TL;DR: I came across a really interesting website that quickly tells you how wealthy you truly are, compared to everyone else in world. If you're looking for a quantitative way to figure out some things to be thankful for this Thanksgiving, it will give you the answer fast.
How wealthy and successful are you?
If you hesitate in answering that question, I have some good news. The mere fact that you're able to read this article tells me you're probably among the most well-off people in the world.
This week, Americans will celebrate Thanksgiving, and if you're looking for a fast way to find something great to be thankful for, I've got just the thing. It's a website called the Global Rich List, and it takes about 15 seconds. Input your annual income, or your estimated net worth, and it will quickly show you where you rank among all people in the world in terms of wealth.
No surprise, if you live in the U.S. or another developed country--and if you have access to electricity, the Internet, and are able to read English--you're going to find find that you're among the world's wealthiest people. You'll also gain a lot of perspective.
A few examples:
- A Texan who takes home $75,000 a year (after taxes) would be in the top 0.11 percent richest people in the world, according to the site, and would be ranked the number #6,645,709 richest person on earth by income.
- A New Yorker bringing home $600,000 in post-tax income--which is a lot of money, but if you live in this part of the country you certainly know some people who do it--would rank within the top 1 million richest people in the world (936,208, to be exact). That's also enough to put him or her in the top 0.02 percent of income earners.
- A Florida retiree with $500,000 in home equity and another $500,000 in investments would be in the top 0.65 percent worldwide--ranked about 29,430,000 out of the 7.6 billion people on the planet based on assets.
The site was put together by a creative agency in London called Poke, and it uses data from the World Bank and from a 2012 Credit Suisse study to compare the data you input with the world figures. (By the way, just in case my mom reads this, I heard about the site in church.)
While the numbers you'll get are a bit sobering, I don't think the point here is to make anyone feel guilty about working to earn a comfortable living or build wealth. We all need money to live. And, of course, in the United States we have some of the highest costs of living in the world to go along some of the highest levels of wealth.
Beyond that, we're all human beings, and we have human feelings--and they're not always flattering.
I'm certainly as prone as anyone else to being worried that I'm not making enough of an impact sometimes. I sometimes feel envy, hard as it is to admit, when I see some other people's success. Spend a decade interviewing and writing about hugely successful entrepreneurs, as I've done, and it's hard not to get caught up in an internal comparison game sometime.
But then you step back and realize that by making what passes for a normal salary, or having accumulated a comfortable if not particularly remarkable amount of wealth in this country, you're actually among the most fortunate, wealthy people in the world.
In my case at least, I found it gave me not only a sense of gratitude and perspective, but made me feel peaceful and content.
So I encourage you to take 15 seconds and check it out. You don't have to share your data with anyone, and you don't need to do anything differently. But I do think you'll realize you have at least one more thing to be thankful for this Thanksgiving.
If you're willing, input your data into the calculator, and let us know the results in the comments.