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The term being “rich” is always associated with material means. You either have it or you’re striving to be it. However, many people don’t truly understand or appreciate what it’s like to be rich in other ways. This pandemic that we are currently in has thrown everybody in the world for a loop. It has caused chaos and made tragedy seem like another Tuesday. Although the pandemic is something to acknowledge, that is not what I’m going to talk about. I’m talking about being rich in the fact that many have roofs over their heads, delicious food to eat, or company that they enjoy. These are some of the ways in which we can be rich in the way that it counts.

woman outside wearing scarf
Photo by Oleg Magni from Pexels

The thought occurred to me after I had casually mentioned this to a friend. She had just moved into a new house that her parents had relentlessly worked on. The house was beautiful. The amount of admiration and awe I had for her parents’ dedication towards the house was unmatched. I explained to her my feelings and proceeded to say that she was rich. This came with a moment of hesitation and a quick rebuttal that she was nowhere near being rich. She missed my point, as many people do. We connect this term with celebrities like the Kardashians or the Biebers because of their financial stability. Why do we though? Why aren’t we conditioned to enjoy the small things in life? There is a simple answer to all of this and that is because we live in a capitalistic world. Money is what helps the world go around but it doesn’t make any of us happier. I would argue that money can even make a person more miserable. So how do we escape these economic woes?

Patrick Spongebob Money

First, we need to start taking a deep breath and appreciating that we are beings who are alive and hopefully well. Doing this breathing can help rewire your brain and allow for it to stop its constant motion. Next, if you have time, either look for or write down three things that you are thankful for in that current moment. It could be as plain as the tree outside your bedroom window that has finally transitioned and changed its colors. I know that’s something that I am thankful for. I appreciate the stability of New England’s fall weather in a time like this. I understand that it can be difficult for anyone, myself included, to find small positives throughout this year of craziness and sadness. It’s alright to let yourself feel these emotions because you are entitled to feel however you want to. Although, I do not encourage dwelling on these depressive thoughts because you often miss the good. The key to being rich in the way that it counts is being aware of what you have. I’m rich because I have a great family who I love. I’m rich because I am allowed to attend college and make that my main focus. I’m rich, so how are you? 

Amala Diamond

U Mass Amherst '23

Amala Diamond is a sophomore at UMass Amherst who writes and photographs for HerCampus. Her passions are social justice, woman's empowerment, and advocating for mental health. Her goals are to encourage and continue these difficult conversations and familiarize political issues with a younger audience.
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