Success & Prosperity Blog

Those Poor Unhappy Rich People

By Randy Gage in Critical Thinking, Success, Prosperity.

We’ve been discussing the question of whether you can be prosperous without having a lot of money.  Now the knee-jerk reaction of the herd is almost always yes.  They would say something like, “Money isn’t everything.  Many people are poor and they’re happy.   Look at all the unhappy rich people.  Look at all the movie stars getting divorces, Tiger Woods, rich people in rehab, etc”

Here’s my problem with all that…

When you say things like, “I know lots of unhappy rich people…” you are making a very lack-centered statement.
When you affirm something like that, you are programming your subconscious mind that rich people are unhappy.  Which means that it will work against you getting rich, because you don’t want to be unhappy.

Of course you know unhappy rich people.  But you also know lots more unhappy poor and middle-class people.

The fact that “money doesn’t buy happiness” does not mean that money buys unhappiness.  Money or the lack of it will only magnify your happiness or unhappiness.  Money reveals who you really are.

Now is someone who has good health, wonderful relationships, a strong spiritual connection, and fulfilling work – but not much money – prosperous?

Well I suppose they could be.  But I think they’re usually not.  Maybe the meek will inherit the earth, but not if they’re making the minimum payments on their credit card bills each month.

Let me show you a few examples of the difference between being wealthy and being poor.

You are born with crooked or protruding teeth.  You feel very self-conscious about it and your self-esteem suffers.  If your family is wealthy, you get braces and other dental work to correct it right away.  Be poor and you could take psychological damage around for life.

You’re driving and your car breaks down on the highway.  If you’re poor, it’s a very old car.  There is no warranty, and you probably don’t have the cash to fix it.  You can barely pay for the tow truck to haul it to the repair shop.  You try to work out payments with the guy, or you end up taking the bus for three weeks while you try to scrape together the money to fix it.

If you have money, you’re a member of the auto club.  You call on your cell phone; they send over a truck and take it to the dealership.  Because it’s a recent model, all the necessary work is covered by the warranty, and they give you a loaner car while it’s being fixed.

You pick up your paycheck one week and go shopping.  On your way home, you stop at the bank to deposit your check only to discover that you lost it somewhere.

You immediately call your boss, who tells you that they will stop payment and issue a new one.  Which will take three weeks.   If you’re poor, what happens?

You’ve already written checks against that paycheck, because you were over due with some bills already.  They come in and bounce.  Your bank charges you $45 each.  Each credit card company that gets check back charges you a $35 late fee.  You’re frantically calling your friends and relatives, relating your drama story to borrow enough money to cover your hot checks and survive the three weeks.

If you have money, you have overdraft protection, the bank transfers a few hundred dollars from your savings account, and you live in harmony till your replacement check comes in.

I could go on, but you get the point.  Money may not buy happiness, but it sure can stave off a lot of misery, lubricate your life, and make it more fun.

Now if the lady who runs the charity or my minister are happy and fulfilled while making $25,000 or $30,000 a year, great.  I just have a hard time believing that they are happy with that.  If they truly are, wonderful, but what happens when challenges come up like the ones I mentioned?

If they have a problem making their bills, fixing their car, or are living from paycheck to paycheck, it’s pretty hard to live a life of abundance.

Now some would say that prosperity comes from reducing your desires to be happy with what you have.   Which is about the craziest shit I’ve ever heard!  And that’s where we’ll pick up next time.  Until then, please check in with your thoughts.


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66 thoughts on “Those Poor Unhappy Rich People

  1. Rosa Muziotti says:

    Our natural state is wellbeing, HAPPINESS, prosperity and abundance in all areas (time, money, health, relationships, etc).
    Money MAGNIFIES what you ALREDY ARE.
    Money is used for two things. One, it is to make you COMFORTABLE, And the other purpose is it enables you to extend the service to others.

  2. We are stuck in groundhog day. A life where the DVD is scratched an stuck in the same loop. The universe abhors a vacuum, it is simple physics.

    ‘Now some would say that prosperity comes from reducing your desires to be happy with what you have. ‘

    I believe you have to learn to enjoy the smaller things as you work towards the larger ones. I have found that life is a cycle of ebb and flow like the tides. Don’t worry too much when shit goes wrong, just keep moving.

    and happiness is not something you can work for- or get. its Joy that stems from inside when you finally realize everything is okay and will be, just keep working. We do not get prosperity for our own sake, but that we use it to develop ourselves others and grow. No I do not mean charity or victim sanctioned help me help me, but rather looking at why we have gifts and how we can use them for growth.


