What matters most to you? If you had more time and money, how would that help you pursue what matters most?
Saving money is great. Making money is fun. Being hyper-efficient makes you feel super-human. (Or is that last one only true for me?)
But having more time and money fails to satisfy unless directed toward a greater end.
Don’t get me wrong. We can trick ourselves into living as though having more money or being more efficient are ends in themselves. But ultimately, they aren’t. And somewhere, deep down at least, we know it.
This is not a new reality. Over 2,300 years ago, Aristotle tackled the question of human happiness in his Nicomachean Ethics. His insight is as true today as it was then, though perhaps less obvious to us. “Wealth,” he writes, “is evidently not the good we are seeking; for it is merely useful and for the sake of something else.”
What is the “something else” for which you’d like to have more time? What is the “something else” for which you seek to have more money?
A car? A house? Both of those are fine things. Such material goods can motivate us. Even money, which is just a means of acquiring other things, can motivate us, as Aristotle points out.
But for me—and I’d wager this is true for most people—there is something beyond material goods that is even more motivating. What is really motivating is whatever matters most to each of us.
What matters most to me is my faith, my family, and the opportunity to better them and the world through my work. I ultimately want to have more time and money so that I can have a bigger impact in those most important areas of my life.
Getting clear on what matters most helps us have the most leveraged impact we can with the time we save and the money we earn. Are you clear on what matters most to you?
If not, here is a simple way to get clarity, inspired by a Catholic saint, Ignatius of Loyola:
How to Get Clear on What Matters Most to You
- Go off by yourself for 30 minutes.
- Imagine yourself on your deathbed. (Cheery thought, I know, but hear me out.) Picture it to the best of your ability. What will you look like? Who will be there beside you?
- Ask yourself: what, at that moment, will you wish you had lived for?
- Write that down. That is what actually matters most to you even now. (And I bet it wasn’t a car or even a house!)
Once you know what matters most to you, it’s time to get more money and time to pursue it!
And that’s where this blog comes in. I love striving to have more time and money, because with those powerful resources I can make a bigger impact on what matters most. And I can’t wait, in future posts, to share many tips and tricks with you to help you do the same!
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