Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Money & Happiness of Life

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What do you think, how the happiness in life comes to you? Is it earning lot's of money in life & enjoying it or is it doing your duty without caring much for money & taking the life & money as it comes? As per Bhagwat Gita, it is doing your duty in a proper manner without caring much for the fruits or the money that it shall generate. As per "Bhagwat Gita: Chapter Two verse 47", Lord Sri Krishna says to his disciple Arjuna:

"karmany vadhikaraste
ma phalesu kadachana
ma karma-phala-hetur bhur
ma te sango’stv akarmani"

"You have a right to perform your prescribed duty, but you are not entitled to the fruits of action. Never consider yourself the cause of the results of your activities, and never be attached to not doing your duty."

So as per Bhagwat Gita, money etc. are just the "by-products" of doing your duty. Main thing is that you do your duty with full devotion in life without caring much for the fruits or money it shall generate. Here below are comments on money of a Singapore’s Youngest Millionaire Mr. Adam Khoo (Adam Khoo is an entrepreneur, a best-selling author and a peak performance trainer. A self-made millionaire by the age of 26, he owns and runs several businesses in education, training, event management and advertising, all with a combined annual turnover of $30 million.).

As per Adam Khoo in one of his Blog Post reproduced by Mr. Amitabh Bachchan in his blog:

"Recently, someone came up to me on a plane to KL and looked rather shocked. He asked, ‘How come a millionaire like you is traveling economy?’ My reply was, ‘That’s why I am a millionaire. ‘ He still looked pretty confused. This again confirms that greatest lie ever told about wealth (which I wrote about in my latest book ‘Secrets of Self-Made Millionaires’ ). Many people have been brainwashed to think that millionaires have to wear Gucci, Hugo Boss, Rolex, and sit on first class in air travel. This is why so many people never become rich because the moment that earn more money, they think that it is only natural that they spend more, putting them back to square one.

The truth is that most self-made millionaires are frugal and only spend on what is necessary and of value. That is why they are able to accumulate and multiply their wealth so much faster. Over the last 7 years, I have saved about 80% of my income while today I save only about 60% (because I have my wife, mother in law, 2 maids, 2 kids, etc. to support). Still, it is way above most people who save 10% of their income (if they are lucky). I refuse to buy a first class ticket or to buy a $300 shirt because I think that it is a complete waste of money. However, I happily pay $1,300 to send my 2-year old daughter to Julia Gabriel Speech and Drama without thinking twice.

When I joined the YEO (Young Entrepreneur’ s Organization) a few years back (YEO is an exclusive club open to those who are under 40 and make over $1m a year in their own business) I discovered that those who were self-made thought like me. Many of them with net worth's well over $5m, traveled economy class and some even drove Toyota’s and Nissans (not Audis, Mercs, BMWs).

I noticed that it was only those who never had to work hard to build their own wealth (there were also a few ministers’ and tycoons’ sons in the club) who spent like there was no tomorrow. Somehow, when you did not have to build everything from scratch, you do not really value money. This is precisely the reason why a family’s wealth (no matter how much) rarely lasts past the third generation. Thank God my rich dad (oh no! I sound like Kiyosaki) foresaw this terrible possibility and refused to give me a cent to start my business.

Then some people ask me, ‘What is the point in making so much money if you don’t enjoy it?’ The thing is that I don’t really find happiness in buying branded clothes, jewellery or sitting first class. Even if buying something makes me happy it is only for a while, it does not last. Material happiness never lasts, it just give you a quick fix. After a while you feel lousy again and have to buy the next thing which you think will make you happy. I always think that if you need material things to make you happy, then you live a pretty sad and unfulfilled life.

I think the point I want to put across is that happiness must come from doing your life’s work (be in teaching, building homes, designing, trading, winning tournaments etc.) and the money that comes is only a by-product. If you hate what you are doing and rely on the money you earn to make you happy by buying stuff, then I think that you are living a life of meaninglessness."

So the above views of Mr. Adam Khoo clearly say the same thing what "Bhagwat Gita" teaches, that money is not what gives you the real happiness of life, rather it is doing your duty in a proper way. Money is just the by-product of doing your duty. So do your duty efficiently without much hankering for the fruits or money it shall generate.

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