Here’s a hypothetical for you; if you won the lottery tomorrow, what would you do with your lottery win? Winning the lottery is a life event that very few are fortunate enough to experience. Yet, contemplating this idea can offer insight into what you want out of life – your vision and goals.
If someone asks you what you want now and, in the future, it takes a lot of introspection and reflection and can be hard to answer straight off the bat. But, visualising scenarios such as this can be the prompt we need.
Welcome to the brilliant concept of Life Planning.
An introduction to life planning
Life Planning is the process of discovering the full life we long to live and making it happen, no matter where we start – George Kinder.
We incorporate life planning exercises into our financial planning process, as we believe they are abundantly helpful in unlocking your deeper, meaningful goals and aspirations. From our point of view, acquiring money is not an aim in itself. It’s what this money enables you to do in your life that matters. And this is where financial planning and life planning join forces.
Our financial planners have all attended extensive life planning training with the globally recognised Kinder Institute of Life Planning. And have gone through the life planning process themselves. And Tina and Caroline have also gone on to become registered life planners, an internationally recognised qualification.
George Kinder introduces The Three Questions concept, which forms the foundation of a solid life plan. The exercise requires careful consideration of each question before skipping to the next. It’s then important to explore how different each answer is, and herein lies what matters to you in life.
And, similar to a lottery win, the first question asks you to imagine that you are financially secure, with enough money to satisfy your needs. It allows you to visualise a time without restraint or anything holding you back; uncovering what is important.
What to do with a lottery win
Each person will have a different answer, and it may be hard to formulate your own. It is often the case that actions speak louder than words, so, we took it into our own hands to put this exercise into action. This time around, we put our planners and the rest of our team in the hot seat. The question: If you won the lottery, what would you do with your winnings? Would you live your life differently?
I’d pay off the mortgage and give a sum to my immediate family. Home and security are essential. Then I would pay for a chef to come into my house every day with prepared meals, so I would never have to cook again unless I wanted to, and I would always eat healthy, interesting food. I would buy a place near the best theatres in London and one or two other capital cities, so I could spend my time going to any show, talk or exhibition that caught my eye. Of course, I would make sure my children had all they needed to be great and happy human beings. And thinking more widely, I would support organisations creating change for the better, worldwide.
I would not rush into spending the money. I’ve been brought up to be careful with money, and I do not think that will ever change. I would let it sink in and get some solid advice on how to make the money go furthest. I would also like to help family paying off mortgages, buying homes or helping their kids. I would set up a trust to help (young) people achieve their dreams. And I would love to buy a typical English rural cottage with a large fireplace and adopt more dogs.
I would put some aside for the children, help out the family and have some nice holidays – but would not massively change my life.
So I probably would not tell anyone, I think I would throw a big party, gather all my friends and family and then surprise them all with some sort of gift. I would pay off my mortgage, maybe move to a bigger house and travel a lot more.
If I won the lottery, I do not think I have changed that much about my life, which is quite nice. I would dedicate more time to hobbies and passions. If I could, I would open up a printing press or a bookshop, so I could help to support authors and other creative endeavours.
Financial planning for lottery winners
The answers above highlight a few aspects of financial planning that often come to light following a significant life event. However, you don’t always need to wait for a life event to prompt you to seek financial advice. No matter what phase of life you are in, if you think you could benefit from reassurance and peace of mind, knowing you have a robust financial plan to support your future, then perhaps that is all the prompt you need. The reality is that everyone could benefit from life planning to bring their goals into sharp focus and make their money work harder to bring them closer to those goals.
Themes that repeatedly come up during our sessions with clients, and a reason you might want to seek financial advice whether you’ve won the lottery or not, include:
- Charitable giving
- Planning for a secure future
- Supporting family
- Making the most of every penny
- Enjoying life to the fullest
And if you’re lucky enough to have won the lottery, then our advisers can help decide on what is best to do next. As exciting as it is, it’s a time that needs calm heads and rational decisions. With careful planning, your excitement will continue for years to come.
Alternatively, if this has got you thinking about what you want in life, and you’d like to discuss how we can help you get there, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with one of our trusted financial planners.