The real meaning of being ‘rich’

The Ganges River is believed to be one of the holiest rivers in the world with the power to cleanse one’s impurities and past karma.

Sometimes, I wonder why we wait so long to do the things we really want to do.

We say we don’t have the time or the resources or we simply wait too long on something on that beloved bucket list until that window of opportunity might close on us, and the dreams that came with it.

I’ve been trying to get myself into the positive habit of not putting things off. This was all part of the grand decision to start living life by my own rules with the first rule being, you have to really live, or it will just pass you by.

We need to make our aspirations, and long cherished goals a top priority because life is short. If you cannot achieve the bigger goals right now, then set some smaller ones to work toward to give you something to look forward to in the short- to mid-term.

It’s important to create little adventures in your life to keep things fresh and exciting so that you also have a bit of variety to break up your daily routine.

For example, you don’t necessarily need to travel so far just to make this happen. Just driving to a new restaurant you have never been to before can feel like a mini adventure.

I often do road trips with friends to different waterfalls within Malaysia, which makes me feel like I’m on holiday, in my own backyard.

There could be so many hidden gems we’re not aware of because we simply never explored them, some of which may only be a short drive away.

Time, health, happiness

I was just watching an inspiring video on YouTube by author and motivational speaker Robin Sharma about what it means to be rich, and he was pointing out that being rich was not just about making material wealth because one can be rich in time, health or happiness.

In fact, several of his clients are successful millionaires, even billionaires but they have such pressure cooker schedules, that they lack peace of mind and the ability to really enjoy their lives, or be present in the moment, which makes them actually very “poor”.

Jojo Struys in Rishikesh, India when she was studying yoga a few years ago.

In line with my belief that you need to slow down in order to speed up, even if it means taking a break somewhere just to recharge your batteries, I decided to return to Rishikesh, in India a few years ago, to remind myself of the lessons I had learnt when I was last there, studying yoga.

That last little break did me wonders. While sipping my ginger tea in a quiet café surrounded by the Himalayan mountains, I felt “rich” being able to listen to the eternal flow of that age-old Ganges River the locals refer to as “Mother Ganga” and I was hit by waves of nostalgia at the sight of this sacred river, believed to possess mystical and even curative properties.

I had dunked my body multiple times into her freezing waters when I was a student in winter in the hope, (like millions before me across the ages), of cleansing myself, body, mind and soul.

It was believed this was one of the holiest rivers in the world with the power to cleanse you of your impurities and past karma so that you can wipe the slate clean.

So, some years ago, I had bathed in this river and it made me wonder if the stories you hear were true because I felt like I had become a different person on so many levels.

I had begun living my life in ways that provided me more freedom and more time, even if it meant turning away opportunities that would trap me or enslave me again with a very poor work-life balance.

I felt more fearless about chasing my life’s goals and priorities, which were in line with my true passions. I did not want to waste any precious life moments.

There’s something truly exciting about that feeling of growth and expansion.

Perhaps, you can start by creating and designing your next adventure, from wherever you are.

It doesn’t have to be big but do something that will make you feel inspired and proud of yourself that you at least tried to do something completely different for a change.

The more of these mini adventures I go on, the more “rich” I feel, and incredibly grateful to be alive.

Jojo Struys is a regional TV host, speaker and wellness personality. She is also the founder of OhanaJo Studio, Malaysia’s largest yoga and sound healing space.