We are blessed to live in a society where financial security is available to most of us with a little bit of thoughtful planning. So, if all of us can be successful, how do you begin to think about your situation and your options?
We would suggest taking an inventory of activities, people, places, and things that make you smile a little bit inside. My experience is what makes me happiest are the connections with others and actions like gardening, traveling, exercising, and cooking.
We’re all different and your list will likely reflect your experiences and your values. In planning for our clients, one thing we are often struck by is how little the most important things cost. Faith, family, friends, even most hobbies are relatively low on the cost structure scale.
We all need a certain amount of stuff to move through the world with comfort. Nice clothes are great, and I would love to share a fabulous bottle of wine with you sometime. I’m only suggesting that learning to be mindful of our luxuries might help us enjoy them even more. A little restraint makes them even more special.
Whatever your favorite activities are, a little thoughtfulness in making the most impact for your time and energy helps in the happiness return. How we teach our children and take care of those closest to us matters in the long term.
Living well means living in balance. Austerity is a drag, and most of us can’t sustain opulence so somewhere in the middle is where we find our comfort. We’re all different. Choosing a happy place that is a little lower than your income level leaves assets to save for tomorrow.
Take care of the ones you love. Take care of your community and find a meaningful way to contribute a little something to someone out of sheer kindness every now and again, and by all means, take the trip, drink the wine just take the picture, write the story, and save a little along the way so you can do it again tomorrow.