“Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn’t matter to me. Going to bed at night saying we’ve done something wonderful…that’s what matters to me.”
The stoic quote above was popularized by the late Steve Jobs though it was likely originated by comedian and actor Ed Wynn who said in a 1932 interview with a journalist: “I have no ambition to be the wealthiest man in the cemetery.” (Shout out to Colonel Sanders, though, for his excellent version of the same sentiment: “There’s no reason to be the richest man in the cemetery. You can’t do any business from there.”)
Notice that this quote is NOT an indictment of wealth acquisition – indeed, Jobs himself was worth about $10 BILLION dollars at the time of his death – but instead it is a recognition that simply striving to acquire more wealth in life is probably not much of a life at all. Memento mori!
Bottom line: Focus on your purpose…derive meaning in your life from that purpose…go out and share that purpose with rest of the world and maybe – JUST MAYBE – you may make a few dollars (or perhaps a few BILLION dollars) doing it!