As lifelong financial coaches, it’s incumbent upon us to take our financial conversations to a higher level.
Higher than assets and liabilities.
At Diversified, we’re honored to model out your future and help you invest, but we do so much more. Our careers revolve around helping our clients achieve their dreams. That’s right–dreams. Not just accumulating wealth within an investment portfolio.
We help fulfill dreams.
Let me take it even a step further, our ultimate objective is to get to the core of what makes each and every one of us tick as human beings.
What actually fulfills your life? Why do you get out of bed every day and work 40, 50, even 60 plus hours a week? Do you have an idea or is it simply just going through the motions?
I’m here to challenge you and help you take a more inward look. Let’s figure out the WHY behind what really gets your gears turning.
Lately, I’ve been trying this with both myself and clients–getting to that root understanding of fulfillment. This makes us better at what we do, as we can talk about the cause and effect of our decisions and the meaning behind them. When we shut those conference room doors and sit across from clients, we consume a special spot in their headspace. We help slow the thought process down and force a dialogue about what actually matters in their lives (i.e. what fulfills you).
Peeling this tough exterior back is very challenging–for both of us. (To explain how to do so in a thousand-word blog is even tougher.) But heck, my motto is “you can’t make an omelet without breaking some eggs.” So let’s start cooking together, shall we?
When you look up the word fulfillment in the dictionary (which nowadays means googling it), the definition will be something like “satisfaction or happiness as a result of fully developing one’s abilities or character.”
Whoa that’s heavy stuff, right? How many times this week have you thought about what makes you happy? This goes beyond your passions, such as fishing or laying on the beach. This is stuff that cuts to the fabric of who you are as a person.
If you’re like most, you haven’t thought much about these things in a very long while. The question I have is WHY NOT? Shouldn’t this be all you think about, not the 4,000 things that you have to do this week? Shouldn’t this be your guiding light and not that next paycheck? I, for one, can’t see an argument any other way.
We want clients to not only figure out what fulfills them but to start working towards it today. Note that I chose my words carefully. I said “working towards it,” as it will take effort and determination to achieve. But, isn’t it worth it?
Time for Action
Ok, enough time on that soapbox. First, we have to determine what those things are. I’d like you to close your eyes for a moment. Now smile. Do so the entire time your eyes are closed. Start thinking about what makes you happy in life and why you’re smiling. For me I’m thinking about the following:
1. Dinner dates with my spectacular wife.
2. Weekends with my 3 amazing kids.
3. Having friends over for dinner and cocktails. Or, when my brothers come to visit and we watch sports and debate like the good old days.
4. Those first few minutes in my conference room with clients where we talk about family.
5. Sitting on a deck at the Jersey shore with friends/family playing music as the salt air forces me to relax.
6. Hosting holiday gatherings, the bigger the better!
Of course, I thought of many other items which keep me smiling. But that list doesn’t mean we’re done. These things aren’t what fulfill me.
Once you have your list, take a moment to look at yourself in the mirror and ask why all these things matter so much. What are those commonalities between them that create purpose? What talks to your character and happiness?
For me personally, my thought process goes like this. I certainly like to eat and although that fills me, it doesn’t fulfill me. (See what I did there?) I like doing and planning things with people. OK, I seem to be getting closer. Aha, I got it! What fulfills me is being around, and enriching the lives of, those I care most about. I love the feeling after I’m around those people and get to think back on those amazing times. Most of all, I love those couple of hours together laughing, debating, and enriching one another’s lives in the moment. I never want those times to end, probably to my detriment, but hey, that’s what fulfills me.
To distill it down, what fulfills Andrew Rosen is enjoying the special and enriching times with friends and family. I guess at the end of the day it’s likely why I chose the career I did. I love making clients into friends and spending that time trying to enrich one another’s life.
The first challenge here is to help people slow down and think about what it is that gets their gears turning. The second challenge is to start helping them achieve that fulfillment by having that positive energy guide them through life (rather than being pulled through life). How much more would all our lives be enriched if we woke up and tried to find purpose in fulfillment in each day?
It’s on now – the challenge is set.
I’d love everyone reading this to go through the exercise of figuring out what truly fulfills them. Find a way to reframe your life and focus on how to maximize fulfillment (or at least take the first steps in doing so).
I would love to hear from anyone reading this. Tell me what your fulfillment factor is and what changes you’re making. If I get a good amount of responses, I’ll write a follow-up post and include some of the best things I’ve heard.