TOEFL Essay Topic 131 - Do you agree or disagree with the following statement? Only people who earn a lot of money are successful. Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.
Money is everything?
The society we live in is becoming more and more materialistic. This tendency has influenced people’s way of defining "success". Nowadays, many people think that the word success can only refer to those who have a comfortable salary. I can not deny that this contains an element of truth, but I insist there be still many other ways to regard a person as being successful. My argument for this view goes as follows.
First of all, we can not judge a person as a success merely by his or her paycheck. Those people who argue that money is the only factor fail to notice the fact that there is more to life than just money. Some people, unfortunately, focus all their attention on making more money and hardly pay any attention to enjoy their life. Seldom do they spend time with their family and friends or have some recreation, and the only goal in their mind is the desire for money. Indeed, they do make a lot of money that we ordinary people may be jealous of, but at the same time, they sort of become a money-making machine, and how can we consider them to be successful?
In my opinion, a successful person doesn’t necessarily have to be well-off, but he or she should have a kind and giving heart. These kind of people win others respect and thereful can be regared as successful. Take a student in Fudan university as example. After finishing her study as a postgraduate, she went to the Western part of China to volunteer as a teacher in the local elementary school. Life in the rurul areas was tough, totaly different from the metropolis she has lived for more than 20 years. Yet she overcame all the difficulties and taught there for 2 years, wining all the students love and respect. She didn’t get any pay for that, all that she did was done out of a generous heart. She is not a rich person at all, yet I think she is quite successful.
Moreover, a succesful person, in my mind, should have a thankful heart. Instead of applying all their energy to work or study, those people know the importance to stop and smell the roses. It is those people who learn to appreciate the small things in life that can really lead a happy and purposeful life. This "attitude of gratitude" can also help you be more humble, and this may lead to even greater success.
In conclusion, money is not the only aspect that can define a person as successful. Money isn’t everything, and the point is we should look at things in a broader perspective, thus lead the kind of life as successful as you define the word for yourself.
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