“Hey Everybody!” by 5 Seconds of Summer – Have you heard this song yet? When I first heard it on the radio, I wasn’t quite sure where they were going with it. Luckily, the actual music video gives a little more to go on. It’s the usual story: they’re broke so they dream about living in a gigantic mansion and literally raking up their money. Here’s where I stand on this message:
- “We can’t afford to give up. We gotta make our own luck.” – Sing it brothas! If you don’t like the way something is going, change it! Nothing is going to fall into your lap. You need to make it happen.
- “Gotta live it up today… we can all get some, we can all get paid.” – I’m giving them the benefit of the doubt here that “living it up today” means hustling to get paid. If in fact, it means live it up today and wait for something to fall into your lap that equals money… then move it on down to the next section.
- Credit cards maxed out, can’t afford a dollar for the bus, insufficient funds for rent – “we’ve all been there before” – These are real problems that a lot of people face. I’m not discounting that. But treating these things like they’re common and okay is not going to help. Sure, “It’s not the end of the world” as they say, but these are real financial problems to solve. It’s going to take a long time to move from maxing out credit cards and not being able to pay rent to raking up money in our mansion. And on that note…
- Raking up money, playing segway croquet, and having a butler throw money at you – These are not real dreams. It reminds me of the line in Tangled (3 kids, remember?!) where Flynn Rider sings that his dream takes place “somewhere warm and sunny, on an island that I own, tanned and rested and alone, surrounded by enormous piles of money.” He’s later told by one of the thugs: “your dream stinks!”
Okay, my main issue with this music video is a complete lack of future self-awareness. Everyone wants to be rich. I want to be rich, too. I promise, I do. But this whole music video shows them doing ridiculous things with their money and then ends with them becoming CEOs and small business owners. Dreaming about swimming in cash does not lead to becoming a CEO. The problem is that people have a terrible idea of what having a lot of money can mean. Because they don’t have that much money now, they imagine that if they had a bunch of money, all of a sudden, they would be different people. They would want completely different things. If playing segway croquet is one of your lifetime goals, great! Write it down. Take a picture. Stick it on your wall. And work toward that. But make sure that is your concrete goal. Do not assume that dreaming in abstract ideas of cash will get you anywhere. Most rich people probably do not see that amount of cash at one time in their lives. And they probably don’t rake it up or have butlers throw it at them.
Rich you will still be you. What would you do today with $1000? How about $1,000,000. What if you had to earn that money? Would the answers be the same? You will not make it to that future if that future is vague. It won’t be motivating enough. Figure out what you want more than anything. What would your life REALLY look like if money was not a factor? Separate that idea from actual money. Sure, money will get you there. It will be a tool, but it won’t be the end goal. Get over the idea of cash. Cash certainly won’t get you there. And if you want to live the REAL life you want to lead, swimming in cash probably won’t be a part of it (for longer than half a day if that’s still one of your actual goals).
So, the song is right when it says “Hey, Everybody! We don’t have to live this way.” Decide today what you want your life to be like instead. In real, tangible terms. And figure out what it would take to get you there.
What are your tangible goals for the future? Is playing with cash a part of those goals?