Independently Wealthy

“A man in a suit jacket tying his tie” by Andrew Worley on Unsplash

I was reading an interview with Irish poet/philosopher/overall badass, David Whyte. The interviewer asked him what people’s reactions are when they ask him what he does. Here’s what he said…

I either say matter of factly, “I’m a poet.” I know that will always lead on, so sometimes I just say, “Oh, I’m independently wealthy.” Which is actually how I feel. That has another kind of accuracy.

I just love that.

“I’m independently wealthy.”


This is why Whyte is so insanely creative. Because he carries this consciousness throughout his work and his life.

We’re not talking about dolla-dolla bills here. I’ve known monetarily rich people who live like prisoners. What we’re talking about here is creative freedom.

Creative freedom doesn’t happen when you’re trying to win someone over or gain their approval.

What if you could carry this knowingness with you? How would your life be different? How would your work be different?

Maybe you’d write what you really want to write.

Maybe you’d laugh off those nascent worries.

Maybe you wouldn’t base your entire body of work on that one angry email you got from an anonymous reader.

Maybe you wouldn’t feel the need to pander to them.

Maybe you’d be freer in your word choice without feeling the need to over-explain.

Maybe you’d be more clear and direct.

Maybe you’d just say the damn thing.

Maybe you’d loosen up a bit.

Maybe your inner wealth would reflect the innate inner wealth of others.

Maybe others would really dig that. (Even though, they very well may not — but it doesn’t matter because you’re independently wealthy, remember?)

I know I would.