How to Become Autonomous (Autonomy Buys Happiness)

autonomy buys happiness

I remember back when I was 18 and I had to drive a giant suburban to school. One weekend I picked up a bunch of my friends. There were almost fifteen of us in total. Another friend was driving his car alongside to fit the rest of us. We all decided to head out to the beach that day.

It was fun being able to help all my friends get to the beach and enjoy each other’s company. We got to there and some of us dug a trench and molded seats around the portable bonfire. Another set of us set up a giant tent nearby. It was a California dream.

Before 7:00PM we were kicked out of the beach. The guys in the tent were smoking weed and a beach security SUV came by. They started talking to the guys and we were given news that we had to leave.

What’s funny is that we didn’t get in trouble for having reefer on us. We got in trouble because we weren’t allowed to set up tents.

We ended up leaving early and we all decided to eat at an In-N-Out before leaving the city. A bit overrated in my opinion, but still good. 

As I was driving us back I  came up with the idea – let’s go to the drive-in and watch some movies.

Everyone was all for it. Except not everyone had the money to get in. So across both cars, about 4 of us hid in the trunks.

For the guys in my suburban, they had space and only needed the cover of a giant beach towel. But for the guys hiding in the trunk of a sedan, they were very cramped.

We managed to save a bunch of money getting in and all of us enjoyed watching the newest movies on the outdoor big screen. By the time we creeped into the middle of our third movie, most of us were already dead tired.

Both my friend and I drove all of us home. We were tired, but we had an incredible time.

What was it that made us so damn happy and carefree? It was autonomy. Although we could’ve definitely used some money, we weren’t dragged down by financial obligations.

We had minimal bills and we didn’t have to pay car loans, college loans, or outrageous rent costs. We had little money but had an incredible time.

It isn’t until real life hits you that you decide to pick up some bills at the cost of autonomy. Bills are unavoidable, but you can always lower your expenses.

The little money we had was more than we needed anyway.

Flash forward into the future and you realize that it’s the accumulation of liabilities that take away from your autonomy. The lack of creating value and making money, limits your autonomy.

Autonomy is freedom. Freedom is happiness. But do you know what buys freedom and happiness? Money.

Money is outside good or evil. It either works with you, for you, or against you. But in the end, the only person who can do anything about it is you.

It’s you who gets owned by the need for money. Or it’s you who makes more than you need. Produce more than you consume. And then produce even more than that.

What’s crazy is that by having a suburban, I was able to produce a great time for at least seven extra people. I produced value for them.

The act of producing made me feel good. The ability to give people what they wanted made me feel good.

When you make more than you need, you can use some of that extra to produce value for other people and feel good about it. You can even get paid for it!

I bet that if you produced your own value to others and got paid for it, you’d feel better than when you produce value for your company. Sure, maybe working for someone else is fine.

But if you like the feeling of helping other people, and getting paid to help them. Wouldn’t that be a much greater feeling?

Working for yourself and producing your own value for others will feel a whole lot damn better than producing value for someone else.

What do you think that tells you about you? What are you going to do about it?

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