Americans love to compete, and we love to win. Many of us use money as a way to keep score. Are we as financially well off as our friends and neighbors? In some cases, we feel victorious. At other times, we might feel like we are falling behind. But whether we feel like we are winning or losing, using money as a way to keep score distracts us from what really matters in life.
Using money as a scorecard implies you are in a game with abstract rules and a definite end, such as: The person who dies with the most money wins.
That is a terrible mindset for two reasons:
- It is a game we can never win. No matter how rich we become, we will always know someone who has more money.
- It implies that that our legacy should be all about how much money we leave behind. That is not only sad, it is absurd.
Our real legacy is reflected in the quality of our most important relationships and the positive differences we make in the lives of our family, friends and the strangers we touch. That’s a game we can win.