What is a well-lived life? This philosophical question has been floating around my mind for the past few weeks. Is their a meaning to life or is it all just purposeless as we momentarily burst in and out existence? I think the answer to this question is subjective for everyone, just in the same way how choosing what religion to believe in (or not to believe in) is a matter of what personally aligns with who you are and what brings you peace of mind. In my opinion, a well-lived life is living by intention – meaning that the 24 hours we all have in a given day are used exactly in the way we want to. Some might say it’s a lofty goal and too idealistic, but I would argue that this is the purpose of human life. After all, isn’t the ends to all means happiness?
I work in the world of finance, which seems to be the epitome of the “9-5” cubicle life where everyone is a miserable, white-collar worker that is stuck in the rat race. For the most part it’s true. Almost everyday I hear people around me complain about being miserable and being stuck in this seemingly endless cycle of giving most of their time to tasks they don’t like doing. That’s not living by intention. But what I’ve learned over the years is that success/happiness comes from a state of mind. I’ve talked to many successful people in my company who make 7-figure salaries and usually they’ve gotten there because of their mindsets. They actually like their work and their goal is to do good work. Their day-to-day lives are intentional for the most part and they feel their potential actualized through their work and what they do everyday. You see this in every field, where the most successful people don’t even feel like they’re doing work. Jerry Seinfeld even said, “I’ve never had a job.”
I respect and envy a lot of successful entrepreneurs that I follow, because they’ve achieved a life in which the line between work and play is almost nonexistent. And it’s not all about the money, it’s about seeing the bigger picture in life. Time is the ultimate resource we have and it’s finite. A lot of people including myself forget to see that work is a means to an end. It’s to live the life you want to live. Whether you’re doing the work you love or you’re working hard to make enough money to live a certain lifestyle, the goal of it all is to maximize the time in your life being happy.