Author: Kim Potgieter

The practice of happiness

Can you recall how many times you have said, “I just want to be happy”, or have uttered the same sentiments to your children or loved ones?

Happiness is a basic human need; everyone deserves to be happy. Sonja Lyubomirsky, in her 2007 book, The How of Happiness, describes happiness as “the experience of joy, contentment, or positive well-being, combined with a sense that one’s life is good, meaningful, and worthwhile.”

Happiness, or being happy, is not often easily achieved. Let me explain by asking you this: Do you set tasks or goals in the pursuit of happiness? Do you start your happiness sentences by giving yourself a deadline? For example; “If I had …, I would be happy” or “When I accomplish …, it would make me happy?”

The pursuit of happiness starts from within. Happiness exists within each of us. And here’s the truth: we are the catalysts of our own happiness. So, to be happy, you must know what makes you happy. You have to discover that place in your heart that makes you leap for joy. And that takes courage. The courage to embrace the opportunities that life brings your way.

Happiness asks you to be brave, to actively challenge yourself to embark on journeys that may scare you, and to be fearless in your pursuit of that which brings you joy.

When we allow others to decide for us, permit the voice of fear to enter our minds, play it safe or prioritise pleasing others ahead of ourselves, it is then that we lose our way in the pursuit of happiness.

The key is to be authentic and true to ourselves.

Here are my top four tips for actively practising happiness:

  1. Life is a journey, not a destination
    Life itself is the great journey. There is no destination. Be conscious that each moment of every day is a part of this journey and that each moment has the potential to fulfill you. Our family life, work, hobbies, morning walk, time with friends – all these are unique opportunities to experience moments of happiness. Hidden within these simple daily activities lies the meaning of our lives. Simply appreciate what is in your life today. Practise finding joy today. Practise feeling compassion today. Experience today to its fullest potential.
  2. Celebrate your uniqueness
    Your uniqueness is your greatest gift. Applaud your own ‘me-ness’ and that of others. Just being who you are, and authentically being yourself, brings a special gift to the world.
  3. Personal reflection
    Have conversations with your inner voice – that voice that reminds you of who you are and what you need to be fulfilled. Listen to your intuition. Prayer, meditation or just spending quiet time with yourself, by yourself, will facilitate an awareness of a deeper sense of meaning and purpose in your own life.
  4. Every moment counts
    Practise finding simple moments of joy in the everyday. Notice how many daily experiences bring you pleasure. Think of happiness as something to be experienced and enjoyed many times.

Author of Mindpower, John Kehoe reminds us to practise happiness rather than to search for it. He believes that happiness is a choice; if you want to be happy, look at your life and find reasons to be happy. Likewise, if you want to be unhappy, then you will find many reasons to be unhappy.

I’d love to hear what brings you happiness and am excited to share many happy conversations with you this year.

Warm regards

Giving is Receiving

The festive season is fast approaching and if you’re anything like me, you already have a long list of gifts planned for all the special people in your life. There is much to be said about the joy of giving. Simply gifting someone with something, no matter how big or small, brings so much joy! The joy is not measured in the smile, the gratitude or the ‘thank you’, but in how it makes you feel.

Female posed on couch with a cappuccino and book
Kim Potgieter, Director and Head of Life Planning at Chartered Wealth Solutions

According to research, giving produces endorphins and studies have found evidence that the act of giving increases our sense of happiness. But what then of receiving?

Giving through growing our relationship

In order to give, there must be a receiver, and most of us are somewhat uncomfortable receiving. To receive graciously is to acknowledge the intention of the gift. Giving and receiving are reciprocal and something that happens in flow. Deepak Chopra says: “The universe operates through dynamic exchange . . .  giving and receiving are different aspects of the flow of energy in the universe. In our willingness to give that which we seek, we keep the abundance of the universe circulating in our lives.”

As I reflect on the client RetiremeantTM workshops that we hosted for the first time this year in Port Elizabeth, Cape Town and Johannesburg, I realise how powerful this relationship of giving and receiving really is.

We were extremely touched by the feedback from these workshops. We loved hearing what Chartered means to our clients; how they value the support they receive from our RetiremeantTM Specialists, and appreciate our newsletters and events. It was an extremely humbling experience and we are so grateful for all the positive feedback and messages of gratitude.

