If you ‘Google’ this question, it results in all sorts of mathematical tools that tell you how you should add up your assets that you have acquired over your lifetime. However, if you read about half way down the first page of search results, something changes with the addition of the word “true.” There is a perfect quote by an English Congregational Speaker of the early 1900’s by the name of John Henry Jowett. He stated, "The real measure of our wealth is how much we should be worth if we lost our money."
It is no secret that the basis of our business is to manage money for the individuals and families we work with. It is also no surprise that our goal is helping these individuals and families grow their greenbacks. Yet it is also our goal to help these individuals and families grow their life’s wealth despite a dollar sign. After years of combined experiences through our clients’ lives, we put together a core process we feel is imperative to discover how we can help our clients accomplish their goals. We call it the 8 Life Planning Issues. The interesting thing is that only 1 of these issues addresses investments… and it is the very last one to be addressed. Think about it: is growing your greenbacks all that important if you don’t have fulfillment of wealth without your money?
Since we started writing weekly articles in 2006, we have written about retirement planning, estate planning, business planning, tax planning, risk management, investments, etc. And every few weeks we have written about life planning—how to “Live Life on Purpose.” If you have read any of these articles, I bet you have heard us ask you the question I am about to propose.
If this were your last day on earth, where would you want to be, who would you want to be with, and what would you be doing? What about Spiritually? Mentally? Physically?
What if it were your last year? Five years? Ten years?
Picture yourself at that point. I would be willing to bet you aren’t worried about money or that you hear the sound of greenbacks being counted, though don’t undervalue the importance of financial security in allowing you to develop your wealth.
Do your answers to these questions compare to how you are already living your life every day?
Okay. Now how do you measure your wealth? "No man can tell whether he is rich or poor by turning to his ledger. It is the heart that makes a man rich. He is rich according to what he is, not according to what he has." --Henry Ward Beecher. In 2007, I had the privilege of meeting Dr. John Rhodes, who became my life coach over the next few years. He created a simple little score card that addressed the most important wealth issues of life that I still use to this day. Every quarter I sit down and score myself in relation to each item. Then, I set a goal for each item for the next quarter. Last, I only walk away when I have one thing I will do over the next week to work toward my goal. I don’t always succeed, but Dr. Rhodes has a motto he uses that keeps me going, “Continuing progress, not perfection.”
Remember, today is the first day of the rest of your life—make the most of it! God Bless!