I have seen it happen time and time again.
A husband does something to upset his wife. He feels terrible about it, so he buys her a gift.
A working mom has been traveling a lot. She feels guilty so she buys her kids a present for when she gets home.
It’s been a challenging year at the small business, and the boss knows he won’t be able to give his hardworking employees a raise. Instead he splurges on an expensive dinner for the entire staff.
In each of these situations (and others like it), the outcome hasn’t changed a bit. Chances are that spouse, that child, that employee, still feels the same about the situation. Chances are that the temporary joy from a gift or special treat eventually fades or is tarnished by memories of what precipitated the gift.
There is a simple reason for that: Money can’t buy you love. It doesn’t matter how much money you throw at an issue, it doesn’t buy love. It doesn’t buy loyalty. It doesn’t buy happiness. It only buys things.
And the sooner you realize this, the sooner you will see that your best bet is to invest in your relationships instead of extravagance.
Spend the time to work out your disagreements with your spouse. Figure out a way to spend more time with your kids. Discover ways to appreciate your employees that help your bottom line.
A friend of mine from high school recently passed away after a short battle with cancer. He lived the best life he could in the amount of time he had. He traveled, helped others, played music, and most importantly, he focused on his relationships.
He died richer than most of us will ever be. He knew that life isn’t about things. It’s about health, friendship, kindness, and love.
Please remember that today and always.