Modesty, a lost virtue?
You can’t measure success by the money you spend. So stop showing off your lifestyle on social media.
In a world where the top 1% holds half the world’s net wealth, we question their motives and hold them responsible for problematic overconsumption. They are showing us a world that we can’t afford. But we ignore what they have to say on how to get there.
Being rich is tricky. Does it mean you can buy anything you want? Or does it mean you have a million sitting in the bank? Robert T. Kiyosaki said it best in his book “Rich Dad Poor Dad“: “Wealth is a person’s ability to survive so many numbers of days forward. Or if I stopped working today, how long could I survive?” It creates a good measurement because it explains what being financially independent means without specifying an actual amount.
Every generation faces different challenges: economic crises, growing population, or ecological destruction. And every individual has to protect themself, their family, and their community against direct losses caused by these challenges. It’s a problem every generation faces. It means that your wealth should benefit your security. And this is what being financially independent means.
A sustainable financial situation would mean that your income matches your expenses. And that you always have a surplus. You could use this surplus to save money, to help others, to invest, or to cope with difficult times. But not to spend it on things you don’t need.
Showing modesty, whether you are wealthy or not, is a meaningful thing to do. Modesty is proof that your financial status is effective and sustainable. While you can’t measure your success by possession or experience, you can define it by progression. And this sets a roadmap for your future. You can’t determine success by results, but you can with the path you take.
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