Conventional financial planning advice tends to follow a pattern. First, focus on the basics—budgeting, securing your needs, saving for the future. Once you check off these boxes, you can move to the next level and buy the “extra things” you want. Those “extra things” might be an experience or an opportunity, such as paying for college tuition or buying a new business, but the fundamental premise remains. You calculate how much money you have, decide whether you have “enough” to pull the trigger, and keep moving onward and upward.
The truth is that determining whether you have “enough” isn’t that complicated or that satisfying. Anyone can plug the required numbers into a calculator—how many dependents, what’s the interest rate, how long until retirement—and tell you whether you can buy that next thing.
But what we know—after 30 years of working with clients just like you—is that even very wealthy people who lead lives of luxury often face a more lingering and troubling question: “Now what?”
To get a sense of fulfillment, you need to not only identify what you want, but why you want it. Otherwise, you can keep accumulating without feeling truly satisfied.
That’s what this new series is about—how to identify, understand, and accept your deeper motivations to create the right path for you. Drawing on principles from Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, we’ll explore topics like finding a purpose, embracing the unknown, and how to develop empathy and acceptance. You might not expect these kinds of discussions from your financial advisor. But, at Truepoint, we recognize that money intersects with every aspect of our lives. So we invite you to join us in a different kind of conversation—one that explores the values and fears that drive our behaviors and helps you chart a course to deeper fulfillment.
In psychology, the idea of self-actualization centers on the realization of one’s potential. Psychologist Abraham Maslow, in his hierarchy of needs, depicts self-actualization as the highest level of psychological development. What does this mean for you and your financial journey? More than you might think!
In this chapter, we explore the parable of the Chinese farmer. This simple story shows that if we can’t determine whether something that just happened today was a good or bad thing, we absolutely should not be wasting our time and energy agonizing over things that have yet to happen–or, more importantly, events that we cannot even control in the first place.
“Am I doing this right?” is a question that almost all of us ask ourselves at different times in our lives. And this is where the topic of self-acceptance comes into play. When you practice self-acceptance, you can take stock of where you are and move forward from that point, rather than trying to ignore the parts of yourself that you fear are bad, unworthy, or odd. By accepting who you are and where you are, you can then more easily determine where you want to go, rather than always looking over our shoulders to wonder, “Is this really the right path?”
In this installment, we’ll highlight the importance of enjoying your life’s journey—professionally, personally, and financially—instead of hyper-focusing on a distant and uncertain future.
Finding joy in the journey allows you to feel fulfillment whether or not you arrive at a specific destination because you will already be satisfied with who you have become and the experiences you’ve had along the way. Satisfaction is no longer pinned on one culminating event, but can instead be found internally and in the day-to-day joys of experiencing one’s life.
This installment discusses the often confusing topic of “purpose.” You don’t have to look too far these days to find someone discussing the importance of finding your purpose or, as it is sometimes called, “your why.” But identifying your life’s one singular, overarching, and unchanging purpose can feel overwhelming and even stressful.
That’s why we prefer to talk with our clients about living a “purpose-driven” or “purposeful” life. This wording emphasizes what matters most: that your sense of meaning guides the direction of your life. Your goal is not to find just one purpose to structure your life around. Instead, it’s to approach life in such a way that your deeper values shape your decisions.
Over the past few years, we’ve experienced an unusual amount of disruption, unpredictability, and stress. Yet, in spite of many challenging events, each of us has also enjoyed special moments—large and small—that have given us hope, happiness, and a feeling of gratitude.
At Truepoint, we believe that good relationships happen when we invest in building teams of smart, caring people who work together to deliver peace of mind and possibility to every person we touch.