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  • Writer's pictureDan Haylett

"Unleashing the Power of Life Planning: The George Kinder Approach To Planning Your Retirement"


Your Retirement is a significant life transition that you will look forward to with great anticipation. It's a time when you can finally step back from the hustle and bustle of your career and enjoy the fruits of your labour.

However, have you ever stopped to ponder what exactly you want your retirement to look like? George Kinder, a renowned financial planner and life planning expert, has dedicated his career to helping individuals envision and achieve their ideal retirement through a unique and profound approach.

In this blog post, I will delve into the world of George Kinder's life planning philosophy and explore why it's so essential for a fulfilling retirement.

The George Kinder Approach to Life Planning:

George Kinder's approach to life planning is more than just financial advice; it's about discovering your deepest desires, values, and passions, and aligning your financial goals with these intrinsic aspects of your life. Here's a closer look at the three core questions that lie at the heart of Kinder's methodology:

Question 1: Design Your Life

“I want you to imagine that you are financially secure, that you have enough money to take care of your needs, now and in the future. The question is, how would you live your life? What would you do with the money? Would you change anything? Let yourself go. Don’t hold back your dreams. Describe a life that is complete, that is richly yours”.

This deceptively simple question encourages individuals to think beyond the financial aspect of retirement.

It urges them to reflect on their passions, dreams, and the things that truly matter. By answering this question, you begin to create a vision for your retirement that goes beyond just the numbers.

Question 2: You Have Less Time

“This time, you visit your doctor who tells you that you have five to ten years left to live. The good part is that you won’t ever feel sick. The bad news is that you will have no notice of the moment of your death. What will you do in the time you have remaining to live? Will you change your life, and how will you do it”?

Facing one's mortality can be a powerful catalyst for clarifying priorities. Kinder's second question compels us to contemplate what truly matters to us in the limited time we have left.

It prompts us to align our life choices with our values, ensuring that our remaining years are spent meaningfully.

Question 3: Today’s The Day

"This time, your doctor shocks you with the news that you have only one day left to live. Notice what feelings arise as you confront your very real mortality. Ask yourself: What dreams will be left unfulfilled? What do I wish I had finished or had been? What do I wish I had done? (Did I miss anything)”

Are your priorities in line with your life plan? Is your time reflective of what you care about? What do your financial habits say that you value? What “bucket list items” have you missed?

Typically, people do not say that they wish they had earned more money, worked one more shift, or had one more side hustle. Most often, they wish they had spent more time with family, had more experiences with those that they love, and made sure that those they left behind would be taken care of once they were gone.

If today was your last day, what have you left unfinished? Of those things, what would bother you the most?

Good, now go chase after it and stop making excuses for why you aren’t doing it right now.

Why George Kinder's Approach Matters in Retirement:

1. Fulfilment Over Finances:

Kinder's approach shifts the focus from mere financial planning to life planning. It encourages retirees to prioritize their personal fulfilment, happiness, and well-being. By exploring their passions and desires, individuals can create a retirement that feels purposeful and satisfying.

2. Alignment with Values:

Retirement is an opportunity to live in alignment with your core values. Kinder's questions help you identify what truly matters to you, enabling you to make choices that reflect those values. This alignment can lead to a more meaningful and contented retirement.

3. Improved Financial Decision-Making:

By starting with a clear vision of your ideal retirement, financial decisions become more purposeful and strategic. You'll be better equipped to allocate resources, plan for contingencies, and make informed choices that support your vision.


George Kinder's life planning approach challenges us to think beyond the traditional notion of retirement planning, transforming it into a deeply personal and meaningful journey. It emphasizes that retirement isn't just about financial security; it's about living a life that aligns with your values, passions, and dreams.

As you embark on your retirement planning journey, consider seeking the guidance of a financial advisor who incorporates George Kinder's principles. By doing so, you'll be better equipped to create a retirement that's not only financially secure but also rich in purpose and fulfilment. After all, retirement should be the start of a new adventure, a chapter in your life where your dreams take centre stage.

Why don't you have a go at answering the 3 questions yourself! Download our workbook below, grab a coffee and go to a quiet place. It may just be the best investment of your time when it comes to planning your happy, healthy and wealthy retirement

Your WealthGPS Life Planning Workbook Fillable
Download PDF • 2.76MB

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