Many people equate their lives to how much money they have and spend their lives working to achieve wealth. Now, I am not against hard work, but I also think life needs priorities and a balance. The person who focuses their whole life on working may miss out on things that I feel are more important than money. Raising your children and being there for your spouse or significant other should be your top priority in life. Money can buy a lot of things, but it cannot buy love and respect or most importantly, good health.
I had the opportunity to speak to an older gentleman friend of mine, who just returned from Florida and Europe. I complimented his tan and asked him where he had been over the winter. He proceeded to tell me about his trip and when I asked if he had fun, he replied, "It is not fun traveling alone." He told me how he worked for many years, long hard hours building his business. His wife left him because he worked so many hours and was never there for her and her children. His children resented him for never being home during their childhood.
My friend had a "lady friend" for 10 years who left him for the exact same reasons, she was lonely. Two years ago (about a year after his girlfriend left him) he sold his business for millions of dollars. He had succeeded in becoming a multi- millionaire and at last his hard work and dedication had paid off. He called his former girlfriend and asked her to see him again, to give him another chance – but to no avail. He then told me that traveling alone was just not the same as sharing your travels with somebody you love. He pointed to one of his friends and said, "Do you think that Jack really gives a crap what I did on vacation?" He told me that no amount of money will bring back the women he lost, and that he regrets the mistakes he made putting money as his priority over love. He would give everything he owned, just to have back the woman he loved.
I walked away from our conversation feeling sad and contemplative. The conversation made me realize that my thoughts about love were right, that no amount of money can buy you happiness. Some of the richest people I know are miserable, some of the poorest people I know are happy. Taking the people closest to us for granted is easy to do... We often hurt those who are there for us because we simply can. So, I guess the big question really is ... How important is money and what is your top priority in life? Do not take those you love for granted, you may lose them one day, someone takes them away, and they don't hear the words you long to say...