"He that is of the opinion money will do everything may well be suspected of doing everything for money." ~ Benjamin Franklin
Are you using your life as a tool for a money plan or do you use money as a tool for a life plan?
At the core of my philosophical belief system with regard to money and personal finance, is life planning. Essentially, I believe life planning is the antithesis of conventional financial planning, or what I call money planning.
The Money Plan: This is the conventional financial plan. It is almost entirely quantitative in nature. The money plan implies that you must use your life as a tool to accomplish money-oriented goals. In other words, to accomplish the objectives of the money plan, one sacrifices one's health and well-being to climb the corporate ladder, to save more money and to retire sooner and wealthier. Conventional financial planning, in the form of a money plan, perpetuates the root cause of stress -- the pursuit of money, material wealth and social status. In order to reach money goals, one creates a money plan. To reach this money-oriented reward, you are the tool -- not the money.
The Life Plan: Life planning, as opposed to money planning, is completely opposite in its essence -- money becomes the tool and the life becomes the benefactor of its utility. Life planning is almost entirely qualitative in nature -- it is more art than science. One forms the life plan first and the money-oriented planning becomes one of the ingredients to fulfilling the life plan -- to making a life. I like to say that life is not a tool for a money plan -- money is a tool for a life plan.
"He who would learn to fly one day must first learn to stand and walk and run and climb and dance; one cannot fly into flying." ~ Friedrich Nietzsche
So how does one form a life plan? The process is certainly not difficult or complex in its form but deserves more than one blog post. I will dedicate a total of three posts to life planning and how it can lead to a meaningful existence -- something a money plan will not likely accomplish.
Don't be a tool! That's a job for money -- not you!