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CWealth Blog

Follow what Clifton Wealth have to say beyond financials, and we'll share useful, engaging and informative articles, insights and interviews about topical news, industry trends and relevant aspects of day to day living.

The Secret to Happiness in Retirement ...

The Secret to Happiness in Retirement ...

The secret to happiness is well within your reach. It is a state of mind and completely within your control regardless of your financial situation. You can have happiness right now, no matter what’s going on in your life.

How financial freedom forces you to learn the truth about money and happiness

There is a seldom said, little secret about financial freedom. It is counter-intuitive and illustrates an essential principle about money and happiness.

When you achieve financial freedom your life suddenly changes from pre-determined to self-determined.

The surprising effect of this is you are suddenly stripped of all the excuses for why your life might be less than ideal. You instantly become solely responsible for your own happiness with no excuses allowed.

To understand how this works and why it’s important, let’s first look at the reality faced by most people living the ordinary working-life existence. Their lives are largely pre-determined. They spend the bulk of their time working to earn the money necessary to build a better lifestyle. The little remaining time is quickly swallowed up by family, chores and other tasks and not a lot is left for fun.  There is also a lot “stuff” to distract people from seeing the truth about their lives.

However, once you achieve financial freedom all that changes. Suddenly 2,000 hours a year previously spent on work-related tasks is yours to do with as you please. Your days don’t have a pre-determined structure and your time becomes a blank canvas for you to paint the life of your dreams upon.  Your life becomes self determined.

However, the downside to having a self-determined life is you no longer get to follow a default script imposed by society because financial freedom eliminates the need for the structure and there is a void left in its place. Your days are no longer filled with stuff you “have” to do and you have to choose what you’d “like” to do.  You’re in the driver’s seat of your own life.

For some people, the adventure this situation presents is exciting, but for many others, being solely responsible for your day, your life and ultimately your happiness is daunting to the point of terrifying.

Personal freedom is the retirement goal, not financial freedom

Once a person realises that the goal all along is personal freedom, not financial freedom, things can start to change. So what is the answer? How can you enjoy each and every day?

A simple daily habit can create more happiness than achieving financial freedom

Taking personal accountability for your daily happiness is a journey in personal growth. The essence of this personal growth is understanding that your happiness is a product of your thoughts.  Your approach to life. Nothing more, nothing less.

To get yourself in the correct frame of mind each day, it is important to re-focus and therefore re-train the way you think.

It doesn’t sound like much, but by reading everyday the following 6 point checklist of thoughts and measuring yourself against this list, you will begin to notice tangible results and after about 90 days you will have habitualised the practice.

Remember, your happiness is a state of mind. You don’t have to be rich, and you don’t have to wait until you reach some level of achievement in the future.

You can have happiness right now.

Your daily happiness checklist

  1. Choose happiness as the priority for the day
  • The decision to be happy is actually the decision to stop being unhappy.
  • Most people seek happiness as a by-product of their achievements, actions and other things they do through the day. This makes their happiness dependent upon what happens during their day.  Make happiness a direct choice without any dependency.
  • Happiness does not require favourable events, interactions, or any particular stimulus. You can choose happiness at any given moment, no matter what’s going on and for absolutely no other reason than to just be happy.
  • Suffering today in an effort to earn greater success and income for tomorrow so that you can relax and feel secure at some future date is insane. You can embrace the adventure that is your life.  You can do what you can each day without stress but with creativity and joy, and trust the results will be meaningful.
  • You can pursue all your goals from a happy place today. Your internal state of being doesn’t depend on external events that you believe will make you happy at some unknown future.
  • There’s no reason to limit happiness to the dessert in life. It can be the whole meal.
  • Happiness is an option and misery is an option. They are both choices you can apply to the same day’s events.  It’s your choice.
  1. Let go of judgments
  • The secret to happiness lies not in the events, but in our response to them.
  • Adopt an accepting attitude to all things and events in life.
  • Try to go the whole day without blaming, shaming or complaining. No negative thoughts.
  • See everyone as being on their own heroic journey through the trials and tribulations of life. We are all doing the best we can with what we know.  If others do you wrong, then try to find compassion for the pain that motivated them to do wrong.
  1. Live in the present
  • Unhappiness does not exist in the present  It only exists as a regret about the past or worry toward the future.
  • Taking deep breaths helps your brain to function in the present.
  1. Be grateful
  • Remind yourself your life is filled with endless wonders every hour of every day. The only time you are actually unhappy is when you take this for granted.
  • Train yourself to be sensitive and appreciative for all the little things that occur for daily life to simply go on.
  • Notice how much time you spend on thoughts of gratitude as opposed to thoughts about problems.
  • Be grateful for what you have and say or do something to make your gratitude visible or real.
  • Gratitude is simply a choice to become aware of the good things that are already true in any given situation and become consciously thankful for.
  1. Create strong social connection
  • The risk we associate with authenticity is illusory. The more we nurture our true selves, remove our masks, and allow uncensored expression, the more our relationships and surroundings will support our true selves.
  • Simplify your life and greet every person and situation with positivity.
  • Quality relationships creates happiness. Quantity of relationships can distract.
  1. Live with contribution
  • Find at least one way each day to make another person happy. It could be as simple as a kind word, a personal acknowledgement, giving anonymously, or allowing someone in a rush to get ahead.
  • Serve a purpose greater than your own needs.
  • By giving happiness, you experience happiness.