  3. Haran Davis says:

    Great post Randy. I agree that money may not buy happiness, but I also believe that money can contribute to and support my happiness. Money can assist in enhancing the other areas of our life.

    I appreciate and celebrate your labor of love Randy in expanding the prosperity consciousness of all who are open to receive your wisdom.


  4. Diana says:

    Love the comment! For sure one sole thing is not going to bring you all the happiness, it’s a combination what makes you happy and prosperous. If you have money but no health you can’t feel prosperous, if you have health but no money you’re life will seem waaay longer, but not exactly abundant, but if you have a balance of health and love, and wealth, I do believe it brings you to the prosperity feeling.

    Like a tripod, to make a good picture you need the three legs, if one is missing, most likely the picture would be blury…

  5. Hanaa says:

    I enjoyed reading this Randy, thanks. It’s synchronicity if course as this past Wk at my small Mastermind mtg we spoke if exactly this where we reflected in WHY there’s so much literature on Do N Be Good, and Good (ie. Wealth) will come. As we cited personal references of ppl we knew who became multi-millionaires at age 30, who came from a broken home but who was focused, determined n WENT FOR IT, n “made it”. And then the rest of us, who plod along, believing that we must attract, be in line with the Universe, be grateful for what we hv, and…. WHERE THE …. IS IT??

    Sigh, Focus, Take Appropriate Action, Be Grateful (for that which is yet to be received), Believing in Abundance (which I agree is a much healthier way to live than focusing on Lack n Scarcity), n yes, I m still hopeful that I shall be Wealthier than I am now. It’s all good and I am grateful. 🙂

    Thx Randy for yr rants. They keep me grounded n focused. And hopeful.

  6. jloh says:

    I’d lived a life with money shortage for many years before I got my head straight and got rid of my victim stories. Counting coins for food, worrying about bills (from menial ones to medical ones) & praying that no unexpected disasters like the ones you described above happens (they invariably do anyway) every single day is a damn pain in the ass. There is NOTHING prosperous about existing that way. How can you be truly happy being stressed out and worried all the time? And I don’t buy into settling for less either. Money is freedom, and freedom brings joy. Thanks for the post RG, touched some nerves for me. xoxo

  7. Beth Ascoli says:

    “Life is more important than money, but money is needed to support life” -Robert Kiyosaki

  8. Maryam says:

    Hi Randy, Excellent. I dont understant those ppl who say money isn’t everything, to answer them I always say you are right but if you have money 😉

    best wishes

  9. Tom says:

    I was speaking with my brother about work. He said he would rather be poor than be a slave to a high paying job.

    Poverty is a different form of slavery- a waste of life and human potential. It destroys the soul, and weakens all mankind.

  10. How does the saying go?

    Money can’t buy you happiness, but it sure does make a helluva good down payment!

  11. Rachel Henke says:

    Hey Randy. I need no convincing. I’m in!! I think people only say that cause they’re cross they are broke ..

    Health is the big one isn’t it. It is so obvious that when you are not penny pinching you can order whatever you want for you and your family, whether it be specialist treatment, supplements or medication etc.

    On another point the other day my 11 year old daughter got into a discussion at school about one of her friends who is going to a private school. The other kids were saying that it won’t be fun because they will all be so snobby.

    Ella said what nonsense – and explained to the kids all about memes! I was so impressed and have to thank you for our awareness on that.

    Cool new pic by the way 🙂

  12. Ron says:

    Why condition one self to believe that seemingly financial problems must be solved with money, or solved at all?

    Misery, as well as happiness, also comes from within.

    If one trusts the universe and trusts himself and his abundance and the endless support by unconditional love, he will not have to face such problems, only when they need to happen, to show him something, looking at a specific event is not seeing the whole picture – maybe the event allowed for something great to happen.

    Then again, maybe that great thing would be getting a better job.

    Money is useful and doesn’t mean one is happy or not, and indeed could help someone be more externally prosperous.

  13. Randy, I love the way you think. And I love your direct attack approach on the issues that matter. It wakes people up!

    Here’s what I know: Money brings up our insecurities and fears like nothing else. Money is at the root of most arguments and insecurities. And while it is only one aspect of a “prosperous” life, (along with physical, mental, relational, spiritual prosperity) it does affect every aspect of life. This point is brillliant illuminated in your examples.

    When I hear people say “Money will never make you happy”, I think, No kidding! It’s not meant to. Money is just a tool to provide a person with options. OPTIONS!

