.. You seem to feel the (hearsay) income level of 300k is the minimum you need to feel good about yourself. In that case, your worry and negative self-assessment about income is misaligned with reality.
A bit of real statistics to chew on – rank all countries by GDP per-capita. Most of the top 10 richest countries have population below 9 million including Switzerland and most of the Northern Europe countries.
Q: How many countries are richer than U.S. *and* with a population above 20 million?
Answer: zero. Japan, Germany, UK, France, … are all less rich than the U.S. Now, I believe you don’t want to compare with developing countries like China, Korean, Taiwan, India, let’s first focus on rich countries —
- I believe half the American families earn less than 60k combined income, so do you think half the American families are struggling to survive every day?
- I would estimate (based on my knowledge) more than half the *families* across the rich countries earn less than USD 60k, but you are implying that a single income of 300k is the minimum you need?
- USD 300k single income would put you in the top 2% in any rich country, but you feel that’s the minimum you need?
- USD 300k is higher than at least half the doctors’ and lawyers’ income across the rich countries, so you seem to say most doctors and lawyers are struggling to survive based on their income
- My wife’s income is about SGD 30k. A regular teacher’s salary in Singapore is about SGD 50k. Singapore is, by most rankings, more affluent than the U.S. and teachers are a large, white-collar workforce. By your standard, even a 500% increase in a Singapore teacher’s income would still be too low for you.
- In one of the most expensive cities of our world – London, a USD 300k salary would be top 2%. I know from many sources that London finance IT salary is lower than New York. A 700-pound daily contract rate is “extremely rare” (unheard of to many people) but it works to be only USD 230k, but you would think that’s not enough to survive. Mind you, London is more expensive than New York.
- Some would say London is still cheaper than … Hongkong. A UBS VP position I tried was at HKD 1.2 million, about half your minimum standard.
- I have friends in Shanghai and Beijing – the most expensive Chinese cities (along with Shenzhen). A 300k USD salary would be one in 500 jobs over there, but you think it’s barely enough for you. They would guess you live in a city where home price is 10 times higher than Shanghai/Beijing but in reality, your home is more affordable — A comparable apartment (not a 2-storey house with backyard) in Beijing/Shanghai would cost at least USD 1.5 million.
You are living in an ivory tower (and refusing to step out to the real world) if you hold on to that irrational and negative view. You sound like a guy complaining about his 10-room, 3-story mansion. It’s not depression but hallucination.
If you carry this habit into parenting, then beware — your kids could be top of their class but you may still feel they are not good enough because they didn’t win a gold medal. Would be tragic. I think Chinese parents are demanding but most are not at that level. We love our kids and accept them. We ought to love and accept ourselves.
I recommend [[compassion and self-hate]] by Theodore Issac Rubin, my favorite American self-help writer. His books changed my life. I feel good to know he is now 95. I’m grateful to Dr Rubin; I’m grateful to my dad; I’m grateful to Buddhism teachings; and I’m grateful when I answer your questions — I often get a chance to look into myself. I thank our creator to give me the analytical powers (though not as powerful as Dr Rubin) to dissect the layers and uncover the core issues in my psyche. As I endeavor to answer your questions I often reach a deeper understanding of my own pains, stupidity, irrationality and unfairness to myself and love ones.