Giving through sharing your stories

For us, the circle of giving and receiving is ever expanding as our relationship with our clients grows. We love giving back to our clients, whether it’s a special event, a workshop or a communique. But in return, we receive so much more. Without fail, after every single event with our clients, we bring home a wealth of wisdom, sincere stories and a deeper insight into what RetiremeantTM really means to our clients.

Thank you to all our clients who so openly and honestly share their real life experiences with us. There are many transitions in the RetiremeantTM years, and so many stories to share: stories of hope, of loss, of emotional strain, stories of new beginnings and exciting adventures, difficult stories, happy stories, RetiremeantTM stories. Whatever your story, it is a story worth knowing – and telling.

We treasure your stories and, with your approval, it is our privilege and pleasure to share them with other clients navigating the same transitions. And this is exactly why our giving-receiving relationship adds value to us and our clients. Your stories are inspirational, motivational and empowering. Your insights are a wonderful source of comfort to clients; it helps them know that there are people who share the same experiences, it helps them connect to a community of like-minded people and it provides wisdom and insight into dealing with the many transitions in retirement.

Thank you for your stories and for allowing us to share in your lives.

I hope that you have a wonderful festive season and return in the New Year with many more stories to share.

Warm regards

Bucket Wheel®

I had a recent chat with a RetiremeantTM client who, pre-retirement, had been very anxious about how to fill his time when he was no longer working. He mentioned that he is now so busy having fun that he hardly finds time to fit in all his activities. We had a good chuckle at how happily his retirement years are panning out, and the conversation left me pondering the importance of balance.

Jana Kingsford, author and blogger, says: “Balance is not something you find, it’s something you create.” And that is why we emphasise the Bucket Wheel® – it’s all about creating a balanced life.

While having fun is important – and, well, fun – creating balance is crucial. On the flip-side, many of us simply don’t have time for fun. We get caught up constantly addressing urgent matters and forget to allow time for really important things, things that make us feel alive.

The point of the Bucket Wheel® is to ensure that we focus our time, not only on the urgent, but also on the important. It keeps our balance in check and ensures that we direct our energy towards what matters most. By spending quality time planning your Bucket Wheel® items, you will have started your journey to living a more balanced and fulfilled life in retirement where all eight areas of your life are considered: work, give-back, relationships, money, learning, health, purpose and play. In essence, the Bucket Wheel® integrates the idea of balance with your Bucket List and helps you stick to the plan.

Your Bucket Wheel® is also the best indicator of what money you will need and how your money needs to work for you. This becomes your blueprint, your plan for life in retirement. And it is this wheel that you can discuss yearly with your Retiremeant™ Specialist to make sure that your money enables your dreams and ambitions.

Watching the Wheel

As you feel you’ve accomplished something on your Bucket Wheel®, revisit it, slotting in new goals as you go. It is a constant reminder of what’s important to you while at the same time ensuring that you are mindful of all the important aspects of a balanced life. It is more than a list that just gets ticked off. It gives you a chance to reflect on how balanced you feel; what is working and what is not. And it adds so much value to your Retiremeant™ review meetings by allowing your Specialist to align your finances with your Bucket Wheel® items.

My final thought: don’t allow how much money you have dictate the type of life you want to live. Be master of your money and align your Retiremeant™ Plan with your Bucket Wheel®.

Enjoy inventing your very own, personalised Bucket Wheel®!

Warm regards,

Five tips for fair money management

Love, as they say, makes the world go around. To go places, do things, this love does need money!

Speak kindly to each other, talk gently and considerately about money and you will be a formidable team in making your life dreams go places!

I have compiled a list of five tips that I have learnt while doing Life Planning.

1. It’s never too late or too early to have courageous money conversations

We so often avoid just talking about money in our relationships.

These conversations are difficult, emotionally charged and often come from a place of extreme discomfort and fear.

This is because we all have a different relationship with money. Each of one us has our very own money story that was formed in our childhood, and often, we still carry the same emotions and beliefs about money in our hearts through to adulthood.

I have learnt to talk about money when the relationship is going well. Don’t confuse relationship troubles with money troubles. Have regular conversations and integrate these conversations into your married life.

