Feeling your Life's Purpose …

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Feeling your Life’s Purpose …

We’re making a big ‘to do’ about your Life’s Purpose … yet this is a Personal Finance forum not some sort of wacky ‘self help’ love-fest. So why?

Well, it’s for a very financial reason … it tells us the scale of our ultimate financial journey … it tells us how high a [financial] peak we must climb – and, how soon we must reach the top.

Despite the highlights, the key word is actually ‘must‘ … if we don’t have a very powerful reason that resonates deeply and emotionally withing us, it’s unlikely to happen.

Don’t believe Sir Edmund Hillary when he said that he climbed Mount Everest simply “because it was there” … he was clearly understating what must have been a deep, deep need that meant that he simply must climb the tallest peak on earth.

Of course, your Life’s Purpose only needs to resonate with one person: you. However, it’s my job – our job – to help you put it into perspective and make sure that you are selecting the right mountain to climb …

… select one too high, but fail, where does that leave you? Select one too small and you remain unfulfilled.

So Scott should not at all feel badly in any way when I read his post (and the ensuing comments) and say:

Honestly, I don’t ‘feel’ it, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t there. From reading what you’ve said here, particularly in response to Josh’s questions

I’m just using Scott’s post to make my point … so, when I reread that post and comments, I think I’m seeing the following two parts:

1. You (Scott) seem to see yourself helping people through your profession, but feel time constrained in doing so.

Simple solution: remove the time barriers – there are a number of ways to ‘up’ the % of time that you can do this that don’t require a lot of money e.g. work for somebody else and let them handle the sh*t )

Of course a more ‘expensive’ way to achieve the same (better?) result is to free up your time by replacing your ACTIVE income with a similar amount of PASSIVE income.

Thus being effectively ‘retired young’ would give you the TIME to not care how much you earned while doing this work; I can even see how it would allow you to volunteer to medically help those locally or abroad who can’t afford to pay, if that’s what you wanted to do.

But, TIME doesn’t necessarily require many millions (just a few!) i.e. at a MINIMUM it would simply require some % of your current salary (depending on what % of your lifestyle – if any – you would be willing to trade for that ‘freedom’) x 20 (to 40) = Your Number.

2. However, the thing that I’m reading is bumping your Number is up seems to have nothing to do with your Life’s Purpose (i.e. ‘helping people’), and more to do with ‘lifestyle’ … which is OK – lots of people get rich ‘just because’.

BUT, in my experience, just wanting the good things in life doesn’t carry the emotional sway to push you through the barriers that will inevitably get in your way.

In other words, unless I’m missing something KEY, it is your Time / Helping others requirement that seems to hold the ‘emotional power’?

Here’s a way to test how you feel: if you had the FREEDOM to help others (i.e. you bought the required amount of TIME through passive income) but didn’t have the LIFESTYLE to look like Elvis Teresa while you were doing it, how would you feel?

Whether this helps, or am I just missing a big piece of your puzzle, this is the type of thinking and self-analysis that I want you all to do …

… the aim is to come up with the SMALLEST Number and the LONGEST Date that does the job. Why? It should be pretty obvious by now … if not, it will be very soon )

Thanks for being so candid, Scott (and, thanks for being so probing, Josh).

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@ Adrian – I think I’m having difficulty in figuring out how one can put money requirements into a purpose statement then. To be honest, everything I ever learned from big success and motivation gurus is that the term ‘purpose’ is something you dedicate your life to that is ‘bigger’ than yourself, ie;, not tied to money and not something you want to use to purchase ferrari’s and 2 million dollar homes and world travel. It’s something outside of yourself that you want to do to make a difference for others with your life. This is simply what i’ve learned about purpose long before I began any work with the 7 millionaires in training. We use the term ‘purpose’ daily in my office and in meetings to remind each other to do everything we can to help as many people as possible. Been using that term for a long time. But with these exercises, this is the first time i’ve seen someone attempt to match a purpose with a yearly living expense requirement(a great idea!)

As I said in my previous post, I don’t think anyone is gonna ‘feel’ it with someone else’s purpose statement(some people’s statement is just extremely vague and I think others are reluctant to comment on it), because so far, I can see no one’s purpose statement equaling millions of dollars. Seriously, think about it. As I’ve seen other’s statements, my mind immediately did what I guess you and Josh did with my statement, which is not see where fulfilling the statement requires millions, and my brain picked out a million and one ways that people are doing that right now while broke(the reason why I didn’t say anything or analyze their statement to them is that I figured that meant $ to them somehow).

Ultimately, it’s the desired lifestyle that people want to improve/increase. If not, multimillionaires such as yourself wouldn’t even own multimillion dollar homes, european sports cars, travel the globe in first class and afford their children private schools after they made their fortunes- they earned those bucks to make THOSE things happen increase their ‘perceived security’ while making sure they don’t have to work and can do so only if they choose. Do you see where i’m coming from?

I guess I believe that along with someone’s purpose statement, they also have a vision and a dream of what they want to have in their life ‘lifestyle wise’, which translates to ‘dollar-wise’ and it’s those who want the lifestyle BADLY ENOUGH who are the one’s that go out and GET IT. So, in someways, you can use a person’s wealth attainment to measure how motivated, goal-oriented, resourceful and “stick-to-it” a person is, because ultimately, it seems that’s what it takes and some people will never have those abilities while other’s do and exhibit those traits.

