Blake Snow

writer-for-hire, content guy, bestselling author

As seen on CNN, NBC, ABC, Fox, Wired, Yahoo!, BusinessWeek, Wall Street Journal
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How to live richly on any income

Getting rich in five years is one thing. But living richly involves a lot more than just money.

Indeed, many people are rich in cash but poor in assets, broke on time, impoverished in relationships, destitute in health, and underprivileged in experiences and ongoing education. Of course, the inverse is true too. Poor people can be rich in many other areas that matter.

What can each of us do, then, to ensure we’re living richly in most, if not all, major aspects of life, regardless of income? While I don’t have all the answers, this is what I know for sure:

  1. Be selfish with your health. To be rich in health, you must dedicate ample time to your hydration, diet, personal hygiene, exercise, and sleep every day. This is hard and often time consuming work that doesn’t pay well. But the return is massive and maximizes everything that follows on this list. It is literally how you secure your own oxygen mask first before helping yourself and others as follows.
  2. Own your calendar. Many self-help gurus teach us to “outsource everything that isn’t worth your time,” including managing your calendar and commitments. While this is an effective way to maximize income, it’s a horrible way to prioritize your time, which is the #2 regret of the dying. To be rich in time, then, you must own, consult, and update a singular “life” calendar often with your personal, family, work, and social commitments. When it comes to time, failure to plan is planning to fail.
  3. Devote yourself to family, friends, and colleagues. Not staying in touch with friends and family is the #4 regret of the dying. We’re social creatures after all. So it’s important to be present with others (your phone can wait), share yourself, and budget your calendar to include time spent on relationships. (See also: How to make friends)
  4. Invest in experiences over things. The most important things in life aren’t things. They’re our relationships (#3 on this list) and the memories we take with us (aka experiences). Prioritizing experiences over things is scientifically proven to make us happier and more fulfilled. By all means splurge on a few of your favorite things. But save the bulk of your play money for experiences.
  5. Stay curious. Ask questions. Challenge your thinking with opposing views. Read both fiction and non-fiction books. Devour Wikipedia. Watch documentaries. Consider self help advice. Enroll in classes or extended education programs. Don’t stop learning. The more you know, the better you’ll feel, the fewer mistakes you’ll make, and you’ll undoubtedly uncover new ways of living richly as you age through life.

I love mortality.