Happiness is found in the journey, not the destination.

You don’t need to wait until you achieve financial freedom to be happy. Practice these habits now and begin enjoying the benefits today.

Finally, here is a particularly relevant quote from Mahatma Ghandi…

“Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.”

Here’s to your happiness!

 

If or you'd like to have a Compelling Conversation TM about aligning goals and life, please Contact Us. Call Clifton Wealth on 1300 TO WEALTH (1300 869 325).

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Super Changes from July 1

Super Changes from July 1

In late January the changes to superannuation outlined in the May 2016 Federal Budget became law.

So it’s important to understand what these changes are and how they may affect you.

While there are a number of changes that will be made effective on 1 July 2017, below we have identified some particular areas of interest to take note of:

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Asking Questions of the Future You

Asking Questions of the Future You

Every week or so, our adviser discuss what books they've been reading that helps us do what we do. We discuss and share insights – it’s a time and process that we all value and get a lot out of.

Today we talked about The Happiness Trap by Russ Harris. It was first published 10 years ago but the content remains current and resonated with all of us. It’s a global best-seller for a reason.

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A Blended Family and Your Estate

A Blended Family and Your Estate

A few generations ago, marriage was generally ‘permanent’ and something that you stuck with regardless of whether or not it was working and you were happy. A failed marriage was something to be ashamed of, and blended families were unheard of.

But these days, one in five Australian families are living as a ‘blended’ family, and one in three first marriages now end in divorce. And, these figures are rising.

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Staying Active in Business in Retirement

Staying Active in Business in Retirement

Leaving a full time working role can be a challenge for many people when they reach retirement age.

While the thought of a relaxing lifestyle and being able to do whatever you want, whenever you want, is appealing initially, many retirees quickly become bored and are left wondering, “What can I do now?”

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Ray Jaramis wins "Newcomer of the Year" Award

Ray Jaramis wins "Newcomer of the Year" Award

On Friday 12th August, we were proud to announce that our youngest adviser Ray Jaramis won Newcomer of the Year Award at the 2016 IFA Awards.

This award recognises Australia’s top new advisers, considering not only the delivery of best practice advice but also the aptitude and acumen to build a solid advice business and client proposition. As well as these key skills, the award recognises their potential as a future industry leader.

This award is evidence that our unique advice proposition attracts, develops and produces the most exciting young talent in Australia. Ray has been an integral part of the Clifton Wealth team since inception, and with our partner Treysta Wealth Management since 2013; his thirst for knowledge, willingness to innovate and enthusiasm for the industry is a natural fit.

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Should You Help Your ADULT Children Financially?

Should You Help Your ADULT Children Financially?

In a perfect world, your children will learn sensible financial practices and how to manage their money throughout their childhood and teenage years. As adults, they’ll be capable of making an adequate income and will be responsible with this money.

But let’s face it, life’s not perfect, and many children don’t learn these lessons for one reason or another. Or, they may have great money management skills, but life has thrown some tricky situations at them and they’re stuck in a money-less rut they can’t get out of.

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Remarrying? 5 Considerations Before saying "I Do"

Remarrying? 5 Considerations Before saying "I Do"

The unfortunate statistic is that second marriages tend to have a higher failure rate than first marriages. And the reasons are fairly obvious.  Both spouses generally have an ex-spouse, are more advanced in their careers, have significant assets and perhaps have children.  When this is the case it’s much easier for life to become rather complicated.

And like at any other point in life, money can be a major source of stress.  This seems to be especially so in second marriages.

If you’re planning on tying the knot again, there are some important financial considerations you need to be aware of first.

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Are You Ready?

Are You Ready?

Small business dominates the Australian landscape.  And 75% of these business owners have no exit plan in place.

We can almost hear it now - I don't need one.

Rubbish! It’s important to have a strategy in place no matter how small your business might be.

There will eventually come a time when you hand the reins over, so it’s essential to be prepared for that day. A business succession plan, or exit plan, outlines everything that will happen when you sell, close or transfer ownership of your business.

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What is the "Female Financial Paradox"?

What is the "Female Financial Paradox"?

Working women, and women who are the breadwinners, now make up one third of households, with the ratio growing.

Women tend to take control of the family finances by paying the bills, budgeting and doing most of the grocery shopping. They’ll hunt down a bargain, and tend to be frugal.

However when considering building wealth and financial security, such as superannuation plans and investment opportunities, women seem more bewildered or disinterested than their male counterparts.  This is what financial experts now refer to as “The Female Financial Paradox”.

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