Now, before I begin, let me first clarify that I am not pro-Royals. I’m also not anti-Royals. I’m largely just uninterested in them.
That said, the news that came out overnight is a fantastic demonstration of what Financial Planning is really about. Stick with me, it’ll make sense in a minute.
It’s a misconception that Financial Planning is about pensions and products. The reality is that good Financial Planning is really about helping Clients to figure out what they want from life and then helping them to achieve that, making sure their finances can support those goals.
But it’s the ‘helping Clients to figure out what they want from life’ that can often prove tricky. It can be hard, overwhelming and brave to recognise that the life you have now, isn’t necessarily the life you want to be living. It can take a lot of reflection, some bold decisions and courage to step out and say ‘THIS is what I want now and THIS is what I’m going to do about it’. And I mean, does it get any bolder than ‘disappointing’ the Queen of England?? Most of us feel scared explaining our life changes just to family and friends. Imagine having the global press scrutinising every move.
So how I see this is, what if everyone (Royal or not) is living life for the same purpose, which is to simply live in as much joy as we possibly can, in the short time we have on Earth? To then look at that life and establish which elements aren’t creating joy is a much simpler exercise. But the scary bit? To take action to get our lives back in alignment with that purpose, and live more joyfully.
And isn’t that really what Harry and Meghan are doing? They are saying that fundamentally, they are not living joyfully, they are not happy with how their one life is going. And they’re doing the bold thing of choosing to change it. I applaud them.
The other angle I find interesting is their ‘strive for financial independence’. Again, isn’t this really what we all want, celebrity or not? We all want complete freedom to live our days however we please, without the need to do anything in particular. To choose to work in a role we’re passionate in (or not work at all), to choose to spend time with family, to choose where to live, all without fear of ever running out of money.
And this is what financial planning truly achieves. It can help people to understand whether they can have that freedom of complete financial independence, and if they can’t, what they need to do to get there.
So if nothing else, thanks to Harry and Meghan for demonstrating what it looks like to make the difficult changes to live a life more on purpose. The world aren’t watching what you’re doing, so what’s stopping you?