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3 Things I’d Rather Have than A Million Dollars

“Don’t think money does everything or you are going to end up doing everything for money.”


Neeramitra Reddy

4 months ago | 3 min read


Money means nothing without these

What all can a million dollars furnish?

Plush penthouses. Roaring supercars. Armani suits. Chartered jets. Top-notch healthcare. Shoulder-rubs with some of the wealthiest and most powerful people.

“It’s good to have money and the things it can buy, but it’s good, too, to check up once in a while and make sure you haven’t lost the things money can’t buy.”

— George Horace

But the things it cannot buy? Most of those are irreparable once lost. I want to share 3 such crucial things with you.

The Number One Factor for Long-Term Happiness

painstakingly effortful Harvard study on happiness followed the lives of 700+ men for 80+ years — and it came to a surprisingly simple conclusion.

Your relationships dictate your happiness. Period.

Blinded by the pursuit of wealth, if you ruthlessly slash people out of your life, you’ll be left with money — and nothing else.

As long as life’s going great, it’s all fun and dandy. But when adversity strikes? That’s when you’ll realize the necessity of uber-reliable buddies and a safety net of a family.

But this doesn’t mean you shoot a hundred Facebook friend requests a day or warm up to every Joe or Peter that passes by.

It’s the quality, not the number of your relationships, that matters.

If you have two people you can trust your life with, you’re leagues more fortunate than the most social of butterflies.

Pursue money but not at the cost of your relationships — what’s the point of wealth when you have no one to share it with?

Cultivate deep friendships with like-minded people. Routinely check on your family. Ask out people you find attractive. Cold-email the people that inspire you. Talk to strangers, even a simple “Hello! How’s your day going” will suffice.

The Truest Form of Wealth

It was when I first lost 20 lbs that I realized the pulsating connection between health and happiness.

You cannot be unhealthy and happy at the same time. Nothing disillusions humans and throws a dark blanket over the world than a disease or major injury.

Forget diabetes or arthritis, even a minor running nose irritates the living lights out of you — messing up your mood and productivity.

Recall the immense gratitude that wells up when your nose clears up?

“Good health is not something we can buy. However, it can be an extremely valuable savings account.”

— Anne Wilson

The beauty of wealth lies in experiencing it — but what if an obesity-induced heart stroke robs you of your life or stress-induced migraines create a living hell?

Health is the foremost and truest form of wealth. Even a million dollars isn’t worth lost sleep, junk meals, and skipping physical activity.

  • Pick a physical activity you enjoy and stick to it.
  • Sleep at least 7 hours every night.
  • Eat (mostly) healthily — prefer whole foods like meat, veggies, nuts, milk, eggs, and fruits over processed ones such as pizzas, burgers, and Doritos.
  • You don’t need to step on a scale every day, but be aware of your body weight.
  • Meditate and perform breathing exercises to cope with stress.
  • As you age, start getting (at least) yearly health checkups.

The (Actual) Currency of Life

The entire point of burning our time to earn money is to pile up enough of it to retire — basically, to buy back your time with money.

But where’s the sense in slogging away during the prime decades of your life to get back a mere decade or two as you turn 60?

What “life” will you “live” with creaking joints, dimming eyesight, deteriorating mental faculties, and a snail-pace?

Who’s wealthier? A burnt-out multi-millionaire that works 16 hours a day or a minimalist with a hundred thousand in the bank and a part-time stint at the local nursery?

Money without time means nothing. As 

Tim Denning calls it, you want to be a time millionaire first — and an actual millionaire next.

Diligently work to earn money, but also carve out time for your family, friends, hobbies, passion projects, leisure activities, and yourself.

A nifty reminder of this is the 8–8–8 rule — sleep 8 hours, work 8 hours and live 8 hours.

Final Thoughts

None of this is to say money doesn’t matter — it undoubtedly does.

It can elevate the quality of your life, buy you memorable experiences, grant the power to change lives, stave off suffering, and grant you freedom.

But it’s far from meaning everything — and in our hustle-culture worshipping world, this is a crucial fact to remember.

“Don’t think money does everything or you are going to end up doing everything for money.”

— Voltaire


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Neeramitra Reddy


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