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What Millionaires Want, Other Than Money

What Millionaires Want, Other Than Money

Some millionaires are missing out on some of life’s great treats. Money, it seems, cannot buy them contentment, health or real friendships. There are, of course, lots of happy millionaires but a fair number of them are not really happy or connected.

The ideal income is only $75,000 a year, according to a Princeton University study. Anything beyond that is no guarantee of emotional well-being!

According to the Hurun report on China’s Rich List, the top five have as much wealth as Microsoft. But this has not automatically brought them happiness. For example, 35% of female Chinese millionaires are either divorced or unmarried. This is twice the number of their male counterparts.

Wondering what millionaires want? Here are some of their wishes:

1. They want genuine human contact

MarkZ2

    Karl Rabeder used to be a millionaire but gave away all his money because it was making him unhappy. He sold everything, gave the money to charity and now lives in a modest mountain chalet in Austria. He has also kept a mini apartment in Innsbruck.

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    He decided to do this because he felt that the high lifestyle was false and it was impossible to connect with real people. He also felt guilty when he witnessed poverty. He could not help thinking that he was somehow complicit in the world’s inequality. Now, he is much happier.

     2. They want their lives to have meaning and purpose

     I’ve got all the money I could ever dream of, but have nothing in my life that really excites me.

    – Anonymous Australian millionaire

    This millionaire wanted psychotherapy because his life lacked meaning and purpose. He was no longer able to become passionate about his relationships, hobbies or community involvement. After a few months of therapy, he felt happier. He had learned how to regain contact with nature, value his family time and become involved in community work. He felt less disconnected than before and that his life had some pleasure and purpose again.

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      3. They cannot enjoy any privacy

      Juan Rodriguez regrets winning the lottery because he now cannot go out without meeting people who either owe him money or want to owe him money! He cannot enjoy any privacy when he goes out and his life is very boring because he only has dogs for company and he no longer trusts even his own family.

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      Financial consultants say that with sudden wealth, the winners are very likely to ruin their lives in trying to cope with it. There seems to be high burnout rate among lottery winners.

      4. They wish they had looked after loved ones better

      Money will not change how healthy you are or how many people love you.

      – Warren Buffett

      Many self-made millionaires wonder what went wrong. They seem to have dropped the ball while they were so busy making all that money. They forgot to live life to the full and cherish their loved ones. When they ended up as super rich celebs, they suddenly found their lives were rather empty.

      As Warren Buffett says, the most important assets we own are our families, friends and partners.

      5. They wish they could trust people more

      Millionaires have plenty to worry about. They are always worried about who they can trust. They are concerned that friends may turn into sharks because of their wealth. They worry that their children may squander their fortune.

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      Alan Nunn won the Texas lottery and is generally fairly happy with his active and meaningful life. But one thing really worries him all the time: he doesn’t know whom to trust. He loves his sister but feels he cannot trust her.

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        6. They worry about their safety

        Many millionaires have to lay out considerable sums to protect themselves, all their properties and their loved ones. They live in fear and worry about robbery, violence and burglary, not to mention kidnappings.

        A Sicilian woman was very happy when she won £79m in the Italian lottery. But consumer groups made such a fuss that her identity was revealed. She had to go into hiding because she feared that the Mafia would come calling.

        7. They want to work

        It becomes an illness because you don’t have to support yourself, you don’t have to decide on a career, and you don’t have to worry about whether you can afford to do something, and it can become incredibly disempowering. It’s very bad for your self-esteem. You don’t feel as if you’re succeeding. You feel like a fraud, in fact.

        – Sara Robin, ex millionaire.

        Sara Robin inherited a huge fortune. She had a car at university and found that she gave lifts to everybody as a sort of penance. But the quote above reveals her unease with not having to really work for a living. She was missing out on so many things. She solved the problem by reinventing herself and set up a bike co-op. She also decided that her fortune was an encumbrance and she gave it all away to charity.

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          8. They wish they could savor the present moment

          Johnson2

            Did you know that 15.5% of the people in Singapore are millionaires? In the USA, that figure is only 4.5% while Switzerland is 9.9%. The interesting thing is that the Singaporeans are among the unhappiest people of the world and they come further down the list than people in Iraq, North Korea and Afghanistan.

            The problem many millionaires face is that they cannot step back from their rush to invest and save their money or give it to charity. They are thinking that this is the path to happiness and that there will be a long journey ahead. They become so absorbed in this that they can never savor the pleasures of life now.

            Let us know in the comments whether wealth could really change your life for the better and how you would cope with all the problems money might bring.

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            Featured photo credit: Mark Zuckerberg Keynote – SXSW 2008 /kris krug via flickr.com

            More by this author

            Robert Locke

            Author of Ziger the Tiger Stories, a health enthusiast specializing in relationships, life improvement and mental health.

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            Last Updated on February 21, 2019

            The Secret to Effective Conflict Resolution: The IBR Approach

            The Secret to Effective Conflict Resolution: The IBR Approach

            In business, in social relationships, in family… In whatever context conflict is always inevitable, especially when you are in the leader role. This role equals “make decisions for the best of majority” and the remaining are not amused. Conflicts arise.

            Conflicts arise when we want to push for a better quality work but some members want to take a break from work.

            Conflicts arise when we as citizens want more recreational facilities but the Government has to balance the needs to maintain tourism growth.

            Conflicts are literally everywhere.

