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Money or Happiness? Which Do I Choose?

Updated on Jul 29, 2013 2576 views
It's amazing how young people believe or assume that money is equivalent to happiness. Though I will not fail to agree that money is vital and the lack of it has the ability to make one unhappy at the same time, we need to get our priorities right in our career decisions.

Find below the question I saw on Quora that got me thinking:

At age 25, would you pursue a good paying corporate job that makes you unhappy or a hobby that makes you happy but has no guarantee to pay the bills?

I shared this question with a number of people, online and offline, and I received one unanimous reply: WORK FIRST AND MAKE MONEY, EVEN IF YOU ARE UNHAPPY!

This leads to my next question: When will you stop doing the job you are unhappy with? Is it when you are 35 and you have dire needs for money and probably with a family to cater for? With two boys and a girl to pay fees for?

This is buttressed in one of the best responses to the question on Quora below:

Your question is the problem. Stop making big decisions and focus on closing the gap with where you want to be.

A successful life is not made of easy, clean cut choices. It looks like this:

Sadly, far too many look like this:

Now I know this sounds obvious, but consider. Have you ever seen a guy desperately enamoured with a girl, but he can't bear to talk to her? Or someone who wants to get fit, but they won't step in a gym? How about someone who wants better career options but stays exactly where they are?

You always need to be closing the gap.

Stop making this a big scary decision and start taking lots of continuous small steps. Take something you love doing - or if you're not sure what that is, something you'd like to try. And move towards it now.

In your case, you don't have to choose between a well-paid job you don't like and the unknown. You have countless other options:
  1. Start up a small business in your evenings
  2. Ask your boss what you could do for them to get promoted
  3. Teach yourself a new skill that interests you
  4. Write a blog or a book
Some steps will lead to greater things. Others will be dead ends. But as long as you sit feeling paralysed, I can assure you nothing will change at all.

Do not, and I shall repeat for emphasis, do not defer this until a "better time". If you make a habit of that, you'll wake up one idle Monday and wonder how you let your whole life fly away.

Staff Writer

This article was written and edited by a staff writer.

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