The resentment and conflict are often precisely because we don’t have these conversations. Keeping your emotions and feelings in check because you are too afraid to speak about money is not healthy.

2. Share your money beliefs

Everyone has a different relationship with money, and even if you believe that you and partner have most things in common, it is unlikely that you have the same money story.

Our relationship with money starts when we are young and the money messages we hear from our parents shape our money story. By the time you reach adulthood, your money story is so ingrained in your belief system that it functions on autopilot.

Partnering with someone who has a very different money story to you can make things even more complex.

Consider asking your partner these questions:

  • What is your first memory around money?
  • What formed your relationship with money?
  • What is your fear or money trigger?

The answers to these questions will help you understand how the money memories from childhood impacts on your partner’s belief around money today.

If you take the time to understand how each other’s relationship with money was formed, you will have a much clearer picture of how this impacts their behaviour and choices around money today. And importantly, you will understand what their money fears and triggers are.

3. Plan your goals and dreams

This is where you get to have some fun together.

Work on a list of goals and dreams together and have fun doing it. Just by having the opportunity to talk about your life goals makes it feel attainable. And listen to your partner’s goals and dreams.

Perhaps you will find some common goals, and perhaps you will find yourselves more easily accepting of each other’s dreams, even if they are different to yours.

If you both know what you as a couple want to spend money on, or how important saving is, or how much time you want to allocate to enjoyment and having fun, or even what your Bucket Wheel items are – and if you both buy into the plan, then you can start working towards common goals.

4. Money is a combined responsibility

Responsibility can be a burden, especially if you take it on alone. It’s the same with money. It’s unfair to make one partner responsible for the financial well-being of the entire family.

Work together, work towards the same goals and dreams.

Your Financial Plan must enable the life you envisage together. And if you are not comfortable with financial management, learn and empower yourself.

Support your partner by engaging and participating in the financial responsibilities.

5. Don’t manipulate and control with money. 

Remember, money has no power other than the power we give it.

Using money for this purpose, either by withholding it, as a means to punish, to show love or as something to be respected for, is the wrong place to put money in your relationship.

Money is just money – it has one purpose only, to enable the life you and your family dream of having.

What money fights are really about

Money troubles are the leading cause of marital problems in South Africa. This is not new to us; we have all heard the statistics before.  

Prifle photo of blond woman in corporate attireBut in my more than ten years of interviewing clients in Life Planning meetings, I have come to realise that couples don’t actually argue about the amount or lack of money they have. It is not the money they are fighting about. It is the power that goes with it.

Money and happiness
As I reflected on a recent Life Planning meeting with a married couple, I realised that there is much to learn about the role of money in relationships. And, that you are never too young, or too old to learn how your relationship with money can impact on your relationship with a loved one.

Just for fun, I decided to research the happiness factor of lottery winners, and visited the Ranker web-site, a digital media company in Los Angeles that holds one of the largest databases of opinion polls in the world. According to the Ranker opinion poll, 43% of people who win the lottery say the money has not improved their state of happiness in any way. At least 90% of lottery winners lose friends due to jealousy and resentment.

So yes, money certainly does not buy happiness, but how can we manage money in our relationships to ensure that it does not lead to a breakdown of our happiness?

The Call to be Courageous
Back to the Life Planning meeting with the married couple. This couple has been married for over 40 years, and for the first time in her life, the wife admitted that she has never been included in their financial planning process as a couple. She felt that she had no value to add, and had handed over the responsibility of their financial affairs to “others”. I am always surprised in client meetings how valuable it is to put courageous money conversations on the table. Sometimes I feel that clients are more at ease having these conversations with a Retiremeant™ Specialist present, as a mediator and safe-keeper of emotions.

colourful Wheel of balance with 8 areas: Relationships, Money, Learn, Health, Purpose, Play, Work, Give BackThis one meeting had such a profound impact on my day, and reminded me once again why we do what we do at Chartered. A marriage cannot be built on money, but as surely as it cannot buy happiness, it can so easily destroy a relationship. And it’s not the money that destroys the marriage. It’s the meaning we give to money, the emotions that come with money, the beliefs we have around money, and the expectations about money.

