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Poverty Doesn’t Make You Poor But Poverty of Your Aspirations


Poverty Doesn’t Make You Poor But Poverty of Your Aspirations


lack of aspiration

You’ve all heard rags to riches stories haven’t you? If you haven’t read any then surely your parents have, many a times, inadvertently mentioned stories of people who have won certain distinguishments or awards. Something which has made them stand out from the others. Some of these are pure luck but many of them have worked incredibly hard to achieve a dream[1]. They are the people who have aspired and have had the courage to follow through with those aspirations. They may be rich, poor, black, white, good or bad but they have gotten where they are because they pushed through against all odds.Another important thing is apparent when one starts following such stories. Most of the people who have aspired and achieved these goals[2] have been dealt a raw hand in life. Their successes have a stark contrast to the lives they led in their past. Poverty is one of these very conditions. It gives a man the will to fight and the tolerance to survive. The courage to be bold and the patience to forgive and to move on in life.


Poverty is a State of Mind

If poverty was classified as a state of having insufficient income then what is supposed to be a sufficient level of income[3] is an arguable concept. Much more than an economic notion, poverty is fundamentally a relative mental construct of the mind[4]. A mental trap of sorts which stems from the inability to articulate a clarity of purpose in life due to circumstances beyond our control. In such a mental state one requires not only the will to succeed but also the will to do whatever it takes to succeed.

Inspiration sparks aspiration and this aspiration becomes a fire that burns within a person that fuels his life and his goals.

But the hardest step for a poor man is to find a source of inspiration as the majority of his time goes to sustain his survival.

Compare this to the lifestyle of the average person. The average Joe has a fixed routine, a set of predefined goals and a perpetual certainty in his life. There is a continuum in which the average person exists and dies and rarely does he move out of this state of mind. Life seems comfortable and once we settle for a certain comfort level we find ourselves content, uninspired people. The average person is intellectually unstimulated and does not feel the need to attain any substantial achievement in their lifespan and often you will hear people talking about how they will provide their children with everything they need so that they may be successful in life. They cannot be further from the truth. To provide for a child is one thing but to make their lives overtly comfortable creates a sense of entitlement in them leading to chaos and confusion when they are suddenly pushed into the real world. They are in short, setting their children up for a lifetime of misery and poverty. The parents themselves will try to strike a balance to maintain themselves at a good economic stature but their wealth is as volative as their half-hearted aspirations.

The Need for Aspirations

Picture a train on railway track and compare that to the life of any person. Someone who believes in fate also assumes that no matter what happens his train will stay on the same that that was intended for them. Then there are those types of people who believe that can add new track to their lives, get rid of the old one, skip a few stations or stop at a few stations they weren’t supposed to. They believe that they decide their destinations and how long they want their journey to be.

If there is anything that we can learn from life is that there is no free lunch. If you want something then reach out and grab it.

Aspiring and perspiring to achieve will bring achievement. Hoping and praying to achieve is a gamble that might work but in all likelihood it will not.

The Rags to Riches story screams of this very phenomenon. Poverty is nothing but another barrier on the path to success; A barrier behind which most people seem to take shelter and find comfort in blaming their situation instead of their inactions. There is a valid and understandable conclusion to this phenomenon which explains why such mass behavior is good for those who are aspirers. If each and every person was equally inspired then they would all be intellectually and physiologically more determined to aspire in life which would then raise the bar higher and the biggest aspirants will have to strive even more than they do today. Just like our standards of wealth, power and happiness are relative standards which are determined by the Aspirations of those at the top of the food chain, poverty and success are also relative and subjective standards. One cannot however remove himself from the shackles of poverty without the presence of the will to aspire.

I believe that no one is born poor. But if you think you are poor, the very moment will make you one. Stay happy in the toughest times of your life. If you don’t know how to be then read these 11 Blissful Reasons to be Happy Even if Things Aren’t Perfect.


[1] Raul Coimbra,Gustavo Pereira Fraga, and Sizenando Vieira Starling. World Trauma Congress: when dreams come true. World J Emerg Surg. 2012; 7(Suppl 1): S1. Published online 2012 August 22. doi: 10.1186/1749-7922-7-S1-S1.

[2] PATRICK W. CORRIGAN, JONATHON E. LARSON, and NICOLAS RÜSCH. Self-stigma and the “why try” effect: impact on life goals and evidence-based practices. World Psychiatry. 2009 June; 8(2): 75–81.

[3] K Alaimo, C M Olson, E A Frongillo, Jr, and R R Briefel. Food insufficiency, family income, and health in US preschool and school-aged children. Am J Public Health. 2001 May; 91(5): 781–786.

[4] Office of the Surgeon General (US); Center for Mental Health Services (US); National Institute of Mental Health (US). Mental Health: Culture, Race, and Ethnicity: A Supplement to Mental Health: A Report of the Surgeon General. 2001 Aug.

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