    Show me the life that is rich with options, ripe with opportunities and abundant possibilities, and I’ll show you a happy life!!

  14. Chris Lianos says:

    I jut love the line ….craziest shit I’ve ever heard!….LOL…. what else is there to say. Summed up perfectly.


  15. Tony Scarcia says:

    What a great article.
    A lot of people settle and talk themselves into being OK with being poor, struggling all their life.
    I used to try to show them that there is another way but eventually gave up on that.

  16. Its such a good thing to realize that I am learning from truthful mentors like Randy. Thanks for keeping shit real man!!
    What you sow, you shall reap … if you sow poor, you get poor … if you sow rich, you get rich …
    Soooooo simple … Right?

  17. Terri says:

    I totally agree with these comments. Money buys FREEDOM… the freedom to not have to suffer when situations are less than desireable. It makes you not have to suffer financially for long periods of time… no suffering = happier people. Abundance also allows you to help those in need… what a great feeling! I am manifesting abundance in my life and “assuming the feeling of the wish fulfilled.”

  18. Great post!! I agree 100% because I have lived the life of barely getting by and I have lived the life where we fly around the world on family vacations and enjoy a day on the lake in our boat as well as many other niceties . I can promise you that having money and the ability to pay bills and enjoy life is so much better than being meek and lowly. My wife and children are secure when there is money in the bank and when they know that the utilities will be on when they come home. No, “money does not but happiness”, but lack of money sure doesn’t either!!! Keep up the great posts. I love them.

  19. John L says:

    Deb, thanks for sending me your comment here. I love where Randy’s going with this.

    re: your thoughts…

    When I hear people say “Money will never make you happy”, I think, No kidding! It’s not meant to. Money is just a tool to provide a person with options. OPTIONS!

    I agree with you Deb, money is a tool that provides options…


    I don’t think I could agree with anyone that actually said “money will never make you happy” nor do I want to “think” – No kidding!

    First by agreeing, you are affirming a thought that comes from lack thinking…

    The truth is…

    “Money DOES by happiness”…

    Money builds churches

    Money sends your kids to college

    Money supports charities

    Money will let you the lifestyle you deserve

    So while money does give you options…

    Those options, when made by “balanced” (ie: ppl that have physical, mental, relational, spiritual prosperity) people WILL bring you happiness.

    Babe, money WILL make you happy!!

  20. Enrique says:

    The fact that “money doesn’t buy happiness” does not mean that money buys unhappiness. Money or the lack of it will only magnify your happiness or unhappiness. Money reveals who you really are.
    I agree with part.

    But How about a school teacher making $40,000 a year? I found many that love what they do instead of the Wall Street trader making $500,000 per year which supports your above sentences.

  21. Joe Foster says:

    Money doesn’t buy the ability to spell, clearly.

    This autogratification loop makes Rand seem nuanced and textured.

    What a bunch of jackassery.

  22. Ouch John, I’ve been “smacked”!! Bring it on Babe, LOL. Actually I have to concede here, you are bang on .. now don’t let this go to your bloody head!

  23. Scott Cofer says:

    In the words of David Lee Roth:

    “Money can’t buy you happiness, but it’ll buy you a nice yacht to sail through the misery.”

    Guess that falls under the ‘lubricate your life’ category … 🙂

    Best to you,

  24. Ngoc says:

    What’s a great writing I’ve ever read, Randy. Thanks for sharing your points which help me so much on changing of mind! 🙂

  25. I’ve been the guy with the old car, and I’ve been the guy with the auto club membership. I know which I prefer, and I’d have trouble believing anyone who said differently!


  26. Eric says:

    Great read! “Money isnt everything back it ranks right up there with oxygen.” – Zig Ziglar

  27. Hi Randy;

    I gotta say I agree with you. !

    All the best

  28. Leslie Esperanza Espaillat says:

    Randy, I Love It! Great Post.
    Money can only make you more of what you already are.

    A rich happy person.
    A rich unhappy person
    A rich Spiritual person.
    A rich ungodly person.
    Well, you get the picture…

    I rather be RICH and be a happy, spiritual, who owns & plays with fabulous toys!

    I am tired of being broke. It is not FUN!

    P.S. Randy, I love your book “Why You’re Dumb, Sick and Broke… and How To Get Smart, Healthy and Rich’

  29. Melissa says:

    Randy, I love money. I love what it can provide. My awareness of prosperity likes the idea of me being a multi-millionaire.

