2023 August Update

by | Aug 18, 2023

Last month, we talked about financial decision-making, and left you with some big, fluffy questions to contemplate while you were (hopefully) enjoying some well-deserved rest.

If you worked your way through those, you now may be sitting on some great answers about why you live where you do, like doing what you do, and enjoy the people you do. You may have a bit of an understanding as to why certain deadlines, like financial independence at a particular age, are important to you.

Even more delightful, you may have an idea of what makes you feel fulfilled and engaged with your life, and what the key components are of those activities.

These answers are really, really important.

In our society, we generally start engaging in external systems of learning, work, and activity at a very young age. Preschool, kindergarten, elementary, and secondary school fills up most of the first 18 years of our lives. Post-secondary schooling, career growth, and raising children (if that’s an option you chose) often take up the next 40-50 years.

We often don’t have the time, energy, or even the tools to step back and reflect. We’re just too busy. We get some idea of our natural talents and build our skills to earn a living. But taking time to figure out what we really like, and how we want to show up in the world, can feel indulgent or even selfish.

Maybe you got some of that time this summer.

Now that you have your big pile of answers to all those “why” questions, it’s time for the next step: Doing something with all those answers.

Your first step is to review your day-to-day activities, the ones you’re engaging in right now. Ask yourself: “What WHY is this fulfilling?” You’re still in data collection right now, so just write it down. If something is not actually fulfilling a particular why, write it down and put a star beside it or highlight it to come back to.

From there, when you’re making plans, whether they are work, holiday, or family, ask yourself the same question. “What WHY is this fulfilling?” Again, write down the answers.

Spend a week, or spend a month, engaging in this activity. You might add to this exploration with this worksheet from the Designing Your Life book recommended in last month’s blog to see what kind of engagement and energy you’re experiencing.

At Spring, our tagline is “Your Life, Well Spent” for a reason. We want you to have what you consider a really great life. The only way to do that well is to deeply understand what a really great life looks like to you. We can help you build a financially well-structured life, but if it’s not a life you enjoy, it’s not worth it for you, or for us. We want you to design your best life, and then we’ll help you build the financial structures that will support it.


Spring Team



Practice Notes:

We’ve been blessed with really high demand over the last few months at Spring Planning and are currently booking meetings up to four months in advance. This is a huge change from early in the year, when wait times were no longer than a week! If you have an active engagement with us, we’ve already got the time booked for you – not to worry. If you don’t have an active engagement at the moment, but suspect you’ll want a conversation in the coming months, please be in touch soon.

“Free” Fridays remain booked permanently in our calendars. These days are free to us at Spring in the sense that they are our opportunity to work on becoming better planners, whether through collaboration and discussion, education, research, or even a little down time. It’s been a regular practice since the summer of 2017, and we will continue to set aside the time to become better versions of ourselves every week. Even 1% better is solidly worth it, because we know that will be reflected in the work we do for you.


Incapacity Planning Webinar September 21, 2023: 10 am Pacific
Julia will be sharing the stage (or screen?) with Rose Shawlee of Boughton Law and Sue Talbot of Genus Capital for a conversation about incapacity planning. This is a webinar for people of all ages and all walks of life, as incapacity can impact us, either in ourselves or our family members, at any time. Save September 21 at 10 am Pacific in your calendar, and look for the registration link in the next newsletter!


Spring in the News:

Julia discussed with Erica Alina the process of preparing and strategizing for mortgage interest rate changes when the time for renewal arrives. Read the full article here (for Globe and Mail subscribers).

Julia engaged in a conversation with Brenda Bouw regarding the transformations that the FIRE (Financial Independence, Retire Early) movement has experienced, as well as the sobering assessment of its current appearance. Read the full article here (for Globe and Mail subscribers).

Rob Carrick and Julia reviewed the bridge benefits involved with a Canadian Armed Forces pension. Read the full Q & A here in the Ask Rob section.

Please check out our media page here for videos, podcasts, interviews and more.


Planning News Digest:

  • Stop asking Whether Money Buys Happiness – Researchers have been studying this question for decades. Recent results are contradicting earlier findings, discovering that the amount of happiness that money buys, at certain levels, is marginal at best. Read the full article here.
  • How to Prep for Divorce when Wealth is Involved – Divorce is already painful enough, and the financial divisions seem to just compound that pain. You can prepare for the numbers part of this process by working through these great steps from Ellevest. Review all of the preparation steps here.
  • What Advisors Get Wrong About Money Scripts – Money scripts are often discussed in financial planning – we all have them, and understanding what they are and how their uniqueness can help us make better financial decisions. Read the full article here.


Feature from the Archives:

Building Community With Your Financial Plan – It’s worth stopping to contemplate your communities in the context of your finances. How much will they contribute to your income? How much will you set aside out of your income to contribute to them? If a particular community is incredibly important to you, how much will be enough for you to feel that your value has been met?


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Julia Chung
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