Embracing emotional honesty

In a world that often glorifies the “stay positive” mantra, it’s easy to fall into the trap of toxic positivity — the belief that no matter how dire or difficult a situation, people should maintain a positive mindset.

But is there such a thing as too much positivity?

According to Dr. Susan David, a psychologist at Harvard Medical School and author of “Emotional Agility,” the answer is a resounding yes. “Forced positivity is not leadership. It’s denial,” she asserts.

Hope and optimism, integral to overcoming challenges and seizing opportunities, differ significantly from this brand of false positivity. They are not about ignoring the negatives but are future-oriented states, earned through hard work, problem-solving, and a willingness to confront and create better outcomes. They don’t shy away from hard conversations or insist on a facade of unwavering cheerfulness but recognise difficult feelings as indicators of underlying issues, urging us toward emotional honesty.

Echoing this sentiment, Brené Brown, a research professor and author known for her work on vulnerability, courage, and empathy, champions the power of vulnerability. “Vulnerability is not winning or losing; it’s having the courage to show up and be seen when we have no control over the outcome,” Brown says. This vulnerability allows us to confront our challenges head-on, acknowledging our fears and uncertainties without succumbing to a veneer of unfounded positivity.

The danger of toxic positivity, especially when tackling new projects or embracing opportunities, lies in its dismissal of genuine emotions. It encourages a superficial glossing over of problems, which can lead to unaddressed issues and unresolved tensions. In contrast, a balanced approach — one that welcomes hope and maintains optimism while acknowledging the reality of the situation — fosters resilience and adaptability.

This balanced approach is particularly relevant in financial planning and personal growth. The path to financial security or personal achievement is rarely linear and often fraught with setbacks and challenges. Acknowledging the reality of these challenges, rather than painting them over with a brush of unwarranted positivity, enables more effective problem-solving and strategic planning. It invites a fuller, more nuanced understanding of the situation, opening the door to innovative solutions and deeper personal growth.

As we navigate the complexities of new ventures and opportunities, let’s strive to balance optimism and realism. Let’s encourage emotional honesty, not just in ourselves but in those around us, recognising that acknowledging our vulnerabilities and fears is not a sign of weakness but a courageous step toward genuine progress and meaningful change.

By fostering an environment where difficult emotions can be expressed and explored, we lay the groundwork for true resilience and lasting success. After all, as Dr. David suggests, it’s through confronting our realities — not denying them — that we pave the way for a genuinely hopeful and optimistic future.

Smaller, manageable chunks, today

In the hustle and bustle of daily life, it’s easy to push aside the administrative tasks that seem daunting or time-consuming. Yet, when tax season rolls around, many find themselves overwhelmed by the mountain of financial paperwork that has piled up. The principle of tackling big tasks in small, manageable chunks isn’t new, but it’s astonishing how often it’s overlooked, especially when it comes to managing our finances.

As the well-known organising consultant Marie Kondo says, “The objective of cleaning is not just to clean, but to feel happiness living within that environment.” This philosophy can extend beyond just cleaning your home to managing your financial environment as well. By dedicating just a little bit of time each month to organising your financial documents, capturing expenses, and revisiting your budget, you can avoid the stress and scramble that often accompanies the end of a tax, financial or calendar year.

David Allen, author of “Getting Things Done,” emphasises the freedom that comes from having a complete and organised overview of your tasks: “Your mind is for having ideas, not holding them.” Applying Allen’s method to your financial admin means capturing all your tasks and information in a trusted system outside your head.

This could mean scheduling a monthly financial “review” day on your calendar, where you check statements, log expenses, and adjust your budget as needed. By doing so, you’ll free up mental space for more creative and productive pursuits, knowing that your financial house is in order. This method also makes it easier to share your financial situation with others who may need to step in or support you.

James Clear, in his book “Atomic Habits,” speaks to the profound impact of small changes over time: “Habits are the compound interest of self-improvement.” Just as a single degree of change in direction can significantly alter a ship’s course over a long journey, so too can small, regular efforts in co-ordinating your finances lead to a considerably less stressful tax or holiday season.

So – for those who dread the end-of-year financial frenzy, the solution is simpler than you might think. Start by setting aside a little time each month to deal with your financial admin. Break down the tasks into small, achievable goals: today, you might capture and file your receipts; tomorrow, review one month’s bank statements. Over time, these tasks become part of a routine, transforming a once-daunting process into a series of simple steps.