    There is a famous story of a rabbi who every day at lunch and dinner would say, “God, Zusha (that was his name) is hungry.” His chef would immediatly come in with the food and Zusha would thank him and thank G-d. One day the chef got sick and tired of hearing the Rabbi ask G-d for food. That day at lunch he decided he will not bring in any food. Sure enough, Rabbi says, “G-d, Zusha is hungry” not a minute goes by and a townsperson runs in with a big tray of food and says, “Rabbi, Rabbi, you gave me a blessing that my wife will have children and we just found out that she is pregnant. Take this tray of food as thanks.” And the Rabbi had lunch that day.

    My point is, if one really really really believes in all of G-ds possiblities for us and really really really believes that G-d is our rich dad that wants to provide then it’s not the current car that will get us to our destination. G-d has his ways. But most people, you my dear Randy included, believe that you need to have money and do work to have the things you need. The ultimate level of prosperity is the belief that G-d always provides even when our human eyes don’t see how. The ethers are pouring out prosperity in all forms, we just have to be open to accept it. Money in the bank or under the mattress is not the end all.

    Again, if that’s prosperity to you, or to others, that’s great-it is to me too. But I do understand that their is a level above having the actual money that you never seem to talk about….

  30. Melissa says:

    OK, I wrote a whole long comment and it’s gone!!! Instead of rewriting it I will belive that the ethers are telling me to let it go. And so I will…..

  31. Melissa says:

    Ha!!!! There it is!!!!

  32. Marion the Mormon says:

    Had to laugh! Thanks for the down-to-earth/reach for the sky attitude – my first ‘visit’ – thanks for the crisp, humorous and encouraging slant on life and it’s challenges!! Keep up the good work!

  33. Randy! This was such an interesting point! I’ve never thought about is this way, but I see what you mean and I actually agree. Thank you for sharing! / Linda, Sweden

  34. WealthyRocketWoman says:

    I love your statement “money doesn’t buy unhappiness” !!

    Knowing what I want keeps me away from wasting my money…I don’t buy large quantities in an attempt to fill the void created by not satisfying my wants.

    I decide what I want then purchase the best quality of it that I can afford. More money is usually necessary to purchase the higher quality. Notice I did not say “purchase the most expensive”… many designer label items are made of flimsy materials and worksmanship. Look for quality (yeah Armani!) and be willing to pay the money for it.

    Side note: many of my former friends are ecologically conscious and have very little money. Many of them badmouthed “making a profit” or “capitalism”. At the same time, when I pointed out that organic produce costs MORE than the regular produce, that a Prius they had their eyes on costs MORE than the subcompact they are going to settle for, and the spiritual tour of Egypt they want to take costs MORE than simply staying at home… man did those people get mad! Living “lightly” on the earth and having spiritual journeys can cost MORE than going along with the masses. Money can allow one to express one’s deepest values more easily.

  35. Enrique says:

    Again everything is relative. Warren Buffett makes $1 million per hour as the richest person the world. King Abdullah bought an A-380 coverting into a flying palace. By those standards, Randy is poor even if he bought himself a Lear jet. Your jet would smaller than the owners of Google who travel on a 757 jet to Tahiti and Bora Bora.

  36. G.J. says:

    Money, if it does not bring you happiness, will at least help you to be miserable in comfort.

  37. Bernice says:

    “It’s God’s will for you to live in prosperity instead of poverty. It’s God’s will for you to pay your bills and not be in debt.” Joel Osteen

  38. Bernice says:

    “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth”(MATTHEW 5:5).
    One definition of Meek: Showing patience and humility; gentle.

    Patience is sometimes hard when everything seems to be more “instant gratification”. I did put myself through school which took patience & faith/belief that the time and work I put into going to school would be worth it.

    I believe God wants us to be prosperous (happy, healthy & wealthy). I believe he is the source of our prosperity & he will take care of our needs (we still need to choose our thoughts & actions). We need to get rid of the “lack” beliefs or “memes” like “rich people are unhappy”. And we need to have faith.

    “Money reveals who you really are.”
    I don’t agree.
    You could be happy with money or unhappy with money.
    You could be a good person with money or a bad person with money.

    I think wealth is a part of prosperity and your prosperity reveals more about you.

    “Now if you long for prosperity, you must make choices aligned with principles that are congruent with prosperity- meaning they are based on integrity and value-for-value exchange.”

    “Once you understand the critical importance of values and principles and then develop a congruent philosophy based upon them, you can then build a life of purpose, meaning and happiness.”

    quotes are from the book:
    “Why You’re Dumb, Sick and Broke… and How To Get Smart, Healthy and Rich”

  39. Daryl says:

    This is why your one of my prosperity heroes you think different even from other “Rich Folk”.

