The irony of stress is realizing it isn’t good for you, then stressing about being stressed. Keeping with the theme of Mother’s Day this week, ask yourself…what advice would your mom offer you?
…Hold your horses.
…Take it down a notch.
…What part of ‘no’ don’t you understand?
…Shut the door! Who do you thing we are, the Rockefellers?
…If your friends jumped off a cliff, would you do it too?
…You don’t NEED it, you WANT it.
…Go to bed, I’m tired.
Awe yes. Those “Momisms.” If you use your imagination a bit, I would be willing to bet one or more are a perfect fit for the stress you’re enduring right now.
The point is that sometimes we forget to go back to the basics. Most stress seems to be built over time. Maybe life keeps getting busier and busier. Maybe your finances keep getting more and more complicated. Maybe your bills keep growing and growing. Maybe...your procrastination is compounding your issues.
One of the first things we do when we meet a family for the first time is gather facts and data. This is a huge feat for some families. Ask yourself, can you “at any time,” know where everything is and what it is for? Think: assets, debt, insurances, legal documents, cost basis in everything you own, business documents, and alike.
The busier you are and the more success issues you have, the harder this tends to get. A lot of successful people hire someone to help, but a lot of times, they still can’t immediately put a handle on all of these.
We have been blessed with helping about a dozen families over the past year start the Life Planning Process. Out of that dozen, one of them was able to get about 80% of their entire picture right away. Even a few that have professionals helping them stay organized can’t get us everything we need after six months of data gathering. And frankly, we’ve seen even worse - we worked with one family that we were still finding assets for almost decade later!
This is like walking through life blindfolded. How can you possibly know which direction to take or what the right decision is if you don’t know where you are? And knowing that you don’t know it? No wonder there is stress!
We like to ask people what keeps them awake at night. It’s often something to do with money—being sued, worrying if their family will have good Christmases after they’re gone, not paying taxes, staying retired…
No matter what it is that keeps them - or you - awake at night, the solution can usually be found by getting back the basics. And step one is getting your bearings of where you are right now.
I want to leave you with one more story: Several years ago, a doctor and his wife came to a three-night workshop we did at a local university on retirement. Part of the workshop was a personalized retirement plan. He truly believed that he was never going to be able to retire and he was completely burned out. It took him almost zero time when he found out his retirement plan offered him a green light to retire. The next time we saw him, he was in flip flops and a Hawaiian shirt. Years of stress were lifted from his face. Unfortunately, his retirement was cut short with a major stroke a few weeks later.
The point is that all of that stress you have may be for nothing. Or it might be rightly justified. Either way, what would your Momma tell you? Mine would say…get your rear in gear!