To me, my family is more than proof that love is the only treasured item that has no supply limits. My family is a large part of my legacy. True, my legacy may include passing wealth forward to my heirs – but that’s a small part of my legacy goal. Rather, I anticipate approaching my legacy goals by learning with my family about life, living our values, and, importantly, talking about and understanding money. I know that I will continue to learn a lot from them in this journey, and I treat each day as my best chance toward furthering this purpose. I am sure I drive my family a bit nuts, but I know I have today, and tomorrow is harder to know about for certain.
I listened to the call that my inner voice made in 2003. What was a passion of mine during my teens and early twenties elevated to crusade in 2004 when I turned in my notice at my comfortable corporate job to head out and follow my vision. While the odds seemed unimaginable to many – a then 30-year old doing a career change and starting over from scratch – I took great comfort in one truth that I could quickly reflect on when the times got tough. That truth was, and is, that I have a relentless determination combined with unwavering values. My own mission statement tormented me to step out on my own…
In 2002 I crafted a mission statement for myself that is still on target going on two decades later: “To add enduring value to others and our environment. To enjoy each day by living my dream, by continuously learning and exploring, by securing financial freedom, by being humble, honest, and altruistic, and by always treating others with respect.” The Perspective Group was the vision for much of this, and it is a vital part of my story. I can’t achieve my life’s mission without it. And so, the crusade advances.
When I was in my teens I “pumped iron”, first to impress girls and secondly to boost my locker-room confidence. That exercise routine has carried me well past the point when I was so aware of appearances, and decades past the time when I had to shower next to high-school linebackers.
I consider physical activity to be one of four longevity-extending tools (four that I can control, that is). To share the other three, I believe one needs sufficient financial freedom to provide for options in life and to reduce stress. Second, I can control the food I consume. Hippocrates, considered the father of modern medicine said, “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” Okay – I don’t need to complicate it – so, that’s what I do. Third, I believe we need intellectual stimulation (which may come by way of work, volunteering, social life, or learning a new skill). Lastly, I believe physical activity – of any kind – is vital to an enjoyable long life. Just as an old car in a barn shows us, it’s never optimal to sit too much (…you’ll rust).
Serving others is really close to my most favorite thing to do. Working on, and in, The Perspective Group is tied with the joy I experience when I am serving others in a meaningful way. Being able to serve others with my family? Game over. For instance, when my oldest son helped me “MC” the Community Bike Ride near Clinton Lake, it was a joyful day. The bike ride is well aligned with my personal values and aspirations. It promotes free physical activity and healthy food, and it promotes cycling, which is good for the environment. Each year the Lawrence Central Rotary Club, of which I am a member, organizes the ride. It gives out countless free bike helmets to participants of all ages and abilities, as well as bright safety vests and shirts to wear throughout the year. Now that is what I call rewarding!