David Geller is Author of Wealth & Happiness: Using Your Wealth to Create a Better Life and CEO of GV Financial Advisors.
Forget the Promised Land.
Welcome to the Un-Promised Land, where nothing is certain, especially your financial future. That’s why I tell my clients to stop looking at the bottom line and refocus on the topline — what really makes you happy.
Even with that advice, finding security and happiness is a challenge in the world today. Taxes are going up, regulations continue to squash business owners, the federal deficit is skyrocketing, and politicians bicker instead of making compromises. With so much discord, it’s no wonder I’ve seen a sharp increase in anxiety over the past few months, leaving many to consider drastic changes in pursuit of financial security.
While the proverbial Promised Land seems to be on the horizon, it’s actually a moving target. No matter how well you do, there will always be new threats and challenges.
Which leads me to a word of caution.
Don’t mistake financial wealth for security. No matter how much money you have, you can always imagine a scenario that will leave you penniless. No matter how well you are doing, you can always imagine a catastrophe that will wipe out your business. Here’s a hint — the future is uncertain. Always has been, always will be. Real security is about what you can rely on in times of uncertainty.
I have a single question I like to ask my clients that puts things in perspective.
What would happen if you lost your job and 80 percent of your wealth?
After overcoming the initial shock, you would face a simple choice: give up or keep going. Moving forward would require major lifestyle changes. It would be difficult, maybe even scary, but it would not be the end. Dinners out, family vacations and new cars might be gone, at least for a while. You might have to move your kids from private to public school and refrain from buying new clothes. But could you survive? Of course you could. Your money might be gone, but the other elements of wealth remain in full force — wisdom, health, talents, time and personal network of family, friends and colleagues.
You might even find a new sense of freedom. Rather than being tied to your business, you might relish the possibility of starting with a clean slate.
To put it bluntly, there is no such thing as financial security or a Promised Land. You don’t have enough money and never will. Get over it and get on with it.
Don’t look for security and control of your business in the wrong place. Place your faith in the skill, knowledge and contacts you’ve built over a lifetime. Those elements of wealth will not fade and cannot be taken away, regardless of taxes, conflict, endless gridlock and government regulation.
You have more wealth than you think. If you forget that, just remember to find clarity by asking yourself THE one important question about your future and where your real wealth lies.
The answer might surprise and inspire you.
The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of BusinessNewsDaily.