Saturday, December 28, 2013

Mastery Trumps Money

The phrase, "the pursuit of happiness" is a mistranslation of the Greek "eudaimonia," which means "human flourishing." You get it through "arete," or excellence. And what is excellence? Mastery. Autonomy. Meaning. Purpose. Community.

But it's not money. After a certain point, money doesn't motivate at all.

I had a girlfriend who worked for the federal government and made $120,000 a year. She had her own office. She hated it, lasted three years, went to work for herself making half the money, but is four times as happy.

1 comment:

The Anti-Gnostic said...

Correct. What people really want is time and control over their own lives.

Businesses that think all people want is money tend to be shortsighted, autocratic operations with lots of turnover. They don't last beyond the lifespans of their principals. Or, they are multi-nationals which are coasting off a lot of externalities.