For a society in which “making a lot a lot of money”, “getting rich” or “success” in general is valued so highly, it is surprising to see how few people actually think deeply about why they strive for all this. 

Why people want more money

If you think about it, money in the abstract sense as well as the very real sense of having it in your pocket, is completely useless. The only value that money has is to be exchanged for something we want. So when people say that their dream is to become rich, they don’t actually talk about owning a lot of money. Instead, their dream is to buy all the stuff they could then afford. They also might dream of all the other things they could do, like taking time off and travel the world. In general, people think that money equals freedom and that with just enough money they could buy and do whatever they wanted. 

Interestingly though, most people don’t have concrete ideas what it actually is that they want. What are their goals? Sure, a nice car and a vacation in New Zealand could be something one would want. But it isn’t really a goal. Moving into a bigger house doesn’t qualify as a goal either. Neither does ‘starting a college fund for your kids’. None of these things require work, none of these things are a longer process. Therefore, none of them is a goal. 

Here is where the real value of money comes from: Money helps to create leverage when working towards a goal!

Why people should want more money!

If you already have a clear vision, a clear goal of what it is you wanna do in life and what value you want to create for others, then suddenly money itself is incredibly valuable. Money helps you buy the resources you need; money helps you hire people to work on your goal; at the very least, having money allows you to spend time working towards your goal and not being forced to work a job that doesn’t help you advance (don’t underestimate the opportunity costs of pursuing your dreams). 

Money is the fuel that allows you to create leverage when working towards a goal. Ideally, this should also be the only reason why companies try to make more money: so they can pursue their (hopefully value-creating) goals with even more vigour and zest.

Making money can be a goal in life, but it can never be an end goal. The only true value that money provides is when used to create leverage during the attempt to create the life you desire for yourself. 

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