I bargained with Life for a penny,
And Life would pay no more,
However I begged at evening
When I counted my scanty store;
For Life is a just employer,
He gives you what you ask,
But once you have set the wages,
Why, you must bear the task.
I worked for a menial’s hire,
Only to learn, dismayed,
That any wage I had asked of Life,
Life would have paid.
Jessie Belle Rittenhouse (1869–1948)
“My Wage,” The Door of Dreams,
p. 25 (1918).
I found this poem in the book Think and Grow Rich (the best book on personal development) many years ago and it left a deep impression on me.
It’s entirely up to you want you get out of life.
Want a higher salary? Earn it by creating more value for others. Then you won’t even have to ask Life for a higher wage, you’ll get it anyway.
But it’s not just about money.
Want closer relationships with your friends and family? Get clear about what you want and work towards it. You’ll get it.
Want to be the best parent for your kids? Decide that that’s what you want and how you’re going to become it. Then do it.
What wage are you asking of life?