The deeper meaning of wealth

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(NNPA)—As I get older, I find myself increasingly aware of the way money attaches itself to almost every deep emotional issue in life: love, acceptance, freedom, expectation, control, you name it.

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Everybody wants to go to heaven but nobody wants to die. Everybody wants success but not everyone is willing to do what it takes to get there.

Whenever I say those two sentences in front of people, the response is very similar. I sense a collective silence as people think about what those statements mean, quickly realizing how true they really are. You might have recognized the first statement. It’s heard in many song lyrics and no one knows who originally authored it.

The second one is my own, and I don’t intend to intimidate you by it. But it’s true; no one becomes successful out of luck or through an easy 1-2-3 set of steps. Let’s get one thing straight: if it were that easy then virtually everyone would be rich and you probably would not be reading this. Or maybe you are successful already, and your friends would say you’ve “made it.” Congratulations. You, as well as I, know that the lessons never stop. We are all students of life until the lights go out on us.

I want to help you become a richer person regardless of how well or how poor you are currently living. In my second book, “Get Real, Get Rich: Conquer the 7 Lies Blocking You from Success,” I walk you through seven myths that hinder personal success, reveals some surprising truths, and provides concrete tools readers need to conquer these myths and achieve financial, emotional, and spiritual security.

It is about maximizing what you can do with your talents and dreams so you can transform your life into a winning game of successful strategies. That may sound like an over-promising declaration to make, but bear with me. I believe that part of my calling—part of the reason I was put on this Earth, is to make other people successful. But it’s not always easy. Sometimes I feel like I’m on one side of the table and my reader is on the other. I hate to meet people full of frustration as they ponder their lives and seek a drinking fountain that promises wealth and achievement. I wish I could roll in that fountain and let people pour themselves a magical cup. But what fun would that be? It’s gratifying and exhilarating to go after your dreams and work at them day in and day out—including the setbacks that reboot our systems from time to time and compel us to stop, self-examine and re-evaluate.

I’m going to dispel the erroneous connection that people make with success and chance. With success and connections. With success and IQ, and even with success and money.

Before we go too deep, I want to be clear on the difference between being “rich” and being “wealthy.” Those words are thrown around in the same circles. But they are not equivalents. When someone says he is “rich,” what immediately comes to mind? Probably a big bank account with millions of dollars sitting in it. On the other hand, when someone says he is “wealthy,” does that word trigger a slightly different picture? Do you think about not only cash in the bank, but also homes, stocks, bonds, income properties, and so on? In other words, assets. “Rich” has a very in-the-moment and short-lived feeling to it.

People get “rich” hitting the jackpots in Vegas or the lottery. “Wealthy,” on the other hand, equates with long-term success and a state of well-being that accompanies happiness and stability. It’s the true combo of affluence and influence—concepts you’ll learn about in future columns. That said I’m going to continue to use the word “rich,” because I want to guide you to a place where you adopt an entirely new meaning to this word.

(Farrah Gray can be reached via e-mail at fg@drfarrah­gray.com or his website at http://www.drfarrahgray.com.)

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