“The three most harmful addictions are heroin, carbohydrates, and a monthly salary.”
– Nassim Nicholas Taleb
I have something to admit – I enjoy receiving a paycheck twice every month. Some people are willing to give up the sure thing to pursue a passion project, launch their own business, or take a year off to travel the world. While I’m envious of those with such conviction, I just can’t pull the trigger.
There is that old adage that says “money can’t buy happiness.” We now know that to be false, as Daniel Kahnaman proved otherwise in 2010. There is in fact incremental happiness gained from money, until a household’s income reaches $75,000 (or about $88,000 in 2019 dollars). This article shows it’s probably closer to $105,000, but it’s irrelevant what the exact dollar amount is, because money DOES buy happiness.
I was talking to my friend Justin Castelli and he said “complacency is a dangerous thing… for some.” What I think Justin was saying is that some people can get stuck in their ways, and it can become unhealthy (physically and mentally). Just because you stay with a career and don’t pursue the shiny new object, doesn’t mean you’re being complacent.
People with more traditional careers, collecting that paycheck twice per month, might get bogged down with what others are doing in regard to their non-traditional careers. We’re in the age where everyone is posting their travel on social media and showing off their flexible self-employed schedule. It’s okay to work for “the man” and earn a regular paycheck. That paycheck has a lot of value, and it isn’t all monetary. The job and paycheck can give peace of mind, health insurance, vacation days, maternity/paternity leave, purpose, self-worth, and camaraderie.
Entrepreneurship and traveling the world aren’t for everyone, at least right at this moment. So if you like that paycheck? Keep on, keeping on.