139 // What Do You Lose When You Have Too Much? with Mike Maisel

Financial Advisors From Cincinnati Share Perspective

There is an inflection point where money shifts from being a source of worry to that worry is now gone, and your life is still somewhat simple and understandable; from that point on, it gets more complex, more confusing, and more likely to own you.

 

Money is one of the most powerful forces in the world because there is almost no limit to what it can impact, including your heart and your family.

 

Watch Out for the Lifestyle Creep

The lifestyle creep happens when you reach these higher numbers because you need more to sustain that $10 million or whatever it is. You feel this quiet, unspoken but ubiquitous pressure and anxiety to make more. Do you have enough? Maybe just one more million, then it’s five, and so on. If you do cut a satisfying line and say at x point you will not need anything more, you can experience freedom from all that; it’s rare. Most commonly, people want to keep chasing.

 

Something that is ironic but almost makes perfect sense if you think about it is the wealthier someone gets, the tighter their grip on what they have. Their identity is tied tightly to their wealth; their social circles are dependent on it, the properties they buy determine the level they have to maintain. Those things are what give them access to this life they entered into, and the admission is steep. The bigger it gets, the more they feel obligated to keep living this way because now it’s who they are, not just what they have. The lifestyle creep is slow but sudden.

 

Any parent will tell you that a large motivation to make more and save more is their kids. They want to provide for them, and more than that, they want their children to have more opportunities than they did. They want them to be safe and cared for and get to choose what they do with their life. So it’s fascinating how those who have the money and the ability to give a large amount to every single child – don’t. They feel like they built their career all on their own. When you create something out of nothing, you are stretched, you grow, you face adversity. No parent wants to steal the gift that is the hardship of life from their kids. Life being complicated and full of friction is deeply valuable. As a parent, you tread those waters carefully because choosing wrong in that regard shapes a lot about the adult your child will become.

 

Where Wealth Management Ends and You Begin

Everyone starts saving out of fear, saving for survival; when you cross into a place of saving out of-in many cases-pride. The threshold where that fear transforms into pride is different for everyone depending on their lifestyle and circumstances. Ask yourself why you’re doing this because if it’s just because obtaining more feels good or it feeds your identity, you might want to reassess. There comes a point when you will start to resent it. It all goes back to identity and whether or not you’ve let the money change that. In some ways, you feel tricked, like you’re now looking at your life through a fogged lens. You start to question relationships that you have always carried close to your heart-are people looking at me or interacting with me differently?

 

A great defense against the lifestyle creep and letting your dedication to wealth management invade your identity is to have a trusted advisor you can confide in. Having that confidante can bring value far beyond looking at charts and spreadsheets.

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