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Garry F. Liday Corporation FINANCIAL COACH
RETIREMENT ASSET MANAGERS, INC. A Registered Investment Advisory Firm (RIA)
PREPARING FOR THE FUTURE Is a Financial and Mental Activity
At the beginning of the year, we all look forward to the adventures awaiting us over the next 12 months. When you get to be my age, those adventures get less and less grand — don’t expect me to go skydiving any time soon — but they’re still every bit as meaningful. I firmly believe that no matter where you’re at in life, maintaining a combination of preparation and open- mindedness will help you deal with life’s unexpected surprises, as well as the expected ones. To speak to the preparation point, I want to relay a funny conversation I recently had with a client. Though we’re not an attorney’s office and do not give legal advice, I often discuss estate-planning measures with my clients. Not long ago, I was proposing the idea of setting up a will for one of my clients: a woman in her 80s who’d been putting it off or a long while. This conversation was probably the fifth time we’d broached the topic, but she had a new perspective on this occasion.
That being said, you can’t prepare for or control every aspect of your life. Along with your planning, you have to be willing to go with the flow from time to time. That’s especially true as you get older because your life can change swiftly during your later years. You may leave the home you’ve lived in for decades, see your health falter, or take on a new role in your family. I experienced this transformation for myself during last year’s Thanksgiving. Louise and I have taken less of a key role in the proceedings over the past few years. That’s great in terms of not having to cook or clean, but it also means we can’t dictate what ends up on the table. Sure, it’s a little weird to see the dishes you’ve been eating for your entire adult life go the way of the dodo, but there’s no use crying over it. While I was bummed to not see some of my favorites, I viewed it as a chance to try new things and enjoy a new type of Thanksgiving. I even got to sample some “hippie food.” Even though I don’t think I’ll be craving it anytime soon, it was fun and made the holiday feel unique and fresh. All of this is to say that handling life’s transitions isn’t always easy. When I help people plan, the work is just as mental or psychological as it is financial. As we kick off 2019, I encourage you to prepare for the year while leaving a healthy amount of room for the unanticipated. Balancing those two concepts will leave you ready for whatever life may throw at you. – Garry Li day
“My friend recently completed her will,” she told me. “She was dead less than a week later.”
“Well, it’s a good thing she finished her will then,” I told her. “Don’t you think you should do the same?”
“No,” she replied firmly. “I don’t want to end up like my friend.”
I couldn’t believe it. We had taken the exact same story and viewed it in opposite ways. At first, I didn’t understand my client’s reaction and chalked it up to silly superstition. Eventually, though, I came to sympathize with her perspective. Having conversations about what will happen when you’re gone or when you retire — or after any major life change, for that matter — is scary and uncomfortable. It’s easier to stand pat and go about your routine ignorant of what’s coming on the horizon. But I think if we can look at the above story objectively, we see that being prepared is a lot better than the alternative.
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