Finding your purpose through contribution

(Blog courtesy of Debi Haden: www.debihaden.co.uk)

Finding your purpose in life can feel as though it has filled a blank space in your story and can come in many different ways, through work, our personal lives and through the contrubution we make to society.
I received the British Red Cross Durrant Award last week alongside my other Red Cross colleagues who supported at the Grenfell tower fire site last year. The award is given for work above and beyond. Whilst an honour to receive it for the second time it is difficult, because it means we have had to work on something that is often profoundly challenging, however I’m super proud to have been part of this team for the last 16 years.  We are often quietly out on deployments around the world without any need for drama or accolade, because as a team are committed to what we do. We do it without any recompense, but merely for our belief in making our personal contribution. For me, I feel a real sense of purpose through my role as part of this team. I know many people  find their purpose and passion through the contribution they make to the lives of others.
 
Criticism is often made of charities without really understanding the vast contribution they make to society. Hundreds of people volunteer to support charities in order to make the world a better place, and I’m super proud to stand alongside my Red Cross colleagues to have made, and continue to make, my contribution to the greater good.
 
We can all make a difference, no matter of small it might seem, whether it’s picking up rubbish off a beach, changing our recycling habits, checking in on an elderly neighbour, giving a few hours a month to support a charity, sponsoring a friend doing a fund raising activity, it is all a valuable contribution.

I’m reminded of this story that was shared when I was training as a coach.

A young girl was walking along a beach upon which thousands of starfish had been washed up during a terrible storm. When she came to each starfish, she would pick it up, and throw it back into the ocean. People watched her with amusement.

She had been doing this for some time when a man approached her and said, “Little girl, why are you doing this? Look at this beach! You can’t save all these starfish. You can’t begin to make a difference!”

The girl seemed crushed, suddenly deflated. But after a few moments, she bent down, picked up another starfish, and hurled it as far as she could into the ocean. Then she looked up at the man and replied, “Well, I made a difference to that one!”

The old man looked at the girl inquisitively and thought about what she had done and said. Inspired, he joined the little girl in throwing starfish back into the sea. Soon others joined, and all the starfish were saved.

— Adapted from The Star Thrower
by Loren C. Eiseley

 You only have to look at the recent events in Thailand to see the amazing difference that can be made when people pull together for a common purpose.

Through my work with the Red Cross I am constantly reminded, how, in the face of crisis, individuals and whole communities come together to make a difference.  In an often chaotic and unstable world it is a welcome reminder to us all that community and compassion can conquer all.

A client recently said to me,  ‘If we only lived our lives with respect much of the challenges of the world would disappear. Respect for ourselves, respect for each other and respect for our planet’, and I couldnt agree more.  If we all undertook just one act of kindness imagine the difference we could make…

What one action could you put in place today to make your contribution?
Book your FREE 30 minute Clarity Call today by clicking the ‘Discover More’ and see how Debi can help you find your purpose!

Separation and Divorce: how does it affect your Will

(Blog courtesy of Trusted Law: www.trustedlaw.co.uk)

Have you recently divorced or going through a divorce? Do you know how separation and divorce affects your Will?

If you had a Will in place prior to your separation and divorce, this will remain valid……

The time between separating from your spouse, deciding that you want a divorce and actually receiving your decree absolute/dissolution, is the most exposed time period where your estate is at risk.

According to research, the average time it takes for an ‘amicable’ divorce to be finalised is between 14-20 weeks.  I am going to emphasize the word ‘amicable’ as I think that there is only a handful of divorces that are amicable so the likelihood is it would take even longer.

Would you want your ex-spouse to benefit from your estate on death? 

If you have a valid Will with your soon to be ex-spouse as a beneficiary or executor, then the provisions of that Will are still valid until you receive your court order ending your marriage.  If the worst does happen and you die, then your soon to be ex-spouse will receive all or part of your estate as per your Will.

An additional problem is the family home.  We know that it is not always possible to sort out a jointly owned family home prior to your court order being granted – sometimes it takes longer than expected to sell or the spouse remaining in the property might not be able to sort out a re-mortgage in time.

If this property is held as ‘joint tenants’ then the automatic right of survivorship applies which means that when one owner dies the survivor automatically receives ownership of the entire property, regardless of your Will.  So, imagine if you die before your divorce is finalised and the family home is still jointly owned……. your ex-spouse may receive the whole property regardless of your impending divorce.

Slightly better news when you actually receive your divorce……. any gifts or appointments of your ex-spouse will fail. 

It will be treated as though your ex-spouse had died on the date of your court order.  This means that if you have left anything to your ex-spouse under your Will, this gift will not take effect.  In addition, if you have appointed your ex-spouse as an executor and trustee of your Will, the appointment will fail and you would need to rely on any remaining appointed executors – if you only named your ex-spouse then the court would have to appoint an executor to deal with your estate.

You might be thinking that it will be fine because you wouldn’t want your ex-spouse to act as your executor and you wouldn’t want them to receive anything from your estate anyway.  However, you need to think about where you would want your estate to go.

In our experience, most married couples leave their entire estates to each other (unless advised otherwise) and if there is not default beneficiaries named in your Will the laws of intestacy applies.

 

So, would you like your estate to pass to your parents, siblings, grandparents, aunts & uncles automatically OR would you like for it to pass to friends, charity, maybe even your new partner?

Here are some scenarios to show how separation and divorce can affect your Will: 

Scenario 1 – Mr & Mrs White:

  • Mr & Mrs White were married with 3 children.
  • They separated 18 months ago, Mr White has now met someone else and Mr White would now like a divorce.
  • Mr & Mrs White’s Will state that they appoint each other as executors and leave their entire estate to each other, and then on to their 3 children equally.
  • Mr White dies before divorce proceedings are issued.

