Human beings are brilliant with significant potential that is waiting to be unleashed, with the extraordinary capacity to create, recall, and process. However, given the amount of information we have available to us, it is hard to keep it all straight in our minds…“all” being the operative word. As a result, we tend to un-complicate things down to “simple steps”, “how to’s” and other shortcuts to help us get to the goal. These are transaction-oriented ways of thinking.
While transactional processes do work, the question should be not only how EFFICIENT is the process but more importantly how EFFECTIVE is the process and is the process SUSTAINABLE for all times as new assumptions, ways of doing things, new societies emerge, etc. In other words, is the process teaching folks HOW TO DO which is more transactional or is the process teaching folks how to THINK and CREATE so that the solution is highly personal, uber specialized and hyper focused on an individual’s unique set of understandings and experiences. When folks get to that stage of learning, creation can truly occur that benefits the individual, beyond to society as a whole and shared as new products, services and experiences.
Financial Framework: While this framework will look similar and in some ways just as simple as others you have seen, the content and context behind it will show multiple sides to the discussion and not assume one is right for you. We do not know what our lives will bring us in terms of health, experiences, motivations/passions/aspirations, externalities but we should know there will have to be trade-offs given as we have two limited resources: time and money. When we make these trade-offs it is highly personalized and dependent on our emotional values. That is what makes finance complex. There is no one ultimate solution!
Once we know there is no one magic formula, then we understand there is no comparison needed to be made with others, there is no right final answer to the test and the journey should be something we lean towards instead of turning away from as leaning in will bring emotional fulfillment.
Here is the Financial Framework:
- Dig Deep and Understand Your Emotional Values and that of Your Family
- Assess Your Current Financial Situation
- Current Obligations and Assets
- Current Monthly Recurring Expenses/Annual Expenses
- Current Employment/Business Opportunities and Challenges
- Define Your Personalized Success Story – What will sustain fulfillment for you?
- Develop an Expense Rationalization Plan that Aligns with Your Values
- Create a Salary/Revenue Growth Plan that Aligns with Your Values
- Develop a Risk Reduction/Mitigation Plan based on Emotional Safety and Security
- Develop an Investment Income Strategy (Stock-Market, Real Estate, Income Generating Business) and Savings Plan
- Create a Community Investment Plan – How Can you Help Others through ideas, efforts and money?
Three underlying concepts that will be woven through out the materials and will provide context to the discussion will be the concepts of social, economic and political forces. These are three areas that affect us and our finances.
Important Note: You will notice the word retirement is not in the framework. The word “retirement” has connotations of a long distance future, older age, working until some point and then no longer working. When I look around, I see people who could choose to “retire” and do not. Why? They are contributing to society, helping their family, helping move business solutions that help society and enriching their minds.
So this is not a plan to get to a point where you are not contributing and simply consuming….that is for the traditional financial industry to share. This is a lifestyle financial framework. It is based on your unique situation to create the life you have or are looking to maintain or are looking to change and grow. A life that will be a net giver to the world through inventions, ideas, your time, your experiences and even some money. Why have I listed money last? For me personally, I think society needs more human investment. Certainly monetary investment helps, but we need to develop new ways to solve old problems so that all boats can rise and we can reach higher highs as a society.