A musing which kept me awake last night, “What would it be like to be valued in my job at £40 million”? I know, highly unlikely, but that’s what happens to many sports players and film stars. The value of a person isn’t determined by their income, however would you want to be a sports star or celebrity earning millions every year?
The Value of Sports Stars
Money for running around, that’s what many believe the world’s top sporting athletes receive. However, I’ve got a great deal of respect for the effort and lifetime dedication to the sport in order to reach the top of the game.
It’s a case of supply and demand. The world demands sporting heroes for the joy of the game so they are willing to pay what’s required. Agents demand extra money for their client which also pushes the price up. As more money flows into each sport the value of the player increases.
Gareth Bale, a professional football player, recently signed for Real Madrid for 91 million Euros. That’s an incredible amount of money. The pressure on his shoulders to perform must be excruciating. How can anybody live up to that hype?
The main movie icons of our generation amass a huge wealth for every film they make. Some movie stars receive upwards of £20 million for each film they make.
In the 2013 film, World War Z, Brad Pitt reportedly received $14 million for his part in the film. However, in the opening weeks the film took $66 million. So perhaps Brad’s inclusion in the film helped raise interest and encourage movie-goers to visit the big screen.
Yet, I can’t help think that this is a hell of a lot of money. It’s surely more money than anybody could spend in a lifetime?
The cost of being a star will undoubtedly have its financial problems. The cost of security must be huge! You couldn’t go anywhere without a mob of security and even a simple trip to the grocery store must be a challenge. Movie stars couldn’t live in a normal street like you or I; they would be hounded and pestered consistently. So a mansion in a secluded area probably costs a “pretty penny” too.
The thought I had was, would I swap my life for the life of a sports or movie star? Most people would say yes, and the money would be tempting, but I’d say no. The money would be an attraction but living in the spotlight would be blinding. I like peaceful family walks, spending time browsing at the grocery store and meeting up with friends, without being followed and harassed by paparazzi!
Ego? Pressure? Success?
Please don’t mistake my rejection of the $20 million as my acceptance of the “unfortunate celebrity” who must accept the tough lifestyle they have. Being adored by millions must be difficult. I struggle at times to be adored by tens of people, never mind millions.
The reasons I hate the thought of being a millionaire go further than simply being harassed constantly, but it’s similar to when I had to go bankrupt. The mass accrual or lack of money undoubtedly changes a person. When I had nothing and was in a financial hole, I changed. I became panicked, stressed and money was the only thing I thought about.
What would happen if I was given millions of pounds (or dollars for that matter)?
Would my ego change?
Would I treat my friends and family differently?
Could I actually become a money obsessed person again?
What kind of pressure would I be under to maintain the high-roller lifestyle?
If I was suddenly dropped, as many stars are, what would happen and could I manage it?
I don’t know the answer but I’m not precious about finding out. We all spend too long focussing on the next financial dream and not enough time of living in “the now”. I’ve got a small savings account, I’m saving for my retirement, I have a great family and I’m paying off my mortgage. Yes, $20 million would financially make my life, and my families life, easier but I’m not a person seeking celebrity status or their wealth. I don’t envy their life, “better the devil you know” is my moto.