  40. Randy,
    I just love your words & there is nothing I can add to the comments that would be redundant. Well done everyone.

    Peace & Prosperity,

  41. Mike Shippey says:

    You used excellent examples of real life scenarios and summed it up brilliantly.
    How much good can you do yourself or anyone else on this earth when you are broke?
    There is no prosperity or abundance in lack.

    As far as being happy goes…that really has nothing to do with circumstance; true happiness comes from within. And a truly happy person becomes content and grateful with their life, which manifests even more ways for them to feel happy…including financially!

    Keep the good stuff coming,

  42. David says:

    Your last paragraph says it all…I love it. Keep it going!

  43. Kerri says:

    This post couldn’t be more true!! Most of our unhappiness comes when we don’t have money to do the things we want/need!! Not having money just adds unnecessary stress in our lives!

  44. Bernice says:

    I think the unhappy rich people may believe the same bad memes as the unhappy poor people… like ‘Rich people have lots of money but they also have additional problems. Being rich isn’t worth it”, “Money is bad”, etc. They didn’t let the memes stop them from getting rich but the bad memes keep them from being happy. The memes limit them.

  45. Vk says:

    My personal belief is that the amount of money one has is directly proportional to one’s belief in himself or herself. “Money is a reflection of who we are” really rings true for me.

    I do think the people who say, “I’d rather be poor than_____ (fill in the blank)” are really just giving up on themselves; they fear they will be unable to meet their real needs and, therefore, console themselves with a fabricated reason for why they are happier being poor.

    Having said that, there truly are people who are down and out, having a difficult financial time, and who really believe in themselves. Lack of money is, in many cases, a test of just how much you believe in yourself. The movie, “The Pursuit of Happyness” is a great example of what can happen when you really believe in yourself–no matter how poor you are at any given moment.

  46. Carmen says:

    Craziest shit indeed! Who can deny that earning an average wage doesn’t create money stress. When I house sitted for a few months last year and didn’t have to pay a mortgage or rent, it was amazing how much freer I felt.

  47. Penny Arcos says:

    Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

  48. jnhks says:

    No one on their death bed ever said: “You know, I wish I would have made more money.” You’ll never see a Brinks truck following a hearse.

  49. Claire McAuliffe says:

    You are right in saying that money enhances our happiness.
    Many people would have way less stress and be able to enjoy life a whole lot more, if they opened their hearts and hands to success and prosperity.
    Thanks again Randy!

  50. georgo says:

    If you are unhappy with your money or you want to get rid of id go to or

  51. taramwhite says:



  52. lecygneblanc says:

    “It’s better to be rich and healthy than poor and sick”

    When you are poor and sick your options are limited to steal, pray and hope.

    When you are rich and healthy you have unlimited good and bad options.

  53. lecygneblanc says:

    Being rich or poor has nothing to do with happiness. The proof is that there are rich unhappy people and poor happy people.

    Being a Buddhist, I believe that happiness is achieved with a good balance of our real needs, love, health, food, shelter, transportation, leisure time, family/friends, praying, generosity, etc …

    – It is difficult to appreciate and to be thankful to anything that you have in excess.

    For example, the fresh air that we breath

  54. Mwesigwa says:

    I agree with Randy. Be a man and fail to have money….u be doomed in this life. Money is a necessity and the richer u are, the more u dream n fulfill ol yo dreams…. and in my experience, money can buy almost everything except life. Who disagrees?

  55. Ken says:

    > that the amount of money one has is directly proportional to one’s belief in himself or herself.
    You really believe this ? Hey, read some history books.

  56. Ken says:

    > Money is a reflection of who we are


  57. JosieFrisicano says:

    Money makes your life easier, but it cannot buy you happiness. Happiness comes from within.

  58. omest says:

    It all depends on who you are, some will not know what to do with their money while others have no problem with investments.  Happiness is overrated and is a transient condition in this realm of existence so if you know what makes you happy, it can be purchased and it will last for a time.  Generalizations about the wealthiest people not being happy can be made but the same can be said for the poor, if you don’t know what brings you happiness, it is a an impossible goal and unobtainable at any price!

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  61. Hobo Jim says:

    It’s much better to sleep on concrete or in a cardboard box. Prosperity and wealth is unChristian and can only cause misery. Remember those streets of gold and mansions in
    the sky? Well, if you just hurry up and die you will be much happier!!!!!


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