Being rich is not about owning things – Narayan Murthy of Infosys

I boarded flight from Bangalore to Mumbai, economy class. I put my hand bag in overhead bin and took my aisle seat. There was an old person sitting next to me on the window seat.

I had a presentation in Mumbai, so took my documents and started going through them for the final time before the presentation. After 15–20 minutes I was done with my documents, so I put them away and started looking out of the window, and suddenly I looked at the face of this person sitting next to me. I thought I have seen him somewhere.

He was old, his face, the suit was not very expensive, and he was replying to some mails or going through some documents. I exactly don’t know. I noticed his shoes, they were average quality.

Something stuck me and I asked him: “Are you Mr. Narayana Murthy?”

narayn murthy
Narayan Murthy, Infosys

He looked at me, smiled and replied, “Yes, I am.”

I was shocked !

For one second I had no idea what to say next. I looked at him again. His shoes, his suit, his tie and his specs. Everything was average. This guy was worth $2.3 Billion and co-founded Infosys.

I always wanted to become super rich so that I can buy all the luxury and travel business class. He could buy the whole airlines and yet he was sitting next to me in economy class!

I again asked: “Why are you travelling in economy class and not business class?”

He replied:
“Do Business class people reach early?”

And then introduced myself, “Hello sir! My name is Mayank Gupta and I am a freelance corporate trainer and I work with many MNCs PAN India.”

He then put his phone away and started listening to me, he also asked few questions and answered the questions I asked. We both went down deep into the conversation until I asked a question which was about to change my life entirely.

I questioned: Sir, You are so successful and have made so many good decisions in your life. Is there something you regret?”

He got intense look on his face, thought for a while and answered,
“Sometimes my knee hurts, I should have taken better care of my body. When I was young I was so busy working that I never got time to take care of myself and now even if I want to work more, I can’t. My body doesn’t permit.”

“You are young. You are smart and ambitious but don’t repeat the mistake I made. Take proper care of your body and take proper rest. This is the only body you have got!”

That day I learned two things, one that he told me and another that he showed me!

Being rich is not about owning things.
I had got what I needed.
What a great and down to earth human being he is, no doubt he is so successful!

Note: It is fiction or reality but a great story… Life story

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