Stanford Brown – Monthly Mind Over Matter


Welcome to another instalment of the Stanford Brown Monthly Mind Over Matter, inspired in name by the wise words of Mark Twain;


Here we summarise the monthly highlights of the articles being uploaded to the Stanford Brown Sydney Retiree Community, our Facebook Group which has grown rapidly since commencing in March 2018. We welcome you and your friends & family to join in the community – otherwise, if you don’t have Facebook, this monthly email is for you to ensure you don’t miss out!

Top 10 highlights and popular articles from the last month within the Facebook Community:

Stanford Brown presents: Health, Wealth and Sex in Retirement


Thursday November 29 marked the latest Stanford Brown Retiree Community Event – “Health Wealth and Sex In Retirement”. It was a full house with approx 200 of Stanford Brown clients and friends attending. Featuring insightful discussions with personal finance guru Noel Whittaker, and a hilarious speech from Bettina Arndt that certainly got the room talking, it was an enjoyable evening for all and a successful way to wrap up 2018! If you missed it, watch it here and keep an eye out for more SB Retiree Community events in 2019.

Can money buy happiness?

Although the saying ‘money can’t buy happiness’ is widely regarded as true to most experiences, a considerable amount of research suggests that it may be possible as there are multiple ways to spend money that will contribute mightily to overall happiness. First and foremost is spending money on experiences over material items, followed by spending money to benefit others, and buying many small pleasures rather than fewer large one. Other schools of thought advocate delaying consumption, and considering how peripheral features of purchases will affect your day-to-day lives.

The Sydney Bucket List

Many lifelong Sydneysiders shrug off the very same suggestions they would give to a visiting tourist as too busy, too expensive, or simply the old I’ll-get-to-it-one-day. However, most of the 50 items on this Sydney Bucket List would be easily incorporated into a casual Sunday day out, or take you to a neighbourhood that has become surprisingly renewed since you last visited. It’s well worth printing it off for a summer of fun!

Life after 50: better than ever?


It has become known as the Happiness Curve – academics have found increasing evidence that happiness through adulthood is U-shaped; with life satisfaction falling in our 20s and 30s, hitting a trough in our late 40s, before increasing until our 80s. The so-called ‘midlife crisis’ often experienced in the fifth decade supports this theory, as many experience a restlessness and discontent that they just can’t name the source of. The good news is that its 50 we should be looking forward to. Often heralded as a point of coming into greater self-confidence, less stress and more steady emotions, life after 50 may just be better than ever.

Family Discussions in Advance about Aged Care

It’s something that not many of us want to dwell on, and hence decisions about aged careare often made under considerable stress when circumstances demand a plan is put into place. Taking the time to have such an important conversation well before a decision is necessary could spare your family members the emotional strain of trying to satisfy your needs without all the right information. Most importantly, pre-retirees often plan only for the first phase of retirement, missing the fact that your needs may change substantially as time goes on.

Taking the reins of the family portfolio

It’s somewhat obvious when you think about it, but seldom is it leveraged for the family portfolio’s benefit – women invest differently to men. This Wall Street Journal article posited that if we can learn one thing from the GFC largely created by the investment decisions of men, it’s that the financial world if controlled by females may be very different. The author delves into psychological research that explores how women are more risk-averse than men; trading less frequently and expecting lower returns. It leaves us with an interesting though, that the average household’s investment portfolio will be less risky and more diversified if your women of the house helps manage it. In all likeliness the differing approaches and emotions present may even complement each other.

Micro-adventures you can have this weekend


In the years before relaxing into a complete retirement, many of us find ourselves daydreaming of holidays, travel, adventure – you name it, at some point we all just want to escape! Even once retirement is in full swing, it can be hard to fully delay to-do lists and various commitments for a full-blown getaway. The solution may be to take ‘micro-adventures’, for 1 or 2 days closer to home. For example, driving to a high point in a national park near your home, locking your bike then driving to a connecting trailhead, hiking up to the bike and coasting back to the car for a full day of outdoor exercise. Various similar combinations may involve camping and can be tailored to your stamina level and comfort in the great outdoors.

7 Ways to be a Rockstar Grandparent

Becoming a grandparent is for many the most enjoyable aspect of getting older – like parenting but less stress and more fun! However, navigating your relationship with your child as the parent of your grandchild can be tricky – here a 7 must-read tips to adjust to this totally new role and make the new family dynamic work for everyone.

How to become a coach or consultant 

Many senior professionals nominate coaching or consulting work as an attractive option they’d like to pursue post-retirement, with the promise of flexible hours, higher rates and greater autonomy probably front and centre in their minds. This article delivers a few key tips to making this goal a reality, with the smoothest transition possible.

  • Give yourself a sufficient runway, i.e. plenty of time to plan ahead and make a thoughtful departure from your current full-time position
  • Do a skills analysis, being sure to develop entrepreneurial abilities as well
  • Start recruiting clients as a first priority
  • Prepare your marketing, depending on whether or not your existing network satisfies the amount of consulting you’re willing to take on
  • Give yourself a break, ideally taking a sabbatical of some length to enjoy retirement at first

Video of the month

Ever had a bad day at work? Spare a thought for this luckless forklift driver!

If you like what you’ve seen so far, please feel free to join and interact with us on our Facebook group, at

And if you’d like us to add any of your family and friends to receive this email, reach out to [email protected]

Andrew Griffin | Private Wealth Adviser & Retiree Advice Leader

Stanford Brown

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