Today, Easter Sunday is the day millions of kids big and small would “typically” go hunting for chocolate eggs and treats in all sorts of shapes and sizes, they would be filling up baskets and celebrating their bounty and get given a massive free pass to overload on chocolate.
I’m not sure what Easter Sunday is looking like in your home today.
Perhaps you’ve never participated in this particular chocolate binge, so not doing it is one thing you can tick off as “normal”.
Perhaps you are “locked-in” with your loved ones big and small and having an egg hunt will be a fabulous game to play today.
Since I’m in lock down with just my dog and cat, and I’m starting to wonder if 3D humans still exist, I’m still going to do a hunt, except it will be Cara, my dog, hunting out treats.
Today has gotten me reminiscing about all the easter egg hunts in my past…
Between the ages of 4 and 9 I spent most Easters on a farm and on Easter Sunday my twin and I would each be given a basket which had to stay put on the kitchen table and we were sent out hunting with clear instructions to find chocolate eggs wrapped in shiny paper and bring them back one at a time to said baskets. These instructions were very important and had to be followed explicitly!
Off Andrew and I would dash in the direction my folks and older siblings would point us in where a handful of eggs had been carefully hidden to ensure we worked hard to find them. Deep in the vegetable garden, an egg would be burrowed under the red and green of a rhubarb leaf or at the end of the long driveway in the crook of the old oak tree’s branches. Bounty didn’t come easily!
I remember a fair amount of jostling too as Drew and I competed to get the eggs, a cacophony of cheers and encouragement from our seemingly very supportive siblings and mad dashing back and forth to the kitchen to place our bounty safely in the baskets.
Little did we realise it was all a set up!
In order to keep us in the hunt and make us believe we had loads of eggs, my siblings would pilfer the found eggs from the basket and go and re-hide these in another area and then point to that zone for us to go and find those eggs again. We were so caught up in trying to beat each other in the hunt and finding more eggs that we never stopped to see how we were actually doing. We thought the laughter and ‘egging-on” of our siblings was because we were doing such a great job and besides, we couldn’t stop and check on things because if we did the other would get ahead of us and might then have more.
Over and over this would be repeated until eventually we would get tired (or bored), slow down and actually look in the basket to see whether we had enough to stop and enjoy some of our treasures.
Confusion and disappointment would sweep in as it dawned on us just how few eggs all that dashing about had resulted in topped up with a fair dose of anger and bitterness as we noticed the tell-tail chocolate around our siblings mouths and they hadn’t done any hunting!
While this ruse may have been lovingly created to increase the joy of the egg hunt for 6 year old twins when there were only a few eggs to go around and while Drew and I genuinely loved the dashing about with our siblings giving us masses of attention with their whooping and cheering us on, it got me thinking about a far more sinister ruse that looks pretty much the same as this crazy basket filling illusion – a ruse 95% of the adult population is currently caught in.
I’m talking about the ruse of “nest-egg” savings, investment and retirement products.
- The ruse of you being told that investing is scary and confusing and that you won’t understand what is happening anyway so just go out there and work hard like a good hunter bring those eggs back here without looking in the basket;
- The ruse that you should just trust what type of eggs the financial industry tells you to get despite not being able to see what is actually inside them because of the glossy wrappers;
- The ruse of financial advisors and actively managed fund managers helping themselves to 70% to 80% of your basket because you didn’t read the small print and understand the compounded effect of all those “little” fees and charges;
- The ruse of “smoke and mirror” investment returns so that even if you do glance in the basket or ask a question it seems to be going okay;
As much as we all enjoy the hunt, finding the eggs and dashing about in the big garden of life, the whole point of making money is so you can:
- feed off it now,
- have funds for the important milestones and aspects of your life’s journey, and
- be able to stop all the dashing and hard work and still be able to keep living and loving life with investments giving you the income you need.
To do this you’ve got to have an assortment of baskets and an assortment of eggs to put in them.
Then you need to give your baskets and eggs some attention and ensure they grow and don’t rot.
You also need to ensure the baskets you choose are the best baskets to keep your eggs well and the eggs you are using so much of your life force to gather are actually fertile.
Enough of metaphors…
Let’s check in…
- Do you understand the different investment baskets you have available to you like ISA’s & SIPPS; 410k’s & ROTH’s, RA’s & TFSA, SUPERS and Living Annuities, know why you would want such a basket and what type of egg to put in it to maximise your returns? (it is much simpler than it sounds)
- Do you even have any baskets or do all your eggs get consumed before you get anywhere near a basket?
- When last did you stop and actually look at what baskets you have and then actually look inside them to see how much is in them and in what type of eggs?
- Have you worked out whether the amount in your basket equals how much you have put in it plus a good market return?
- Can you see what type of eggs you have or are they covered in shiny wrappers which make them look sexy but you have no idea whether they are rotting inside?
- Are the people you have entrusted with your eggs looking after your basket and you or are they looking after themselves only?
If all this sounds overwhelming, confusing, complicated, difficult, boring… (anything that will stop you from looking after your eggs and ensure your financial wellbeing is looked after); or if you have no idea where to start or how to do this…
I’ve got great news.
I did a Facebook Live where I walk you through the principles of
- Multi Asset portfolio design
- Asymmetrical risk managed asset allocation models
- And what a risk managed drawdown strategy is and why you need one.
In other words – what baskets and eggs you need to ensure your financial wellbeing now, in the medium term and for the rest of your life.
Watch it now.
Wherever you are, whoever you are with, whether you celebrate Easter or now – know that the greatest hunt there is, is the hunt to determine what a wealthy life is for you, creating the frameworks to make it happen and setting off on the adventure to live it.
From my little lock-down to yours…
P.S. My easter egg folly continued…
A few years later as a Civil Engineering student, learning more about boys and beer than bending moments, I invented a brilliant drinking game called the “Egg and Booze Race” (my creativity has been applied to many fields throughout my life).
Here’s how it goes:-
The object of the game is to see how many drinks you can have out of a chocolate egg before it melts and starts falling apart at which point you quickly eat the egg before it drops down your cleavage in a molten mass. The person who has the most drinks from an egg is the winner. Once eggs are consumed you start again. My research showed that the best vessels are those white candy eggs with a hard outside candy shell lined with chocolate on the inside. You bite off the top (not always an easy feat) and fill your chocolate chalice with your favourite liqueur and keep going until it’s a marvellous sticky mess – both you and the egg. Dark 80% cocoa eggs are particularly good with a Shiraz or similarly juicy red wine and research also shows eggs don’t last very long with coffee ;).
It doesn’t need to be booze. I’ve played this with great delight (for the kids not the parents) with many of my nieces and nephews over the years. The added advantage of using a chocolate egg as your drinks vessel is you don’t have any glasses to wash up.
Never say the Wealth Chef doesn’t give you loads of juicy living tips ;).
Here’s the link to the Portfolio Design FB live again >>>>>
P.P.S I am running a powerful small group Investment Implementation Bootcamp to get your multi-asset investment portfolio designed and implemented. Go here to learn more about it and submit your application if you know your eggs and baskets are not in tip top shape.