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  • Writer's pictureKel Galavan

This ain’t no Rehearsal, your One Shot at a Life Well-Lived

Time waits for no-one not even you.

Remember when you were a kid? The summers stretched forever, with hazy days spent hanging out with friends, playing games, and causing trouble. Those youthful days were a time to be relished. We thought they would never end, that they would go on forever. 

An old lady with a large red and yellow hat
Photo by RepentAnd SeekChristJesus on Unsplash

Then, in the blink of an eye, we're neck-deep in adulting, saddled with responsibility, bills and the quagmire of life, family, work, and money. Every day seems to go by in a blur of noise and to-dos, only to crash on the sofa and do it all again the following day. 

Who pressed the fast-forward button, and how did we even get here? What happened to all those middle years? At times like this, I think of my childhood hero, Matthew Broderick, in Ferris Bueller's Day Off.

"Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it."

That kid was on to something. 

Living and life were the sweet spot. 

I have struggled with this for years, and I've seen so many others struggle with it, too. Because here's the thing: what is urgent demands our attention, but generally, what is urgent is not important. What is not urgent doesn't demand our attention but is often undoubtedly important. 

As a result, many of us, myself included, whine false promises to our future selves: next month will be the month we start that pension, put those savings in place, and begin writing that book. 

With so many demands on our time and resources, how do we prioritise the few actions that will make a difference? What will drive us to take action and bypass the 'some day' fallacy? Where is the thing that will launch us into action? What is the wake-up call? 

For me, it was this…

A graph showing a breakdown of a typical life in weeks
Credit to: Tim Urban,

Your wake-up call 

If this is not a wake-up call, I don't know what is. Seeing this was my jolt of reality; my entire life, 90 years of it by week, amounted to one measly A4 printout on cheap ass paper. 

It's a stark reminder of the finite nature of our time on this planet, and that's assuming we get the maximum one whole Life. 

The one-shot wake-up call

We only get one shot at this life; there are no do-overs or second chances. We all know this on a fundamental level, but it's easy to ignore and put on the back burner. No one else seems to be worried about it, so why should I? 

Now, let's shift the focus to money. 

How many of those precious weeks have you spent stressing over finances, living paycheck to paycheck, or putting off saving for the future? It's easy to procrastinate when retirement seems so far off but know this: time is ticking away, and those weeks are slipping through your fingers faster than you realise.

All you have is right now. 

Here's the thing: The earlier you take control of your money, the more power you have to shape your future. Every week that passes without a solid financial plan is a missed opportunity. Whether you're in your 20s, 30s, 40s, or beyond, you only have now to start making smart financial decisions. If you leave it off until next week or next month, you risk leaving it off forever. 

Money waits for no one

Think about it this way: every euro you save and invest today is a euro that will work for you tomorrow. It's not about depriving yourself of enjoyment in the present; it's about realising that today is the best day to set yourself up for the fast-approaching future. Striking a balance between enjoying life now and securing your financial stability for the future can only happen now because, in the future, you may not want or be able to set that plan in place.

What can you do to start taking control of your money right now? 

It's simple: start by doing something. 

If you are stuck for ideas, try any or all of these: 

1. Create that Budget: Take a close look at your income and expenses and create a realistic budget that allows you to live within your means while saving for what you want the most. Whatever that looks like for you, do it. 

2. Save and Invest: Make saving a priority by setting up automatic transfers to a savings account, pension or towards investing. Explore investment options that align with your financial goals and risk tolerance.

3. Educate Yourself: It's your money, and no one will like your money more than you do. Countless resources are available, from books and podcasts to online courses and financial advisors. What are you waiting for if you are not already on the Rise Money Newsletter list?


4. Set Goals: Whether buying a house, travelling the world, or retiring early, set clear financial endpoints to work towards. A concrete vision of your future can help you stay motivated and focused.

"We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be."

- Kurt Vonnegut -


Final Thoughts

So, here we are, standing at the intersection of time and money, with the clock ticking away and our financial future hanging in the balance. It's easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of everyday life, to put off our financial goals for another day, another week, another month. But as we've learned, time is not something we can afford to waste.

Rise Money, is a free weekly newsletter designed to help you reclaim your money while living a life of your own design. Join the thousands of other brilliant minds there.


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