Remember, the goal isn’t just to be prepared for tax season; it’s to create a sense of calm and control over your financial well-being. In the words of Anne Lamott, “Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes, including you.” Sometimes, unplugging from the chaos of procrastination and plugging into a routine of regular, planned and intentional action is all it takes to transform your approach to financial admin.

So, as we move through the year, let’s embrace the principle of doing a little bit each month. It’s not just about avoiding the last-minute rush; it’s about empowering ourselves to live less cluttered, more organised financial lives.

Courage: The catalyst for personal and financial transformation

In the journey of life, courage is often the unsung hero that propels us toward change and growth. It’s the force that challenges us to step out of our comfort zones and embrace the unknown.

Bonnie Garmus aptly reminds us, “Courage is the root of change – and change is what we’re chemically designed to do.”

This powerful statement is a call to action, urging us to break free from the constraints of fear and self-doubt and to boldly chart our own course, both personally and financially.

The first step in this journey is recognising that fear is a natural part of the human experience. It’s not something to be ashamed of, but rather a signal that we are on the cusp of something significant.

Embracing courage doesn’t mean the absence of fear; it means acknowledging our fears and choosing to move forward regardless. In the context of financial planning, this might mean taking calculated risks, such as investing in a new venture, pursuing further education to enhance career prospects, or even making a significant life change like relocation for better opportunities.

Courage also involves challenging societal expectations and stereotypes that often hold us back. This is particularly relevant when it comes to financial independence and empowerment. For too long, many have been constrained by narrow definitions of what they can achieve based on gender, race, economic status, or religion. Embracing courage means rejecting these limitations and believing in our unique abilities and potential. It’s about taking control of our financial destiny, whether it’s negotiating for a well-deserved raise, starting a business, or managing our investments proactively.

Moreover, courage is about self-discovery and embracing our talents. Each of us has unique skills and passions that, when nurtured, can lead to fulfilling and financially rewarding careers or ventures. It requires the bravery to pursue what truly resonates with us, even if it goes against the conventional wisdom of what is considered a “safe” or “practical” career path.

But courage isn’t just about grand gestures; it’s also found in the small, everyday decisions we make. It’s in the discipline of saving a portion of our income, the diligence of creating and sticking to a budget, and the perseverance in paying off debt. These actions might seem mundane, but they require a consistent commitment to our long-term financial well-being.

As we look ahead, let’s use Garmus’ words as a mantra: “Ask yourself what YOU will change. And then get started.” This change could be in how we approach our finances, how we view our capabilities, or how we plan for our future. It’s about setting goals that reflect our true aspirations and taking actionable steps to achieve them.

By embracing courage, we open ourselves to a world of possibilities. We become architects of our own destiny, capable of crafting a life that is as financially sound as it is personally fulfilling. Let this be the year we tap into our courage, challenge the status quo, and ignite the change we wish to see in our lives.

The ripple effect of change

Change, a constant companion in our journey through life, often becomes a focal point as we transition into a new year. However, its principles are timeless, transcending the boundaries of calendars and seasons.

The essence of change lies in grand resolutions and the subtle shifts of our everyday choices – from our thoughts and attitudes to our actions. Significantly, these changes, no matter how small, can profoundly impact our finances and social environment.

At the heart of all change lies the power of mindset. Our perception and approach to life’s challenges and opportunities shape our reality. The beliefs and attitudes we hold are the blueprints of the future we are building. When we adopt a growth mindset, we open ourselves to possibilities, learning, and adaptation.

This perspective allows us to see beyond temporary setbacks, viewing them as stepping stones to greater achievements. This mindset directly influences our financial decisions – encouraging us to invest in our growth, seek new opportunities, and approach financial planning with optimism and strategy.

Actions, the physical manifestations of our thoughts, are where change becomes visible. The choices we make daily, from the minor to the monumental, set the trajectory of our lives. In the realm of finance, this translates to budgeting with intention, conscious spending, and thoughtful investment. It means being intentional about only allowing expenses that align with our values and goals, and being mindful of the long-term implications of our financial habits.

The change within us inevitably radiates outward, influencing the world around us. Meaningful social change often begins in the most intimate settings – our homes. How we manage our resources, engage with our family members about finances, and model fiscal responsibility can have lasting impacts on our immediate community. These homegrown changes can inspire others, creating a ripple effect that extends far beyond our personal sphere.