 What will happen……. 

  • Both Wills remain valid.
  • Mrs White will remain as executor for her husband’s Will – even though they have been living separate lives for 18 months.
  • Mr White’s entire estate will pass to Mrs White.
  • Mr White’s new partner, Ms Black, will receive nothing.

 Scenario 2 – Mrs Jones:·

  • Mr Jones is recently divorced from Mrs Jones and has 2 children from the marriage.
  • Mr Jones’ current Will states that he would like to appoint his wife and his sister as his executors.  Also, that his estate is to pass to his wife in full (as the Will was made prior to the children being born).
  • Mr Jones dies after his divorce is finalised but before he has made a new Will.

 What will happen……..

  • Mr Jones’ Will remains valid, however, the appointment of his ex-wife as an executor and his gift to his ex-wife will fail.  It will be treated as though his ex-wife had died on the date of the court order.
  • Mr Jones’ sister will need to act as sole executor now.
  • Whilst the Will remains valid, there is a partial intestacy here as there is no ‘backup’ for the gift to his ex-wife.  Therefore, the distribution of his estate will be governed by the laws of intestacy.

Are you unsure about making your own Will?  Would you like some professional advice?

If you are putting off writing your Will because you are unsure of how to go about it or can’t decide on the fine detail, then there is no need to worry.  To provide you with peace of mind, you can discuss your situation and concerns with Trusted Law.

We will work with you to agree what is best for you both and your family.  Everything we discuss will always be private and confidential, and you will never feel rushed or pressured.

Trusted Law offers convenient appointments in the comfort of your own home – including evenings and weekends!  So it couldn’t be easier…..

To make your appointment, or for an informal chat, please feel free to contact us on

Tel:                      01953 711950 / 01603 339055

SMS text msg:   07972 212355 or

Email:   enquiries@trustedlaw.co.uk

Please note that this information is provided as a guide only and in accordance with the current laws as at the date of publishing.  

About Trusted Law Ltd

Trusted Law (previously Trusted Wills & Probate Ltd) provides a wide range of services to protect your loved ones and your assets, providing you with much needed peace of mind. 

Our team take the time to get to know you, your family and your wishes to ensure that we are providing you with the right service. No matter how complicated your situation may be, we will work with you to find the right solution.

To read ’Our Story’ (explaining how Trusted Law was established) please click here.

If you would like to discover what our clients say about us, please feel free to read our client Testimonials.

Top 10 Tips To Avoid Business Burnout

(Blog courtesy of Debi Haden: www.debihaden.co.uk)

Ahoy there Captain..

There are many great advantages about being the captain of your own ship, calling the shots and deciding how you want your business to look and feel, that’s why entrepreneurship is on the increase, especially in the over 50’s.
When we are doing something we are passionate about, especially in the early stages, it’s easy to work excessive hours.  It doesn’t feel like work, right?  You feel highly motivated and driven.

The once taken 25+ holiday days drift into the distance and for many business owners, especially sole traders, holidays are not even on the agenda. It can easily be the norm to take no or few days off.
One of the things I share with those I work with who are just starting out in business is that unless you create some positive self-care from the get-go you won’t be as effective as you want to be, and in the long term, you could face business burnout!
Latest statistics show that over 25% of entrepreneurs have taken time away from their business due to stress.

Stress causes all sorts of issues, both mentally and physically, and once on this path, it’s much harder to come back from than putting preventative measures in place in the first place.

Here are my top 10 tips for creating positive self-care habits for you to avoid business burnout:

1. Think about how you want your working week to look, build in regular hours and at least a day a week off.

2. Work out how many holiday days you’d like to give yourself for the year, in the early days of developing your business you might find yourself wanting to take less, but make sure you do book it in your diary and take it.

3. Stepping away from your business, free from the telephone and computers can be hugely beneficial as it gives us time to recharge our batteries and come back to work with a new vigour and passion.

4. Agree a time, at least an hour ideally longer, before bedtime to switch off from any work, checking emails, phone etc. This will aid more restful sleep.

5.  Keep a notepad by your bed. If you find your head full of work stuff before bedtime write it all down, clear your head, it’ll still be there in the morning but at least you will have left it behind at bedtime.

6. Take time out for hobbies and interests. It can be one of the first things we let go of when we become self-employed, often due to limited time and money, but it’s really important you do have things in your life other than work.

7.  Find your ‘tribe’ – it can feel lonely and isolating when working for yourself, especially if you work from home. Try out local business support groups, find out what works for you, who you connect with.

8. Create your support network. Running a business can be complex and lead to us doing things we’ve never done before likes accounts, marketing, networking, website and business development! It can feel daunting and at times overwhelming. Look at local courses and advice services open to you, some will be free if you are a new business.

9. If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed, not able to switch off, having disturbed sleep, or struggling with any other symptoms of stress then consult a doctor, coach, or speak to someone close to you. Many people suffer from Stress, anxiety and depression, don’t feel you have to hide it or be ashamed, it’s ok to not be ok.

10. Don’t bury your head in the sand if you feel overwhelmed, lack direction or focus. Working with a good business coach can be hugely beneficial and worth the investment. They can guide and challenge you as you develop your business, saving you wasted time and energy in the long run. Find one you relate to and don’t be frightened of accessing a free conversation with a few of them to ensure you find the right coach for you.

For more information on the services I offer around business, self-care, stress management and coaching, in general, contact me to claim one of the FREE limited clarity calls I offer.