Capital Advisory Group September 2018


Will Help You Declutter Your Workload GREG MCKEOWN’S ‘ESSENTIALISM’

“If you don’t prioritize your life, someone else will,” writes Greg McKeown in “Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less.” When he set out to write the book, McKeown wanted to know what keeps skilled, driven people from achieving as much as possible. What he found was that many people

Shawn joined our team over the summer, and we wanted to give him a proper introduction in our newsletter this month. In addition to being a licensed assistant, Shawn has a background in banking and holds an accounting degree. He’s also been an outstanding addition to our office.

suffer not from being lazy, but from allocating their time ineffectively.The impulse to “do it all” keeps folks from spending their time on the things that actually matter.The book, then, serves as a guide to cutting out the extraneous and focusing on the essential. “Life is not an all-you-can-eat buffet,”McKeown says. “It’s amazingly great food. Essentialism is about finding the right food. More and more is valueless. Staying true to my purpose and being selective in what I take on results in a more meaningful, richer, and sweeter quality of life.”This metaphor can be applied to your work life as well.There aren’t enough hours in the day to accomplish every task.The essentialist works to spend their time diligently by pursuing what actually matters, rather than filling their days with meaningless busywork. Early in the book, McKeown uses famed Braun designer Dieter Rams as an example of an essentialist. He notes that Rams’ design philosophy can be characterized by three simple words: less but better.This, in essence, is what essentialists believe. Doing your best work where it matters and cutting out the superfluous will allow you to better manage your time and increase your performance. As McKeown puts it, “It is about making the wisest possible investment of your time and energy in order to operate at your highest point of contribution by doing only what is essential.” Instead of having their energy spread out in a million different directions, essentialists channel it into what really matters. McKeown also advocates for defining your purpose in order to accurately assess what’s essential and what isn’t.The more a task contributes to your purpose, the more essential it is. Many business owners and leaders struggle to let go of tasks that are best left to other employees. If you’ve ever found yourself struggling to manage a massive workload while resenting the fact that much of what you do is needless, then it’s time to pick up a copy of “Essentialism.”

As a people person, Shawn found this industry to be a good fit for his skills and personality. His knack for having real conversations with people and getting to know them beyond their financial goals are abilities the clients appreciate. “I like to talk to people, get to know their stories,” Shawn says. “I’ve mostly worked with people who are retired or nearing retirement, and it’s amazing to hear their stories.” Beyond listening to clients, Shawn is passionate about helping people by empowering them with financial planning — something he first learned while working at an investment firm. According to Shawn, “A lot of people don’t understand what we do and how we do it.They don’t know what they should do, and they sometimes get taken advantage of. I like to help them so that doesn’t happen.” A self-described “numbers guy,” Shawn loves what you can do with numbers. “I’m a math person,” he admits. “I love planning and showing numbers to clients to let them know, ‘You are in good shape,’ or if they’re not, “Here’s what we can do differently to help you get there.’” These days, when he’s not working, Shawn spends most of his time at home with his family. He and his wife have four kids, so as Shawn says, “We don’t have too much free time.”They enjoy watching their kids play sports, and when he gets the chance, fishing is his hobby of choice. We’re so glad to welcome Shawn to Capital Advisory Group. Say hi next time you’re here!


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