I visited the National WW2 Museum in New Orleans yesterday. I thought it was appropriate as we approach our 239th year of Independence. It is a remarkable 6 hour tour and should be at the top of any to do list when visiting NOLA.
The museum provides overwhelming context to all of the planning, effort and lives it took to win the war. As I tried to digest all of the information I was haunted by my conscience with a question of whether I was living a life deserving of the sacrifices made by others to ensure my freedom. I don't know that I have the confidence or the right to answer such a question. I can only reflect on what freedom means to me and to what degree I am utilizing this gift provided to me by so many that came before.
As we returned to the hotel I found I could not rest and started googling philosophers I had read during my college years. I enjoyed catching back up on the transcendentalists of Henry David Thoreau and Ralph Waldo Emerson. Their ideas coming out of the industrial revolution, so uncanny and relevant to the times we live in now. I highly recommend you review a synopsis of their views on independent thinking and self reliance.
We live in a time of which we have so many choices and opportunities. John Sculley, former CEO of Apple, in his new book, Moonshot - speaks to how technological changes have brought costs down to a point that no institution in the world is safe from competition. Personal freedom through entrepreneurial drive is more accessible today than in any other time. It has never been easier to switch paths from uninspired comfort to one of the energized unknown. Often the only thing that stands in our way is what I call our FUD's. Fears Uncertainties and Doubts.
"Anxiety is the Dizziness of Freedom" -- Soren Kierkegaard
In my case, when I started Sherrill Wealth Management, I had to leave the prestige of having well known and respected brand recognition. I had spent the better part of 15+ years selling the intangible value of brands. Over the years as we slowly lost power and control to the national head offices combined with the 2008 credit crisis I realized that business and life is about accountability and that only comes from one-on-one relationships. I can effectively compete and better service a smaller group of like minded families and achieve my own freedom in the process.
Sean Stephenson's 10 minute story is a wonderful reminder of how despite the freedoms afforded to us we imprison ourselves with unnecessary anxieties and self-limiting beliefs. We pity and / or bully ourselves into being prisoners in our mind.
"Never believe a prediction that does not empower you." -- Sean Stephenson
It is a privilege to live in a country where each individual has the right to enjoy life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. I hope you have a terrific Fourth of July celebration and when your thoughts turn to the pursuit of financial independence, give us a call!