5 valuable financial lessons you can learn from Star Wars

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Star Wars Day on 4 May is a celebration of the legendary sci-fi saga that has been capturing audience imaginations since the release of Star Wars (later called A New Hope) in 1977.

The film launched one of the biggest franchises in history, spanning 12 films and nine TV series, as well as countless books, comics, and video games.

Generations of fans enjoy the galactic adventures of iconic characters including Luke Skywalker, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Yoda, and Rey. The characters often learn important lessons about the virtues of patience, self-control, and bravery in the face of danger. But did you know that Star Wars could give you some useful insights into your financial plan too?

Read on to learn five valuable financial lessons you can learn from Star Wars.

1. Debt can be dangerous

In The Empire Strikes Back, the much-loved smuggler Han Solo finds himself in a dangerous predicament when he ends up in debt to local gangster Jabba the Hutt.

As he’s unable to pay the debt and Jabba the Hutt is notoriously ruthless, Solo ends up frozen in carbonite until he’s eventually rescued by Luke and Leia at the beginning of Return of the Jedi.

While your creditors are unlikely to freeze you in carbonite and lock you away, Han Solo’s story does demonstrate how dangerous debt can be. He didn’t consider the potential implications of getting involved with a creditor like Jabba and once he was in debt, it was very difficult to get out of.

Bear this in mind and always consider the interest rate, terms of the credit, and most importantly, what might happen if you can’t afford to pay debt back. This could help you ensure that you use credit in a way that supports your financial plan and avoids any dangerous situations.

2. Protect yourself against the unexpected

Darth Vader and the Emperor dedicated a huge amount of time and resources to building the “Death Star”, a monumental space station with the power to destroy planets.

After years of careful planning, the Empire finally completed the Death Star and believed it was the key to galactic domination. What they didn’t expect was for Luke Skywalker to pinpoint the one weakness in their design and destroy the mammoth space station. And they certainly didn’t expect the Rebel Alliance to destroy the second Death Star after they rebuilt it.

You’d think that Vader’s grandson, Kylo Ren, would’ve learned his lesson but he faces the same fate in the most recent trilogy when the heroes destroyed the Starkiller Base.

What the villains of Star Wars consistently failed to realise is that no matter how well thought out their plan is, something can always go wrong and it’s important to be prepared for any eventuality.

You might spend years creating your financial plan and putting it into action. But an unexpected event such as a serious illness or a death in the family could undermine your hard work.

For example, if you’re too ill to work and can’t earn an income, you might not be able to contribute to your retirement savings. Additionally, if you die unexpectedly and don’t have life insurance, your family could face financial hardship.

Fortunately, investing in protection can prepare you for life’s challenges and ensure that you can still work towards your long-term financial goals if the worst happens.

3. Patience is the key to success

When Luke Skywalker comes to Yoda and asks the wise old master to train him in the ways of “the Force”, Yoda is reluctant. He tells Obi-Wan Kenobi that “the boy has no patience” so he can’t train him.

Yoda eventually agrees to teach him, but Luke rushes off before finishing his training. As a result, he finds himself unprepared for battle against Darth Vader. He loses a hand and is shaken by the revelation that Vader is his real father.

Luke’s impatience is his downfall, which is a common theme in Star Wars. Only Jedi willing to put time into their training reap the rewards and unlock the power of the Force.

The same is true of your financial plan. If you invest your wealth, remaining patient can unlock the power of compounding and lead to long-term growth. Letting your investments mature over time means that you may be more likely to be prepared for retirement.

Yet, if you try to rush the process like Luke, you could find yourself unprepared for the journey ahead.

4. Do or do not, there is no try

During Luke’s Jedi training, Yoda asks him to use the Force to raise his crashed ship from the swamp. Luke responds, “I’ll try”, to which Yoda says, “Do or do not, there is no try”.

This is one of the most iconic Star Wars quotes and it teaches a very important lesson about financial planning – consistent effort is the key to success.

It’s not enough to talk about saving or investing, you need to take action and make regular contributions if you want your wealth to grow. Similarly, planning to put protection in place or creating an estate plan in the future won’t make you resilient in the face of challenges unless you do it.

5. The right mentor can help you unlock your full potential

Every great hero in the Star Wars universe has a mentor to guide them. Qui-Gon Jinn taught the ways of the Force to Obi-Wan Kenobi who, along with Yoda, gave Luke the guidance he needed. Luke would later go on to teach a new generation of Jedi in Rey.

Without the support of an experienced master, these new Jedi wouldn’t have been able to unlock their full potential and triumph over the Sith.

You might benefit from a mentor in this way when managing your wealth. We can help you learn the ways of financial planning and achieve your dream lifestyle now and in the future.

Get in touch

If you want to put these financial lessons from the Star Wars universe into practice, we can support you.

Email enquiries@blackswanfp.co.uk or contact your adviser on 020 3828 8100.

Please note

This article is for general information only and does not constitute advice. The information is aimed at retail clients only.

The Financial Conduct Authority does not regulate estate planning or will writing.

A pension is a long-term investment not normally accessible until 55 (57 from April 2028). The fund value may fluctuate and can go down, which would have an impact on the level of pension benefits available. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance.

The tax implications of pension withdrawals will be based on your individual circumstances. Thresholds, percentage rates, and tax legislation may change in subsequent Finance Acts.

The value of your investments (and any income from them) can go down as well as up and you may not get back the full amount you invested. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance.

Investments should be considered over the longer term and should fit in with your overall attitude to risk and financial circumstances.

Note that life insurance plans typically have no cash in value at any time and cover will cease at the end of the term. If premiums stop, then cover will lapse.

Cover is subject to terms and conditions and may have exclusions. Definitions of illnesses vary from product provider and will be explained within the policy documentation.

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