Live the Dream: Research into Australians living a successful life

Monday, August 21, 2017

McCrindle has been delighted to partner with the Financial Planning Association of Australia (FPA) again this year to conduct new research into the regrets, dreams, and attitudes to matters of money and life across generations, genders and geographies.

The new research shows almost one in four Australians (23%) believe they are ‘definitely’ or ‘mostly’ living the dream. These enviably content people are nearly three times more likely to seek the advice of a financial planner (24%) than those who describe themselves as not yet living the dream (9%).

Not everyone is 'living the dream'

Not everyone is content, however. The research also shows 80 per cent of working-age Australians are stressed about money and finances, with 1 in 4 indicating acute stress levels. 

Gen X and Gen Y are the most stressed about money and finance, and are the generation most likely to struggle with planning. Half of Gen Y (53%) finds planning their life very/somewhat hard. Two in five Gen X Australians feel the same way (44%), while Baby Boomers are the most likely to find planning easy to do (25%).

Owning a home is no longer a dominant Australian dream – slipping to a distant fourth place in the dream stakes. Most of the measures Australians attribute to “living the dream” in 2017 are linked to personal finance. While 57% believe living the dream means having the lifestyle of their choice, a similar proportion (54%) believe it means having financial freedom and independence. 

“The great Australian dream once meant home ownership, and the security which came from this, but these once-dominant goals have been replaced with lifestyle and financial freedom aspirations” stated Social Researcher, Mark McCrindle.

“Money is not the sole enabler to ‘living the dream” as Generation Y are much more likely than the wealthier Generation X to state that they are living the dream. However a lack of money and high debt are the biggest blockers for the 3 in 4 Australians who are not currently living their dreams.”

Australia’s four financial action personalities

Four distinct personality types are identified in the national data based on people’s ability to dream and act on their plans. The results are summarised in the infographic below:

About McCrindle 

At McCrindle we are engaged by some of the leading brands and most effective organisations across Australia and internationally to help them understand the ever-changing external environment in which they operate and to assist them in identifying and responding to the key trends.

Our expertise is analysing findings and effectively communicating insights and strategies. Our skills are in designing and deploying world class social and market research. Our purpose is advising organisations to respond strategically to the trends and so remain ever-relevant in changing times. As social researchers we help organisations, brands and communities know the times.

Feel free to Contact us to find out more about our research services.

Welcome to our blog...

We have a passion for research that tells a story, that can be presented visually, that brings about change and improves organisations. And we hope these resources help you know the times.

Our Social Media Sites

Facebook | McCrindle Research Social Media YouTube | McCrindle Research Social Media Twitter | McCrindle Research Social Media Flickr | McCrindle Research Social Media Pinterest | McCrindle Research Social Media Google Plus | McCrindle Research Social Media LinkedIn | McCrindle Research Social Media Mark McCrindle Slideshare

