Contributed by Lewis J. Walker, CFP®
What follows is not original and the author is unknown. Apparently the text was found in the possessions of famed Alabama football coach Paul Bear Bryant after he passed away. It’s a thought-provoking piece entitled "The Magic Bank Account."
Imagine that you won the following prize in a contest: Each morning your bank would deposit $86,400 in your personal account for your exclusive use. However, there are strict rules: 1. Everything you did not spend during each day would be taken away from you. 2. You may not simply transfer money into another account. 3. Only you may spend it. 4. Each morning upon awakening, the bank opens your account with another $86,400 for that day. 5. The bank can end the game without warning; at any time it can declare, GAME OVER! The bank can close the account and you will not receive a new one.
What would you do? You would buy anything and everything you wanted, right? Not only for yourself, but for all of the people you love and care for. Even for people you don't know, because you can't possibly spend it on yourself, right? You would try to spend every penny and use it all because you know it would be replenished in the morning, right?
Actually the contest, the game, is real. Are you shocked? YES! Each of us already is a winner of this prize. We just can't seem to see it.
The prize is TIME. 1. Each morning we awaken to receive 86,400 seconds as a gift of life. 2. And when we go to sleep at night, any remaining time is not credited to us. 3. What we haven't used up that day is lost. 4. Yesterday is forever gone. 5. Each morning the account is refilled, but the bank can dissolve your account at any time, without warning!
So, what will you do with your 86,400 seconds? Those seconds are worth so much more than the same amount of dollars. Think about it and remember to enjoy every second of your life, because time races by much quicker than you think. So take care of yourself, be happy, love deeply and enjoy life! Here's wishing you a wonderful and beautiful day. Start spending...
Don't complain about growing old! Some people don't get the privilege!
The foregoing was circulated by a graduate of the Class of 1956 from Bishop Kenny High School in Jacksonville, Florida, where I grew up. Teenagers when they graduated, they are 78, about to turn 79. A third of the class has passed away. When they were 18, someone 79 was "old," a grandma and grandpa. Now they consider themselves fortunate to be a grandma and grandpa. At 18, you are immortal. When you are 79 or older you are happy to roll out of bed each morning and have your feet hit the floor!
Coach Bear Bryant told his players, “Don’t give up at halftime. Concentrate on winning the second half.” Good advice, especially if you are retired or are about to be, whether you are in the halftime of life or the fourth quarter. You have been given a gift of time, and a gift of wisdom learned through experience in your journey from your teens to now. You have learned what is important, and what is not. Net worth, both financial capital and human capital, are couched in new meanings within concepts of love, legacy, purpose, and spirituality. "Winning" has a different meaning.
Coach Bryant was a heavy drinker and smoker and his health declined rapidly in the 1970s. Shortly before his death at age 69 in 1983, he met evangelist Robert Schuller on an airplane. Their talk about religion had a major impact on Bryant. Perhaps, with goal to go, he received a last minute gift of redemption, a spiritual "Hail Mary pass," before he crossed into the end zone.
Bear Bryant had another saying: "When you make a mistake, there are only three things you should ever do about it: 1. Admit it. 2. Learn from it, and 3. Don’t repeat it." If only politicians would learn that!
Do I hear a hearty, “Roll, Tide, Roll!”? Happy 2017!
Lewis Walker is a financial planning and investment strategist at Capital Insight Group; 770-441-2603. Securities and advisory services offered through The Strategic Financial Alliance, Inc. (SFA). Lewis Walker is a registered representative and investment adviser representative of SFA which is otherwise unaffiliated with Capital Insight Group.