When the topic of financial planning is discussed most people focus on money, with good reason of course, but the conversation doesn’t have to end with our financial capital. How much do I have? How do I spend it? How much should I invest?
There are other factors that affect our lives; our human capital - time, energy and skills. These are each additional components of a successful formula that leads to happiness. To maximize the output from the formula ask yourself some questions. How can you better manage your time? Maybe spend a little less time with your Smartphone and those time wasting apps. How can you increase your energy? Exercise and eating better to start. How can you improve your skills? Consider getting a clearer perspective on your personal values and the topics that interest you most. If you identify some things you want to really accomplish… make a plan to do it… life is short.
We all know people who seem to be happy all the time. Ever ask them why? The answer may surprise you. Is it because money = success = happiness? More likely it’s because their life is centered on a strong value system. Knowing who you really are and staying true to yourself is invaluable. There is an old proverb that reads: “The happiest people don’t have the best of everything, they just make the best of everything they have.”
When we go through life unaware of, or ignoring our personal values, we may feel out of sorts or disconnected. But when life is properly prioritized, things just seem to click.
In our experience the happiest people are those who have managed to align their lives with their core values in mind. Only after their values are clearly identified can they wisely invest their human and financial capital to serve their goals. They focus on faith, family and careers (as an example) allowing everything else to fall in place. Life is good.
Values + Centered Life = Happiness
Having money certainly helps but it should not be the driving factor. Too often we see reports of people who prioritize their lives with money being the dominant force and the ultimate outcome is often undesirable.
Money – Centered Life = Unhappiness
Our challenge, if you care to take it, is to review your own personal values. Decide what is most important in your life. What makes you special? What makes you happy? Then consider the formula for happiness by placing your values first. If you’re married have a frank conversation with your spouse and develop a unified plan. Six months from now you may see a vast change in your own life and your degree of happiness.