I have wanted to write about this topic for a while now. After working with over 80 households of people aged 22- 40 in the past 4 years, what I have found is that many people in this age range are unhappy. They feel lost. They had this vision in their head of how life was going to go. They were going to finish school, get their dream job, get married, build a family, have their forever home, go on Instagram-worthy vacations, and ultimately feel loved, valued, and appreciated not only with their families but also at work.
Then… they got older and life didn’t exactly look this way. Their first job was not their dream job, they had less disposable income than they thought, and most importantly they lacked the freedom to live life the way they wanted to.
When I meet with new clients, the conversation always starts by asking questions about how they would change their life if money wasn’t an issue. Or how they would change their life if they had limited time left on earth. We go very deep here. What do you think are the top answers I hear?
These are the 3 most common answers:
- “I probably wouldn’t do my same job, I would do something I enjoy more”
- “I would pursue this business idea I have”
- “I would spend more time with my family and friends”
I am not going to lie, these answers have surprised me. I thought a small percentage of people would feel this way, but not a majority.
This summer I read “The Psychology of Money” By Morgan Housel and I finally started to understand the problem — what most people lack in life right now is freedom. They have very little time in their week that is under their control which is why so many people can’t wait for the weekend — the only time where they have control and get to do the things they want.
What if life was more like this? What if you worked a job that was interesting to you? One where you worked the hours that best suited you. One where it was about the work you did, not those random hours they tell you you have to be there? What if you could travel and work from wherever? What if you could pursue the business idea you have always thought of? What if you even took a lower-paying job that gave you more freedom, was more interesting, and allowed you to be with your family more?
Let’s be brutally honest with ourselves for a second. These questions have come up in our minds many times over. But… we are all scared to take action, scared of the risk, scared of what others will think, and ultimately scared to align our life with what matters most to us.
Here’s the thing, you owe it to yourself to at least explore these options you have. Maybe you will do all the research and planning and realize it’s not a possibility. Or… maybe you will be surprised and it could become your reality. Think it through, plan it out, see what the numbers say. You need to at least see if it is possible to live the life you have always wanted. It can’t hurt to try!
Why do I care to ask these questions when financial advising has always been about the numbers, growing your investments, making textbook good financial decisions, etc? Because I want to help redefine the goal of financial planning. To me, financial planning is about helping people live a life that is true to themselves. One that is fulfilling. One they are proud of.
If this is you, and you want to explore this idea, feel free to reach out. My passion truly is helping people use their money to create more freedom so they can live the life that is true to themselves.