How much you have actually “earned” is how much you have still got.
Nearly all humans today are confused on this simple fact, partly because other folks wanting to sell things have confused us with bogus concepts such as “investing” in a new gadget which of course is not an investment in any sense of the word, bur rather just a way for us to lose our money to them.
If you worked for five years mowing lawns and hauling garbage to the dump, and you earned a whole bunch of money and gave every dollar to other people, what have you actually “earned” from your five years of labor?
That’s right … nothing.
By giving away those dollars, you have effectively earned nothing for five years of work.
But what if you spent all the money on cantelopes and watermelons which you stacked in the back yard? Do you have something to show for your labor?
No, because they have rotted away and are now worth nothing. You’ve still effectively earned nothing because nothing is what remains of the dollars which once visited you briefly.
But what if you spent the money not on cantelopes but on a sportscar? Well, is the sportscar still worth the number of dollars you paid for it? Could you sell it today for the same amount? No? Then the sportscar is just rotting more slowly than cantelopes, but its days are numbered, and you can count on it being worth nothing soon enough.
It is surprisingly easy to overlook this basic fact: If you obtain some dollars, and then give them away, you’ve got nothing. It is surprisingly easy to overlook what is important for what seems urgent. The urgency of our desire for glittering gadgets, fancy food, and shiny automobiles can easily outweigh something important.
What is important? Well, survival is important, and loved ones are important, and pleasure in living is important.
Survival means you’ve set aside money enough to take care of your true needs, including healthcare when age slows you down, and if you ever want to have love in your life, setting aside enough to take care of your sweetheart and your children. True pleasure in living does not mean the shiniest car now, but rather the leisure to leave labor behind you as your investment income grows enough to support you and your loved ones.
True luxury is having time to live, people to love, and wisdom enough to live in a way that promotes the survival and pleasure of you and your loved ones.
True luxury is obtained by living below your means, keeping some part of what you earn — this is your true “earnings” — and putting that money to work, so that in time the “earnings” from your invested money will free you from ever having to labor again.
Does this mean you will do nothing? Not at all. It means that, over time, you will have more and more choices about what you do, and how you care for your loved ones.
When you spend all the money that comes to you, you’re earning nothing. You’re not spending just the money; you’re spending your life.
Speaking plainly, it’s better to save your life!
Knowing this important secret of the universe, go forth and prosper.