As we approach the six month anniversary since the UK first went into lockdown, I’m thinking about how different things are now, compared to how they were just six months ago.

We’ve all had a different experience over the last six months.

Some have loved the lack of commute and have had a much more relaxed lifestyle. They still get the same amount of work done, and are being very efficient, but they can achieve that in less hours, and with less stress. In contrast some have found their work hours increase since they are not commuting but using this time to work instead.

Some have found it very isolating and missed the connection they get both with clients and work colleagues. Of course, we’ve all had Zoom but for many (me included) Zoom just didn’t give the level of connection they crave. We’ve even heard for the first time the term “Zoom fatigue” referring to the mental exhaustion associated with online video. Yes, I’ve certainly experienced this.

For those with young children at home, they’ve not only had to do their normal day job but, without warning, they’ve had to be child minder and teacher during working hours too. Thank goodness schools have re-opened in September.

Regardless of your individual experience of lockdown, for all of us it’s been a change to our working life… a pattern interrupt. It’s easy to keep doing the same thing over and over without questioning it, because we’ve always done it. And since we’ve always done it, we keep doing it and just assume it’s the correct thing.

But of course, if the last six months have taught us anything, it’s that there is very little that is “normal” and “normal” can mean something very different from one week to the next. Working life evolves to fit the new surroundings and circumstances.

I’m wondering, what has this pattern interrupt brought up for you?

Are there some new opportunities that you hadn’t previously considered, because they weren’t previously part of your definition of “normal”?

But you’re exploring them now, and thinking “what if?”

Maybe you’re now questioning whether working long hours, commuting, and rushing from one meeting to the next, feeling permanently stressed and frazzled is what you want to go back to? You’ve experienced the taste of something different …and you like it.

Maybe you’d love a shorter working week, ensuring you have more down time, more relaxation and more time with your family and friends?

Maybe you’ve realised that the job which pays you a nice salary, really doesn’t fulfil you and satisfy your values. You want to change to something more fulfilling, even if it pays a lower salary.

For so many of us, living through a pandemic has prompted us to reassess our lives and priorities and work out exactly what it is that’s important to us.

But let’s be honest, no matter what we want to do in an ideal world, we still need to have sufficient income to cover our expenses. Maybe we can reduce our spending to a certain extent, but it’s difficult to plan for our future without considering the financial implications.

We all have choices, and maybe you have more choices than you realise. But before you can decide which is the best option, you need to understand the financial implications of each. Then you can make an informed choice knowing exactly what this means for your future lifestyle.

But how do you start?

I’ve had a number of enquiries from clients in exactly this situation during the last six months. They want to make a change but need to know whether they can afford to. As a result, I’ve introduced a new service to cover these queries: The Wealth Compass Audit.

Just as when you’re navigating from one place to the next you would plan your route and check your compass regularly to see whether you are on track or needing to make a slight amendment, the Wealth Compass review does exactly the same thing. It looks at:

  • Where are you now?
  • Where do you want to get to?
  • Are you on track to achieve this? And if not, what can you do to improve the situation?

When I work with clients in my Wealth Compass Review, we look at 7 key areas:

  • Earned income
  • Pension
  • Property
  • Spending
  • Investments
  • Priorities
  • Mindset

In the next fortnight I will be exploring each of these areas in my LinkedIn posts.

Want to know more?

I work with my clients in the Wealth Compass Review to support them to fully understand their options.

Together we consider your different scenarios and using specially designed software, we look at how likely your different options are to be successful and ensure your funds last. This is based on over 1,000 actual historical scenarios since 1900. We’re not guessing what may happen in the future, we’re looking at what would have happened in your scenario in the past. Therefore, it takes in all the erratic movement of the stock market, both up and down.

This enables you to have confidence in the choices you are taking.

To find out more, visit this link for a case study of Sally aged 52 who was keen to step back from her business, but didn’t know if she could afford to do so, and how I worked with her to help her understand what choices were available to her.