I personally don't think too much of new years or birthdays or any other days. They don't really mean much to me. days, months, years, they are really all just the Earth rotating around the axis and revolving around the Sun... and to me, that means nothing. It's just a way humans count Time.
Oh well, but that's not what this post is about today.
How many times have we heard someone say,
"Life was easier last time. My parents had so much more opportunity, if only I was born earlier. All they had to do was buy XYZ stock, if only they had bought XYZ, if only they had invested in property, we could have been rich. It's harder now. Property is so much more expensive, stocks are so expensive, there's no opportunity for us. Yes, my parents had it easier."
Well, let's look at these comments properly. Property WAS indeed cheaper last time. So were wages. People were earning less. If you had 20/20 hindsight, sure, our parents had it easier. Same as what our kids would say. They would say WE had it easier. Our kids would be saying "If only my parents had bought Google, Apple, Berkshire."
Each generation will have their own opportunity and challenges. We all have our chances. Of course it won't be the same opportunity. Everyone would have exploited it the first round and we have to look for our own niche. It's easy to say our parents should have... when you already know property would increase in value after 30 years. And maybe 30 years later, Apple would be USD10,000 per share and our kids would say if only my parents bought some Apple. However, we are living in the NOW. We don't know what will be the next big thing. We don't KNOW Apple will be USD10,000 in 30 years time. Maybe Apple won't even exist in 30 years time.
What I'm trying to put across today is. In each generation we all have our own new opportunities and it's easy to say that the old opportunities were more lucrative since we already know the fact. Relating this to the title of my post, NOTHING has changed. Opportunities are always abound. If only we are able to recognise them when we see them. Naturally, opportunities would have changed as people would have kept doing it if it was lucrative until it fell into an equilibrium and it made no sense to do it any longer.
So stop giving excuses about the past and stop saying the old generation had it easier. They had their own challenges. They had to live through the Great Depression, they had less education, they did not have the internet, they did not have as much technology. So no. I don't think they had it easier. Humans have a tendency to get used to the problems/challenges they faced. So if your parents say the old days were easier, they are right in their own opinion. As they are used to the old situation and are not used to the new environment which you are facing. And this will happen in the next generation as you have overcome your current challenges and when you see what your kids would face in future, think back and say that the NOW is easier.
So no, I don't think many things have changed. Human nature sure hasn't. Not many can see that grass is similar everywhere and only in relation so how you view it. Similarly, the glass is half empty or half full.
Thus in the new year, I would remind myself.
Don't compare yourself with the best/richest. It might make you feel sad/inadequate.
Don't compare yourself with the worst/poor. It might make you complacent/elitist or stagnate.
Do/Try your best in all situations according to your options/opportunities you have at hand.
Some people may have more opportunities than others. That's not your fault or theirs. It just is.
You live with your own opportunities.
(Example, if you have a formal education and someone else doesn't, well, that's what the situation is. You move on and take the next step from your position and he/she will move on from his/her own position.)
There's nothing to complain or compare.
If he has enough money to retire but doesn't do so, then that is his choice.
If you don't have the money to retire but want to do so, then that is your circumstance.
Both have different options to move and different decisions to make.
Life gives you the cards.
You just make the best game out of it or try to improve to the next best position to increase your game.
Just keep moving forward.
Happy new cycle of revolution of the Earth around the Sun everyone!