Muhammad Ali’s Finest Hour, which you have probably never heard about.
Two Things Infinitely More Valuable Than Money
“Money cures all.” I heard that expression as a kid and considering my family wasn’t exactly wealthy, I tended to believe it. Money can do a lot of things. Most studies on the topic show that our health in general is proportional to our net worth, with those who are most prosperous trending to the high end of healthiness, while those who are in poverty trending to the less healthy categories of obesity and diabetes.
Good health is important, but the two things you have in your possession that will never trump health and are not interchangeable with money are time and trust.
Time goes without saying I suppose. Most of us are always on the go, with limited time to spare. We have expectations placed on us that are often dictated by a window of time. Hell, our very lives are not exempt from the window of time. Money can sometimes buy you a little time, but the time it buys you has to come from somewhere and it usually is subtracted from time that should be allotted to doing other things. The most successful people in the world have a handle on their time. They know where it goes, the quickly recognize when it is being wasted and know where to draw the line on time wasting because they understand that their time is money and wasting it is equal to throwing money away.
Trust on the other hand is the most fragile of commodities. When you’re born, you own the most trust that you’ll ever own at any point in the rest of your life. From the earliest interactions with others, you are either earning their trust or losing it. Once you’ve lost trust, it can be earned back, but it is harder than earning money and even when others who have lost trust in you say they trust you, there is still at least some existence of doubt. The doubt never goes away. You can’t buy trust from those who doubt you. Sure, they may take your money, but the doubt never goes away entirely.
Today was the first time I confronted my 4-year old son about lying to his mom. Of course, it was a small lie, but I want him to understand that lying is much like throwing money away. It too is a commodity that when it is gone is so hard to get back. What makes lying worse is that once a person lies, they usually have to build upon the lie with other lies. Lance Armstrong is the example of the moment where he is caught up in one big lie that really is hundreds, maybe thousands of lies. His trust amongst others is eroded to the point that his very image now hurts efforts to raise money for cancer research. Think about that.
I’m going to continue to teach my son on the importance of time awareness and being honest and respecting of the trust others have in him and I’m going to continue to press myself on these virtues as well.