There is a lot going on – oil supply concerns in Saudi Arabia, continued trade war shenanigans, the stock market whipsaws, and oh yes, the U.S. presidential debates.
But, death makes me pause. This weekend I attended a funeral of “Gracie,” as they called her, and she was a 97-year-old family matriarch whose love spread to everyone she touched. I felt her love. For me, funerals always make me reflect on what my obituary will read when I die.
Will my obituary say how many hours I worked? Probably not.
Will the obituary say exactly what I did in my day job? Probably not.
Will my obituary say how much money I made? God, I hope not.
Will my obituary talk about the things I am passionate about? Most likely, yes.
Will it say how I impacted the family and friends, and perhaps the broader world, around me? Oh, yes! Bingo.
I must admit, these reflections are humbling because many people can spend a lot of time grinding it out at work, chasing dollars, and making trade-offs with their time. But you must remember, obituaries are written by the people who are left behind. Obituaries tend to focus on who you are as a person and the effect you’ve had on this life.
It’s a bit morbid to think this way, but let’s face it – we will all have to walk the road to death one day. So, I try and embrace my mortality and live into one of my favorite mottos – “Life is short. Enjoy the journey.” If you do not live in the moment, you will get to the end of life and wonder what you’ve done with your time, talents, and gifts.
So, then, what’s the point of putting all my time and effort into building wealth?
I’ll tell you – Wealth is about leaving a legacy for the next generation. Wealth is about the opportunity to advance not only your own life, but about the life of others. Wealth is freedom from restraint and allows you to take advantage of opportunity, albeit it to pursue your dreams, your passions, or those of others.
I’m a big believer in hard work and sacrifice, but I want you to think differently about whether the hours you put into your day job are enough to give you the satisfaction to have the impact that you want to have. If you are lucky, or blessed for my Christian brethren, you will get the chance to spend most of your waking hours doing the things, and with the people, you love.
My hope is to that you’ll find value in the quality of your life that pursuing wealth affords. If this is not happening right now, what’s stopping you? Please leave a comment on my blog below.
Here are a few articles in the last two weeks that bring life to what I’m saying above:
Should You Spend, or Save, as if You’ll Live Forever? My over-arching takeaways from this article is wrapped up in one sentence – “So people who feel fit are acting much differently, working longer or taking on side projects to supplement their savings.” Your mental state changes your behavior on what financial decisions you make, especially as you get older. Keep on living, and you’ll need to continue to build wealth so that you can enjoy life in all the ways you value.
California Bill Makes App-Based Companies Treat Workers as Employees. California voted on a bill that requires companies like Uber and Lyft to treat contract workers as employees. The law can potentially reshape the gig economy and the future of work. On the one hand, workers will get the benefits of being an employee. On the other hand, workers may lose benefits of flexibility. Do you have a side hustle where you are contracting, or work for a company that utilizes a lot of contract labor? What are your thoughts on the bill?
Have a great week and keep living out what you want your obituary to say! My hope is that a big part of my obituary reads that I encouraged you to live your best life!!!