Making Meaningful Money

By Jessica Cardenas

When I completed grad school I had a clear vision in my mind of what my future would look like. I earned a master’s degree that I hoped would open opportunities for me to earn more than enough money to travel the world, raise a family, and fund a very comfortable retirement. However, that was far from the truth once I entered the workforce. Like many recent grads, I accepted job offers out of necessity. One of the downfalls with that decision was struggling to get to work because I felt a deep anxiety going to a job I didn’t necessarily like, but paid me enough to support the lifestyle I wanted.

When I would speak to others about their jobs and how they earn a living, I heard a common theme threaded through our discussions. That is, most people are not happy with their jobs. According to Forbes, “work is more often a source of frustration than one of fulfillment for nearly 90% of the world’s workers.” That is an outstanding portion of the world’s population who is working a job for the sake of a paycheck without a deep engagement to their work.

What if we could approach making money differently? What if we shifted our focus from “making a good living” to making meaningful money. That is exactly what a woman named Jillian Anderson is proposing to the world. She challenges us to create abundance and wealth in our lives all while doing something we truly enjoy or care about.

The thought of earning a substantial income in exchange for my ideas or services seemed far out of reach. As I began to reflect on the topic, I felt a tug of war within myself. A part of me yearns to fulfill an almost palpable desire to help others in direct ways (such as teaching yoga), while the other part of me wants the safety and security of a steady, consistent income. The question reverberated for me: how can we begin to make meaningful money in our lives?

One way to make meaningful money is to cultivate an experience for others to relish in. A great example of what could is a workshop. For instance, Kendra from @paintedcannabis curates workshops in Los Angeles where medicinal marijuana patients can learn to paint with watercolors and medicate while doing so.

Another option is to provide a service for others. In my case, I provide yoga lessons. Both in private one on one settings and with larger groups. It allows for me to do two things that I love, teach and hold space for others to feel whatever it is they are feeling.

Making meaningful money can take countless forms. It brings the power back to you. You get to build your version of abundance and wealth. It may not look like a traditional living, but by putting ourselves in bold spaces to use our creative powers and share our gifts with other humans we will generate momentum towards a life of freedom that allows us to stop chasing a salary and start making money in line with our passions and interests.