David Geller discusses “Living a Better Life Now”

By Betty Dworschak   |   September 4, 2013

David Geller on Living a Better Life

“I want to live a better life NOW — I don’t want to wait until I’m 67!” laughs Adam Murphy, host of “CBS Public Affairs on Peachtree” as he sits down with CEO David Geller to discuss “Saving for Retirement and Living a Full Life Now.”

And the banter begins…watch the video or read on for the key ideas! (Can’t see the video below? Watch it on YouTube.)

Murphy: “Do I have to make a ton of money to be happy?”

Geller: “Absolutely not!”

Murphy (trying again with gusto): “My life would be so much better if I only made three or four hundred thousand dollars a year. I wouldn’t have a worry in the world!”

Geller does’t back down: “Probably not,” then cites scientific studies to support his point.

Confusing pleasure and happiness

Geller: “It’s easy to think that great cars, luxury vacations and material possessions can make us happier. And to be candid, getting the new car does create a short burst of happiness.

“But we’ve all had the experience that six months down the road, that new car that was so exciting is just another car.”

Murphy: “And it’s a burden.”

Geller nods. “And it’s a burden. So instead, it’s better to focus on the three keys to create a happy life.

“The first: The quality of your most important relationships. That’s really the biggest piece,” David emphasizes.

Murphy jumps in: “If you don’t have a happy home life … if you don’t have a good partner … if your friends aren’t loyal and you don’t have that solid core of people around you, you’re not going to be happy.”

Geller: “That’s right.”

Characteristics of quality relationships

Geller continues: “And the quality of those relationships have four defining characteristics.

  1. Mutual trust: You trust each other to tell the truth and to provide advice that’s in the recipient’s best interest
  2. Mutual caring: You’re there for people when times are tough, and you’re there for people when times are good. You give your friends the opportunity to tell you about all the very good stuff.
  3. Here’s the most important of the three characteristics: People you can talk to without fear of judgment, because we self-discover as we self-disclose. And we won’t self-disclose if we feel we’re being judged.”

Redefine “success”

Murphy: “Do you think this is one of the reasons we think that millionaires have these great lives, but when you peel back the layers you realize that not the case? All the million-dollar homes on Powers Ferry look amazing from the outside, but the inside of the home isn’t as nicely landscaped as the outside.”

Geller: “Often the problem is that those people mistakenly think that being successful is about how much money you have. But it’s not! Being successful is about

  1. The quality of those most important relationships
  2. Having engaged (or “flow”) experiences — what athletes call being “in the zone,” and
  3. Making a difference in the lives of others.”

And then … “Take a vacation, folks!”

Haven’t taken one in a while? Watch the video and then book something!

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