A Secret Weapon To Your Financial Plan
|April 29, 2010||Posted by Roshawn Watson under Uncategorized|
By: Roshawn Watson
It is a always troubling to hear of someone’s financial struggles, especially when the implications are life-altering. The absentee father who misses his children growing up as he labors to provide for his family, the professional student who is buried with student loans larger than some mortgages, when retiree has to return to work due to lack of funds, the dying husband who is selling advertising space on his urn in order to pay for his cremation. It is such struggles that can negatively define a family legacy, and we sadly know these stories all too well.
Only the strong can help the weak
Like many others, I believe money is primarily for three major things after you have paid your expenses and built the necessary foundation: further investing, giving, and having fun. I personally believe giving should be a major part of any financial plan. Of course you can do what you want with your money, but there is a fantastic joy that you experience when you give believing that you are making a difference in someone’s life.
In my humble opinion, there is no greater value in money other than to protect and bless the people you love and champion the causes you believe in.
Many of us have heard the parable of the Good Samaritan. A Jewish traveler is beaten, robbed, and left for dead, and only the good Samaritan stops and helps him by paying for shelter and food. Well Margaret Thatcher had an interesting point on the parable…
No one would remember the Good Samaritan if he’d only had good intentions. He had money as well.
A Semi-Radical Thought
Whenever I hear someone say I don’t need a lot of money, I always think what a selfish person. The reason is he obviously is just concerned about himself. I submit to you that when you make the conscious decision to systematically give every week or month, it changes how much you spend, how much you invest, and how much you aim to earn.
Here is a radical thought: if providing for your family is not a big enough dream to inspire you to build some serious wealth, then consider providing for community, just as those people did in Haiti. In fact, I would argue that if your sight is only set on yourself, your dream may never be big enough.
I personally know people who have paid off other people’s homes and given away cars. I wouldn’t dare disclose their identities because they wish to remain anonymous. No one wants to be a magnet for benevolence. I recall revealing to an acquaintance how much I was giving to charity (we were talking about charitable contributions), and the next thing she did was give me a list of her charities she thought I should be supporting in addition. Needless to say, it is often best to keep your mouth shut.
Anyway, think of the legacy you are going to leave. If this appears too daunting a task, consider that it doesn’t necessarily take a huge income to make a lasting difference. Just Monday, the WSJ reported on Jimmie Dean, a thrifty engineer who left a $2 million estate to establish a scholarship fund but never made an income over $50,000 a year. We have such an opportunity to make a difference.
Last year, the CEO of a charity that I have supported over the years said that their total donations in the their 40 years of work total $1.6 billion. That is the power of a dream big enough to include others. Consider including giving as part of your financial plan. It just may be one of the richest decisions you have ever made.
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Caring Banker’s $60 Million Gift
Copyright 2012, Roshawn Watson, Pharm.D., Ph.D. All Rights Reserved.