Friday, 15 May 2009

Why I will never be rich

The name of the game these days seems to be money. Everyone is out to make as much of it as they can. I will never be one of those people for many reason, but here are a few:

1. I don't believe in getting something for nothing. This means I get really nervous about investing and playing the stock market. I understand that my bank rewards me for storing my money in their vaults so they have it to lend, and I am rewarded with a conservative amount in return. But trying to turn $10 into $100 or $1000 into $10,ooo just doesn't compute with me. I didn't earn it. I am also terrible at bargaining. Stores or garage sales, I believe in fair prices. I never try to weasel a lower than fair value price. I believe in fairness.

2. I believe in the trade of talents. My perfect world would be a place where currency and money don't exist, and we all simply help others with the talents we possess. Which would never work in today's society, or even with the natural man. But for me, this trait translates into my business sense all the time. As a piano teacher I often gave deals and breaks to my clients. If they couldn't afford a week, that was fine. If they couldn't pay one week, that was fine. More than anything I wanted children to be able to learn to love music, and this overrode any business sense I had. This trait is perfectly explained in the following conversation I had with James.

TA: I have this new idea for a business project. (Details provided to James, but too long to post here).
James: That sounds great. Would you do it for money?
TA: Of course!

I laughed at the fact that the first words out of James mouth was whether I would take money for this project (a selling of an artistic endeavor). But he knows me that well. And the funny thing was, this was a project I needed help on, and I had the perfect person in mind - someone who was in a dire situation who badly needed some monetary help. It was the perfect fit.

3. I believe in helping out friends and family. The problem is, everyone I know is friends and family. I'm forever saying "let's just do this for them for free". So it's a good thing I'm not running the family business. We'd likely never make any money.

4. I believe in volunteering. I believe in bettering my society. Almost all of my ideas and projects could be business endeavors, in which I charge money for participation. And yet my passion behind each and everyone is that it would be free, accessible by everyone, and especially by those who can't afford the constant demand of cash for activities.

5. I believe that I do not deserve more. I was born into a hard working family in a free, blessed, rich country. Others are born into disease, war and poverty. I don't believe I have the right to live in opulence while others in this world are suffering. If I ever did come into money, it wouldn't last long in my hands. There are too many other people who need it more than I do.

By no means should anyone think I am a perfect example of charity from this. I have a selfish streak, the need to feel secure, the desire to be taken care of. I have a small fear of not having enough for myself and my family. But this is about being rich, having more than you need, more than you know what to do with. And I just don't see myself ever really being there.

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