when and how we spend our time. The ability to become less reliant on our work as a source of providing a living. In a word, wealth provides us with freedom.
We can be perfectly happy continuing on working, spending a little more than half of our waking hours committed to our professions. We can build a nice life around that and we can make the most of what life brings us.
But we would all prefer to be independent of our work. We would all prefer to know that we were working because we wanted to, or because we enjoyed it instead of doing it simply because we had to.
If we detach a little from the idea of independence we can see that this is more of a mindset than an actual reality. In reality we could be making millions of dollars a year and still be just as stuck in our jobs as we are now. On the other side of the coin, we could probably be making less than we currently do but limit our spending and simplify our lifestyle so that we are free to continue doing what we do because we enjoy the work and the relationships we’ve built along the way.
The key to being there is two fold. First we need to change the way we look at wealth and work. Second we need to commit to taking the steps to get ourselves where we want to be. And we need to be detached and honest with ourselves.
virtus fortis vocat