Busy Making Impact – 6 minutes per hour!
Nate Moore is the owner and CEO of Agape Planning Partners, an independent wealth management firm. Originally from Portland, Oregon, Moore came to Fresno State University on a music scholarship in 1994 and decided to stay in the community. He now spends his spare time enriching the lives of people throughout Fresno.
Moore’s venture into wealth management was a fluke journey. He knew he wanted to do something with business, but he didn’t know what. In Portland, high school students pick a high school almost like college students pick a major. Moore went to a business high school, then earned a degree in Psychology from Fresno State University. “I knew I wanted to work with people, but I did not know exactly what it was I wanted to do,” says Moore.
The February before he was to graduate college, Moore visited a career fair where he was exposed to financial planning. The light bulb went on, and he realized that’s what he was meant to do.
Being His Own Boss
“I always wanted to have control over my schedule,” says Moore, and the only way to do that was as an entrepreneur. “Sure, we work a lot of hours, but we control which hours we work.” He traded the security of working for someone else for the freedom of working for himself.
In 2008, he became an independent advisor at Nathaniel Moore Associates. After some failed business ventures, he found himself with $400,000 of credit card and credit line debt, and some $1.3 million of real estate debt. He prayed and asked God what was missing, and realized that there was a crisis of stewardship. He decided to give the business back to God, even to the point of removing his name from the building. So Nathaniel Moore Associates became Agape Planning Partners in 2010. Agape means unconditional love, and that’s the idea they go for. “When you think about finances, if you’re focused on doing for others without anything in return, you have the best chance of success,” says Moore. “And that’s where the name Agape Planning Partners comes from.” Since removing his name and giving the business to God, “it’s been great. That was, without a question, one of the best decisions I’ve made,” says Moore.
“What Agape Planning Partners really focuses on is getting to the fundamentals of what makes you tick,” Moore says. “Oftentimes we create these financial goals, we get to them, and we’re not fulfilled because they really weren’t our goals. We didn’t have that purpose or that ‘why’ behind them.”
Time For What Matters
Moore is a very busy man, but he contends that we all have time for the things that are most important to us. However, we often pile things onto our plates and wear a “busy badge” instead of making time for those important things. “When you pause and you prioritize your life, you realize that there is free time in there,” he says. He could work more and make more money, but there’s food on his family’s table, a roof over their heads, and they are able to give from time to time, and that’s the finish line they set for themselves.
For Moore, making time for what matters means not spending hours watching sports games or television, and setting his alarm for 3:41 each morning. “My thought process is, show up to the starting line, and you have a chance of winning the race,” he says. His starting line is 3:41am, so that’s where he shows up.
He also tithes his time. “If you think about tithing outside of the realm of monetary, but look at it from a family, time, or talent standpoint, we should apply the same principles,” he says. It would break down to tithing about 2.4 hours per day or six minutes per hour to something greater than yourself.
Giving What He Can
Some people think they have nothing to offer, but “we all have something to give,” says Moore. Sometimes it takes asking others what they need, then seeing if you can meet those needs. “Let others do an assessment of you. Oftentimes, we don’t even realize what our gifts or strengths are.” He can’t write big checks to give to others, but he can give them his time.
Advice to His Younger Self
Oftentimes, people think about what they want to accomplish in life and dream big, but then start to doubt themselves. “Don’t be afraid to dream,” Moore would tell his younger self. “I think sometimes we’re taught to settle for a reality that isn’t ours, but because we settle for it, it becomes ours.”
One childhood memory that has stuck with Moore was when he was in fourth grade, a family sponsored his family for Christmas. He grew up poor, although he didn’t realize it at the time. The sponsor family not only brought items to his house, they also stayed and hung out. “I could tell they weren’t necessarily comfortable,” says Moore. “The environment we lived in was not necessarily the best of environments, but they made it a point to spend that Christmas with us and love on us, and that memory has stuck with me forever, and it’s one of the biggest motivating factors for the things that I do.” He wishes he could find out their names so he could thank them and let them know how much of a difference they made.
Moore contends that if you have a positive comment for somebody, you should tell them. It may be the only positive thing they hear that day.
Getting Through the Hard Times
No matter what he is dealing with, Moore knows that there are billions of people in the world who would trade places with him. We have so much to be thankful for, but we sometimes lose sight of it. “I think it’s just perspective,” Moore says. “The difference between a blessing and a curse is perspective.”
Books That Made a Difference
Moore enjoys reading, listening to podcasts, and learning. A few books have made a big impact on him. Life Is So Good by Richard Glaubman, the grandson of a freed slave who learned to read at age 98, taught Moore that it’s never too late.
The Choice: A Surprising New Message of Hope by Og Mandino is great for busy professionals. “We can allow ourselves to be so busy that we miss our passions, miss our purpose,” says Moore. Mandino’s book reminds him of that.
Kevin Kruse’s book 15 Secrets Successful People Know About Time Management: The Productivity Habits of 7 Billionaires, 13 Olympic Athletes, 29 Straight-A Students, and 239 Entrepreneurs takes interviews from hundreds of successful people and condenses them into 15 tips to free up time.
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