What do I mean by that question?
Have you ever stopped and thought Why?
Why, day in and day out, do you do the things that you do?
Because you have to? Because you want to? Because you’ve had the same routine for years and you’re used to it?
If you feel like your life is something that just happens to you, it’s time to reassess how you’re spending your time. Financial security, stability, and creature comforts are all important. But feeling that your life has purpose will become more and more critical to your emotional and physical well-being as you age — especially when you finally retire.
Research into the area of human well-being draws a distinction between happiness (experiencing pleasure and avoiding pain) and the feelings of meaning and self-worth that we derive from our lives (1).
Too often, we focus on the former and neglect the latter. This is why the sheen wears off so quickly from a big-ticket purchase. Buying a new car or big-screen TV gives us a quick hit of pleasure. But sooner rather than later, new things become just more things that we’ve accumulated. Once that initial happiness evaporates, we find there’s no additional layer – no purpose – to improve our well-being.
Researchers have also found that people who feel like their lives have purpose live longer and show decreased risk of cardiovascular problems (2). And as you age and prepare for retirement, living with purpose helps to limit your risk of cognitive problems, such as Alzheimer’s (3).
So maybe its time to ask that question of yourself, Why? And am I really living my life on purpose?
Here at Hartcliff we help our clients find their purpose and get some focus and clarity around what is really important to them. Then we work collaboratively with our clients to help then attain and sustain that purpose for both them and their families, making optimum use of the resources they have available.
So if that car or 55inch TV you just bought becomes something accumulated rather than a pleasure to behold, then maybe it’s time to talk. For an informal chat about your purpose and lifestyle financial planning, call me, Andy Bennett on 01226 446 135 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
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