Either you’re happy with very little, free of all the extra luggage,

because you have happiness inside or you don’t get anywhere!

I’m not advocating poverty. I’m advocating sobriety.

José Mujica


The sobering advice of Uruguayan president José Mujica is very difficult to embrace living in a progress driven, technology obsessed, consumer society. His words speak of a revolutionary approach to our lives that many of us will either utterly reject or most likely find it very difficult to embrace, yet there is such great wisdom and truth there.

Money can’t buy you love, but without money, love will eventually wither, wilt and die.

It is as important to love as it is to generate the means to love and to help others do the same, but that is not so common in our society.

We are very obsessed about our education and we subject ourselves to a process that may not be too healthy. It certainly produces usable pieces for growing the economy but I’m not so sure it procures any happiness for those pieces or builds any depth of character.

There are many of us that are not very happy, yet it is almost impossible to say that we have very little. We have diploma’s and graduate degrees. We live in condos and two storied modern homes. We are never without food. We have access to health care. Most importantly we have the freedom and the means of living happy lives, but we trade that in to chase and pack our luggage with all kinds of material things, gadgets, games, and social games that doesn’t get us anywhere.

Clearly, poverty is not the answer. It never has been, but neither is the pursuit of wealth or the lack of discipline to say no to the latest gadget or the latest trend.

But why not sober up? Why not be part of a sobering revolution that puts the needs and desires of people at the heart of everything. Why not act differently? Why not dream and act on things that bring life to us and to others?

Just imagine the world we could create. Imagine all the people living life in happiness?

And it’s not impossible nor that far out of reach, especially since we have to accept that the only world we know is the world we engage in and find ourselves in. That is the only world that matters. That is the only world we know. That is the only world we need.

We don’t have to solve the multitude problems that plague people on every corner of the globe, but we should and must be happy with who we are, where we are, and dream of doing what we can, and execute our lives with untethered determination.

Let’s sober up. Let’s not buy things, use things, invest in things and worry about things that don’t need to be worried about. Let us worry more about experiences than things. Let us buy things for other people and help them be who they were meant to be. Let us invest in life, the life that surrounds us and the people we can reach, because they are at our fingertips.

If you make the commitment. I will make it too. Let’s commit to be happy with who we are, dream of being who we were meant to be, and work to help others sober up, and join us in a battle that will actually take us somewhere.