The Bottom Line Is NOT the Bottom Line

fritzwood 10-2012This is not intended to be confusing, but it’s a great quote and makes for a clever title. Let me explain. There are many things today that cause us to wander from our beliefs and values. This is called “The Craving.” It is tempting, but leads to pain. Money magazines, Jim Cramer, Mad Money, and CNBC get this better than anyone. They LOVE to prey on our cravings, but we mustn’t be tempted. We are led to believe that if we make more money, we will be wealthier.

The truth is lasting wealth comes from being content with what we have. The real Bottom Line is simply defined as: “Peace of mind, contentment and a clear conscience.”

Too many Americans today consider the Bottom Line to be their net worth, or the rate of return on their portfolio. Here are a few tips to increase your real wealth:

  1. Know yourself. Ask yourself, “What do I need to make my life work?”
  2. Strive for a large ROL. This is your Return on Life. It’s about getting the best life you can with the money you have – being intentional with time and money
  3. 10-year rule. Ask yourself, “In 10 years, how will I look back on this decision?”
  4. Understand me + now. Stop fretting about the past and worrying about the future. Planning is important, but you’ll enjoy your life more when you remember, “This is the only ME that’s ever going to be, and the only NOW that I’m ever going to have.”
  5. Learn from others. Researchers have learned that people more often regret things they did not do, and less often regret things they did do. What might you regret not having done?