When we talk about money, we immediately think about working and the sacrifices that we make at work in order to earn that money. Some, put in the extra hours of work to score points with the boss, some continue working at home long after the working day has finished. Some will even work away from home for long periods of time, which is fine as long as we don’t overdo and end up completely neglecting the time we spend with our friends and family. In some cases, even our health.
Don’t get me wrong, money is undeniably an important aspect of our lives, but is it really worth putting that little sterling sign on a pedestal and letting everything else come second? I speak from experience on this one and I have people in my life right now who are struggling with the ‘over and above your contracted hours’ chestnut and being made to feel like they have to work long into the evening to get everything done.
Way back when, before we had kids and I had a contracted 36 hour week (seems a lifetime ago now, doesn’t it? I would regularly rank up 60 hours plus and I wouldn’t think twice about staying late to help out or cancel plans because they ‘need me’ and even change my shift at the last minute to suit someone else’s needs. But as you get older and hopefully a little wiser, you have things happen in your life that makes you question your own ideology and ask yourself ‘IS IT REALLY WORTH IT?’
For me, those significant moments came in the form losing my Grandad a year before Olivia was born and going to clear out his room in the nursing home where he spends his last few year. I will never forget that his ninety years worth of life ended up in three black bags. A man who had always worked, always paid into the system. A man who had to sacrifice his pension in order to pay for the care and that’s all that was left.
The second moment came when Olivia was born and that really did make me look at life very differently. All the worries, the stresses and all the things we get worked up about in our daily life, suddenly went away the second I looked down at her face in the delivery room for the first time. She didn’t car how big our house was or how new our car was. Even the size of our bank balance didn’t mean anything to her and it didn’t matter to me anymore either.
If your someone that seems to always put money first here is my reasons why money really isn’t everything.
Your Health Is More Important
It always starts with the sniffles or something in the back of your throat first thing in the morning, and you don’t think much about it. Then you start to have a headache on the way to work, and by the time it’s 2pm you realise you’re having a full-blown fever and all you can think about is going home and curling up into a little ball underneath for duet. Despite all this, you’re still stubbornly seated on your desk or standing in front of a class full of children, refusing to go to the doctor because “It’s wasting a doctors time or “I can’t afford to be off work”. I know, I’ve been there.
Neglecting your health all in the name of money, status and not wanting to be thought bad about because of your off work ill, we’re all guilty of it. However, we need to realise that our health and our bodies, above all need the most taking care of, regardless of the price that comes with it because we’re only ever going to have one body.
If we don’t take care of it, or let it rest and heal, we’re going to end up damaging ourselves in worse ways in years to come. Our bodies are like engines. If you run it constantly for a long time, it will burn out quicker. Run it slower and maintain it better, it will last you longer.
Experiences Are More Valuable
Okay, so you’ve earned all of this money, which is great! What are you going to do with it? Spend it on the latest iPhone? Or buy a new car? Or maybe you’re planning to just keep it locked up in the bank, untouched.
Keeping the money locked away isn’t going to do anything to improve your quality of life. Unless you’re actually investing your money and making it work for you. If you’re not going to invest and the money, don’t just let it sit there. Money is like Oxygen. You breathe it and breathe it out. It’s not meant to be squirrelled away. If you have it, enjoy it.
Relationships In Life Matter More
I know you’ve probably heard this a hundred times before. Money isn’t everything because there are people in your life that matter more. The only thing that you have between you and the people in your life is your relationship with them. Some people in their pursuit to be the richest, wouldn’t think twice about standing on your back to get a better view. Don’t be that person.
Money is nice. I have money. Some money, not a lot but enough that life is comfortable. We’ve always had good jobs that pay a good wage but sometimes the end doesn’t justify the means. When I think back to what I’ve put myself through and what I see Rachel going through now to earn that money, it is any wonder I’m asking myself the question… IS IT REALLY WORTH IT?
There’s more to life than the paper chase. If you can remind yourself that, don’t you think that life will have a lot more meaning to it?
Categories: Dad, SAHD and parenting