I once heard a quote that read:

“How you do anything is how you do everything”

So for some, they are gonna rise like cream no matter what situation you put them in, because that’s just how they are made and how they do everything they do, they want to produce and receive the BEST!

@ Scott – No doubt this is a difficult exercise, and you are right: your Life’s Purpose will sound ‘pithy’ to anybody else who hears it (e.g. mine is “to be constantly traveling physically, mentally, spiritually” … what does that mean!? Well, in a few days I will explain how I translate this to money).

But, there is a ‘missing link’ between your Life’s Purpose (which is internal/intangible) and Money (i.e. your Number/Date, which is external/tangible) and that is your Rear Deck Speech …

… it’s purpose [pun intended :)] is to ‘force’ you to articulate what your Life’s Purpose MEANS in a way that an 8 y.o. can understand/admire: in “do’s” and “have’s”.

It’s the do’s and have’s that will ultimately guide you to your Number … and, then you can throw in your Ferrari if you still want to 🙂

Go and give it your best shot!

For me “Purpose” is the motivation for the trip it’s not the destination. “Purpose” drives me to set the “Goals”. “Goals” help me determine the destination. “Means” is what it will take to get there.

Purpose = I want to travel.
Goal = I want to travel where ??
Means = I’ll have to have $$$ (number) to make the trip.

Yea this is a tough one. @ – Scott, don’t be discouraged man, it just seems like your getting a lot of slack because you’re the first one to have their life’s purpose published. I hope when mine comes up its gets the same evaluation as yours.
Recently I’ve begun to feel the most pressure and motivation I have to become wealthy is that I’ve told some people close to me what I plan to do. Now, my word as a man is on the line as well as my character.
Since they know my plan, I have to carry the burden of wondering what they will think of me if I fail.

As of right now, this is my main motivating factor.

I guess you could argue that if the relationship deteriorates, then the motivation will seize. I guess this would apply if I had told someone other then my mother.

@ Josh – anything that we can dish out here will pale into insignificance compared to what Life is capable of throwing at you … particularly to those bold enough to climb the steepest mountains, with ‘purpose’. Nobody said this was going to be easy – for any of us 🙂

Yeah this is definitely good stuff. We should all be very clear about our purpose and how it’s going to get us to our number, so any criticism we can get is only going to help us get there.

Doh, I keep forgetting to log back in on wordpress for my posts, sorry…

Well, Scott, I didn’t tie in the dollars to why that amount of dollars was needed – the math would elude an 8 year old or a 10 year old. Maybe I accelerated my years a bit much, but part of that is that Barry (more about him in the Rear Deck Speech) will be close to that age-old retirement age, and at a point in his career where it will be time for a change again, at about that time. I don’t want to be on divergent paths with him, so I know I need to move quickly.

It will be interesting to see if Adrian takes us back thru the numbers waltz to have us rethink them, and how. I can live on less, but I don’t see how I can do the things I want to do later if there are a lot less. But the cost estimator/analyst side of me says we as people always tend to underestimate how much we’ll need and how long it will take, so I figure whatever I might have overstated today should be left in as “risk” and that part to aim for (if you shoot for the moon, you might wind up among the stars at least).

Maybe our numbers are also dependent on our levels of risk? who knows?

Hi everyone, my name is Adan and I have been following all of Adrian’s blogs since about June. I have done most of the exercises and just like Scott I seem to be stuck on this one. The help everyone here offers is unbelievable. This in-depth analysis of our purpose made me want to continue to refine my Life’s Purpose more closely…that is when I came across this quote,
“If success of failure of this planet and of human beings depended on how I am and what I do…How would I be? What would I do?”—R. Buckminster Fuller

That took me to another level of thinking. Though this way of thinking involves us to bring the world into our Life’s Purpose…our own monetary goals to make this happen are uniquely ours (I think). Hope, I don’t have it all wrong.

@ Adan – Hi and Welcome! I hope that there’s a lot more people joining our 7m7y Community who are following along and doing the exercises … feel free to continue to share.

We’d like to hear your [& everybody’s] views and feel free to share your Life’s Purpose and rear Deck Speech – if you can stand the scrutiny of the 7MITs that is 😉

Yeah, I’m really trying to think of some of the wealthiest people on the planet, the Forbe’s top 10 and I’m trying to picture how they would have done this exercise and how their purpose statements and rear deck speeches would read.

Ah but wait Scott, you may have hit on something. I seem to remember either in something Adrian said or in someting I recently read that we would need to have a mentor or even “several” mentors. While I understand that Adrian fills that position at this time, maybe one of our tasks is to do more than “try to picture” how wealthy people would have done this exercise maybe we need to “actually ask” them. I believe I also read somewhere that they would be honored if we did.
In this day and ask of internet emails it wouldn’t be all that difficult.

That’s a great idea Lee. I’m going to put it to work actually and get some other input.

yeah, I bet Bill Gates didn’t have all the philanthropy at the top of his list when he did what he did…he just kept opening up his own opportunities, and redefining what his life’s purpose was about…but let me know what you find out.