Having money is a great state of mind

In the movie Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara, Hrithik Roshan plays the character of Arjun, whose life revolves around money. He is workaholic. He’s essentially that friend in your group who’s constantly responding to emails and checking his Teams/Slack messages even though he’s on a vacation. His travel essentials include his work laptop.

Hrithik Roshan as Arjun in ZNMD. [Source: IMDB]

People made fun of this character when this movie came out over a decade ago. Is this life even a life, they exclaimed. Money is not everything, they argued. They said he needs to leave his work behind and learn to enjoy life.  But today, the very same people understand where he was coming from. They are struggling to find work-life balance. They are the same ones who are ready to compromise on their life, just to get richer. They now low-key admit that they are slowly becoming Arjun. We all have been there and done that or still doing that. 

Arjun, does give a justification why making money is a priority for him and it’s something that stayed with me. 

Bahut jaldi samajh gaya tha ki iss duniya sirf aur sirf paison se chalti hai. As simple as that.

[I had realised very early on that this world runs on money. As simple as that.]

Back when I had watched this scene, like everybody else, I had scoffed. I had judged Arjun to be a shallow, selfish and materialistic person. But as I write this today, I know better.

Arjun did have a point.

No matter how much you try to deny it, the people who are richer or are blessed with good looks – have always got it easy. Especially in a country like India where the society is extremely status-based, having a hefty amount in your bank account is always a plus. If you have the money, people treat you differently. Your confidence is through the roof. Have you seen the before/after photos of celebrities? They didn’t age well, they just got richer. Same goes with normal people too.

What’s wrong with wanting a luxurious life? A lavish vacation? A fancy car and spacious home? Or an attractive Apple ecosystem? You have dreams, and you want to scale up the social ladder. So you end up doing wherever it is that gets you there; whether it’s your business, or a 9-5 job. Many people, although they hate their jobs, still choose to stick with it because they want to maintain a certain lifestyle. So do I. 

Because I like the probability that I could upgrade my iPhone whenever I want, if I really wanted to or the fact that I could afford a retail therapy. I like the idea of hopping on any flight in business class whenever I feel like it. It makes me feel less worse about having sold my soul to the corporate job when I go to a restaurant and I don’t have to look at the price before ordering. I may not be all the way up there yet, because I still sort the products by Price Less to More and fly economy because business class costs almost 3 months of my paycheck. But it’s a surreal state of mind to know that if I really, really wanted to, I could. 

Proudly owning the materialistic mindset

It’s a euphoric feeling, to be able to afford anything you want. To be able to just wake up randomly one day and go on a month long exotic European trip. I no longer feel ashamed admitting I am that materialistic person. I proudly own that. It’s my choice. There may be people out there who do not feel the same and I respect their choices as well. You do you, while I do me. No matter how much I hate Monday mornings and “are you up for a quick call?” work messages, I show up to my job because I have high lifestyle standards to maintain and a status glow up to achieve. 

Of course, I don’t let myself overdo it. Recently, I have been trying to draw boundaries so that I catch myself from getting sucked into a rat race that I can never get out of. A little above and beyond is all fine as long as you are being compensated enough for it.

Before, I used to work for the paycheck I wanted; now I work for the paycheck I am currently gettting. Poetic justice. A fair play of meeting halfway.

No, I do not intend to be doing this for the rest of my life. That would be the textbook definition of toxicity. Remembering when to stop being a part of the rat race is also equally important. I just plan to grind until my hypothetical spacious 4 BHK villa with 4 balconies doesn’t excite me as much as the idea of living away in the mountains does. That’s when I know I have reached the ribbon that ends my rat race; that it is time to finally call it quits. 

Until then, it’s a life of hustle for me. Because whether or not you want to believe it, just like happiness, having money is a state of mind.

And that’s where I intend to keep my mind on, until I find the ribbon that’s supposed to end the rat race I am currently in. [Spoiler Alert: Arjun also finds his ribbon. 😊🍀]



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