top of page

Pursuit of Happiness by Jennifer Faherty


According to my kids, the Fourth of July is one of THE. BEST. HOLIDAYS, coming second only to Christmas. For them, it means fireworks, ice cream, barbequing, pool parties and the celebration of all things summer.

I like to remind them that it’s about our country’s Independence too. :) They sometimes forget that.

As do I. It’s easy for the historic significance of the Fourth of July to get overshadowed by fireworks and ice cream. So today, I thought it would be a nice change of pace to turn the tables and re-focus the holiday on those ideals that make the Fourth of July so special: independence, freedom and the pursuit of happiness.

Of course, in 1776, Thomas Jefferson and our Founding Fathers were concerned with how those ideals applied to the nation as a whole, and how they could move us forward as a sovereign country.

I’m no Jefferson so for me, my musings tend to be much simpler and self-directed, asking instead how those ideals apply today, in 2014, to our own personal lives. Asked in a different way, if you were to write your own personal Declaration of Independence, what would you want it to say?

Here are some questions to ponder:

  • In what areas of your life do you enjoy independence and freedom?

  • In what areas do you crave MORE independence and freedom?

  • What truths do you personally hold to be self-evident and inalienable?

  • Are you in pursuit of your own definition of happiness—or are you living someone else’s version?

  • What steps are you willing to take, financial or otherwise, to do things differently?

In my work as a Money Coach, these questions come up time and time again, even though they are not directly financial in nature. Whereas one client’s goal may be early retirement and another’s might be owning their house outright and another’s might be being able to take care of their aging parents, in the end, most financial goals really boil down to different personal versions of freedom, independence and the pursuit of happiness.

We don’t usually think of the Fourth of July as a time for personal introspection and self-help. It’s a historic celebration of our nation’s freedom, commemorated with fireworks and ice cream.

But why not take a minute to reflect on those timeless principles and the role they currently play in your own life?

You may just start your own personal revolution.

~Jennifer Faherty is a Certified Life Coach, specializing in helping women find their passion and develop a healthy relationship with money. She can be found at or on Twitter @jenniferfaherty.


bottom of page