How to create the ultimate bucket list

What do you wish you could tick off your bucket list? Meet Sebastian Terry, the man who’s living his dream life – and motivating others to do the same.

If you knew you only had a short period of time to live, what would you do differently? That was the question that Sebastian Terry, author of 100 Things: What’s On Your List?, asked himself following the death of a close friend at a young age.

“After considering my friend’s life, I realised I probably wasn’t living my own to the fullest,” Sebastian said. “I wrote down a list of things that would make me smile more. I created a blueprint to happiness, and I dropped everything in my life to pursue it.”

From marrying a stranger in Las Vegas to living with a tribe in Kenya, Sebastian has already completed more than 70 things on his bucket list.

Here are his top three tips so you can do the same.

Tip 1. Set achievable goals

According to Sebastian, your journey to a more enjoyable life starts with an important first step: creating a list.

He said, “The first thing that anyone has to do is give themselves permission to sit down and consider their goals, values and beliefs. A meaningful list will derive straight from those values.”

And Sebastian doesn’t accept excuses from people who say there are external factors preventing them from setting goals for themselves.

“At the end of the day, we’re accountable for what we do in our lives,” he said. “You don’t have to have 100 goals, but make sure you have at least one.”

Tip 2. Don’t be afraid to dream

Sebastian encourages others to dream big when they set their goals – which means thinking outside of the box.

“I think we’re all dreamers, but we’re not given permission to dream by society,” he said. “We’re conditioned to living in a certain way and doing the things that people around us do.”

But when you step out of your comfort zone, you can discover a whole new world of possibilities and realise you’re capable of much more than you think.

“You’re testing yourself in a new way,” Sebastian said, “You get to learn about yourself a little bit more and grow as a person.”

Tip 3. Make plans – and stick to them

While some of your dreams may be things that can only happen spontaneously, most will take considerable amounts of planning.

Sebastian commented, “One of my goals was to compete in an Ironman competition. It took a lot of preparation: I had to buy the right gear and train for nine months.”

That’s why it’s essential to create a plan and then break it down into smaller steps so you can reach it. And, to help you stick to your plan, Sebastian recommends taking inspiration from those who’ve already achieved similar goals.

“We didn’t know we could fly to the moon, but now we know,” he said. “Look around at what other people are doing – because then you get to see what’s possible.”

Planning for the best

When it comes to funding your dream life, a strong financial plan is a vital tool for helping you achieve your bucket list items. As your financial adviser I can help you set goals and put plans in place to reach them.

So, use the holiday period to work out what’s on your bucket list.

Incentives to Downsize the Family Home

The Government will allow a person aged 65 or over to make a non-concessional contribution of up to $300,000 from the proceeds of selling their home from 1 July 2018. These contributions will be in addition to those currently permitted under existing rules and caps and they will be exempt from the existing age test, work test and the $1.6 million balance test for making non – concessional contributions.

This measure will apply to sales of a principal residence owned for the past 10 or more years and both members of a couple will be able to take advantage of this measure for the same home.

This measure reduces a barrier to downsizing for older people. Encouraging downsizing may enable more effective use of the housing stock by freeing up larger homes for younger, growing families.

This measure is estimated to have a cost to Government revenue of $30 million over the forward estimates period.

When people do downsize, financial incentives are generally not the big things on their minds. And so most of the budget’s financial incentives will go to those who were going to downsize anyway.

When older Australians do downsize, their decision is dominated by non-financial considerations, such as a preference for a different style of house and living, a concern that it is getting too hard to maintain the house and garden, or the loss of a partner.

These emotional factors typically dwarf financial considerations. According to surveys, no more than 15% of downsizers are motivated by financial gain. Stamp duty costs were a barrier for only about 5% of those thinking of downsizing. Only 1% of seniors listed the impact on their pension as their main reason for not downsizing.

Bitcoin: what to make of it?

Bitcoin is now featuring regularly in the financial news because of the extraordinary price rise this year, though understanding the reasons for this and whether its justified or simply a speculative bubble, as I believe to be the case, is very difficult to determine. I’m not aware of any institutional investors buying Bitcoin but perhaps they, like me, are missing an opportunity.

Jordan Elisio, the Chief Economist of ABC Bullion, recently wrote an interesting research piece entitled Bitcoin, Dollars, Gold: What is the Future of Money”. He said,

“Type “Bitcoin is a Bubble” into Google and you’ll get 31,800,000 results, a clear indication of how many times people have, incorrectly so far, called a top in the price of the world’s most famous cryptocurrency.

“We see numerous potential tailwinds for Bitcoin, and for blockchain especially. Capital is flowing into the sector, millennials love it, and we also think governments and commercial banks are supportive of digital currency, as they have a general disdain for physical cash.

“Blockchain’s potential to disrupt multiple industries is also another tailwind. For those who want further evidence of its potential, we suggest reading “Banking is only the Beginning: 30 Big Industries Blockchain Could Transform”.

“Finally, for as long as central banks the world over engage in the monetary largesse we’ve become accustomed to in the “post” GFC environment, more and more people will look for alternative monetary solutions.

“Tailwinds aside, there are plenty of ‘bubble’ warning signs in Bitcoin, and cryptocurrencies more generally today.

“It’s not just the size of the move, but also the accelerated nature of the price gains that are cause for concern, whilst the proliferation of ICOs is a definite warning sign”.

Personally I’m staying away from Bitcoin as I don’t favour investing in something I don’t properly understand and I think the extraordinary price rise in recent months suggests a speculative bubble but it will be interesting to watch how this plays out.

Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) Settlements

Following a two year assessment, the ASX has decided to replace CHESS (its post-trade equity clearing and settlement system) with distributed ledger technology (DLT). ASX’s DLT go-ahead follows suitability and security testing of the DLT software built by software company Digital Asset Holdings along with stakeholder and regulator consultation. When this is implemented, settlements will occur on the same day as a trade rather than the current two days after the trading day (T+2). There will be further market consultation in 2018 and implementation is likely still 2-3 years away.

This newsletter contains general advice. It does not take into account your individual objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider talking to a financial adviser before making a financial decision.

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