Money won’t create success, the freedom to make it will.

What's the meaning of this quote?

Quote Meaning: This quote emphasizes the importance of having the liberty to create wealth, rather than the mere possession of money itself. It suggests that success is not solely determined by financial wealth, but rather by the opportunities and freedom one has to pursue their goals and passions. Money, in this context, is merely a tool that can enable one's ambitions, but it is not the sole determinant of success. The ability to think creatively, take risks, and seize opportunities is what ultimately leads to prosperity and fulfillment. This quote serves as a reminder that it is essential to prioritize the cultivation of an environment that fosters individual freedom and empowers people to unlock their potential, as this is the true driver of success.

Who said the quote?

The quote "Money won't create success, the freedom to make it will." was said by Nelson Mandela (Bio / Quotes). Nelson Mandela was a revolutionary and iconic figure who dedicated his life to the fight against apartheid in South Africa.

Free Resource: A step-by-step blueprint to realize your dreams

Applying the quote to your life

Unlock Mandela's wisdom and apply it to your life by getting the in-depth Nelson Mandela Workbook & Study Guide, complete with Mandela's top quotes, insightful commentary, reflective questions, and practical uses for everyday life. 👇

Is there a historical example that illustrates the message of the quote?

In the late 20th century, a confluence of factors, including proximity to leading research universities, a culture of innovation, and a regulatory environment that fostered entrepreneurship, gave birth to what would become the world's foremost hub of technological innovation.

At its core, the story of Silicon Valley is one of individuals granted the freedom to pursue their entrepreneurial ambitions without undue bureaucratic constraint. Visionaries like Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, and countless others were not necessarily motivated solely by the pursuit of wealth, but by the freedom to bring their ideas to fruition and make a meaningful impact on the world.

Consider the example of Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, who famously founded Apple Computer in a garage in the heart of Silicon Valley. In the early days, they weren't driven by financial gain but rather by a shared vision of democratizing computing power and making it accessible to the masses. It was their freedom to innovate, unencumbered by excessive regulation or stifling corporate structures, that allowed them to transform an industry and amass immense wealth in the process.

Moreover, Silicon Valley's ecosystem encouraged risk-taking and iteration, recognizing that failure was often an inevitable part of the innovation process. This culture of embracing failure as a stepping stone to success enabled countless entrepreneurs to persevere in the face of adversity and ultimately achieve remarkable feats.

Thus, the story of Silicon Valley serves as a compelling illustration of the profound truth that success is not merely a product of monetary wealth, but rather the freedom to pursue one's aspirations and make a meaningful impact on the world.

How can the quote be applied in a real-life scenario?

In real-life scenarios, it's evident in various contexts:

1. Entrepreneurship: Many successful entrepreneurs emphasize the importance of freedom in creating wealth and achieving success. Starting a business isn't just about making money; it's about having the freedom to innovate, create, and pursue your passion. Entrepreneurs often sacrifice immediate financial security for the opportunity to build something meaningful and impactful.

Free Resource: Over 1000 smart goal ideas to inspire your life

2. Career Choices: Individuals often face the decision between pursuing a high-paying job that offers financial stability versus following their dreams and passions. While a lucrative salary may provide temporary comfort, true fulfillment comes from having the freedom to choose a career path aligned with one's values and interests. Success in this context is measured not just by monetary wealth but by personal satisfaction and growth.

3. Education and Learning: The pursuit of knowledge and education is another realm where this quote resonates. Education isn't just about acquiring degrees or certifications; it's about gaining the freedom to explore new ideas, challenge existing norms, and ultimately, create opportunities for personal and societal advancement. Success in education isn't solely determined by financial gain but by the freedom to learn and apply knowledge in meaningful ways.

4. Personal Development: On a more personal level, true success often involves self-discovery and growth. It's about having the freedom to pursue personal passions, cultivate meaningful relationships, and prioritize well-being over material wealth. This might involve stepping away from societal expectations and forging your own path, guided by intrinsic motivations rather than external rewards.

In each of these scenarios, the quote underscores the importance of freedom—the freedom to take risks, the freedom to fail, and ultimately, the freedom to define and pursue success on one's own terms. It highlights that while money may facilitate certain opportunities, it's the freedom to create, explore, and contribute meaningfully to the world that ultimately leads to lasting fulfillment and success.

Reading is Smart. Applying is Smarter:  Apply

Chief Editor

Tal Gur is an author, founder, and impact-driven entrepreneur at heart. After trading his daily grind for a life of his own daring design, he spent a decade pursuing 100 major life goals around the globe. His journey and most recent book, The Art of Fully Living, has led him to found Elevate Society.

Actualize Your Potential
Get my simplified process for realizing dreams (The exact process that enabled me to achieve 100 life goals in 10 years)
Access my Start With WHY workbook for free, designed to guide you toward your purpose and the person you are meant to become
Align With Your Why
Elevate In Your Inbox
Get actionable insights, best practices, and wisdom you can apply — No hype, No fluff. Just practical ideas that might change your life.

Read The Art of Fully Living

There's no going back-once you embark on the journey you're meant to live, it's impossible to settle for anything less than your dreams.

Click here to learn more

Set Better Goals

Learn a better and smarter approach to setting and achieving goals. It's not just about what you want to achieve, but who you must become in the process.

Click here to learn more
Take The Free Test
Discover your areas for growth in just 5 minutes. Take the FREE self-evaluation test and pinpoint where to focus your efforts

Uplevel Your Game

Explore The Roadmaps

Access a self-paced online roadmap that turns big goals into realities, complete with daily study guides, actionable steps, and proven practices from the world's best minds
Reclaim your freedom, escape 9-5, and live the life you were meant to live — A self-paced roadmap with daily study guides, actionable steps, and proven practices
Join The Accelerator
Join a 10-week, personalized immersion that will accelerate your goal-attainment, elevate you to your next level, and turn your big dreams into reality.
Learn More
Thanks for reading. It makes a difference. A portion of all proceeds from our endeavors supports entrepreneurs in the developing world. View Impact...