How to Clarify Your “Why” For Your Finances and Your Life

Bruce Eisenhauer- Financial Advisor

When you hear someone mention their why, what comes to mind for you? Is it your purpose, your inspiration, the very thing that gets you up in the morning? Is it possible to have multiple whys? Do you have a why for work? For family? For hobbies? A why for certain charities or compassionate services?

I believe there are no wrong answers when clarifying your purpose. I feel like our why is the motivation behind most things we do. I also believe you can have more than one and it can change with the different seasons of life. I think it is easy to answer what your why is by listing needs or things we feel we must do.

As a father, I was taught by my father that my job is to provide for my family. Is providing in itself a why? I think it is the byproduct of my why. My personal why in this instance is the desire to be the best husband, father and now grandfather I can possibly be. That is my why when it comes to my family.

Providing, being a positive example, nurturing, disciplining (out of love), protecting and teaching are examples of how I implement my why.

Clarifying My “Why”

In the last few years, my wife and I have thought a lot about what we are leaving behind. What is our legacy? We’ve been really reflecting on all aspects of our life and how to leave the world a better place than we found it. Those talks and conversations have forged themselves into a new why for us.

That is the reason I stated earlier that our why could change with the seasons. I have spent a lot of time on the why for how I make a living. I realized I have always had jobs that served people.

I realized that my why is that I feel an innate drive and passion to help people. I can be compensated in my job for helping people. The compensation comes in many forms: friendships and the satisfaction of helping people pursue hopes and dreams, as well as helping them make decisions that can be life-changing or life-altering and help them find their confidence.

I also love the relationship side of my business. I love learning about others and what motivates, inspires and drives them. I have come to realize that, while we all have many differences in our lives, we also have many similarities. It helps me to grow as a person, a friend, a husband and a father.

I love the trust and responsibility element that comes with my job, and it is the constant reminder to live my why by doing the absolute best job I can for clients, friends and family. My why brings happiness and prosperity, as well as enhances relationships.

How to Recognize Your “Why”

What are the steps for recognizing or formulating your why?

To me, my whys are what make everything I do in that element of my life worth it. Ponder what drives you – what are the rewards that come from living your whys? Look beyond the surface answers to find the real reasons for doing what you do and being who you are. One of the great benefits I’ve found is the ability to weed out behaviors or actions that do not benefit me or others, or easily work along with clarifying my purpose.

Teaching and Learning from Others

We are all incredibly unique, but we can learn so much from each other. I believe we can especially learn from those with a different view from our own. Discussions can either confirm our beliefs or give us an opportunity to rethink our positions when approaching them from a different point of view.

Who could have more opposing views sometimes than parents and their children?

My wife and I were discussing our parenting techniques and our children’s personalities, and were prompted to share with them the following: There is no perfectly accurate book on parenting, and when you become parents, you will find this out. Take the things we did that you believe were good, helpful and benefited you as children, and copy those. The things that you feel we did not do very well or did not necessarily benefit you, throw those out or reshape them into something you believe will benefit your children, and implement those.

Search Out Other Viewpoints to Strengthen Your Own

Structure your life in a way that makes you happy. Others do not control our happiness. They can influence moods or situations, but they cannot control your thoughts and emotions. If you can find and identify your whys in this life, it will lead to a happier and essentially more productive life.

While you’re clarifying your purpose, look for opportunities to listen to opposing views and determine for yourself if there is any validity there. It is so easy to get caught up in social media that reinforces our views and beliefs, and then we watch news networks that also continue to confirm our agendas. Soon, I think we are just listening to the masses who cater to our agenda.

It really does not matter what side of the fence you sit on politically; social media is designed to promote and cater to your beliefs. Decide for yourself what is true and what you believe and support.

It appears our political parties are causing a lot of division. I mentioned earlier that even though we have differences with other people, we have many beliefs that are the same or at least similar. I think it is obvious that we are stronger together than we are divided. As a country, we have proved repeatedly that when we are all on the same page, we are unstoppable. Let us do our part to bring unity again.

An Act of Conversation

Finding your why is an act of conversation. We rarely, if ever, clarify our purpose and mission on our own, but in the company of those who know us well and challenge us to be our best. As financial advisors, we want to explore this kind of long-term relationship with you and help you align your financial plan with your unique thoughts and dreams. Get in touch today to start the conversation.

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