The Year that Was 2016
What a year. Who could have imagined the world shattering events that took place?
As the world becomes ever closer via communications channels, we are more than ever connected to world events. The Merriam Webster word of the year was recently announced as “surreal”. And for many that is exactly how the year felt.
A reminder of some of 2106’s extraordinary events:
- February North Korea violates a raft of UN treaties by launching a long range missile into space
- February also saw the Catholic and Russian Orthodox churches coming closer together since their split in 1054, that’s one long feud
- March saw the appalling cowardly attack on Brussels
- Lahore experienced a suicide attack on the 27th of March that left 75 people dead
- In April over 11 million documents relating to Panamanian corporations were released to the world
- Egypt suffered an awful air disaster in May with the cause being attributed to a bomb
- June, the United Kingdom votes to leave the European Union
- In Solar Impulse 2 becomes the only solar powered aircraft to circumnavigate the earth
- August, the Summer Olympics in Rio
- September both China and the USA ratify the Paris Global Climate Agreement
- North Korea are at it again in September with their biggest nuclear test ever – the world condemns
- November, the world looks on in disbelief as Donald Trump is elected President
- December – not yet done and Europe still feeling pain as Berlin suffers an attack
- The US Fed raises rates for the first time in a long time signalling the end of low interest rates into the future
What makes life important
The above events are only a small snapshot of the extraordinary events of 2016. These global macro events do affect us in a micro way. On an emotional level they affect the way we see other people, some create empathy, some disbelief, and others rage. How we deal with that affects our well being and our confidence in the world around us.
Economically the results of some of these events are obvious, the Fed raises rates and that overseas holiday will cost you more as the Aussie dollar drops. The United Kingdom votes to leave the EU and the pound plummets making your UK holiday that much cheaper. Donald Trump wins and surprisingly markets rally.
What makes life important is to have an understanding of how these events affect your health and your finances but always have your own metrics. Have a strong plan of action that achieves goals that will make you happier.
It is a truism that “things” show diminishing returns the more you have. Remember when you were a kid and got your first bike? All your energy and elation was concentrated in that one object, by your second or third bike that experience had substantially diminished.
Once you have a roof over your head, and enough food in your tummy the other things are not as important. Sit down and decide what is important to you and make a plan as to how you are going to get there.
The amazing and disturbing events of 2016 can give you some context as to what you find important. The takeaway here is always be aware of what is going on in the world, but always have a plan that deals with your outcomes.
Whatever happens in 2017 the sun will still come up. Make sure you have a solid plan for the future and stick to it, if not talk to your financial planner and make one.
We look forward to an interesting 2017.