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A Box with Rules. Monday June 1, 2015

Bizarrely, as a penniless Cleric, I have spent the last 18 months helping people understand the unappreciated power of pensions. (Yes, you heard me right, and, relax, this is Moodscope, not a sales' pitch!)

Pensions will act as our metaphor for today - and they are a powerful metaphor. For the majority of us, pensions are not only boring, they are complex and they are 'dead' money. They are a far-off promise that feels like nevereverafter. And that's what the 'System' wants us to believe. Why? Simply because it leaves the control with the insurance companies and banks. And they know best. (Yeah, right!)

Reassuringly, each different pension is just a box-with-rules. You put money in the box. The rules say what the contents of the box can invest in and who makes the decisions. They even say when you can tap into your potential future. I'm sure you can guess where I am going with this. I am revolting! Why would I let anyone else decide what to do with my time or money? This is my life. I intend to live it to the full.

The good news is that you can become the trustee of your own pension. You can decide (within certain limits) what your money can be invested in - in a sense, you can make the rules. And you get back control.

That's a long introduction to my point: your life is a just box-with-rules. Similarly to the former types of pensions, many of us have handed control over to an external party to dictate just what we are allowed invest our time in and other resources too (i.e. a job where you are employed and the boss decides when you can have holiday). Many of us have allowed other people to become the Trustees of our lives and futures. Now I hope you're revolting too!

My challenge to you today is to take back control. Change the box you live in. Become the Trustee of Your Own Destiny. And make the rules up as you go along!

Of course there are some other key "Aha!" moments to consider. Firstly, you can have some rules in place all the time - we call those your values. Those are good rules - perhaps better labelled 'principles'. You've chosen them. Secondly, you can have a Board of Trustees. I didn't become a penniless Cleric overnight, I had to make lots of consistently poor decisions. I would have benefited from a Board of Trustees who could balance my creativity with common-sense. Now I've got a Board, on board!

But I'm the Chairperson and majority shareholder. I make the rules. I make the final decisions. I am in control (ish).

Is it time to break out of your current box and break some rules?

I hope so. (Happy to be on your Board too!)

Lex
A Moodscope member.


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