Friday, October 14, 2011

Do you Have These Personal Assets?

  • A toothbrush and toothpaste?
  • Eyeglasses or contact lenses if you need them?
  • Washer and dryer to clean your clothes?  or access to a laundry facility?
  • A flushable toilet in your home?
  • Air-conditioning to keep you safe in the blistering hot days of summer?
  • Heating to keep you safe in the bitterly cold days of winter?
  • Pain relievers (Tylenol, Advil, Aspirin, etc.) for headaches and aches and pains?
  • A cell phone that lets you communicate with others?
  • A stove or microwave oven to prepare your food?
  • Remote control for your t.v.?
  • Access to affordable education?
  • Shoes with good support for comfortable walking?
  • Access to the Internet?
  • Clothing to keep you warm and covered?
  • Food in your refrigerator?
  • Access to a doctor/hospital?
  • A source of income?
  • A comfy place to sleep?
  • A safe living space?
  • Electricity?
  • Blankets and pillows?
  • Pure water to drink?
  • A vehicle or access to public transportation?
  • Good physical and mental health, or under a doctor's care to keep you as well as you can be?
  • At least one loyal friend?
  • A shower stall or bathtub?
  • Personal items, comb, soap, shampoo?
  • A personal spiritual faith?
  • Can you walk, talk, see, hear, feel, and taste?
  • Can you read and write?
  • Do you have money in your billfold or purse?
  • Peace of mind?
  • A hobby that allows you to create something?
  • No addictions?
  • Access to affordable food?
  • A functioning mind so you can make your own choices and decisions?  
  • Do you allow yourself to love, and to be loved?
  • Friendly, caring neighbors?
  • A plate, cup, spoon, fork, and knife?
  • Do you own and allow a pet to love you unconditionally?
  • Are you able to go out and look at the sky, the trees, grass, flowers, hills, valleys, streams, lakes, and all of the physical setting in which we are privileged to live our lives?
  • A life partner to share the easy days, difficult days, and all those days in between?
  • Are you able to get up early enough to see a sunrise? 
  • Are you able to see a sunset?
Tally up the number of these personal assets you have.  The total number is the weight of your real wealth.  These are the biggies that we take for granted.  We look above and beyond them when we look at what others have and compare ourselves to them.  When others seemingly have more than we do, well, then we start doubting ourselves and wonder what we're doing wrong.

Well, the retailers want us to feel that what we already have is outdated and inadequate, and they work very hard at doing that.  They show us prettier homes and newer appliances.  We are constantly being encouraged to discard and buy new.  In this skittish time of inflated prices and stalled wages, we have got to take a step back and concentrate on what we do have, be grateful, and be satisfied.

 It sleeps so good
now that I'm out of debt!
There are millions of people just like you and me, starving, homeless, and suffering depths of despair, on other continents who consider us to be the swanky rich ones.  No matter where we are defined on the Distribution of Wealth Scale, there will be those with more and those with less.

Life has thoroughly convinced me that it can be, and is, less overwhelming when we weigh our own wealth, and not let others weigh it for us.  Being satisfied with what we have and not going in debt for more, is a simple formula for less stress.  We maybe won't 'look' rich, but we sure will 'feel' rich.  And, isn't that what it's all about?

"Be grateful for the home you have, knowing that at this moment, all you have is all you need."  ~Sarah Ban Breathnach