For most of my life I've worked under the assumption that money buys happiness. It didn't matter how many times I heard critics preach to the contrary, it seemed simple: money will allow me to buy the things that make me happy. Over the last three years my perspective has shifted.
One day I sat down and made a list of all of the things I wanted to do in my life. I realized I'd never put much thought into it, so I wanted to see what would come out. Some of the things — like “Compose a spectacular HDR photo” — were pretty simple. Others items — such as staying at the Burj al Arab Hotel in Dubai — were going to be a bit of a challenge. Then there were a few that were downright impossible (go on a Virgin Galactic space flight, for instance).
When I created this list, I had a solid job as a financial analyst. I was making good money. I'd written these things out, but didn't really plan to cross many off anytime in the near future, simply because I didn't have the time. After all, it was probably going to take more than my two weeks of vacation to prepare for my Galactic space flight.