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Does It Matter? Can I Control It? Where To Place Your Focus Thumbnail

Does It Matter? Can I Control It? Where To Place Your Focus

As a HENRY or Pre-retiree looking to create a plan to achieve your financial goals, you know it is not possible to predict the future. At Drucker Wealth we believe so strongly in educating our clients on how behavior will impact financial preparedness, and we make it a point to talk about behavior every opportunity we get.

Carl Richards recently shared a message that resonated so closely with our core beliefs we wanted to share it with you as well. 

Take a look at this sketch. Just pause for a second and look at it. Take a second to think about it.

This is one of my favorite sketches I’ve ever done. And I think that’s because it speaks not just to our financial lives, but to our complex, sticky, tricky, emotional lives as well. 

We only have so much time, energy, and attention. Only so much we can focus on. So… how do we decide where to place our focus?

When I’m trying to answer that question, I think back to this sketch, take a step back, and ask myself two questions:

1- Does it matter?
2- Can I control it?

Unless the answer is yes on both counts, you can stop thinking about it! For me, the list of things I can stop thinking about includes:

1- Whether my children get into college or not (because I can’t control it).
2- Whether I could have saved $5 on groceries by going to a different store (because it doesn’t matter).
3- Whether the stock market is in flux right now (because I can’t control it).
4- That guy who cut me off in traffic (because it doesn’t matter).

As I drive home from work, NOT thinking about any of those things, I am suddenly freed up to think about the things I CAN control and that DO matter.

For example:

1- How I treat my children, regardless of whether college is a good fit for them or not.
2- How I can get my shopping to align with my values.
3- How I behave when stock market fluctuations happen.
4- Learning to count to 10, taking a deep breath, and letting go when other drivers act like jerks.

Just imagine what might happen if you quit worrying about things you have no control over and quit obsessing over things that don’t matter. 

Where else might you be able to invest that extra time, energy, and attention?

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*Excerpt written by Carl Richards. Visual licensed by Behavior Gap.