Understanding that all change, including financial change, has a social dimension is crucial. Our financial decisions can impact our community, whether through supporting local businesses, engaging in ethical investing, or participating in community-based financial initiatives. As we navigate our financial journey, we can contribute to a larger narrative of social responsibility and collective progress.

In essence, change is not an event but a process – a continuous evolution of our mindset, actions, and their subsequent impact on our personal and social worlds. It’s a journey of aligning our financial decisions with our deepest values and aspirations, understanding that every choice we make, no matter how small, contributes to our well-being and the world we live in.

As we embrace the principle of change, let us remember that it’s not confined to the start of a new year. Change is an ongoing opportunity to reshape our lives and, by extension, our finances and our world. It’s about making each day count, each decision matter, and understanding that the greatest changes often start with a single thought, a simple action, a moment of reflection.

Here’s to embracing change in all its forms, for it is the path to growth, fulfilment, and a better world for ourselves and future generations.

Revitalising your planning approach

At any moment during the year, finding the space to pause and reflect is more than just a breather; it’s a chance for a transformative new start. It’s an opportunity to step back from the day-to-day grind, to reassess and to break free from the habitual patterns that often govern our approach to planning and organising both our lives and our finances. By stepping outside these familiar routines, we open ourselves up to fresh perspectives and innovative ways of thinking.

This time of reflection isn’t just about minor adjustments or tweaking schedules; it’s about a deeper, more meaningful reevaluation of how we envision our future. With the insights of thought leaders like Oprah Winfrey, Charlie Munger, and Mark Manson to guide us, we can cultivate a renewed sense of purpose in our planning. Their wisdom encourages us to look beyond conventional methods and to find a planning style that truly resonates with our personal aspirations and core values.

Oprah Winfrey: Envisioning a Purpose-Driven Path

Oprah Winfrey, an emblem of empowerment and transformation, eloquently stated, “Create the highest, grandest vision possible for your life, because you become what you believe.” When it comes to planning, it’s not just about setting goals; it’s about envisioning a life that resonates with our deepest values and aspirations. It is greatly empowering to let this vision guide our goals and actions, making our planning a powerful tool for personal fulfilment.

Charlie Munger: The Art of Reversal

Investment sage Charlie Munger promoted the practice of inversion: “Invert, always invert.” Apply this to your planning process. Think about what could lead to failure and how to avoid those pitfalls. This approach helps identify potential obstacles in advance, making your plans more robust and achievable. There’s another great proverb that says ‘If you can’t solve a problem, turn it upside down!’ This immediately gives us a different perspective on what we’re facing and helps us approach the problem with new insight.

Mark Manson: The Subtle Art of Prioritising

Author Mark Manson brings a pragmatic perspective on setting priorities. “You cannot be everything you want to be, but you can be a lot more of who you already are,” he suggests.

This year, let your planning focus on enhancing and prioritising aspects of your life that truly matter. Identify your core values and ensure your goals are in harmony with them.

Remember, the effectiveness of a plan lies not in its rigidity but in its adaptability to life’s dynamics while keeping us anchored to what truly matters.

By embracing this timeless approach to planning, we open ourselves up to growth, achievements, and fulfilment, inspired by the profound insights of these thought leaders. Let’s make our planning journey not just about reaching destinations but about enjoying the path itself, with a strategy that truly reflects who we are and what we aspire to be.

The only list you have to worry about

“He’s making a list, and checking it twice;
Gonna find out who’s naughty and nice.”

You’ve probably heard that line once or twice, right? For those who celebrate Christmas, there’s a tradition that speaks to Santa Claus having two lists, and only the kids on the nice list (good and well-behaved)… get gifts. Interestingly, this is not a Christmas-time tradition, but rather a parenting hack designed to keep kids in line during the rest of the year! For sure, it’s more prominent in October and November, and even the first stressed-out weeks of December, but many parents keep it in their bag of last-resort techniques to achieve their desired outcomes.

But – there’s a different list that plays a much more supportive role in our continuous quest for efficiency and productivity – and it may be the only list you have to worry about.

It’s the humble checklist that emerges as a surprisingly powerful tool.

