Roll-of-moneyLess is more?

When I was much younger my father would use the term “Less is More” in regard to lifestyle and the job market… To be honest it used to tick me off (especially in my early twenties)… I would quip, “well, why did I slave in college to get a degree and be saddled down with student loans if less was indeed more?” I was probably missing his point… As a side note, he moved to Hawaii to live the simple life after I graduated high school. Even still, as a young adult, growing up in Orange County, CA – I was inundated with images and real life examples of monetary success. Growing up in the eighties and living in a wealthy area near the beach only perpetuated this vision of success; setting this benchmark for self-esteem and accomplishment that carried me well into my early thirties.  Like many others, I was conditioned to base a large facet of my happiness on things that were not permanent. All I wanted to do was own a big home, drive a luxury car and have the money that was dangled like a golden carrot over my soft and impressionable ego.

Ironically, I got everything I yearned for – careful what you wish for!

…but when the economy dropped out and took stocks and home prices with it – I learned by biggest life lesson about wealth and how we attach ourselves to it… Damn it.. My old man was right all along… and guess what, it still ticked me off… LOL.

Attaching myself to materialistic objects and symbols of wealth; attaching my happiness to what others thought of my successes only dug me deeper into the pit of ego and false-self – the end result was suffering in every magnitude. It was an epiphany of sorts that jolted me out of my fantasy world. That and having to rebuild my self-esteem and investments one penny at a time.

Fast forward thirty plus years from that young and dumb kid in the OC and you have a completely different person. It has taken a boat load of life lessons and suffering over the years to see the bigger picture. Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with making lots of money. It is how we as individuals attach ourselves to it that is the defining factor.

So what was the point of this blog post? Well, first and foremost, my father was right… I concede…

Secondly, life is but a bundle of many variables. It is never prudent to base our happiness and wellness on variables like ego, money, stocks and big homes. Such things come and go like the wind and when they are gone so goes that happiness that was many times unknowingly attached to it. The only permanent facet to life is our True Nature within – this instinctual and intimate connection to the space, clarity and sensitivity that defines this grand, Responsive Universe. Our happiness is driven by the heart wish within that projects only gratitude and compassion; positive energy and good karma.

Now, that is something that money cannot buy… 🙂

John C. Bader

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