What Wealth, Riches and Success Really Mean

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By Goke Ilesanmi


I was invited somewhere as a corporate emcee. At the end of the event, a man beckoned at me. After pouring praises on me for my unique competence, he said I should not have ridiculed one of the guests, a professor, by saying he was “rich” when “everybody knows he is not”. I corrected him that I had not used the word in a vague way but said the professor “is intellectually rich”. He was still looking at me as if to question that usage.


I asked if he had heard the expression “The food is rich in protein” before, and he answered “Yes”. I equally asked if he had heard the expression “The man has a wealth of experience” before, and he also answered the same way. He then admitted that I was right and kept quiet. What do you think would have happened if he were a translator and the man I was introducing brought him there? He could have told the guest that I was trying to ridicule him (the guest) and caused confusion there.


Tragic Ignorance


As a result of lack of knowledge, many people commit suicide daily, because they think they are not yet wealthy, rich or successful. For instance, success means different things to different people. To some people, success implies money and to others, it is power. If your goal in life is to become very educated, then you use that parameter to assess the level of achievement of your own wealth, riches or success. Do not use the parameter of somebody that has set the goal of financial success, wealth or riches for him- or herself.


Personal Experience


When I was in O’ Level, the goal I set for myself was (and is) knowledge wealth, which can also easily lead to financial wealth because people are willing to pay for knowledge. I particularly wanted (and still want) to become a great communicator and an English language expert. I started then by reading books one to five of “Practical English” by P.A. Ogundipe and P.S. Tregidgo (used before JSS/SSS school system). I also read books one to five of “Effective English” by Michael Montgomery. I read some dictionaries and many grammar books several times.


When I left polytechnic lecturing for journalism many years ago, I started running a book review column to keep my goal in focus. (I run the column every Wednesday in this paper now.) The result is that I have reviewed about 1,000 books on management, leadership, motivation, business communication, marketing/selling, human resource management, career management, stock investing, etc., till date.


I am not saying I do not want to make money. What I am simply saying is that I cannot become hypertensive because of desperation for it because my life goal is to get knowledge wealth covering different areas. So I should be able to gauge my success or wealth level through the volume of knowledge I have acquired (to get financial freedom).


When you know the success principles that govern the entire universe, what they are, what they mean to your life and how to deploy them for maximum results, you will definitely achieve success and its accompaniments such as good health, happiness, wealth, etc.


Real definition


Wealth is not just money, though money is the appearance of wealth. Robert Tilton, author of the masterpiece, “The Power to Create Wealth” says true wealth is not material possessions, but knowledge and wisdom. Napoleon Hill, author of “The Master Key to Riches” and “Think and Grow Rich” corroborates this assertion by saying when we talk of riches, we have all riches in mind, not just the riches represented by bank balances and material things alone. Hill reflects that there are riches of liberty and freedom; riches of human relationships, etc.




The fact must be stressed that any man can pursue the type of riches he likes, more so that it has been established that material riches are not the automatic guarantee of happiness. Two things are central to you’re getting financially wealthy, and these are faith and generosity. According Tilton, “Your income grows in direct correlation to your giving. God desires that you take a bold step in your walk of faith, believing He will sustain you.” Tilton reflects that it is the amount of faith you release when you act upon a spiritual revelation that determines your harvest in the natural.


Jim Rohn, America’s foremost business philosopher and author of 7 Strategies for Wealth & Happiness educates that wealth is a controversial word because it brings to mind a wide variety of images and sometimes conflicting concepts. In Rohn’s words, “After all, each of us views wealth from a different perspective. To one person, wealth may mean having enough money to do whatever he or she wishes. To another, it may mean freedom from debt – freedom from the constant claim of obligation. To yet another, it may mean the opportunity to grow and to achieve.”


Exploiting an idea


To succeed, or become rich or wealthy, you need to act on a positive idea. Research shows that thousands of ideas run through the human mind daily, and all you need to do is to capture one good and God-endorsed one and act on it. Ideas are like seeds, which need to be sown and watered to bear fruits.


To become wealthy or rich, you need to unlock the fountain of prosperity inside you. You do not have to make a choice between wealth and happiness as the two spring from the same fountain of abundance. Rohn says, for you to be able to realise your aspiration for enduring success and happiness, you need to unleash the power of goals; seek knowledge; learn the miracle of personal development; control your finances; master time; surround yourself with winners; and learn the art of living well.


Master key


To be rich or wealthy, you also need to have the master key usually given by God. The master key to riches is a marvellous mechanism that can be used to unlock the door to an exciting new world. And the riches of life that can be unlocked with the key are a positive mental attitude; sound physical health; harmony in human relationships; freedom from fear and the hope of achievements. Others are the capacity for faith; willingness to share one’s blessings; love; an open mind on all subjects; self-discipline; the capacity to understand people; and economic security.


Final Note


You are already successful, wealthy and rich. It is not all about money. Avoid unnecessary pressure on your life today and be happy with what you have, while pursuing what you also need. It is not so hard to learn the art of self-contentment.


GOKE ILESANMI, Editor-in-Chief/CEO of https://www.gokeilesanmi.com.ng and Managing Consultant/CEO of Gokmar Communication Consulting, is a Certified Public Speaker/Emcee, (Business) Communication Specialist, Motivational Speaker, Career Management Coach, Renowned Book Reviewer, Corporate Leadership Expert and Editorial Consultant.

Tel: +234(0)8056030424; +234(0)8187499425

Email: info@gokeilesanmi.com.ng; gokeiles2010@gmail.com

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