You’re Already Rich And You Don’t Know It

“Heroes are heroes because they are heroic in behavior, not because they won or lost.”― Nassim Nicholas Taleb

Not having money sucks hard. Tell me about it, I’ve experienced it first hand. Some time ago I had a beer brewery. It was kind of successful. It was very well known in my city. Sales were kind of good, but not good enough to support me. I wasn’t aware at the time of all the expenses that life requires other than weekend money. 

I couldn’t pay for insurance, I couldn’t travel, I couldn’t help my family when they needed me, and I was always struggling to get the next sale just so we could come out even.

I’ll never forget the many times I drove my car with the mere scent of gasoline while begging to god I could make it to the gasoline station for 2 liters of gasoline because that was all I could afford. 

I lived by the day, many days. 

It’s tough to live by the day. You cannot afford emergencies. I couldn’t afford my car breaking, for example. My car was the delivery truck. No delivery truck, no sales. It did break up a couple of times. Where did I found the money to fix it? Geez, under the rocks, just like Link. 

I remember thinking about how unfair life was at times. I shouldn’t be struggling so much, I thought to myself. 

Except you slowly but surely begin to realize that life doesn’t give a fuck. 

I began reading a lot of Stoicism at the time. Thank god. It clicked in an instant. I realized I had begun practicing it on my own. 

Learning to control desire

What do you desire? 

We have two kinds of desire. The desire (hope) to get the things that we want. In my case, lots of sales, people loving my beer all over, you know, an easy life. And secondly, the desire to avoid the things that we don’t like, in one word, aversion. In my case, my car not breaking down, or spoiled beer. We don’t want life to be hard.

As I said above, life doesn’t give a fuck, things just will happen. Beer got spoiled, a lot of times, and my car ran out of gasoline as well. 

Entrepreneurship teaches you to do what you can, with whatever you’ve got, wherever you are. 

It demands you to be creative. Especially when you lack resources and investment. It teaches you to change your focus on the things that you desire. I learned (forced would be a better word) to desire my capacity to withstand the situations. 

He who fails in his desire is unfortunate; and he who falls into that which he would avoid, is unhappy. If then you attempt to avoid only the things contrary to nature which are within your power, you will not be involved in any of the things which you would avoid. But if you attempt to avoid disease or death or poverty, you will be unhappy. Take away then aversion from all things which are not in our power, and transfer it to the things contrary to nature which are in our power. But destroy desire completely for the present. For if you desire anything which is not in our power, you must be unfortunate: but of the things in our power, and which it would be good to desire, nothing yet is before you. But employ only the power of moving toward an object and retiring from it; and these powers indeed only slightly and with exceptions and with remission. — Epictetus

Summarized, learn to switch your desire from wanting the world to be different, to want yourself to be different, to be better

This is the way. Do this and realize that you are already rich, you already have all you want, which is yourself and your guts. 

It doesn’t matter if you win or if you lose. Remember: 

“Heroes are heroes because they are heroic in behavior, not because they won or lost.”― Nassim Nicholas Taleb

So what’s it going to be? 

If you didn’t care about failure? What would you be doing with your time?

Fame, money, success, they are nothing compared to what’s inside you, nothing compared to that power to push back. You can see this written everywhere. Look:

That popular fable of the sot who was picked up dead drunk in the street, carried to the duke’s house, washed and dressed and laid in the duke’s bed, and, on his waking, treated with all obsequious ceremony like the duke, and assured that he had been insane, owes its popularity to the fact, that it symbolizes so well the state of man, who is in the world a sort of sot, but now and then wakes up, exercises his reason, and finds himself a true prince. — Ralph Waldo Emerson

Albert Camus spoke about it as well: 

“In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.” — Albert Camus

And my favorite: 

So use all that is called Fortune. Most men gamble with her, and gain all, and lose all, as her wheel rolls. But do thou leave as unlawful these winnings, and deal with Cause and Effect, the chancellors of God. In the Will work and acquire, and thou hast chained the wheel of Chance, and shalt sit hereafter out of fear from her rotations. A political victory, a rise of rents, the recovery of your sick, or the return of your absent friend, or some other favorable event, raises your spirits, and you think good days are preparing for you. Do not believe it. Nothing can bring you peace but yourself. Nothing can bring you peace but the triumph of principles. — Ralph Waldo Emerson

Nothing can bring you peace but yourself. 

You’re already rich, but now you know it. 

3 Comments

  1. hello Ricardo, indeed- to enjoy life as a human being, is actually- fascinating, thats flabbergasting, startling- so to speak.answers,? – conclusions?, I doubt it,_ don’t have to be right or wrong,wee”,,l all drop dead and life will go on, just as it always has , there are no conclusions, there never were. there will always be more,- the gods don’t like to be understood. could be wrong, as usual! take care-

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