Money and Therapy: two things that people may love or hate thinking about. However, among other things in life, money and therapy help.
About five years ago I read a must-read book for young and old, wealthy, or building wealth, married or single. Anyone who wants to have a “life” someday… or even have a life NOW. The book is called The Number* and was written by Lee Eisenberg nearly 15 years ago but reads like he wrote it yesterday.
Here are several of the chapters:
- “Welcome To Numberland”
- “Debt Warp”
- “Alone At Sea”
- “Covering Your Assets” (nice play on words)
- “Night Sweats”
- “Deep Breathing”
- “Bottom Lines”
All of these topics could be covered in conversations with friends, or by reading The Number, explored in a therapy session… or all 3! I recommend all three (and the therapy session could be with your financial adviser – because a real financial adviser makes this conversation mandatory.)
The reason why this matters:
It makes no difference if you are 23 years old and starting a first job, 35 and single or married, in the thick of building a family and working, or 60 and contemplating IF and WHEN to retire. It is more about HOW you want to live your life. The author makes you laugh, cry and most important THINK. He drove, motorcycled, and traveled all around the USA and world, speaking with such a wide array of “experts”; there are some really deep conclusions.
One of the biggest conclusions was that nothing in life worth having comes easily (or comes for free). The process of living life is not always do-it-yourself or operating on autopilot. Every “next stage” takes some version of a PLAN, whether it be written in a notebook, on a whiteboard or simply on a napkin. Important advice is to, at some point earlier in life – and continually – to take the time to consult with a proven expert, spend the time and intelligently pay the money to talk about how much money you SPEND today and, more critical, WHAT you spend it on. What do you most ENJOY spending money on?? Kids? Grandkids? Family? Yourself? Your business? Charity?
What is your timeline for spending the money? Is it realistic to be able to continue to spend what you spend today (as in, will you be in danger of running out of money someday)? What are your plans for your LIFE? Who do you love the most? What do you most love doing?
That should be enough to think about for one weekend – although the process is meant to take your whole life to determine (the sooner the better).
*Used with expressed permission from the author. Eisenberg, Lee. The Number. New York, NY; Free Press, 2006. Print.
Thank you for reading and TGIF! Happy Memorial Day & God bless America!