Often overlooked in its simplicity, a checklist, when crafted thoughtfully, can streamline our days, elevate productivity, and reduce stress. However, it’s startling to note that despite their potential, many of us are not harnessing the full power of checklists.

The first step towards an effective checklist is a complete brain dump. This process involves writing down every task, project, goal, and to-do item, crowding your mind. This isn’t just about organising tasks; it’s about relieving the cognitive load. By transferring your mental clutter onto paper or a digital tool, you free up mental space, allowing for clearer thinking and focus.

Once you’ve listed everything, it’s time to separate and prioritise these tasks. The Eisenhower Matrix is a valuable tool here, helping you categorise tasks by urgency and importance. Break them down into four categories: Urgent and Important, Not Urgent but Important, Urgent but Not Important, and Not Urgent and Not Important. This categorisation clarifies what requires immediate attention and what can wait, thereby structuring your day more effectively.

A Morning Routine list is another crucial element. Starting each day with a simple, consistent routine primes your brain for productivity. Whether it’s hydrating, eating a healthy breakfast, stretching, doing a plank, or meditating, these activities signal to your brain that it’s time to switch into a productive state.

Connecting tasks to overarching goals is also essential. For each task, ask yourself, “Why am I doing this?” Understanding the purpose behind each task ties them to your broader goals. This connection is crucial because goals fuel motivation, and motivation enhances productivity.

However, the key to a successful checklist is not to overload it. Being busy doesn’t necessarily equate to being productive. Limiting yourself to 3-5 major tasks and 1-2 minor tasks per day can prevent burnout and maintain motivation. This approach aligns with research suggesting that people with checklists complete their work 40% faster. But the efficiency isn’t just in the doing; it’s in the strategic planning and prioritising of what needs to be done.

In conclusion, the art of creating and using checklists is deeply rooted in psychology. It’s about understanding how our brains work, what motivates us, and how we can best organise our time and resources. A well-crafted checklist is more than a to-do list; it’s a roadmap for a productive, less stressful, and more fulfilling day.

Remember, the power of the checklist lies not in its length, but in its relevance and alignment with your personal and professional goals.

The Power of ‘Get To’ Over ‘Have To’

Life only seems to get busier – no matter how hard we try to slow things down. It’s easy to fall into a pattern of viewing tasks and responsibilities as burdens, things we ‘have to’ do. This mindset, often a default setting, can make our days feel heavy and obligatory.

But what if we could shift this perspective? What if, instead of ‘I have to’, we started saying ‘I get to’? This simple linguistic flip can transform our approach to everyday life, infusing it with gratitude and positivity.

The ‘get to’ philosophy is rooted in gratitude. It’s about seeing the tasks, challenges, and even the mundane aspects of our lives as opportunities or privileges.

For instance, consider the phrase, ‘I have to go to work.’ Now, reframe it as, ‘I get to go to work.’ The latter implies gratitude for employment, for the ability to contribute skills, and for the daily experiences that work brings. This mindset doesn’t just add a positive spin to our tasks; it fundamentally alters our relationship with everyday life, highlighting the privileges we often take for granted.

Traditions, whether they are cultural, familial, or personal, are a splendid canvas for the ‘get to’ mindset. Let’s take holiday traditions, for example. The preparation for these events can sometimes feel overwhelming — a list of things we ‘have to’ do. But if we shift our perspective to ‘get to,’ we start to appreciate these moments differently. We ‘get to’ prepare a family meal, a chance to nurture and bond. We ‘get to’ decorate our homes, an opportunity to create beauty and share joy.

Even in the realm of financial planning, the ‘get to’ mindset can be revolutionary. Instead of viewing budgeting as a restrictive chore, we can see it as gaining control and clarity over our finances. It’s not ‘I have to save for retirement,’ but ‘I get to secure my future.’ This mindset makes the journey towards financial goals less about deprivation and more about empowerment and future possibilities.

And, there’s a ripple effect in thinking this way…

Adopting the ‘get to’ mindset can have a profound ripple effect on our well-being. It fosters an attitude of thankfulness and abundance, linked to better mental health, more satisfying relationships, and a greater sense of fulfilment. This perspective encourages us to find joy in the ordinary, to cherish the small moments, and to approach life with a renewed sense of purpose.

