When you are in your youth and sorting out your career choices and what you want out of your life, MONEY ranks high on the list of priorities. Rightfully so at that time in your life. You may want to purchase a home, raise a family etc. You need money to live and you need more money to live comfortably. If you are like most young people you want it all right now….the house, the cars, the boats, the trips, the designer clothes, the biggest television you can find and on and on it goes. Materialism at it’s peak.
As you get older priorities change. Material stuff becomes less and less important. I admit it….I’ve definitely changed my focus from accumulating “stuff” to a more spiritual (if that’s the right word) priority list.
The following things, in order of priority, are for me, now more important than money.
1. FAMILY: The world is riddled with turmoil and there is so much uncertainty nowadays. It is so important to me to know that I have a wonderfully loving family who will always be part of my life until my last day. That is not an uncertainty. My home is my safe haven and my family, both immediate and extended, give me emotional and physical support. The value of my family endures. And to add to this, my relationship with my husband is of utmost importance to me. He is my rock. Money or no money, life partner and family rank number one on my list.
2. HEALTH: You cannot buy good health. You can certainly help it along with healthy choices. There are many super rich people in this world who lose their health to various diseases or accidents and no matter how much money they have….they cannot buy their good health back. It is no secret that I have Multiple Sclerosis. I have it and there is nothing I can do to fix it. There is no cure for it as of yet. But my point here is….TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF the best you can. When you don’t have your health, everything else is affected in your life. People spend their lives working in stressful environments and living with unhealthy habits. One day the bubble breaks and suddenly they are spending all of their hard earned money trying to get their health back. Hmmmm….what’s wrong with this picture. VALUE YOUR HEALTH! It has no price tag.
3. GRATITUDE: I’ve graduated from wanting to have all of the new and trendy things to being thankful for what I do have. Gratitude has shifted my focus from what may be lacking to all of the abundance in my life. There is a saying by Meister Eckhart – “If the only prayer you say in your life is “thank you”, that would suffice.” By living in a place of gratefulness I find myself happier and more content with the simple things in life. I’m more aware of the blessings in this world like the colors in nature or the nutritious bounty of vegetables in the grocery store. When you come to a place in your life where you appreciate these little things we take for granted your perspective on life changes. I use to take my ability to walk for granted. Now that this ability is fading I am grateful for the “good” days when I feel a bit more strength in my legs. Seems silly but it’s true. I find joy in simplicity. That comes from being grateful.
4. FRIENDSHIP: “I would rather walk with a friend in the dark, than alone in the light.” – Helen Keller Friends are a very important part of everyone’s life. Friends, unlike your family or spouse, are those you talk to about everything. You share secrets with. Friends bring great comfort and are fun to be with. Good friends help you to learn, grow, keep you on the right path and support you in good and bad times. A good friend is honest, loyal, caring and respectful. Having a good friend is wonderful for many reasons. I know my friendships have helped me grow as a person. I’m a better person for friendships. You can’t buy friendship….although there are people who try. I’ve seen that in action. There is no dollar amount you could ever put on having a good friend. I’m richly blessed for my friendships.
5. GROWTH: Don’t ever stop learning and growing as a person. If you are not going forward then you are stagnate or going backwards. Personal growth bumps up your self esteem and self confidence, affects happiness and how we are able to cope with life’s challenges. Don’t get hung up on what others think about things. Learn for yourself and develop your own self-knowledge. There are thousands of opportunities to improve yourself. Personal growth has a huge impact on your life experiences. You don’t need lots of money to grow as a person. But personal growth has the potential to bring you more money as you grow. Career promotions and income growth usually come to those who invest in their personal growth.
6. SPIRITUALITY: It is a fact that having a spiritual practice is associated with better health and mindfulness. You don’t need money to gain benefits from meditation, prayer, journaling, yoga etc. Making spirituality part of your life helps you find meaning in adversity. I know myself, since being diagnosed with MS, I’ve been reading more spirituality books and taking time out for myself to meditate, do some journaling and seek peace and calm in my life. Since taking on this more spiritual perspective I’ve been better able to get over the fact that my MS is changing my physical life. I am better able to embrace the changes and realize that this is the path set out for me. Spirituality has helped me make better choices when it comes to my health and wellbeing. Spirituality has also helped me to practice forgiveness in all aspects of life and to be less judgemental. Spirituality practices are the real reason I’ve become less materialistic and more grateful for all of life’s blessings.
So there you have it. My top 6 things more important than money.
It took a Multiple Sclerosis diagnosis and middle age to wake me up to what is really important over the almighty dollar.
I’m grateful for the wake up call. Life is good.