In this article, I’m going to tell you:
- Why so many people complain that they’re broke (Little tip? It’s not because they don’t earn enough)
- Why you should love money less (but still chase it)
- What to do when you’re broke
I’m going to tell you this, and maybe it’ll help a little. Or maybe it’ll make you feel a whole lot worse—I’m not sure.
I’m broke, so what do I do? Firstly, I’ll tell you that if we had a way of counting the number of men who have asked this question in the history of humanity, we’d probably be counting till we all got really old. The problem of material lack has always existed and always will. Before money, it was: “I don’t have anything to trade with, so what do I do?”
Here’s the thing: the average man sees money as the solution to all of his problems, so he obsesses over getting it. Now, most people obsess over money and never get it. But let’s assume this man does get it. What happens next? Well, he increases his spending, hoping to finally be able to afford all those things he’s been dreaming of having but can’t. Ultimately, he won’t be able to afford them. And so again he starts murmuring: ‘I’m broke, so what do I do?’
When we were children we wanted toys, and we cried bitterly when we couldn’t get them. It hurt even worse when we saw fellow kids with the same things we wanted badly. And if we ever managed to get any of those toys, we would hold them dearly and show them off to our friends.
So let me ask you a straightforward question. What would you do if you saw a child crying because they didn’t have a toy? If you’re like most people you would console them, while laughing silently at their naivety and the absurdity of their problems. But the truth is that the child really feels that the toy is important.
We are grown-ups but we’re not as different from when we were kids as we like to think. We still want things we can show off to our friends and to the world. Except that as we grew our desires grew too. Now instead of toys and dolls we want fancy cars and big houses. It’s an endless cycle: you chase after a bigger income. When you get it, you increase your spending to be able to buy your toys, until you become restricted. And then you start chasing after an even bigger income.
Do adults need money? Of course, that’s a no-brainer. But the cold, hard truth is that unless you’re among the top 0.5% of people in the world, you will likely spend the rest of your life chasing after money, because no matter how much you make, your appetite will only grow bigger. You’ll buy more fancy stuff to show off to the world, and then begin to crave even more money. The bottom line is, if you let your satisfaction in life depend only on having an abundance of money, then you might be unhappy and frustrated for a really long time.
So if you’re broke, what do you do?
I don’t think anybody in their right mind will tell you not to go out and work for a living, or do what you can to make yourself comfortable. What I will tell you is that your mindset is very important to your satisfaction and happiness. Your mindset has to change. While you’re trying to make money to support yourself and your loved ones, understand that there are other important things in life that define you. Understand that your desire for wealth is a need that is rarely satisfied.
Seeing money as the only important thing in life may seem wise to so many people, but it’s a road that quickly throws you into a dark and inescapable problem: you begin to judge your life solely on how much you’re able to spend. And since our appetite for spending is never satisfied, you might end up a very unhappy and unfulfilled person.
The love of money is the root of all evil—a very old saying, but it still holds a lot of truth. Money itself is useful to you as a man. But the love of it, the extreme emphasis on and obsession over it, will only lead to a degenerate society where no true human effort is appreciated.