Are you building the right kind of security?

Published 3:40 pm Friday, August 20, 2010

All of us, on one level or another, are all looking for some kind of security. Whether its financial security, assurance of a future that includes Social Security, or a relationship with a significant other that provides us with emotional security, everyone is seeking security. So my question is, are we seeking the right types of security?

If youre reading this article, the odds are pretty good that youre a boomer or older. And ever since you were a baby, you received and later sought security. At first it was in the arms of a parent or other loving relative, but thats actually short-lived as we grow up so quickly especially today. In out teen years we seek the security of fitting in with our friends, and in college or on the job, we want and need the security of peer acceptance. Typically, in our twenties or thirties, we meet the person we will marry, and we open ourselves up to being loved and feeling secure in the arms and hearts of our mate. Unfortunately, about half the time, over time, we divorce and often go about seeking a new partner with whom we can feel secure, and loved, and perhaps learn to trust. But thats another topic.

Have you ever thought about the prioritizing the many types of security you seek? I mean whats the most important? Is it self-wealth, or self-sufficiency, or acceptance, or the security of being successful and recognized by your peers or superiors, or being secure with a good self-image? Because as with most things in life, the things we do best or that reach the highest levels of achievement and success are the things that put the most time and effort into mastering. The perfect job is usually more about your adapting and working hard to become successful and happy than it is about falling into a position that suites you to a tee.

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How about the perfect marriage I can hear many of you right now, saying, now thats an oxymoron. And youre right. Good relationships are made and built, and nurtured, and carefully tended. They dont just happen, because we all change as we age and grow and begin to see things differently. So a good marriage is built on a strong foundation, and like all things built, requires constant upkeep and maintenance. Relationships, like houses, apartments, cars and most things in our lives can become run down and lose value if they are not consistently cared for by the partners.

And remember, too much emphasis in one aspect of our lives is usually paid for by a deficiency in another segment of our life. For instance, most of us probably know of an over-achieving workaholic who succeeds magnificently in business, but does so at the cost of his or her marriage or his relationship with the kids or other family member.

Life is a balancing act, and the foundation for supporting all of the elements we wish to maintain, like oranges in a juggling act, is a combination of things, but at the ground level, they all require one thing: self-health. Self-health – until you lose it, you may never fully appreciate that health is wealth, and all good things in your life are tied to it.

So strive for all the things that you believe will make you secure: money, fame, success, recognition, love, happiness, acceptance, self-sufficiency, or whatever you feel is important. But do yourself a favor, prioritize those securities, and keep the one thing that money really cant buy at least not for the long-haul, your health as the core element of your foundation.

Remember, without your health, there is no long-term, fame, fortune or happiness. I think back about 25-years ago to Malcolm Forbes, who at the time of his death was a very wealthy man. He rode expensive motorcycles, drove the best cars, dated his good friend Elizabeth Taylor, traveled the world, and could buy and do just about anything he wanted. And yet, unexpectedly and far too soon, he died. Id be willing to bet a lot of money that if I could ask Mr. Forbes this question, Would your have traded your power, your fame and your fortune for a few more years of life with quality and health? that he would have said absolutely, yes.

Isnt it funny how no matter what aspects of life we think about, theyre all ultimately interwoven and in many ways dependent upon a single factor health? Health equals wealth. Make sure you take care of investing wisely in yours.

Ron Kauffman is a Certified Senior Advisor, radio talk show host and an expert on issues of aging and caregiving. He is the author of Caring for a Loved One with Alzheimers Disease, available at, where you can also hear his weekly Podcasts. He can be reached at 561-626-4481 or by email at