A New Way to Think About Retirement: Planning with Today in Mind
Talking About What's Important to You Now
Don't just think about the future. Think about what's making you make financial decisions today. Maybe you want to leave a stressful job, spend more time with your grandkids, or travel a lot when you're older. Knowing what's pushing you today can make you feel more eager and have a bigger impact on your retirement planning than just setting far-off retirement goals.
Problems vs. Dreams
Most people find it easier to stay away from things that bother them than to go after a dream that seems far away. This could mean retiring early to get away from a tough job, investing wisely to avoid money worries, or spreading out your investments to protect against market ups and downs. By figuring out and handling your problems now, you're more likely to take steps towards a relaxing and happy retirement.
Talking About Your Wins
Instead of talking about your problems, think about talking about your "wins". This means thinking about your financial wins and the things you still want to achieve. Look at your past with money, think about your recent wins, and ask yourself: what else do I want to do? This could be paying off your home loan, saving a certain amount for retirement, or starting a college fund for your grandkids.
The "Avoid-Goal" Approach
The 'avoid-goal' approach is another powerful strategy. Instead of focusing on the goals you want to reach, think about what you really want to avoid - maybe that's not having enough money, not being able to help your kids or grandkids, or having to work longer than you want. By clearly picturing what you don't want, you're better prepared to plan and act in ways that stop those things from happening.
It’s Okay to Repeat Yourself
When you're working with a financial advisor, it's very important that you both use words that are special to your financial life. Don't use unclear words like “dream” or “goal," but say what you want and need right now. Repeat back to each other so there is a clear understanding of what you would like to accomplish.
Better Planning Meetings
By moving the talk away from future dreams, you have a chance to look closer into your money needs and wants. This way of thinking can offer helpful ideas that make you take action. Share your reasons, your wish to avoid certain things, and your money worries with your advisor to make your meetings more helpful and important.
Planning for retirement doesn't have to be a far-off process filled with unclear goals. By focusing on what you want and need now, recognizing your problems and things you want to avoid, you can be more active in planning for retirement. The steps you take today will eventually lead you to the future you want.
Remember, every win, no matter how small, matters and is worth talking about with your advisor. Whether it's the Step Approach, Outcomes Approach, or the Avoid-Goal Approach, picking a method that matches what you want and need now can make the journey towards retirement clearer, and more rewarding.
When you are ready reach out Garrett@AscendInvestment.com
The commentary on this website reflects the personal opinions, viewpoints and analyses of the Ascend Investment Partners employees providing such comments, and should not be regarded as a description of advisory services provided by Kesler, Norman & Wride, LLC dba Ascend Investment Partners or performance returns of any Ascend Investment Partners Investments client. The views reflected in the commentary are subject to change at any time without notice. Nothing on this website constitutes investment advice, performance data or any recommendation that any particular security, portfolio of securities, transaction or investment strategy is suitable for any specific person. Any mention of a particular security and related performance data is not a recommendation to buy or sell that security. Ascend Investment Partners manages its clients’ accounts using a variety of investment techniques and strategies, which are not necessarily discussed in the commentary. Investments in securities involve the risk of loss. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.
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