I’m going to ask you a very powerful question. What would you do if your doctor told you that you only had 5 to 10 years left to live?
You won’t ever feel ill, but you also won’t have any notice of the moment of your death. What would you do in the time you have remaining? Would you carry on as you are now or make the most of your time? How would you change it and realistically, would you have the financial power to change it?
Makes you think doesn’t it? How often do we work too long hours and get wrapped up in the unimportant day to day stuff, putting the things that really matter to us on the back burner? People say that ‘life just gets in the way’ or ‘one day…’. Isn’t now the time to make time to do things you want to do? To share experiences with loved ones? To create memories?
In childhood we probably all wished, at some point, that we were older – wanting to be a teenager, then a young adult, and basically wishing our lives away. Now as grown-ups we wish we could put the brakes on a little as life is happening all too fast and it’s scary; the months and years zip by and precious time is flying. One day we may just be too old to start enjoying ourselves in the way we had envisaged and regret not doing what we wanted sooner.
It doesn’t always have to be material; you could spend more time with the people who matter, tend to your garden, do what is important to you and makes you happy. We all have different lifestyles and they come in different shapes and sizes.
But what if you want more? The lifestyle you want could be sailing a yacht around the world, leaving a legacy, retiring earlier than you thought possible or simply being able to live a ‘comfortable life’. So what does this mean in relation to money?
The power and purpose of proper financial planning is to match people’s money to achieve and maintain the life they want. It’s not about products or investments, but having peace of mind and security of knowing where you are heading financially and knowing whether your desired lifestyle is affordable and what you need to do to secure it. Most people today don’t know for certain if there’s enough money available to deliver the future they want, and for some they may already have enough but don’t know it and are wasting precious time!
There’s a very poignant sign hanging on our office wall that simply says ‘Life is not a rehearsal, make every day count’. It’s a constant reminder to focus on the important things that can be controlled rather than the things that can’t; and to concentrate on achieving a desired lifestyle because when time has caught up with us all, it’s better to be able to say ‘I’m glad I did’, rather than ‘I wish I had’.