Under the title of 'Ties are optional', Les Conway shares his thoughts about what’s going on in the World and how it can affect and impact your lifestyle and finances. Feel free to sign up here to subscribe to receive. And remember that these articles are the opinions of the author, Les Conway of Essentially Financial Limited, and are not endorsed or necessarily shared by Flying Colours Advice Limited.

Many years ago, I came across this phrase. Another more recently of ‘No one ever teaches you how to become a parent, but you learn how to get it right just as they leave home’.
We are all different and people are not all wired the same. Ultimately, it’s about us as humans. Where we think differently about numerous things. From one person to the next. But by providing guidance, advice and support has got to be the key contributor that we can offer to others.
We live in a very mixed up and confused world. Where with the evolution of the human ...

Sometimes, when life hands you lemons, you have to make lemonade

Posted by siteadmin on Wednesday 4th of October 2023

An interesting phrase. Which was something that caught my attention some weeks ago.
Where after not having the best World Athletic Championships due to a mystery problem, I heard Dina Asher-Smith say in a post-race interview on the BBC, ‘Sometimes, when life hands you lemons, you have to make lemonade’. Where she ‘vowed to hit back’ and ‘and still feels that she has belief, ahead of next year’s Paris Olympics’.
But what on earth did she mean?
Well, being the age I am I had to look it up. Where Wikipedia tells me that it’s a proverbial phrase...

The art of evolution

Posted by siteadmin on Wednesday 6th of September 2023

A few weeks ago, I was conducting a follow on Discovery Meeting with some new clients. This being where we identify what they’re trying to achieve, why and by when.

What caught my attention, was a T-shirt one of them were wearing. Which with their permission, I captured as this image.

I thought it was perfectly succinct. And superbly illustrated the evolution of life and how we evolve. But more so, the importance that solid lifestyle financial planning plays. And in the context of our discussions. Albeit that the specifics of this imag...

So, who invented the knife and fork?

Posted by siteadmin on Wednesday 2nd of August 2023

We cannot be sure as to who invented the knife and fork. But according to research, a manuscript from 1004 CE tells the story of Maria Argyropoulina. A Greek niece of Byzantine Emperor Basil II, who would use a certain golden instrument with two prongs to eat her meals. However, this didn't catch on in the rest of Europe until the 17th century.

There is also no definitive time period that can be attributed with the invention of the spoon. However, archaeological evidence suggests that spoons with handles were used for ancient Egyptian relig...

Make the hairs stand up on your neck!

Posted by siteadmin on Wednesday 5th of July 2023

We have all experienced events that have excited us. Family related that have made us proud. And/or that once in a lifetime opportunity.

But should they only be reserved for those special occassions? Or should we find ways to make the hairs stand up on the back of our necks more often?

I have a simple philosophy. That life has a nasty habit of biting us on the backside, when we least expect it. Meaning that we have to take advantage of all of the opportunities as and when they arise. And capitalise on these without fear or favour.
We should be...

You are where you are, and you can only move forward from that point

Posted by siteadmin on Wednesday 7th of June 2023

There’s many an example where people have been heard to say ‘if only I’d done that’.

It took me some time to realise that in doing so, it serves little purpose. You cannot turn the clock back. And you can only move forward from where you are at that particular point in time.

Experiences we encounter, can be good or bad. Good in the sense that we may have progressed professionally as we planned. And bad in that we chose the wrong dish from the menu, in that new restaurant that was recommended.

The best we can hope for is that we learn from...

Ensure that you protect yourself!

Posted by siteadmin on Wednesday 3rd of May 2023

I recently discovered that someone had somehow/somewhere likely intercepted an item of post. Pretending to be me, they then successfully reported my credit card to the provider (which I had in my possession) as lost. Being able to amend the address and contact details, taking delivery of the new credit card, they then happily spent close to £10,000 in around six weeks.

Not least for professional reasons, I’ve been subscribing to a credit referencing service for a number of years. Meaning that I regularly review that all is as it should be. ...

Financial Planning, Journeys and Building Confidence

Posted by siteadmin on Wednesday 5th of April 2023

From the beginning of the year and as I've already touched on within the past couple of articles, I'm going back to basics. To re-explain in detail, what lifestyle financial planning is and why it is so important.

If you'd like to recap, jsut view the articles in this Thoughts section.

And late last year, I was invited to record a podcast. Discussing the same subject. It's only a 35 minute listen, and I hope that you find it clear and concise.

To listen, just click here.

It can also be found on other podcast providers. So just search One...

Not all returns are financial

Posted by siteadmin on Wednesday 1st of March 2023

We often look at what we’ve achieved in life in monetary terms. What we have, what we earn and what we expect to receive.

But what is all this worth? And what value can we place on money, if it doesn’t give us the life we really want?

Perhaps by not being able to do the things we want to, if we don’t know what that is. Or where we might want to help our children or loved ones, as they might require or need.

For most human beings, we value what lies in our aspirations, desires and wants. Not how much we have. The latter is vitally relevant...

So, what’s your purpose?

Posted by siteadmin on Wednesday 1st of February 2023

Last month, I talked about the first phase of lifestyle financial planning. By establishing the individual’s purpose.

Initially, we identify where the person has come from, where they are now and where they want to end up. More importantly, by when.

It’s also helpful to understand what relationship they’ve had with money. What they experienced growing up and how things have unfolded for them since then, to be where they are now.

But what’s as important in establishing the purpose is the ‘why’. What this ‘why’ means and what the effects ar...