Dutch Uncle Talk
I am not sure where the term "Dutch Uncle" came from but I am always one to kick in his two cents worth even if not invited. This past week two very pretty and talented writers both listed their 10 things they wanted to accomplish in their lifetime (or in the next year, to young people it is all the same) A new truck for their hubbies was on the list (I think this is an Oakie thing but it might be just something here in the heartland) I think this was going to make them happy. Well, lets talk about goals and objectives and programs.
My goal at an early stage of our life (OK, Barb inspired me with her's) was to have a retirement that I could a). Live on. And b) Have enough money to do a little travel. The first objective in this goal was to find a job that had a fairly good retirement program. There was Law enforcement, Fire fighting, Mail Carrier, State Employment or Federal Civil Service. We both knew that having a College degree was important and that was an objective in our life programs. It was almost a perfect match when after I graduated from KU that a Civil Service job working for the National Guard opened up. It was an area that I knew a lot about and for the most part enjoyed. The pay was just a living wage at first and we had to focus on the end not the today. The program that we used to achieve our objectives was at first property ownership, retirement programs, then IRAs (Tax deferred), 401(k)s and then investments. We tried several small stock purchases and I will have to say they have all been a total Disaster. I have never seen so many companies go broke with my money. We started small (Thank God) and never lost much but the stock market with individual purchases has been a bust for me. On the other hand, our money and property investments have been good to us. I think the rule for my investing became, "the return of my money is more important that the return on my money."
I think I can easily say that setting goals, developing objectives in those goals and figuring out what programs to fund those objectives worked for us.
I want to say here that wishing for a truck is not as good as establishing a goal to have a truck, setting objectives and then funding the truck program. I have a truck, I bought an old truck and put good stuff in that truck to make it work well. Is it painted fancy? Does it have a fancy radio? No, sadly it sits outside in a primer red but when I need it, it starts and runs great. We funded it with Petty Cash and it does what I need it to do. (I need to insert here that There is a certain brother-in-law that really helped put it into running order but heck, he doesn't want me to mention his name or tell anyone where he lives)
If you want happy, watch a Disney Movie. If you want practical, get real down to earth and talk with your spouse to set goals in your life, objectives that support those goals and fund programs to achieve those objectives. I think that being able to achieve our life goals will make us much more happy than a new truck in 2007. Besides, I had my one new car in my lifetime but that is another story. (Barb says I can have a new truck if I win the lottery -Talk about your wishful thinking)