Asked 2w ago
Everyone talks about trying to earn more, investing to retire with enough money, and all these material aspects of life. The more I think about it, the more I feel like I am getting sucked into this black hole. Anyone else feel this way? And how should we approach it?
There's no direct correlation between rich and materialism. One can be poor and still be a sucker for branded bags and blings.
For some people being financially free means able to splurge without guilt. For others being finanically free means having the right to say "NO" and walk away from toxic things and people. Its all about perspective.
Some people want to earn more because they plan to donate their wealth away.
Whether it's under a fund with Community Foundation of Singapore, or with various charities, you're leaving a legacy behind.
Community Foundation of Singapore: https://www.cf.org.sg/
If one has $200,000 lying around, he/she can have a fund under your or loved one's name. They will distribute the fund accordingly to your wishes now while alive, or via your will upon death.
In this way, you stay grounded and accummulating wealth will be more meaningful in your life. Because these money will go to help others.
Here are two inspiring stories of people who gave so much in whatever capacity they're in.
A janitor secretly amassed an US$8 million fortune and left most of it to his library and hospital
Taiwan's philanthropic vegetable vendor donates a total of NT$16 million to rural health care
"Happiness is the new rich.
Inner peace is the new success.
Health is the new wealth.
Kindness is the new cool."
-Syed Balkhi, Pakistani American entrepreneur
1 more comments
Sounds like you are tired of being surrounded by people who keep inundating you with such information. I guess there are ways to establish your boundaries and actively seek out those who are more aligned with your interests and values.
Not everyone is obsessed with becoming rich, some people are more concerned with leading meaningful lives and having interesting hobbies.
If it’s your family and relatives who are bombarding you with such information, you can tell them firmly and politely that you would prefer to chat about other topics then steer the conversation towards something else.
If you have friends who are like that, you can choose to just remain quiet or respond minimally whenever such topics arise to show that you are not interested.
Additionally, join interest groups or volunteering groups to find like-minded souls who are less money-minded. There are plenty of such communities around— take the 1st step to expand your social circle and you may discover that the world is not just about money.
You are not alone.
There are 2 chains of thought, where someone wants to earn more for materialistic outcomes. (e.g. LV, Hermes...) The other who wants to earn more, so that they might live comfortably in the future.
It is a tough pill to swallow, as understandably the cost of living in Singapore will eventually rise to a point where most of the lower-income population will find it difficult to survive. You might feel comfortable today, but if you dont prepare yourself for the future, you will be caught in a tough situation.
I think taking a step back, and first understanding your own situation, and do a projection for yourself. If you feel that this lifestyle is maintainable, and it will be the same going forward, then you can take the status quo. But if you do know that whatever you are doing today, will not be enough for tomorrow, then you will need to acknowledge the fact that you need to do something.
Don't get caught up with what others are doing, but don't reject it either. Try to make context of it, and relate it to yourself. If you think about it, the reason why people are talking about it more today, could be due to many factors, such as coming from an low-income household, or having parents that were stricken with medical bills, the list goes on.
In the end of the day, whatever assets you have wont be carried over to your afterlife. Whatever you do today, is your choice, just make sure your future self will be thanking you for it!
I hope i was able to shed some insight!
I understand where you're coming from! Especially in Singapore where everyone is a little too obsessed with making money and trying to buy the most expensive shoes or bags out there to impress people around them. Don't get confused with being materialistic and being rich, some people have spent far too much on branded goods that they are left with less money to their name.
However, it is ok to be obsessed with making money as some or even most people are aiming towards financial freedom, funding for long term goals, and even retirement planning so that they don't burden their children in the future and are self-sustainable.
Try to set your own financial goals! Do you have any short or long term goals in mind that require a hefty sum? (i.e car, house etc) What's your lifestyle like? How do you intend to set aside your money (i.e savings, spending, insurance, investments etc). These are some questions you may ask yourself to keep yourself on track and not too bothered by what other people are doing.
Also, surround yourself with friends who are encouraging and understanding of your current financial situation and goals so that you can encourage and motivate each other to stay on track! Lastly, read up more about things that you are unsure of when it comes to personal finance! It can be quite daunting and overwhelming but it will get better once you start. All the best! :)
Thank You very kindly for raising this truly important issue.
Yes, when we write so much on optimization and sucking the last out of all the finance products, it really seems (or is?) as 'cold capitalism'.
It has also a more direct implication: when we invest into products that are associated with or even companies that produce morally doubtful products and we know this, we make a mistake. I own f.ex. biotechnology ETFs and could state, nice, a good thing, human progress, less disease & suffering, more cures (maybe). On the other hand almost all these held biotech companies perform animal testing, bad, investing very doubtful (or dilemma at least). This is an individual thing.
Also: will all those new economy and electronic/sofware/hardware lead to real human progress? I feel with all those alternatives to participate in social platforms like Facebook we could state, nice, connected to many more persons. But: aren't we losing more time on the screens, meet less people directly at home/going out. I feel that all these modern options could really lead to social isolation on a deeper look!
On the other hand: when You earn your money, and can save part of it , You have to do something with it, everybody has to. To let it lie on a savings account will lead to net loss of capital calculating in the current interest and inflation rates. So choose wisely ...
Since the modern finance institutions (banks, insurance companies, also brokers)
have enormous conflicts of interest, we must look that we perform an optimization mentioned above, but in a good sense.
The modern investor has so many choices, f.ex. to choose cheap and large broadly diversified passive stock indexing ETFs and buy & hold them for ultra longterm.
Also, maybe, as to sucking out: this ETF investing strategy is an 'averaging' strategy, that empirically leads to one of the best possible results.
In my text below i already mentioned from the beginning that there are more important issues than money (family, friends, animals, donating) and that materialistic 'fulfilment' often is very short lived (though we all love some luxuries in our life ...)
My advice: see investing as a 'hobby' only, like I do, know then that You could loose even everything with stock investing; but anyway, invest and choose good products to invest,
basic product would be an MSCI World or MSCI ACWI or FTSE All World ETF.
Good luck to You and Your family, and thanks again for asking one of the best questions ever on this board !!!
Just ignore them. Be your own person and live life the way you want to. You only have one chance anyway.
If you feel making an excessive amount of money is not for you, just choose not to do it.
But remember that having an abundance is always better than having scarcity so please be responsible and do the necessary amount of risk planning to safeguard your present and future sources of income. 😬
You’re the master of your destiny. Never forget that! 👍🏻