Many years ago my grandfather and I would play monopoly. It started with him whooping me but eventually I got really good at it. I was a greedy tycoon and dominated not only him but also any challengers
My grandfather was a very humble and hard working man. He grew up during the great depression and served in World War 2.
While I would be cocky after my Monopoly board game victories he would say, “Relax there. It all goes back in the box in the end and we start over next game“.
Now that happened when I was around 10-12 years old. I have never forgotten it for some reason. It wasn’t until recently I realized how important that statement would be to me.
Those of you who have been on my newsletter for months know my what has all happened to me since I turned 40 and had a pretty big awakening business wise on what I was doing and the changes I have made.
The most highlighted line from my book is “Having money isn’t everything, not having it is“. I have been on both sides of that. When I turned 30 I was unemployed and over 50k in debt.
Then one day I made a dollar on the Internet. For me, making my dollar on the Internet was one of the most thrilling and exciting things.
Just like in Monopoly I became obsessive. I got greedy.
By the time I turned 31 I had over a million dollars in the bank.
Over the next 9 years I expanded my skillset and had an amazing journey, earning over 10 million dollars from making money on the Internet.
Right before I turned 40, my wife and I had met with or accountant who told us we could easily never work again and maintain our current lifestyle.
As I said, when I turned 40 it was a huge awakening for me – After examining my current lifestyle both professionally and business wise and realized I wasn’t happy. I closed my downtown office and stopped doing the things that I didn’t like to do (long story short).
Then that saying my grandfather said 30 years ago – “it all goes back in the box” became clear to me.
When we die we are all equal. Whether we have 100 million dollars or nothing. We all are buried in a box (or an urn or whatever your belief) and all is reset.
I know what some of you are thinking, you can leave it to your kids and they will be set.
I have some personal experience with this. On my fathers side of the family – when my aunt died of cancer (I was like 14) she left her money to her children, in a trust. They fought over it for years and eventually it got very bitter and to this day they don’t talk.
On my mother’s side of the family – when my great grand father passed, he left my grandmother and her sister his land and money. This was before I was born but I was told it was a vicious dispute over who got what and they became enemies. It wasn’t until my grandmother died, a few months ago, that for the first time I met my great aunt. I got to spend some time with her and she is a very nice woman. I am bummed I never met her before.
Everyone seems to be so focused on making money. No matter what financial position they are in.
I fully understand that when you are barely getting by and all of your financial decisions on everything from going out to eat to if you can take a vacation are based primarily on money.
Then money is everything.
But when you have enough money to never have to work again then what really matters?
I have 2 daughters (6 and 8 as of now) and I wouldn’t say I have neglected them at all – but my work, at times, has taken priority on some extra curricular stuff. And I wasn’t even happy with what I was doing working wise.
The primary reason I moved back into my house from my downtown office was because it’s only a few blocks from my kid’s school. I get to go to lunch with them, take them to school, and do a ton of daytime activities with them. It’s pretty awesome.
I also changed a lot of what I do professionally focusing back on what I love doing and an ironic side effect of that is that I have profited more since working out of my basement in the last six months than I had in the last 3 years combined.
So with all of this said I would like to leave you with the following and I say it violating one of my primary beliefs (never tell people what to do, instead share your experiences and let them take from it what they will).
Take a look at yourself and see if what you are doing really matters. We have such a short life span and no matter how much money we have, in the end, it all goes back in the box.