on the finer things in life

I had a nice surprise tonight when it came to running some errands – I wouldn’t be driving my normal car.  Instead, I would be piloting my father’s car, something I enjoy quite a bit when I get the chance.  About halfway through the trip, I began thinking about something quite powerful that happens when you get a small dose of luxury – inspiration and motivation.

Driving around I couldn’t help but think that having a car with all these amenities really is worth the price tag.  While I’m used to a car that has for example, 3 settings for AC, it’s nice to have 10 settings.  Or a V8 with close to 400 horsepower instead of a 4 cylinder and less than half that.  Reading about luxury sedans in a magazine is one thing, but driving one of them is a different experience.

When some of my peers were playing video games in college, or too tired to go to class, or skipping class for no reason, I went to class and paid attention.  I wanted to get good grades to secure a job out of school and have a successful career.  There were plenty of days when I didn’t feel like going, but thinking about the doses of luxury I’ve experienced convinced me to go.

I can’t help but think that a lot of my peers might have had a different outlook if they had experienced some doses of luxury.  Restaurants, clothing, hotels, liquor – any one of them can be a powerful motivator.  Eating at a Michelin-star restaurant, wearing a cashmere sweater, staying at a boutique hotel or sipping on a nice whiskey or wine all work.  All those triggers (when experienced in small, infrequent doses) motivate you to make them a regular occurrence.

In my case, I’ll go back to 4 cylinders and a cloth interior tomorrow and it will be slightly depressing.  I’ll say goodbye to 400 horsepower, but I’ll be left better off.  Again, I will be motivated to work hard so that I can enjoy those luxuries in the future.  Until then, little doses will just have to do.

Note: Although not mentioned in the post, I think that a private flight is a luxury that most people can be motivated through.  This is a luxury that I have personally experienced, and it is quite the event.  No baggage check, no TSA, no liquid limits – flying any other way has been quite difficult since then.


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