3 Steps to Live & Invest With Greater Purpose

By Chelsey Frate, Financial Advisor at UBS Wealth Management 
Research supports that the impact of COVID-19, social activism, and economic uncertainty has influenced both women’s and men’s choices in jobs, priorities, and investing. 82% of women surveyed, in a new study from UBS, “Women on Purpose,” say the events of the last few years have made them reassess their purpose and what’s important to them. Specific findings from the study include that:


  • 70% want to make more of a difference in the world 
  • 68% say they are more committed to using their financial resources to impact change 
  • 94% have donated financially or volunteered time in the last 12 months
  • 73% say they make purchases that align with their values 
  • 69% say they chose a career that aligns with them
The research also indicates that millennial women have been driven to make a difference. And while half of married women may still defer financial decisions to their husbands, we’ve seen an increase in the number of women who are leading the charge to change this status quo. 
What can people take from these findings? And how can San Diegans best align their personal beliefs with their personal finances? 
Following are three steps to help individuals live and invest with greater purpose.
1. Reflect on how your life has changed and what is most important to you.
“What you do makes a difference,” said revered primatologist Jane Goodall. “And you have to decide what kind of a difference you want to make.” Research, such as the study from UBS, illustrates how many women and men are reassessing what’s important to them. 
Get to the heart of your ambitions and passions.  Ask yourself:
  • Where do I want to prioritize my time (and money)?
  • What ambitions and social causes am I most passionate about?
    1. Am I most motivated to help religious organizations or those aimed at fighting poverty? 
    2. Those that are addressing inequality, social justice, education, and/or environmental causes? Or others?
2. Organize your financial future.  
Nearly 9 in 10 women see money as a tool that can be used to help achieve their purpose. Looking at your specific needs for the immediate and long term, as well as addressing ways to give back, are approaches that can give you a clearer understanding of where your money is going and how much of it you have to give. It can help you to better understand and unleash the power to invest and support causes that make your voice heard. 
 Define your needs by taking a look at:
  • Immediate needs:  including day-to-day, monthly, and annual cash flow needed for a steady income stream over the next three years. Consider regular expenses, emergency funds, retirement contributions, and debt payments. This step can take the emotion out of investing because you’ve made a plan for what you need. 
  • Longer-term and future emergencies: assets you and your family will need from four years to throughout your lifetime(s). This step will help you assess your long-term needs and goals.
  • Needs beyond your own: including your desire and ability to give back to others or charities. This is the step that will help you to plan for how you can specifically make a difference for the people and causes you care about the most.
3. Put in place a plan to make deliberate choices to achieve your purpose. 
What will you give of your time and talents? Will you make more informed decisions on important purchases? And/or give more financially to important causes? Ask yourself: How you will specifically give to causes and prioritize the things that are most important to you?
94% of those surveyed in the UBS survey say they have been involved with both charitable giving and volunteering in the past year. In addition, women are using their purchasing power and career choices to make an impact. 
Consider all the ways you can give—from the day-day-day impact you can make in your purchasing decisions, to investing time, and making financial donations. Lastly, talk with your financial advisor to help plan for the future.

Chelsey Frate is a Financial Advisor with Torrey Pines Wealth Management, a signature team at UBS Financial Services Inc. in Carmel Valley. Torrey Pines Wealth Management draws on its broad experience in the wealth management industry to help clients exit their companies, retire comfortably, and preserve wealth for future generations. Chelsey has her bachelor’s degree in Economics from Harvard College. In her spare time, she enjoys volunteering with Helen Woodward Animal Center in their PET Therapy Program. She also serves as Co-Chair of the Emerging Leaders Advisory Board with the North San Diego Business Chamber. She lives in San Diego with her husband, Danny, and her two English Bulldogs, Flash and Gus Gus. She can be reached at chelsey.frate@ubs.com

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