And so, with SA marriage week coming up from 1-7 September, maybe it’s time to have a heart-to-heart with ourselves and our partners about the role of money in our relationships. As the saying goes: You live and you learn – and luckily for us, we are never too old to learn.

Warm regards

Rising Strong

Living a brave life is not easy. It is impossible to be perfect; life itself is not perfect. Brené Brown’s book Rising Strong has inspired me in so many ways to keep trying, to give ‘living” a chance, despite the inevitable challenges and setbacks that life brings.

My journey to rising strong has not been a once-off event – learning and growing is a process. Brené’s book is a very personal and practical guide to embracing fear and failure and living a more courageous life. It often gives me courage when I find myself at a crossroad.

Those curve-balls life sends us

If we truly want to live and embrace life in its entirety, we have to be prepared for the eventuality that everything does not always work out exactly as planned. Setbacks are inevitable, and at times, we all get stuck in a place of fear, self-doubt and regret. It may just seem easier to accept defeat and retreat into a space that feels safe and secure … but Brené’s message is one of hope, of perseverance and strength.

It is in the acceptance of our vulnerability that we recognise that we are not powerless. In the space of vulnerability, we have time to accept our setbacks, time to reflect on our experiences, embrace them and practise the art of gratitude for the opportunity to learn from them. This gives us the power to rise up with renewed hope and strength to rewrite our future.

This was so true for me when I entered the financial planning industry. I have always believed that you cannot separate people from money and that a financial plan should support a person’s unique and personal life plan. With this perspective, I brought a new conversation to the traditional financial planning industry which predominantly only focused on investment returns. I knew intuitively that conversations about the client, the life the client wants to live and what their relationship with money is, were equally important.

When swimming upstream, remember your purpose

Re-thinking and challenging the way that financial planning has been done for decades, brought its fair share of criticism. I was constantly questioned by planners in the industry who referred to life planning as the “softer” issues and felt that these did not belong in the world of finances and investment strategies. I had moments of self-doubt and uncertainty and had to remind myself every day to persevere, to stay true to my beliefs and to keep on swimming – even though I was swimming upstream!

What made my journey worth it, and motivated me to keep on following my purpose, were the clients. Every time I had a courageous conversation with a client and saw how they embraced the fact that money can indeed enable a life of meaning, I felt inspired. And watching how clients design their Retiremeant™ as a fulfilling and meaningful next chapter, encourages me to keep rising strong.

I came to coin the concept, Retiremeant™ and define it as having the freedom to achieve your yet unfulfilled dreams and goals, on your terms and in your own time. Despite the challenges along the way, I am truly grateful that in my small way, I have made an impact on people’s lives. I am constantly moved by the stories clients share in Life Planning meetings and have come to realise that our combined knowledge and experiences are powerful stories and lessons that need to be told. This inspired me to start writing a second book, with our relationship with money as its central theme. I am also busy writing a series of e-books, a compilation of stories and lessons that our clients share around unexpected life events in – the Retiremeant™ What If’s.

We find strength together

This newsletter contains snippets of client stories and learnings shared in their journeys to rising strong – more of those in my upcoming e-books! Kate Turkington recently visited us at a Chartered Wealth Solutions and gave an insightful talk on her life in Retiremeant™. For me personally, Kate is a role-model on living Retiremeant™ to the fullest and I hope that you find appreciation and inspiration in her story. If you do have any spare time this weekend, I recommend that you see “Finding your Feet” which is showing in cinemas now.Brené Brown quote - we don't have to do all of it alone.

By sharing these stories, my wish is that you find comfort in the fact that you are not alone. Just maybe, one of these stories will touch you in some way, inspire you to live a brave life, through all your stumbles and falls, and give you the strength to rise bravely and strong.

Warm regards,

Kim Potgieter Hand written signature

We teach what we learn – unintentionally

We have a wonderful opportunity to teach our children responsible and healthy money lessons.

Imagine the possibilities for your children if they grow up with a healthy relationship with money – one where they don’t measure their self-worth by how much money they have … or don’t have. Over the years, many clients have expressed to me their various regrets and happiness around unhealthy and healthy money lessons they had learnt from their parents, and in turn, taught their children.

Some are proud of, and others regret the money messages shared.

