Integrated Living… WOW, no pressure there!!  Life can be overwhelming.  Trying to balance our families, work, friends, finances, spiritual, physical, charitable, and recreational lives (to name a few) can be mind-boggling.  Therefore in an attempt to try and balance life, we instead become compartmentalized… but this is not living a whole life, it is fractured and segregated.  

Ever feel this way?  I did, I was commuting to downtown Chicago for work, my family in the suburbs, kid’s school functions, missing school activities because of work (and significant travel), not engaging in church or with friends like I should or wanted to… feeling like I was letting everyone down.  The Second Law of Thermodynamics had kicked in - the increasing tendency toward disorder, but it was in my life.

I needed a process of bringing my life together in an orderly manner which was sustainable over time, not a destination.  Was I learning, applying, and living the best version of who I was created to be?   

I’ve learned that integrated living is really an iterative process; pausing to gain clarity on what is important and clarity regarding my priorities.  Pausing to reflect on the blessings of life versus simply striving for the next thing.  Pausing to work out physically.  Pausing to take in life & consider my legacy.  Having the conviction to say ‘no’ and the commitment to say ‘yes’.

I have the extreme good fortune of having been blessed in so many ways, which I don’t take for granted.  One of those blessings is that I have never felt as much of an integrated life as I do right now.  I need to continue the process of saying ‘no’ to many good things, so that I can focus on integrating the ‘best’!

I have the honor to serve fantastic individuals and families with respect to their wealth management processes.  I am frequently inspired by and encouraged from the very people I serve (funny how life works).       

IntegratedLiving.Blog is my sharing of these learnings and inspirations (without breaking confidentiality) … it is my own discipline to pause and remind myself that being made whole allows me to give my best to the world around me.

I grew up in the Northwest Suburbs of Chicago, married my high school sweetheart (and after 28 years of marriage, I am still the luckiest guy in the world!), and raised three wonderful adult children who inspire me daily.  After moving around the country, working for very large corporations and spending time in over 25 countries, it strikes me that life is good, sweet, hard, sad, fulfilling and fragile wherever you find yourself.  I work with an outstanding group of people who are focused daily on serving our clients to the best of our abilities… we love what we do and hope it makes the world a better place!

Why the picture?  Paint colors individually, or even alongside one-another, are uninspiring.  It is when an artist begins to blend the different colors together that form takes shape.  We are given many roles and titles, the question is how we will integrate the color palette to paint the picture we call life.  And, when our life on this planet is complete, will others reflect on our artwork, known as legacy, and be inspired?