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Most of you, dear readers, would be better than me at explaining the benefits of physical, spiritual, intellectual, emotional and social well-being. Yet wherever you are now at improving your well-being, you probably recognize that it is an important aspect of your wealth!

Now, Issue 3 introduces the other key goal, in my opinion, of family wealth: well-being.

So as I write this month’s Newsletter actively trying to figure out how to balance my personal well-being within the context of my obligation-heavy life, onto the wealth equation:

Family Wealth = Financial Assets (Human and Relational Capitals)

If you don’t take care of yourself, you show up as a weaker family participant and the family wealth suffers.

A big part of improving well-being in my life (and consulting) is simply setting the intention; family members setting out their goals that align with their family values and then going about the hard work of achieving them (and when not achieving them, learning from that!)

Having physical, intellectual, spiritual, emotional and even social goals are important to checking in on well-being. One particularly well researched scorecard of well-being is called “PERMA”, a system developed within the field of positive psychology.

I’ve enjoyed being on’s newsletter. They introduce the field of positive psychology here and the PERMA scorecard here.

I developed my own Balanced Scorecard; an individual’s personal development check-in tool. Email me for a copy.


Financial assets are a pretty remarkable resource when deployed into supporting well-being. Examples abound:

The best physical and social resources are not online in my opinion so no links! Although I’m actively looking for social forums for wealthy families that are actually helpful, like Farnum Street’s Learning Community has been helpful for me on understanding mental models.

Storytime! Of all the dumb-teenager decisions I made, I got really lucky with one of the best decisions I ever made; hiring a therapist from my allowance money. I was struggling with my identity post hockey career and had recently been cut from two hockey teams in a month to put the final nail in the hockey career coffin.

Although it certainly would have been healthier to talk to my parents and seek support together, it worked out well, and I’m very grateful to have been trusted enough by my parents to have my own bank account. As I reflect on ways that I’m fortunate and my, and my family’s good fortune, has positively impacted my well-being, that story stands out as an important one.


Recently I celebrated my 40th birthday with a conference for my closest friends at the Banff Centre. 

Tim Tamashiro ran us through a workshop on Ikigai, a Japanese philosophy guiding obtainment of a fulfilling life. It was fantastic. His Tedx Talk is here.

Although I am certainly no high achiever in developing my well-being, I’ve definitely improved over time. I believe the focus on being better is just as important as how strong your overall personal development is. I believe Dweck’s growth mindset sets this out well, as does James Altucher’s 1% better. It is the little improvements that make a big difference with time.


The key to family governance is the quality of the people in the family. Tough fact to admit for us advisors. It all comes down to the people.

Relational capital in one sense is the combined efforts of all the individuals. So when I’m asked what the key to effective family governance is, it is not the policies and procedures, experience, mission/vision/values that I cite. No! The key to effective family governance is having great people in the room together that care about each other.