Having crossed over into the six-figure income bracket yet stalling a world tour year by a year. An outrageously expensive sound system in the bedroom begging to be cavorted just once. New Clothes worth thousands waiting to be worn for the past three months. TV worth lacs in the offing to be switched on for the past one week. An eight years old dream asleep in mind to conquest new clothes, sound system, LED TV, and an expensive car. The reality of inner soul is further compromised and bargained.

This is the life of one of my friends working his arse off. He is expected to work 60+ hours a week at the barest minimum. Money can certainly be envious but living a paycheck to paycheck life is not. The unsaid agreement between the employer and the employee is simply – “The more you work, the more I will pay you.” Hence, you work a 60-hour workweek to enjoy life during the 8-hour weekend. And, in this pursuit of spending to “enjoy” life during weekends, we forget the real meaning of spending quality time with ourselves and our families.

He frequently misses out on simple joys of life with his family and friends. Now he thinks there is something magical in living a simple life which is heavily overlooked.

He says himself; I didn’t seem to actually be taking home any more money or enjoying a substantially higher quality of life than when I earned half as much. And of course, being in the highest income tax bracket meant more money going to the taxman. I spend money to woo those who don’t give a flying fuck about me anyway. Unfortunately, my family has grown immune to my constant absence at home. The treatment of an outsider is meted out to me when I go back home as I barely understand their inside jokes and reminiscent.

We all have echoed the same at some or the other point. You see, we spend precious years of our lives slogging at work, then stay tired, and ignore our health and families. All this because we are always in the pursuit of a lot of money that we can spend in whatever little “free” time we enjoy during weekends.

Studies have shown that people with higher incomes generally have less fun; they spend more time working, commuting, shopping, doing chores, and are generally under more stress and tension than those in lower income brackets.

We buy stuff to cheer ourselves up, to keep up with the high class, to fulfill our childhood vision of what our adulthood would be like, to broadcast our status to the world, and for a lot of other psychological reasons that have very little to do with how useful the product really is. How much stuff is in your basement or garage that you haven’t used in the past year?

This vicious cycle of working more to earn more, spend more, and live less is quite simple to understand.

“I plan to slog till 40 and then retire to live happily ever after,” Hrithik Roshan says in the movie Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara.

To this, Katrina Kaif replies, “But how do you know that you will live till 40!”

A deafening silence follows.

Our own philosophies are created by the experiences we encounter in life. It’s all about living in the now yet everyone’s choices would differ.

Life is simply about Learning, Earning, and Yearning. As famous rapper Biggie Smalls once said, “mo money, mo problems”. who knew rap could be so prophetic. While I definitely desire to make more money than I do right now, I won’t cry if I don’t ever make a very high income. As long as I make enough to make my dreams come true, and save up a buffer for reasons of security, I think my life will be a fulfilling one.

May you have a fulfilling life too.

17 thoughts on “Paycheck Living”

  1. Great post and absolutely true to my experience. Once I put my kid through college, I was done with the rat race. I stepped out of that life, never looked back, and am very content without the money or pressure.

    1. I would have loved to know more about your insightful and rich experiences. I am glad you could step out of the race and make the transition. Life is much better without the unnecessary stress and anxiety anyway.

  2. I love this topic! I was just reading about Simple Living, and even before I read this text, I wanted to live in an airstream or just a small house, and have a job that I enjoyed. I think people get so stuck on the idea of making a lot of money, they don’t think of what it’ll cost them. Of course there is still a balance, but I see people who live similarly to this anecdote, and they don’t seem happy at all.
    Natalie | http://nataliesalchemy.wordpress.com

    1. I agree, There are more people than we can imagine stuck in this rut. Balance is certainly the key. Too much of anything is good for nothing. I myself want to own a small house and have an enjoyable job. I hope you get what you want. Best wishes to you.

  3. back in the eighties I was making great money as a Wellsite Geologist. If I had stayed I’m sure I’d be a millionaire by now but not as happy.Money is the ultimate drug that affects all who even come close to it! What one needs to find is their “Goldiloks Zone”………not too much & not too little for them to be “happy”.
    Too little & too much of everything one experiences from cradle to grave is bad for you.
    You take who you are & leave everything you have behind.
    You always have such interesting topics Lovey!

    1. “You take who you are & leave everything you have behind.” You say some beautiful yet practical things. I am sure you would have made a kickass millionaire too. I wish you only the best and more. Thank you for always leaving the words of encouragement for my creations.

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