1. Money will not buy you happiness
The myth that money buys happiness, to some, is a matter of opinion. However, it’s been factually proven. I can empathize with this thought–I was in college not too long ago. I know how it feels to be broke, and yes I did want nothing more than to reach the point in my life where money wasn’t something I had to stress about so much. When you’re hurting for something and you simply don’t have the means, you start to connect material things with money as the method for reaching actual happiness.
Here’s what I want to say on the matter. You think that once you get this one thing you’ll be alright. It’ll make everything better, right? But stop and think: won’t there always be that one thing you need until you can feel satisfied? Truly happy people are the ones who lack basic physiological needs and can still smile at the simple things. They lack things we all need to survive comfortably like food, water and shelter, yet they can still live their lives with substance. In reality, your happiness is mostly disconnected from the material world.
However, there are studies that show that there is a correlation between money and happiness. I like what Wolfers says here in “The Money-Happiness Connection”: “Don’t let an economist bully you into believing money’s all that matters. And don’t let a psychologist bully you into believing that money is completely unimportant.”
So my final conclusion is that doing what you love is very important, but being stable and secure is probably equally important with some variation on both ends of the spectrum, depending on the person. We each decide how we manage the trade-offs, because in most cases there definitely is a trade-off required. If you manage both, you’re either lucky or blessed.
2. You can’t–and shouldn’t do what you love
I’m the perfect advocate for this particular topic. I lived most of my life thinking that since I love writing, I’d have to permanently tuck my dreams away somewhere, since it’s not the most financially stable industry out there. I purposefully chose a major in college that seemed monetarily rewarding, but that I thought I could stand doing the rest of my life. I already wish I had just gotten that journalism degree. It’s not worth living a mediocre life for the money. A few extra dollars, for me, cannot replace passion. Everyone’s different. But I think we all drift back toward our dreams some day. Whether it’s a few months into our first real job, in a mid-life crisis, or on our death bed. Like true love, a dream never really dies. You might as well follow it sooner than later.
3. It’s bad to fall in love
A common opinion these days among the millennial crowd is that it’s shameful–even unattractive–to “catch feelings”. This is mostly true of the people younger than me (when you’ve left college you should be mature enough to leave thinking like that behind you) but it is still a very popular notion in a lot of groups. There’s been a certain implied power given to those who are purposefully single and who don’t need or attach themselves to anyone.
Don’t be so afraid to admit and embrace that you are a human being who has feelings. It’s supposed to be what makes us beautiful, not the shame of our existence. Love is what makes life worth living.
4. It’s bad to be alone
On the other side of things, it’s definitely not bad to be on your own when you know for certain you’d be settling if you weren’t. Love should be amazing, with the fireworks and the whole deal. If you haven’t found that yet, then search on and stand firm. There’s nothing wrong with knowing your worth or being independent, either. It’s still important to have a self-identity.
5. Travel is only for rich people
Similarly to “NomadicMatt” talking in a few of his articles about how travel is not limited to people in specific circumstances, but is doable for everyone, I do believe the notion that travel MUST be expensive is a myth. Although every time I traveled I paid a good amount of money, this is mainly because I paid for somewhat of a luxury. I think we do connect travel with fancy resorts, spas, and spic-and-span hotels. But going on road trips or flying to other countries does not have to be ridiculously expensive. If the experience itself–the views, the people, and the real authenticity of a place–matters to you, then giving up luxury and high expectations should be something you’re willing to do if necessary for your budget. If the accommodations are all you’re in it for, then maybe travel isn’t for you right now. Because in that case you definitely need the green.