As parents, it is our duty to teach our children right from wrong, but at the same time, be aware of not teaching them to be just like us. I am sure many parents have deliberated on messages and behaviours they would like to pass on to their children. And I guarantee you that no parent wants consciously to teach their children bad behaviour and unhealthy habits. or to pass on low self-esteem.

If you had to ask most parents what their number one wish for their children is, the answer will most probably be “happiness.” So how do we teach our children and perhaps grandchildren about money to inspire happy lives?

You can teach your children unintentionally or intentionally. Most communication to our children is probably unintentional. Children learn from what they hear, see and experience while growing up, and if your relationship with money is based on fear, loss and anxiety, then this is the message that you are unintentionally passing on. And in all probability, these were the messages passed on to you by your parents.

Would it surprise you to hear that recent research tells us that children’s money habits are formed by age seven? And that, as adults, we operate on a subconscious level 95% of the time? This means that our conscious mind is really only working 5% of the time while our subconscious mind runs the show most of the time!

Intentional teaching is sharing thoughtful money messages. We as parents can only teach thoughtful messages if we are aware of our own money story, understand our relationship with money and have the wisdom to change the behaviours that don’t serve us, and keep the ones that enable our lives in a positive way.

Real-life examples

I recently participated in a Life Planning meeting with a father and son. The father reflected on the money messages he heard while growing up. His father taught him to work hard for his money, and with hard work, comes reward. You may consider this to be a positive money message, but reflect for a moment if the message would have been more powerful if it had been about “earning money by adding value”? This father, now 70 years old, is still working hard for his money. He fears that if he is not working hard, he is not adding value and therefore not deserving of earning.

The father unintentionally passed this same message on to his son. He also works incredibly hard but expresses the wish to be able work “cleverly,” so that he can shape a more balanced life for himself. Father and son wholeheartedly agreed that this is a cycle they would like to break. They don’t mind working hard, but recognise the need for balance: more time to laugh, relax and just living the life they were meant to live. I am sure that the constraining message will not be passed on to future generations in this family.

Ingrid is a client who reflects on a very positive and empowering money story passed on to her by her father. Her father empowered his girls to be independent; he supported and sponsored their tertiary education at a time when most women were not encouraged to study. He instilled a belief in them that anything is possible. This belief Ingrid’s father had in her capability and ability to succeed served her well. Because of this, Ingrid has had the courage and determination to follow her true purpose in life – and make a success of it!

It astonishes me how powerful father and son relationships can be. In honour of Father’s Day this month, I would like to share one more father and son story that has inspired me as a mother of two boys. The son shared with me that his father always asked, “How much pocket money do you feel you deserve for the time it took to do your chores?” This money message has had a wonderful positive impact on the son’s life. Today, he sees earning money as an exchange for time. His most precious commodity in life is “time”. He will therefore always compare the value of his time versus the money that he is earning for his time. He is now planning to retire early from his formal career and re-invent his work so that he and his wife have more time to explore some of their unfulfilled dreams.

My parting thought on learning and teaching is a money message about saving and investing – the value of compound interest. This could be a fun activity to do with your grandchildren. My advice is not to just establish a savings or investment account for them, but rather to involve them in the process, engage with them on how it works – in this way you are helping them to take ownership from a young age.

Wishing you many happy – and intentional – courageous currency conversations in your family!

Kim Potgieter - a money message about saving and investing – the value of compound interest.

The cure lies in the cause

Wellness is not a point in time, but a continuous cycle. It is a continuum of cause and effect. 

Stress, anxiety and trauma are the most common reasons why people are unwell today.

It’s not the actual trauma or stress that causes your un-wellness, but how you respond or react to these events, the emotions that flow from your experiences, that impact on your well-being.

These are the health lessons presented by Dr Riaz Motara at a recent Lifestyle event for our Retiremeant™ clients.  To say I was inspired by Dr. Motara’s views on wellness is an understatement. I was so enthused that I immediately set up a follow-up appointment: I wanted to learn more!

Dr. Motara’s view on the correlation between health and our thoughts substantiates our Retire Successful philosophy that a healthy mind supports a healthy life. It’s about keeping your body fit, your mind challenged and your heart engaged.

