35. A Calm Mind, a Fit Body, a House Full of Love

When you’re finally wealthy, you’ll realize it wasn’t what you were seeking in the first place.

When you’re wealthy, you’ll realize it wasn’t what you were seeking

Nivi: The last tweet on the topic of working for the long term is that “When you’re finally wealthy, you’ll realize it wasn’t what you were seeking in the first place. But that’s for another day.”

Naval: That’s a multi-hour topic in of itself. First of all I thought it was a really clever way to end the whole thing because it disarms a whole set of people who say, “What’s the point of getting rich?” Because there’s a lot of people who just like the status signal, virtue signal, against the idea of wealth creation or making money. So it was just a good way to disarm all of them.

But, it’s also true. In that the things that you really want in life, yes money will solve all your money problems but it doesn’t get you everywhere.

The first thing you realize when you’ve made a bunch of money is that you’re still the same person. If you’re happy, you’re happy. If you’re unhappy, you’re unhappy. If you’re calm and fulfilled and peaceful you’re still that same person. I know lots of very rich people who are extremely out of shape. I know lots of rich people who have really bad family lives. I know lots of rich people who are internally a mess.

A calm mind, a fit body and a house full of love must be earned

So, I would lean on another tweet that I put out which is actually, when I think back on it, I think it’s my favorite tweet of mine. It’s not necessarily the most insightful, it’s not necessarily the most helpful. It’s not even the one I think about the most but when I look at it there’s such a certain truth in there that it just resonates. And that is that “A calm mind, a fit body and a house full of love. These things can not be bought. They must be earned.”

Even if you have all the money in the world you can’t have those three things. Jeff Bezos still has to workout. He still has to work on his marriage or whatever his next relationship is. And his internal mental state is still going to be very much not controlled by external events. It’s going to be based on how calm and peaceful he is inside.

So I think those three things, your health, your mental health and your close relationships are things that you have to cultivate and can probably bring you a lot more peace and happiness than any amount of money ever will.

Practical advice for a calmer internal state

So, that’s what I meant. Now, how to get there is actually a tweetstorm that I still need to put out. I’ve been working on it. I have probably a hundred tweets on it. It’s just very hard to say anything on the topic without getting attacked from 50 different directions, especially these days on Twitter. So I’ve been hesitant to do it because I want to target it for a very specific kind of person.

There’s a bunch of people who don’t believe that working on your internal state is useful. They’re too focused on the external. And that’s fine, there’s nothing wrong with that, they should do that and that’s who the how the get rich tweetstorm is for. There’s a bunch of people who believe that the only thing worth working on is complete liberation, like you become the Buddha, and they’ll attack anything in the middle as being useless. That’s fine too but most people aren’t there.

So, what I want to do is to create a tweetstorm that is just very practical advice for everyday people who want to have a calmer internal state. A set of understandings, realizations, half truths and truths, that if you were to imbibe them properly, and again these are just pointers to ideas that you already have and experiences that you already have. That if you keep these top of mind, slowly but steadily it will help you with certain realizations that will lead you to a calmer internal state. That’s what I want to work on.

Fitness is another big one, I’m just not the expert there. There are plenty of good people on Twitter that who are better fitness than me.

A lot of divorces happen over money, a lot of battles happen over internal anger

And I think a loving household and relationships actually automatically falls out of the other things. If you have a calm mind and if you’ve already made money, you should have a good relationship. There’s not reason why you shouldn’t. A lot of divorces actually happen over money, unfortunately that’s just the reality of it, so having money removes that part of it.

A lot of external battles happen because you’re internal state is not good. When you’re naturally internally peaceful you’re going to pick less fights. You’re going to be more loving without expecting anything in return and that will take care of things on the external relationship front.

Nivi: So, money solves your money problems. Money buys you freedom in the material world, I think that was a tweet from your cutting room floor, and money lets you not do the things that you don’t want to do.

Naval: Yeah to me the ultimate purpose of money so you do not have to be in a specific place at a specific time doing anything you don’t want to do.

Chapter 36 >>