Money or Things

What Keeps You Awake at Night?

Money and Things

“Wealth consists not in having great possessions, but in having few wants.” – Epictetus

We live in a materialistic world for sure. We are regularly bombarded with commercials about what things we NEED to have, even though we really don’t. And we are told that a measure of our success is dependent upon  how much wealth and possessions we have accumulated. It is a depressing narrative indeed.

And many of us buy into it. So much so that we lie awake at night thinking about it. Do I have enough? Why don’t I have more? How much is enough? These things weigh on us even when we are doing quite well.

Granted there are many in need who do require more. There are a number of reasons for that. But that should not cause us personal anxiety about our own situation. And if it does, there are ways to remedy it.

“It is not the man who has too little, but the man who craves more, that is poor.” – Seneca

Your personal wealth should be determined not by the money and possessions you have amassed, but by the good that you do and the people who have been positively affected by you. While you may not be a billionaire or even a millionaire, you may be considered a very successful and wealthy person through your good works.

Mother Teresea had few earthly possessions. Yet her impact on people was enormous. She is widely remembered for her work with the lepers and the poor. I am sure there are few rich people you can recall as well. So who led  the better, happier and more fulfilling life? My money is on her.

You can see daily how many materialistically wealthy people are unhappy. So much so that they turn to alcohol, drugs or even suicide in order to ease their pain. If owning stuff is the way to happiness, why are these people so unhappy? And many are Awake at Night thinking about how much more they need or what happens if they lose even a part of what they have.

“Too many people spend money they haven’t earned, to buy things they don’t want, to impress people that they don’t like.” – Will Rogers

So, what can you do to shake this unhappiness? Here are some thoughts that might help you through:

  • Reframe your negative thoughts: It is time to sit and think. Think about all the good you presently have and have had in your life. Think of all the friends you have and the good times spent with them. This is time that money and things can’t buy.

We often think about the things that we don’t have rather than about the things that we do. We take the good for granted instead of cherishing all of the blessing we have.

So, stop and reflect on just how good you have it. It may not be perfect, but it is still good, really good. And there is more to come. Just because we don’t have something today, doesn’t mean we cannot have it tomorrow or the next day. Some things just take time. Deal with it.

And also be realistic about your wants. Sometimes they are not within reach and may never be. If not, so be it. Remember, even if you reach for the stars and only reach the moon, you have still come a long way. And you are much further than where you started from.

  • Maintain yourself: What kind of shape are you in? Really, what kind of shape? Are you fairly fit with few if any health issues? If so you are doing good. That is worth more than money and things. What good is having stuff if you are ill and can’t enjoy them?

So, take good care of yourself. Sometimes trying to achieve too much can be harmful to your health. You get caught up in unsound practices that affect your wellbeing. Having more money to spend on more doctors won’t fix that.

Realize what is really important in life. Being and staying well is one of those things. Take care of yourself and other things will follow.

  • Surround yourself with things and people who make you happy: In your pursuit of material things, you will come across those of a similar mind. They are driven by things and not so much people. And keeping up or being more “successful” is the drive, not relationships.

Focus on who you really want to spend your time with. There are many folks out there who are not materialistic. They just enjoy life and those they spend time with, including you. That is something money truly cannot buy.

Those are the people you want to spend your time with. They enjoy the simple things in life. A good meal and some time together relishing each other’s company. It doesn’t get any better than that.

There is much in life to enjoy. There is also much that is a distraction and should be avoided. Money is a tool used to get things. Remember that and treat money as such. And when your life is over, money won’t mean much. You really cannot take it with you.

The same with things. How many things do we really need? How much do we have that we don’t even think about or remember that we have. And yet, we want more? Why? Enjoy what you have. Wanting more of things we don’t need or want will pass, believe me.

Worrying about money and things should not be  What Keeps You Awake at Night. Instead, concern yourself with what really matters; family, friends, great relationships and doing good with and to others. None of these require money or things and will allow you a restful night’s sleep.

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