You’d probably agree “money doesn’t buy happiness”, but I’ll bet you’d still prefer to be rich over poor.
After all, when you have lots of money, you can do whatever you want and solve your problems more easily.
However, there’s another side to it. Several things about being wealthy are seriously overrated.
Most rich people wouldn’t admit this, but I learned this through conversations with a few of them that I’m close to.
So are you frustrated that you’re not rich? After you read this, you may not be anymore.
Let’s check out the 6 most overrated things about being wealthy.
1) Material possessions bring you happiness
Think about that thing you want, but haven’t been able to buy. Imagine you could order it right now — in fact, you could order 10 of them.
On top of that, you could order all the upgrades, useless accessories, every newest smartphone model, every color of the sweater you like, and every souvenir in the store just cause you can’t decide.
I know people that can do this — and a few that actually have.
And you know what? That thrill of owning new things fades REALLY fast.
What you’re left with is a ton of stuff you realize you don’t even want. Because when you can buy anything, you no longer need to think about if you actually want it.
Personally, I get enjoyment out of things when I put careful thought into whether or not I should buy them, appreciate them and take good care of them because I can’t just buy another at the snap of my fingers.
That isn’t to say that I’m poor — I can buy the things I want and need. But you don’t need to be wealthy to do that.
2) Financial security guarantees you peace of mind
One of the top reasons people want to be wealthy is financial security.
But have you stopped to ask yourself why you want this?
It’s because of the feeling of peace of mind.
And the thing is, financial stability doesn’t necessarily guarantee that.
Anything can happen with anybody’s money. Your stocks can implode, a huge expense can come up, money can be devalued, or your investments can lose value.
A couple wealthy people I know actually worry more, because they have such a vast amount of money that they’re scared what could happen to it.
Obviously, financial security is important, and these are worst-case scenarios — this isn’t to say you shouldn’t aim to have savings and stability.
But remember that money isn’t permanent either, and it can never eliminate the uncertainties of life.
3) Social status defines your self-worth
What do you imagine under the words “wealthy person”?
It’s probably someone with a fancy haircut, fancy sunglasses, fancy suit, carrying fancy car keys to an even fancier car.
In other words, someone who just oozes the word “wealth”.
This is someone who gets invited to the most exclusive events, gets upgraded on flights and hotels, and has dinner in other billionaires’ homes.
But why exactly would you want this? As the point above, it all comes down to feelings — being admired by others increases your self-worth. At least, many people think so.
Again, that’s not the case. True self-worth comes from the values you embody, the achievements you made through effort, the relationships you build and protect, and the impact you make on the world.
You’ll notice that being wealthy is not a requirement for any of those things — it’s just something that’s overrated.
4) Endless leisure makes you happier
Picture a week filled with golf clubs, spas, Michelin star restaurants, private yachts, VIP seats at sports games, and front-row tickets to concerts.
This may sound appealing, but the wealthy people I know would tell you that it turns into boredom much faster than you’d think.
When you can spend money on any kind of fun, it’s no longer something special — it becomes mundane.
I’ve seen rich people do some of these activities not because they actually enjoyed them, but because they thought they’re supposed to.
This also brings to mind that scene in the Titanic where Rose is standing on the first-class deck, looking completely miserable.
What that scene shows us is that unlimited leisure turns into a lack of purpose and a sense of emptiness.
On the other hand, real happiness comes from meaningful activities that are propelled by goals and a sense of contribution.
5) You can easily solve any life problem
Let’s be honest — money does make solving many problems easier.
Your computer’s too slow? Buy a new one. Car broke down? Skip the insurance waitlist, take it to a private mechanic.
But the worst problems we have actually deal with something money doesn’t help with much: relationships and your well-being.
Wealthy people still have fights, relationship problems, betrayals, mental health concerns, and worries and fears.
In this case, money could distract you from the problem, but the only way to solve them is to do the inner work.
And here’s another thing: when you cover up any difficult emotion you feel with an easy-fix solution, you stop training yourself to reflect on and manage your emotions.
And let me tell you, this is a CRUCIAL skill to have in order to live a happy life! I don’t know a single happy person, rich or poor, who doesn’t agree.
6) Waiting is a waste of your time
You’ve been saving up to buy that thing you really want, and you can feel the day you finally place the order getting closer and closer.
Then as you get the shipping notifications, your excitement keeps building.
Be honest now: how do you feel during this waiting period?
You may think you’d rather have whatever you ordered ASAP. But think about Christmas or any once-a-year holiday you celebrate.
If you could celebrate it anytime you chose, you’d lose the most valuable part of the experience: the anticipation.
For many people, the waiting period before their holiday is even more pleasurable than the holiday itself. They get to think about all the fun things they’d do and talk about it with their partner or friends.
Just like you enjoy a warm cup of cocoa much more after a cold winter walk. The waiting period gives you a much more intense feeling of happiness when you finally get what you want.
Dreaming of being wealthy?
Do you want to be wealthy? That’s cool! A lot of people do, and there’s nothing wrong with that.
But keep in mind it’s not the be-all and end-all.
You’ve just learned the 6 most overrated things about being wealthy. And any self-made millionaire will tell you the reality is rather different from the dream.
So do go after your goals, and your financial goals — but keep in mind what money can and cannot do for you!