Don’t discount the impact of your emotions
Dr Motara joins many other experts in the field of holistic health when he says that “fear” is the most significant emotion that underpins everything that happens to us as humans. It affects how we approach life, the decisions and choices we make, how we act or react – in fact, fear subconsciously steers almost everything we do.

The difficult part is that our emotions are not really a conscious choice to make. We feel, because we react to something in a certain way.

While fear is the core emotion, how we negatively react or feel, based on trauma, are derivatives of fear: hate, anger, disappointment, discontentment, abandonment, loss, insignificance – and the list goes on.

It all sounds so complex, doesn’t it? To explain, I shared with Dr. Motara that the therapist I was seeing after my third high-jacking told me that I brought all this onto myself. That made me angry! No – fuming! Then Dr. Motara explanation made sense: my negative emotions became my self-talk and all my efforts to heal after the trauma were based on overcoming my fear. I was so fixated with fear that I ended up attracting fear into my life. The stress and anxiety actually caused me to become unwell in body and mind.

It’s a matter of the heart
The same applies to your health. Being a cardiologist, Dr. Motara dedicates much thought and research to issues of the heart. He has actually found a strong correlation between depression and heart disease. He says that by treating patients holistically, and by delving into past experiences, he is able to determine when the heart disease started. For example, a client with heart disease also tested for low levels of serotonin. Motara discovered that the feeling of “un-wellness” and heart disease started hand-in hand, shortly after a traumatic life experience.

Motara believes that 50% of the cure of any illness is having insight into what caused it. Ask yourself:

  • When did it start? When can I last remember feeling great?
  • What did I get exposed to?
  • Does this correlate with how I am feeling now?

The answers are inside of us. Unfortunately, it is not always easy to access traumatic memories, but if you delve deep enough, and try to make sense of your behavioural patterns, you could probably pinpoint your health to a specific cause and reaction.

The cornerstone of complete wellness remains a holistic approach. It is essential to consult a medical practitioner to treat your symptoms, but it is also important to work on managing your emotions and dealing with all the challenges that life holds, which most commonly includes stress and anxiety.

So, this winter, while it’s cold and gloomy and early morning walks are not as appealing as in summer, why not spend some time exercising your mind towards wellness. I’ll join you in that!

Keep warm and well.

Follow your Flow

If you love what you do, it’s play, not work

Kim Potgieter, Author of Retirement: Get more Meaning from your MoneyEver been so involved in a specific task or project that all else falls away? So immersed in what you are doing that nothing else seems to matter? And the best part – when you finally emerge from your complete absorption, you feel happy … even elated! And you can honestly say that this was the best day of your life.  Now imagine feeling like this all the time – this is following your flow.  

So, no, time does not pass faster because you are getting older; it flies swiftly when you are engaged with something that resonates with your true and deepest passion.  Research by McKinsey spanning a decade shows that people ‘in flow’ are 500% more productive and learn between 200% and 500% faster.

I have spent much time reflecting on what brings meaning to my life.  I have realised that it is the people in my life – my family, friends, colleagues and clients – that fill my life with purpose, learning and wisdom.  The essence of who I am, what makes my life a meaningful adventure, rests in the sharing of what I have learned … and this is what my career has grown out of.  This is what it means to work in the flow.

Flow flavours life with purpose

The benefits of working in our flow is both tangible and intangible.  For me, a very important one is Gratitude.  It’s that feeling of happiness that blossoms from appreciation.  And the emotions of thankfulness just keep on flowing.  I am especially grateful for being able to do the work that I love and for the wonderful clients that share in my journey.

A tangible benefit expresses itself in the writing of my second book – and, for good measure, a whole series of e-books about our relationship with money, all with the aim of enabling a successful Retiremeant™. This journey allows me to spend time interviewing clients in order to share their insights and wisdom on money stories and work re-invention.  I am convinced that the success of my first book was partly because of the client stories. It is clear that people learn more from stories than theory. And stories are so powerful!

I am so grateful for the stories that our clients share.  Not only do these stories inspire me in my work and in writing my book, but the stories also inspire others in their RetiremeantTM ;journeys – they are encouraging and support people on so many levels.