Last 150 Articles


community communications gender rent Northern Beaches Christian School social enquiry social researchers Engineering Manager generations spirituality Australian Communities Trends World Water Day travelling personal growth James Ward DIY organisational culture social commentary ease of travel earning suburb Australian schools faux-cilising experience Netflix trades narcissism ideas financial fears trends of 2017 Work place media commentary live the dream urban living index identity finance capital cities victoria australian real estate debt global financial crisis case study baby name Caregiver aged care puzzle christianity students conference presentation ferry professional services HSC states national wealth new york times millionth local census fail young people cancelling plans Christmas lunch property 2016 census Tasmania data visualisation pharmacies social media national private wealth happiness The Daily Edition WA healthy future Financial Planning Week social shifts public holiday survey quote equip water 2020 sydneysiders follow Royals Financial Planning Association mccrindle research hills marriages career micro apartments deloitte brands professional development focus groups aged care seasons Australia Day census 2016 breakfast Australia Day 2017 educhat google social researcher australians staying home more #censusfail brand millenials mythbusting greatness priorities February 16 hornsby Births networking CBD future-proof Skilling growth community event families emerging technologies gen alpha Gen X population milestone donation proactive Queensland 2017 entertainment challenge NFP event kate middleton food Sydney housing affordability personalities high density employers rental stress SMSF group SRE 40 million crime high density living sector wide language NT the australian dream Australian Census 2016 census results staff economic weather train Generation Y South Australia business dessert volunteer demographic life internet wage goal social change ACF2017 2014 norwest Australian Home micro ageing population Australian Population video Deaths average Australian infographics population earnings darwin bureau Australian Families sustainable living futurist volunteering workplace culture christmas school satisfaction staying in lifestyle typical australian keynote speaker work New Zeland shopping centre rise of local ABS going out social trends sports leadership product vegemite newspaper Myth eliane ageing SMART local communities youth Real Estate Institute of Victoria households average sydneysider celebration Real Estate supply and demand Macquarie University repayments baby names australia report VET 1968 coffee infographic fears generational trends global TDE media release ipswich acf15 engagement sydney event Research Director impact focus group screenage TED education research year 12 visual low density Social Trend demographic trends relational small business tips Australian Trends teleworking panel government woolworths menai nfp census data Australian community trends omnibus casual sentiments statistics capital city wealth inequality conferences storytelling long weekend collaboration goals generation alpha research visualisation home owner baby boom Hills Shire Council Queensland: QLD cloudy days future donate student dare to dream NBRS 24 million trends retirement slideshare schools students etiquette optimistic house prices snapshot emerging trends emerging generations housing trends VET sector easy rider cash wealth distribution change baby hobart tattoos google for education unemployment sunny days public speaking media activity christian entrepreneurs of today huffington post office space urban living consumer demography year 7 future of shopping cancelling event father's day research report infographic wall resilience national crime rates market research not-for-profit teach publication house price Christchurch mobile affordability faux-ciliser teacher mentor socialites NEETs Scouts vegetarian cold communication australian communities trends report hello fresh conference fresh plans "know the times" in the media news cultural diveristy stats owning a home affordable financial planning VIC tea Wellington rising house prices group session careers demographer System's Architect non profit transport state future proofing 2013 shopping choice workers not for profit generation financial research pack mortgage 23 million social issues generation Z insight events travel women faux-cilise PSI Crime Rates mccrindle Northern Territory TED talk cooking resource anzac interactive church Sydney Hills Business Chamber 1975 house price rise parents land of the middle class technology mother's day Merry Christmas Australians men sydneysider Channel 7 Duchess of Cambridge weekly earnings ACF17 the hills shire dream data debate socialising income REIV National Conference ashley fell safe meals the hills pharmacy New South Wales future proof friends cost FPA real geomapping insights home ownership bus rich sydney metro family entrepreneur schools learning professional neutral bay daily telegraph world digital authenticity speaker CPI gig economy trend wellbeing innovation McCrindle Speakers culture education sector presentation The ABC of XYZ apartments Melbourne twentyseventeen parenting outsourcing Northern Beaches tv results university degree forum royal family researcher responsive volunteers potts point aussie culture wedding cultural diversity media forecast click property price training graphs royal baby thought leadership gen z speakers pack litter learn Western Australia social life sydneycity educated IT Specialists conference speaker children suburban living hills shire Australian demographics salary internship thrive sector office mythbusters city the changing face of TAS Love housing growth Tuesday Trends toys program EFF residents 10 years renting unaffordable Sydney keynote speaker Australia street youth unemployment trends of 2016 tuesday cica ashley mckenzie balance English cancel plans consumerism jobs work-life world youth day communicate eliane miles learner work mates cars event social impact budget Kiwi increasing densification study Australian communities rain innovative shifts NSW divorce rate summer new office manly holiday Australian Bureau of Statistics child care marketing award baby names Adelaide sector wide study Geoff Brailey analysis society workplace Channel Seven housing collaborative annual income bondi Wagga Wagga urban taskforce ethnography Aussie social REIV Conference optus my business awards 2012 post rationalism Bathburst Valentine’s Day list shopper's pick earn Tuesday Trend Wodonga presentations winter Res Vis Christmas season marrickville overcast volunteering data future of work politics prince george SA leadership workshop buildings investing tertiary education medicine 1994 faith education future Canberra high density apartments sun high school baby boomers future of education professional speaker teachers award winner spend pyrmont meetings public speaker poor social research 2015 princess charlotte cartodb motivate visualisation cost of living 24,000,000 forecasting skills society trends survey design trend tuesday australian community trends report DESTEL Do It Yourself alpha shbc ACT define population growth social lives population map village customer participants car average aussie moderators guide millennials suburbs gold coast 1980 keynote royal speakers mateship couple wealth and income distribution clothing leader FOMO Territory showreel Generation X criminal holidays Gen Y house TEDx selfie brisbane census money poker master GPO entrepreneurial Kirsten Brewer jobs of the future baby name trends baby name predictions religion the great screenage urban online shopping teaching relevant investor education logan stay home qualitative research school students care support sunburnt country workshop JOMO 2016 Population Clock school financial dreams brand experience perth Hornsby Shire Council Vocational education Andrew Duffin Word Up financial independence Charlotte not for profit research environmental scanning winter blues Mark McCrindle internships business index economy mining boom paying to work mccrindle in the media online apartment story business performance moreton bay housing market changing face of sydney domestic home waverton wages australian financial future engage intern giving education future report townhouses demographics community engagement young australians hopes Assistant Store Manager purpose January 26th grave decision growing population megatrends offenders grandparents learning styles tableau friendship local community wealth property market research services marriage wolloomooloo contiki mover and shaker recap mccrindle tea sydney speaker investment curiosity know the times baby names report ACT Report Northern beaches Event royal influence professional presenters employment report Financial Planning Association of Australia australian social research wealth and income ultimo chairty research ACF 2016 university research data commute office opening commuters Aussies workforce data analyst daily commute demographic transformations crows nest in depth interviews charity culturally diverse New Zealand australian communities forum household environment Education Future Forum the average aussie blaxland rule keeper communities dreaming dreams energy lalor park sydney hills global generations social commentator renter of the future trends analyst ACF Australian Dream optus social analysis middle class facts monarchy charities australia divorce names Christmas presents census results easter belief organisations builders gig NBRS Architecture area Research Executive