Did you know the average person spends more time planning for a vacation than they do for their own retirement? Additionally, financial stress is one of the leading causes of absenteeism and unproductivity at work, as well as one of the leading threats to personal relationships. Why is this? There are over a million explanations, but the primary cause is the failure to plan. As you already know, 2022 has been a tough year. As we move towards the end of the year, it is a perfect time to shift the focus from the day-to-day market movements to what really matters- living a life that you find fulfilling and full of passion. One way to work towards this euphoric goal is through intentional planning. As a CFP, I like to refer to this as intentional financial planning.
Financial stressors are everywhere, but by taking the time to imagine what you want your world to look like, putting steps in place to strategically move towards these goals, and potentially partnering with a professional, you may be able to methodically move towards making these desires a reality.
Financial planning is a fluid process and looks a little different for each person and each advisor. Conceptually, a few big topics are generally discussed:
- Cashflow- Spending with purpose
- Risk Management- Protecting against the speedbumps of life
- Short term Goal Planning- House, Car, Vacations, Education, etc.
- Asset Allocation- strategy for your investments
- Retirement Planning- working because you want to, not because you have to
- Tax Planning- thoughtful planning to only pay what you owe and find efficiencies where possible
- Estate Planning- do you have a documented plan or a default plan
- Legacy Planning- what do you want your mark on this world to be
Read this list again, only one of these specifically talked about the market/investment selection and returns. Don’t get me wrong, growth and/or income over time are necessary to make the other items work, but this is not the primary focus of financial planning. By thinking about the goals you are working towards, and less about the day to day number on your statement, you may find more comfort in volatile markets. Additionally, working with a professional may help you ease your mind or give you that needed pep talk when the news only seems to be bad.
Personally, the Malone Family is getting ready to have two of our children in college in the next 8 months. The past 19 years have flown incredibly quickly, and our younger daughter will be joining big sis in the college world soon. Had we not taken the advice of our advisor and started saving for college, this next chapter would feel even more daunting. I am thankful we took steps to prioritize our financial goals and work towards those that we found most meaningful. Now we are almost to “go time” and I feel much more confident financially regarding these next steps for our daughters.
As we wrap up the last few days of October, Financial Planning Month, take a moment to assess if you have a plan. If you have uncertainty in your financial situation, working with a professional might help. If you have a plan, but are still unsure, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our team. We may be a great resource for a second opinion or outside view on the progress you are making towards your goals. Hopefully, by taking these steps you can move closer to living a life of purpose and spending less time worrying about the details of getting there. If we can help, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our team:
816.792.5072- text or call
Securities and advisory services offered through LPL Financial, a registered investment advisor, Member FINRA/SIPC.
The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.