In some Native American tribes, it is advised that every person should consider how the next seven generations will be impacted by their decisions. What ripple (good or bad) might be caused by your actions? How will your day-to-day decisions affect others or your future self?

While this way of thinking may not apply to every decision you make (whether you use the blue pen or the black pen probably won’t change the world!), your choices DO matter. Whether or not you choose to live an active lifestyle, for example, could impact your spouse or your children’s decisions and it could have a bearing on your work performance, as active people generally miss fewer work days and are more highly productive (SHRM report).

And your generosity certainly impacts others. Volunteering or donating to those in need can help lift others out of poverty, empower those who are abused, or provide healthcare to those who are sick. It is hard to measure the power of offering a helping hand, but you can get a sense of the impact when you volunteer with under-privileged communities (such as in a soup kitchen or through Habitat for Humanity).

But what about yourself? Shouldn’t you practice long-term thinking when it comes to your own life?

Absolutely.

This kind of long-term thinking has to do with Hope, which is one of the three pillars of Self-Wealth. When you have hope for the future, you plan for it. You think about your finances, your lifestyle choices, your investments (of both time and money). You start and maintain a savings account (to plan for both good and bad life changes). You regularly put money into a retirement account.

In order to put hope at the center of your focus, take a few quiet moments to think about your ideal future. What does it look like? Where are you living? What is your lifestyle like? Who are you with?

In this future world, what are you doing? Working? Sitting on an ocean-side beach? Hiking in the woods?

Don’t forget to consider other people, as well. Are your children in college? Is your spouse turning their hobby into a business?

Now, ask yourself one key question: "How do I get there?"

Keeping your ideal future in mind will give you the guidance you need to start planning. Tackle your life plan in bite-sized pieces, but don’t lose sight of your ultimate goals. Some people create a “vision board” or write in a journal to stay focused on their dreams. Figure out what works for you and go for it! The future is yours.

 

Good luck! If planning your financial future seems a little overwhelming, I can help! Feel free to get in touch today.

24 thoughts on “Overcoming Short-Term Thinking

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