I recently listened to a speech by Kevin O'Leary, one of the "sharks" on the television show Shark Tank. (For those who do not know, Shark Tank provides aspiring entrepreneurs an opportunity to pitch their idea to potential investors [sharks], exchanging capital for equity in the new company.)
O'Leary made an interesting observation that what Shark Tank participants were truly seeking was freedom. "Success in business sets you free," O'Leary said. "Entrepreneurs in pursuit of personal freedom."
I had not really equated freedom with business ownership, but the two are definitely entwined. The amount of control I have over my time -- and the HUGE life benefits that brings -- far outweighs anything I ever anticipated. We always equate money with success, but if this past year has taught me nothing else, I have learned that having money is overrated if it consumes your life to earn it.
Save as much as you can. Live modestly. Be frugal and avoid excesses. Construct your life in such a way that you can live from earnings that allow you time to enjoy life. As the sharks know, you are far richer when the equation between freedom and funding is in balance.