The true meaning of prosperity

Prosperity comes in many forms

I used to worry about what other people thought of me; I worried about that a lot. I would seek validation from others on virtually every part of my life.  I would be waylaid by naysayers and listen to those that provided advice for their own benefit and those who sought to hold me back. Why did I let their opinion matter? Because lack of confidence made me think they must know better.

Things have changed. I was reminded of that this week while on holiday with my family in Noosa on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast.  I’d been for an early morning surf with my son and we’d retired to our favorite beachfront café for coffee and hot chocolate.

We’d become morning regulars and the staff greeted us with a smile asking how the surf was? We felt great after a couple of hours in the water. The café has a stylish outdoor layout so we found our favorite table in the sun and relaxed, enjoying the moment.

Unfortunately this was short-lived due to comments made by the four people at the table behind us. They thought it was unacceptable for us to come directly from the ocean to the café, and had no hesitation in voicing this opinion loudly enough for us to hear.

This upset my son, made him feel self conscious. He wanted to go home. We were wearing board shorts but had put on t-shirts and shoes after toweling off. It’s an outdoor beachfront café so I didn’t feel we were out of place.

I told my son not to worry about it and our drinks arrived and he was soon dunking marshmallows in his hot chocolate and all was well with the world. As I drank my coffee I looked over to these people and watched them berate the waitress and complain about everything, from the time it took to get their drinks to the weather.

Dressed in the latest resort gear and talking loudly for all to hear, they were consumed by their self importance. And I felt sorry for them. Why was it necessary to put on such a show just so they could feel good about themselves? And why did it need to be at others’ expense? They may have been wealthy, but I doubt it; the wealthy people I know are generally the most unassuming and caring people.

Rich or poor, it didn’t matter. They certainly weren’t living a happy life and it appeared they had missed the beauty of the day and the tranquility of the moment by being entirely inward focused. At that point it didn’t matter if any of us were a CEO, celebrity, politician or factory worker.

We were just people. I was a father enjoying a pleasant morning with my son. At that moment I felt truly prosperous. Who or what I was in other parts of my life were, at that moment, irrelevant. I had happily swapped Hugo Boss for Ripcurl and a Mercedes for an old Falcon with surfboards on top.

I had nothing to prove. I didn’t care what they thought of me or how I looked. I was happy being there, in that moment and I was free.

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2 Responses to “The true meaning of prosperity”

  1. Marie Farrugia Says:

    Love it! As the saying goes: “Success (happiness/prosperity) is an inside job”.
    We should all care less what others say and focus more on what makes us happy and feel prosperous.
    Well done 🙂

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