This weekend my wife sent me to the store with my 8 year-old son and 5 year-old daughter to get new shoes. We came home with shoes, kickballs, football, basketball, baseball glove… need I go on. And my wife in her “sweet southern” way asked me, “How much is enough?”
It is a question that is better answered before going to the store.
There are two extreme answers to the question: “How much is enough for me?” One is, “I want to consume all I can on myself while I have the chance.” Some people make that choice. It’s those people who live by the adage: “You can’t take it with you so might as well…”.
That outlook leads to certain outcomes. One of them is what I might call “self-implosion as a result of self-consumption.”
Actor Nicolas Cage is a box-office star, Academy Award winner, and earns millions of dollars. He’s also spent millions – more millions than he has earned. Here are just a few of the documented items on which he has spend his earnings:
- $8 million for Mitford Castle in England and $17.5 million for his Bel Air mansion.
- 9 Rolls-Royces, 30 motorcycles, a mega yacht, and a Gulfstream jet.
- Dozens of rare and exotic animals.
- Over $1 million for an Enzo Ferrari – one of only 349 in the world.
The public record in November of 2009 says he owed $6.5 million dollars in unpaid back taxes. Cage exemplifies one extreme response that says, “It’s never enough for me.” The other extreme is to give away every penny in life and survive your final years by living on the generosity of others.
Being at one extreme end of the spectrum or the other is probably not where the majority of us want to be. However, too many find themselves there because they did not adequately answer the question soon enough: How much is enough for me?
Don’t leave the answer up to chance, fate or luck. The only way to make sure you end up with “enough” is to plan for it. So do you have answer, for yourself? Share it with me,firstname.lastname@example.org
Wealth is more than money. Don’t just plan for your future, live it right now.
Pass it on and share the insights like this that you find valuable.
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“In everything the middle course is best; all things in excess bring trouble.”