As we navigate through our daily lives, let’s challenge ourselves to reframe our thoughts. Each ‘get to’ is an invitation to acknowledge and celebrate the many blessings we often overlook. By embracing this mindset, we’re not just changing how we speak; we’re transforming how we think, feel, and interact with the world. Let’s turn every ‘have to’ into a ‘get to,’ and watch as our lives unfold with a renewed sense of gratitude and joy.

The relationships we cherish and celebrate

In the rhythmic and deceptively unpredictable day-in and day-out of our calendars, there are moments when our wallets feel significantly lighter. The end of the year, with its festive sparkle and cheer, often brings a flurry of spending that can leave many of us dizzy. It’s not just the holidays, though. Think about that one month when it seems everyone you know is celebrating a birthday, or perhaps the season of weddings and anniversaries.

These periods of intensified spending, while joyous, can also bring a unique set of challenges and opportunities.

As we navigate these financially demanding times, the principles of lifestyle and integrated financial planning become our guiding stars. It’s about more than just managing our money; it’s about aligning our financial decisions with the life we aspire to live. The end of the year, for instance, is not just a time for gift-giving and feasts. It’s a period steeped in reflection, gratitude, and connection. Similarly, those months brimming with birthdays and weddings are not just about the transactions we make, but about the relationships we cherish and celebrate.

The key to navigating these financially intensive periods lies in a balance of foresight, planning, and a touch of creativity. Integrated financial planning encourages us to look ahead, to anticipate these high-expenditure times and prepare for them. This might mean setting aside a little each month into a ‘celebration fund’ or re-evaluating our budget to accommodate these expenses without derailing our long-term financial goals. It’s about creating a financial plan that’s flexible enough to accommodate the ebb and flow of life’s demands.

But it’s not all about cutting back or saving up. Sometimes, it’s about redefining what these occasions mean to us. Can we find more joy in handcrafted gifts or in experiences shared, rather than in expensive purchases? In weddings and birthdays, can the gift of time, a heartfelt letter, or a shared experience outweigh the traditional, often pricier, choices? This shift in perspective not only eases financial pressure but also enriches these events with a more personal and meaningful touch.

However, despite our best intentions, there may be times when we overspend. It’s human to get caught up in the moment, in the desire to give and celebrate. This is where the role of a financial planner becomes crucial. We’re not just here to help chart a course through the calm seas but to provide guidance and reassurance when the waters get choppy. We aim to help you navigate back to your financial goals, adjust strategies, and offer advice on how to recover from any unplanned expenditures.

Moreover, integrated financial planning isn’t just reactive; it’s proactive. It involves understanding your financial behaviour, recognising patterns, and planning for them. Do you tend to overspend during the holiday season or on special occasions? Acknowledging these tendencies allows you and your financial planner to develop strategies to counteract them, ensuring that these periods of high spending don’t disrupt your overall financial well-being.

The Ballad of Golden Means

The Ballad of Golden Means

In sooth, a tale of coin oft told,
Doth shake the hearts of young and old;
For lucre’s siren song entwines
The very core of mortal lines.

Yet, shall we to this master bow?
Or find we balance ‘twixt the bough?
In measure fair and wisdom’s sight,
Let not the gold our souls indict.

For though the purse may fill with glee,
’Tis but a shadow’s feign’d decree.
A full heart needs not excess,
But thrives in love’s simple caress.

Hark! Wise Shakespeare’s quill doth spin,
“Neither a borrower nor a lender be;”
For richness found in peace within,
Outweighs the chest of treasury.

This sonnet, inspired by the timeless musings of the Bard of Avon, illuminates the complex relationship humanity has with money. Shakespeare himself often peppered his works with financial wisdom, understanding that money, while a necessary player in the theatre of life, should never overtake the essence of human experience.

Here are some of the greats…

“Timon of Athens”

One of Shakespeare’s lesser-known plays, “Timon of Athens,” is a cautionary tale about wealth, generosity, and ingratitude. Timon, a wealthy Athenian, lavishes his fortune on parasitic friends. When his wealth evaporates, so does their loyalty, and Timon is left destitute and embittered. The play speaks to the dangers of tying one’s identity too closely to wealth and the fickle nature of friends won by money.

“The Merchant of Venice”

This play is rich with monetary themes, most famously in the storyline involving Shylock, the Jewish moneylender, and Antonio, the titular merchant. The bond between them, which involves a pound of Antonio’s flesh as collateral for a loan, reflects on the peril of debt and the complexities of business ethics. Through the characters’ dealings, Shakespeare contemplates the value of mercy over material wealth, as well as the cost of human life against monetary debt.

