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Taxi Drivers and the meaning of life.

line Taxi Drivers and the meaning of life.

I think if we are seeking the meaning of life, the best person to ask are taxi drivers. They are able to draw from their wisdom from their life as well as the combined wisdom and experiences of all their passengers.

Today, the first driver I encountered managed to put 3 daughters through uni and had a young son who married due to shotgun at 21. He talk about how the path to adulthood for each of his children and and about how they eventually found meaning in life. He now lives in the same flat as his second daughter, and treasures every dinner they have as a family. While driving, his wife called and they were arranging where to meet for lunch. He said, money couldn’t buy this warmth, this happiness. Money diverts your attention from that. We carried on chatting on his cab even after he stopped his meter and I paid him. When I alight, we shook hands.

The second driver lives in a humble 3-room flat in jurong west. He taught me about contentment  He gave me general advice on how some of his relatives build their careers. He also taught me that nothing makes him happier than returning home and being with his family.

Together they guided me with what I had been struggling with. As I turn 25 today and am about to graduate in 3 months, I couldn’t figure what my pursue should be. What kind of life should I lead?
Should I try to increase my personal wealth? Should I carefully plan my career progression across different industries? Should I risk it all and carry on with my startup and impose a financial strain on everyone around me? Should I just find work that pays decently, be contended with what I have, get married quickly and start a family?

I’ve always thought that we should do the best we can. Achieve. Accomplish something. Make an impact on this world. Revolutionalize the world even. But recently, I’ve been pondering: Would it really make me happy? Would I be happy putting in that amount of hard work for the sake of some accomplishment later? If I try to achieve, when would enough ever be enough?

The thing with most people with wealth, is that there’s never enough. Should I allow myself to degrade into such a person? Yes, with more money I can buy better things. But think about it, how much additional utility would I reallyderive if I buy a Prada wallet over a Braun Buffel one? I think that the opportunity cost of trying to earn enough to afford a luxurious lifestyle is too high. I think that I would be happier working with less stress and spending time outside work with my loved ones, or doing things I love, such as listening to music, playing R/C, etc.

I want to break free of this endless pursue. I think I have got the foundation of my academic creditation dialed right. I’ve opened up endless possibilities for myself for what remains of my brief time on Earth. Should I continue to defer my happiness by trying to constantly achieve more and more, or should i just live in the moment, live happily, live contended, and exit the world knowing that I’ve smiled for a huge duration of time?

To my peers, please know that I think slavery still exists in society. If money dictates your career choice, if it dictates what you are going to do from when you are 26 to 60, then you are a slave, and money is your master. This is the prime of your life. Don’t waste it working for money.

Without knowing it, I’ve spent 25 years of my life trying to achieve. From a young child with learning disabilities to a university graduate with all kinds of career door open.

Now, to not have stress in my mind. To enjoy every moment in my life. To enjoy what companionship with my parents and sibling and future wife has to offer.

That’s the best life.