            Avoiding Conflicts a No-No and Resolving Conflicts a Win-Win

            Avoiding conflicts seem to be a viable option for us. The cruel fact is, it isn’t. Conflicts won’t walk away by themselves. They will, instead, escalate and haunt you back even more when we finally realize that’s no way we can let it be.

            Moreover, avoiding conflicts will eventually intensify the misunderstanding among the involved parties. And the misunderstanding severely hinders open communication which later on the parties tend to keep things secret. This is obviously detrimental to teamwork.

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            Some may view conflicts as the last step before arguments. And they thus leave it aside as if they never happen. This is not true.

            Conflicts are the intersect point between different individuals with different opinions. And this does not necessarily lead to argument.

            Instead, proper handling of conflicts can actually result in a win-win situation – both parties are pleased and allies are gained. A better understanding between each other and future conflicts are less likely to happen.

            The IBR Approach to Resolve Conflicts

            Here, we introduce to you an effective approach to resolve conflicts – the Interest-Based Relational (IBR) approach. The IBR approach was developed by Roger Fisher and William Ury in their 1981 book Getting to Yes. It stresses the importance of the separation between people and their emotions from the problem. Another focus of the approach is to build mutual understanding and respect as they strengthen bonds among parties and can ultimately help resolve conflicts in a harmonious way. The approach suggests a 6-step procedure for conflict resolution:

            Step 1: Prioritize Good Relationships

            How? Before addressing the problem or even starting the discussion, make it clear the conflict can result in a mutual trouble and through subsequent respectful negotiation the conflict can be resolved peacefully. And that brings the best outcome to the whole team by working together.

            Why? It is easy to overlook own cause of the conflict and point the finger to the members with different opinions. With such a mindset, it is likely to blame rather than to listen to the others and fail to acknowledge the problem completely. Such a discussion manner will undermine the good relationships among the members and aggravate the problem.

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            Example: Before discussion, stress that the problem is never one’s complete fault. Everyone is responsible for it. Then, it is important to point out our own involvement in the problem and state clearly we are here to listen to everyone’s opinions rather than accusing others.

            Step 2: People Are NOT the Cause of Problem

            How? State clearly the problem is never one-sided. Collaborative effort is needed. More importantly, note the problem should not be taken personally. We are not making accusations on persons but addressing the problem itself.

            Why? Once things taken personally, everything will go out of control. People will become irrational and neglect others’ opinions. We are then unable to address the problem properly because we cannot grasp a fuller and clearer picture of the problem due to presumption.

            Example: In spite of the confronting opinions, we have to emphasize that the problem is not a result of the persons but probably the different perspectives to view it. So, if we try to look at the problem from the other’s perspective, we may understand why there are varied opinions.

            Step 3: Listen From ALL Stances

            How? Do NOT blame others. It is of utmost importance. Ask for everyone’s opinions. It is important to let everyone feel that they contribute to the discussion. Tell them their involvement is essential to solve the problem and their effort is very much appreciated.

            Why? None wants to be ignored. If one feels neglected, it is very likely for he/she to be aggressive. It is definitely not what we hope to see in a discussion. Acknowledging and being acknowledged are equally important. So, make sure everyone has equal opportunity to express their views. Also, realizing their opinions are not neglected, they will be more receptive to other opinions.

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            Example: A little trick can played here: Invite others to talk first. It is an easy way to let others feel involved and ,more importantly, know their voices are heard. Also, we can show that we are actively listening to them by giving direct eye-contact and nodding. One important to note is that never interrupt anyone. Always let them finish first beforeanother one begins.

            Step 4: Listen Comes First, Talk Follows

            How? Ensure everyone has listened to one another points of view. It can be done by taking turn to speak and leaving the discussion part at last. State once again the problem is nothing personal and no accusation should be made.

            Why? By turn-taking, everyone can finish talking and voices of all sides can be heard indiscriminantly. This can promote willingness to listen to opposing opinions.

            Example: We can prepare pieces of paper with different numbers written on them. Then, ask different members to pick one and talk according to the sequence of the number. After everyone’s finished, advise everyone to use “I” more than “You” in the discussion period to avoid others thinking that it is an accusation.

            Step 5: Understand the Facts, Then Address the Problem

            How? List out ALL the facts first. Ask everyone to tell what they know about the problems.

            Why? Sometimes your facts are unknown to the others while they may know something we don’t. Missing out on these facts could possibly lead to inaccurate capture of the problem. Also, different known facts can lead to different perception of the matter. It also helps everyone better understand the problem and can eventually help reach a solution.

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            Example: While everyone is expressing their own views, ask them to write down everything they know that is true to the problem. As soon as everyone has finished, all facts can be noted and everyone’s understanding of the problem is raised.

            Step 6: Solve the Problem Together

            How? Knowing what everyone’s thinking, it is now time to resolve the conflict. Up to this point, everyone should have understood the problem better. So, it is everyone’s time to suggest some solutions. It is important not to have one giving all the solutions.

            Why? Having everyone suggesting their solutions is important as they will not feel excluded and their opinions are considered. Besides, it may also generate more solutions that can better resolve the conflicts. Everyone will more likely be satisfied with the result.

            Example: After discussion, ask all members to suggest any possible solutions and stress that all solutions are welcomed. State clearly that we are looking for the best outcomes for everyone’s sake rather than battling to win over one another. Then, evaluate all the solutions and pick the one that is in favor of everyone.

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