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Non-Financial Goals: What if Your Money Problems were Solved?

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About four months ago, Kenric of e-mailed me with a question. He has just written about post about non-financial goals and asked me "Do you have non-financial goals and how do they affect your financial goals?"

In his post he gives examples of some non-financial goals: visiting the Grand Canyon, climbing Mt. Everest, sailing around the world. I'd like focus on these goals because they have a financial prerequisite. Kenric brings up a great point in his point that having these goals in mind allows you to focus your attention on the task. For us, we'd like to have a newer construction house in the suburbs of Boston. I imagine my wife and I hosting a BBQ, with people playing bocce and some smoothing jazz in the background. Owning a house with enough land to accommodate this scenario requires financial planning and forethought.

When I started Lazy Man and Money, I hadn't put specific thought in my non-financial goals. If you could call it a non-financial goal, I aimed to have the financial freedom to explore other goals that I knew would have financial prerequisites. As I mentioned yesterday, I knew that money was a tool in my quest for happiness. Here are some thoughts on some non-financial goals in the upcoming years.

  • Housekeeping Service - We are expecting to get a house keeper this week. We are hoping to get a great recommendation from someone in San Mateo County. This will give me and my wife one less thing to argue about (remember that I'm Lazy for a reason) and a few more precious hours on the weekends.
  • Early Retirement - This is one our bigger goals.
  • Trips to Europe and Australia - We'd love to take multiple months off to do all the tourist activities.

What non-financial goals with financial prerequisites do you have ?

Posted on August 21, 2007.

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12 Responses to “Non-Financial Goals: What if Your Money Problems were Solved?”

  1. Steve says:

    I want to become a scratch golfer and a winning poker player. But most of all I want to raise my kids to be good people. Most of my goals have a financial tilt: I want to start a foundation, I want to help my family, I want to be financially independent.

    I find it hard to separate my financial and non-financial goals. I want to be able to do whatever I want with my time. I can’t do that if I have a job so financial freedom pretty much trumps every other goal that I have.

  2. Matt Wolfe says:

    Great post. I want to retire early, own my home with at least and acre of property, and travel to Europe, New Zealand and Australia.

  3. Kenric says:

    Thanks for the link! When I wrote my post about non-financial goals, I was thinking more about goals that in addition to money, need some type of training or work to achieve.
    Take Steve’s goal to become a scratch golfer; the steps to attaining that goal would be something like:

    Go to the range daily
    Play 3 rounds a week
    Take lessons from a golf pro

    All three of these things take money and time. Let’s say that it costs $150/wk to do the things above. Then I would find a way to make $150 extra a week. Having a set of defined goals with a price tag makes you work harder to get that $150/wk. There is a purpose of your money making. It’s not just making money to make money for the future.

  4. Moneymonk says:

    Early Retirement is a financial goal because it takes money to retire early

    Trips to Europe and Australia- same thing

    I would like to see South Africa and more of the Carribean but all of this takes money to do.

  5. Kenric says:

    Moneymonk, you are correct in that trips all take money to do. Have you read the book 4 hour work week? It talks about taking mini-vacations (3-6 month long) once a year. I know it sounds crazy but I tend to think the same way. If I want to see Europe, I want to go soon, not in 15 years. I’m going to try to figure out how to make that trip a reality within the next year. That goal in itself will drive my financial goals.

  6. guinness416 says:

    I have a lot of non-financial goals. I’m doing that whole “101 Goals in 1001 Days” thing, and brainstorming my list was great fun, as well as instructive. I’d recommend the brainstorming, if not taking on the list. When it all shook out I appeared to have a lot of health and fitness related goals, and a lot related to getting more involved in my community – becoming a Canuck citizen, going to city meetings, seeing some local sights that I haven’t got to, taking advantage of free city events, etc. I travel a lot, damn furriner and rugby fanatic that I am; I’d hesitate to call it non-financial!

  7. Joseph Sangl says:

    ALL of my “non-financial” goals are actually “financial”!!!

    Travel to Australia, China, New Zealand, Europe, Japan, and South America.

    I have actually completed my first marathon – all 26.2 miles.

    I also want to be the best husband and father EVER!

  8. Brip Blap says:

    It’s hard to separate financial and non-financial goals because they overlap so often. I would say my non-financial goals are getting fit again (shedding my first-year-dad weight and running competitively again like I did two years ago), being a calm and fun dad, and becoming a writer not just ‘on the side’ but full-time. I don’t want early retirement. I want early retirement from my zombified corporate consulting gig. I would love to find work that would be so interesting that I’d keep doing it until I die (part-time, at least). Hence the writing.

    I made a comment about this before but having a house cleaning service should be one of the first things marriage counselors propose. Or even sooner – put that in the vows. Cleaning the house represented 75% of our arguments until we got a housekeeper. Worth every penny we spend 10 times over, easily.

  9. Golbguru says:

    Just two non-financial goals this year:
    – Learn to play “Leaving on a Jet Plane” on guitar.
    – Climb seven stories by stairs (in a given amount of time) and say good bye to the elevator as long as I am working where I am working right now.

  10. guinness416 says:

    Hey Golbguru, I do seven flights of stairs up and down every day at my office – it’s great!

  11. Moneymonk says:


    4 hour work week is a good book!

  12. Harrison says:

    I just make my new non financial goal last week:

    Lose 20 pounds before the end of the year…

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