“Hamlet”

In “Hamlet,” Polonius gives his son Laertes a litany of advice, including the oft-quoted financial counsel: “Neither a borrower nor a lender be; For loan oft loses both itself and friend.” This nugget of wisdom warns of the personal and financial perils of mixing money with relationships.

“King Lear”

In “King Lear,” we see a tragedy unfold around wealth, power, and family. Lear’s decision to divide his kingdom based on his daughters’ professions of love speaks to the folly of equating monetary gain with genuine affection and loyalty. The play ultimately reveals the emptiness of wealth without the foundation of true human bonds.

We open our sonnet above by recognising money’s powerful role, acknowledging its potential to captivate both the youth in their naivety and the elders in their reflection. Yet, it challenges us to question its sovereignty, urging a balance that can be found “’twixt the bough,” an allegory for life’s myriad offerings beyond the financial realm.

The third quatrain cautions against the illusion that happiness is synonymous with wealth. True contentment is not found in the abundance of possessions but rather in the intangible richness of love and connection.

Echoing Polonius’s advice to Laertes in “Hamlet,” the couplet serves as a moral compass, guiding us towards inner peace and self-reliance rather than the uncertainty of debt and dependence. It’s a call to value our internal wealth over external riches.

In contemporary terms, this poetic reflection serves as a reminder that while financial security is important, it is but one facet of a fulfilling life. Our financial pursuits should not consume us to the point of overshadowing the other aspects of our existence – relationships, passions, and inner peace. The greatest wealth we can accumulate is the richness of a well-lived life, balanced in means and rich in purpose.

Why we may never have ‘enough’

The concept of ‘enough’ remains as elusive as the horizon — always visible yet forever just out of reach. This is particularly true in our relationship with money, a relationship that often mirrors the depths of human desire and the complexities of contentment.

The nature of enough is a philosophical rabbit hole. On the one hand, it is an acknowledgement of sufficiency, a nod to the point where need and provision are in harmony. Yet, paradoxically, it is also the starting line for more — a restless starting block from which we sprint after the next financial milestone. The notion of having ‘enough’ money is bound by personal context, subject to the shifting sands of life’s circumstances and societal benchmarks.

In a culture where success is frequently measured by material accumulation, ‘more’ is an endless call, luring us with promises of security, happiness, and status. But as philosopher Epicurus pointed out, “Nothing is enough for the man to whom enough is too little.”

This insatiability is deeply woven into the fabric of our economic system, which thrives on continuous growth and consumption. Yet, this perpetual hunger for more often leads to a cycle of endless pursuit, where satisfaction is a moving target, always just beyond the next paycheck or purchase.

The stoics, on the other hand, teach us about ataraxia — a state of serene calmness, a contentment that comes not from external acquisitions but from inner peace and the wisdom of knowing what is truly necessary. Seneca, a stoic philosopher, cautioned against allowing fortune to dictate happiness, suggesting that wealth is not one of the good things but a ‘neutral’ thing, a tool whose value is determined by its use.

What, then, if we reframe our perception of ‘enough’? What if enough isn’t a number in a bank account but a mindset, a perspective that allows us to find contentment in the present while still fostering ambitions for the future? This balance is not found in passive resignation but in active gratitude, a nuanced understanding that while we strive for more, we also celebrate what is.

In this light, the statement “we’ll never have enough” can transform from a sentence of eternal dissatisfaction to a recognition of life’s boundless possibilities. It’s not a curse of perpetual lack, but an invitation to ongoing growth, learning, and experience. It’s an acknowledgement that the richness of life is not solely contained within the confines of financial wealth.

The truth is, there will always be more money to earn, just as there will always be more life to live, more love to give, and more wisdom to gain. In recognising that ‘enough’ is a fluid concept, we might find that our lives are fuller than we realised — not with the clutter of possessions, but with the things that truly enrich us: relationships, experiences, and the joys of a life well-lived.

In the end, perhaps it’s not about having ‘enough’ money, but about having enough of what money can’t buy. The art, then, is not only in the earning but in the art of discerning — figuring out what enough means for us and adjusting our sails accordingly on the vast ocean of life.