You work hard, so naturally you want your investments to pay off. Obviously, you don’t want to lose in the deal! Here’s the problem: Lots of folks spend their entire lives working hard and investing their money, only to find out they invested in the wrong things. They never learned about the most valuable investment out there—and it has nothing to do with a mutual fund or a stock option.
That investment is your time.
The Legacy Given to Me
When I was young, my grandmother taught me how to play Scrabble. I grew up playing with my mom and my grandmother sitting with me at the kitchen table, board and tiles in front of us. As a child, I didn’t understand the gift they gave me in those hours together. Now that I’m an adult with children of my own, I can see how the time my family invested in me has shaped the man I have become. They made me a kinder person, a more focused person. They gave me gifts throughout my life, but what I treasure most is the hours they spent with me. Because of the legacy they have given me, I am intentional in doing the same with my boys.
What Will Your Legacy Be?
You may think your time is better spent earning money for your family. And if you’re trying to get out of debt, it’s okay to work longer hours or work extra jobs—temporarily. But if you’re working day and night and you’re leaving no room for those who love you, that’s not okay! I’ve coached thousands of people in my career, and none of them ever regretted time spent with family and friends. Unfortunately, I’ve heard too many stories of people who gained wealth but lost what really mattered.
Give your time to those you love. You don’t want to hit your retirement number only to discover that your spouse has become a roommate instead of a soulmate because you didn’t give priority to that relationship. Your kids need you to be active, dialed in and attentive. They don’t want more stuff. They’d choose you over junk every time.
Even if you’re single or don’t have kids or the kids are grown, you can still make a difference in others’ lives. Don’t underestimate the role you play in your extended family, your church, and your friend group. This kind of legacy can’t be measured with a dollar amount, but it’s more valuable than anything in your financial portfolio.
You will leave a legacy, good or bad. Those you leave behind will determine its value.