Your Money Or Your Life: How Much Is Enough? The Nature Of Fulfillment

YMOYLThis is the tenth part of The Simple Dollar Book Club reading of Your Money or Your Life. Want to know more?

This chapter of Your Money or Your Life starts off with six questions that I thought were well worth reflecting on. So, here are my reflections on these questions.

What did you want to be when you grew up?
I alternated between wanting to be a scientist (focusing on a life science) or a writer. I felt some strong pushing towards becoming a medical doctor and some strong pushing towards being a writer, so I more or less rejected both and found another path.

What have you always wanted to do that you haven’t yet done?
Publish a book (preferably a novel) through a large enough publishing house that I could reasonably walk into a large bookstore in the first few months of its publication and find a copy for sale.

What have you done in your life that you’re really proud of?
Personally, raising my children. Professionally… well, you’re reading it. The sustained effort and relative level of quality of The Simple Dollar makes me very proud.

If you knew you were going to die within a year, how would you spend that year?
I’d stay at home with my kids and go on several road trips with them. I would hope to make that year very memorable for my son (my daughter is probably too young) and hopefully when he’s older he’ll know that his father loved him.

What brings you the most fulfillment – and how is that related to money?
Two things: spending time with my children and writing. The first one is basically an expense – children cost money. The other one earns a little money overall.

If you didn’t have to work for a living, what would you do with your time?
I’d write during the day, continuing The Simple Dollar and probably starting another blog and also propose a book deal. I’d drop my children off in the morning at daycare (I really, really like the environment of their daycare) and then pick them up in the evening, bring them home, and feed them a homecooked meal, then play with them and read to them until their bedtime. That would be my normal day.

What sort of picture does that paint? The only thing really keeping me from following that path is my own fear, really – fear that I won’t be able to make adequate money writing.

How do you answer these questions? I found it pretty powerful and a good indication of where my life perhaps should be headed.

From here, the chapter continues onto Step 4 of the plan, which contains “Three Questions That Will Transform Your Life.” Tomorrow, we’ll dig into these three questions, starting the section entitled “Question 1.” We’ll read this whole section, up until the “Assessing the Three Questions” heading. This section appears on pages 113 through 128 in my paperback version of the book.

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