Lynda’s story

I recently interviewed our client, Lynda Smith, Founder of Refirement Network and 50-Plus Skills.  You can read about her and her venture in this newsletter.  With this business initiative, Lynda is certainly working in flow. “If you love the work you do, it’s not work, it’s play,” she says.


Lynda is a prime example of merging her Passion with her Purpose to earn a Play-cheque.  But her journey did not just happen.  It took nine long years of thinking, planning, dreaming, and visualising her flow to get to where she is today. During those years, Lynda continued working for a salary to pay off debt and to invest towards her retirement fund.

Finding your flow often means a parallel process: the work that you are doing at the moment to service your financial responsibilities and the work you plan to do – work that you are passionate about, work that inspires you.

What I know for sure is that investing time to think about your flow, and, secondly, working in flow, can be so rewarding that it is absolutely worth the extra input of time and energy to reinvent your work-self in Retiremeant™.

Imagine the possibility of waking up every day and doing the work that speaks to your purpose – your flow.  What a glorious sunrise that would be!

Access the April issue of Inflight here

Kim Potgieter, Retirement Specialist at Chartered Wealth Solutions

Follow your Flow

My 50th birthday certainly marked a milestone in my life! And yes, I am still celebrating and excited about the adventures that lie ahead in fulfilling my passions.

I don’t think it has anything to with aging, but I am constantly reminded these days that time indeed flies when you are having fun. Have you ever been so involved in a specific task or project that all else falls away? So immersed in what you are doing that nothing else seems to matter? And the best part – when you finally emerge from your complete absorption, you feel happy! Even elated! And you can honestly say that this was the best day of your life! Now imagine feeling like this all the time.

So no, time does not fly because you are getting older, time flies swiftly when you are active on something that resonates with your true and deepest passion. And the added bonus – a research project by McKinsey and Co. spanning over a period of 10 years has shown that people in flow are 500% more productive and learn between 200 and 500 percent faster.

So yes, although I experience time flying at an immense speed every day, I am thankfully not getting older any faster. I have spent many hours reflecting on what brings meaning to my life, and have realised that it is the people in my life, my family, friends, colleagues and clients, that fill my life with meaning, learning and wisdom. My true happiness, my flow, does not only rest in the learning, but in the sharing. The essence of who I am, what makes my life a meaningful adventure, are these two things: learning and sharing. This is what it means to work in flow.

The benefits of working in flow just keeps adding up. I want to mention one more: Gratitude. That feeling of happiness that flows from appreciation. And the emotions of gratefulness just keep on flowing. I am grateful for being able to do the work that I love and for the wonderful clients that share in my journey.

I am busy writing my second book – and, for good measure, a whole series of e-books around our relationship with money matters to enable a successful Retiremeant™. This journey allows me to spend  a lot of time interviewing clients so that I can share their insights and wisdom on money stories and work re-invention. I am convinced that the success of my first book was partly because of the client stories. People just seem to learn from stories, rather than theory. And stories are so powerful!

I am so grateful for the stories that our clients are sharing. Not only do these stories inspire me in my work and writing my book, but the stories inspire others in their Retiremeant™ journeys, it encourages and supports people on so many levels.

I recently interviewed a client, Lynda Smith, Founder of the Refirement Network and 50+ Skills. Lynda’s vision is to influence 10% retirees to work for 5 years longer by applying their passions and skills to make a difference. With this business venture, Lynda is certainly working in flow. “If you love the work you do, it is not work, it’s play”, says Lynda. Lynda is a prime example of merging her Passion with her Purpose to earn a Play-cheque. But Lynda’s journey did not just happen. It took nine long years of thinking, planning, dreaming and visualising her flow to get to where she is today. During those years, Lynda continued working for a salary to pay off debt and invest towards her retirement fund.

Finding your flow often means a parallel process with the work that you are doing at the moment to service your financial responsibilities, with the work that you plan to do – work that you are passionate about, work that inspires you.

What I can say for sure, is that investing time to think about your flow, and secondly, working in flow, can be so rewarding that it is absolutely worth the extra input of time and energy to re-invent your work-self in Retiremeant™.

Imagine the possibility of waking up every day and doing the work that speaks to your purpose – your flow. What a glorious sunrise that would be!