What comes to mind when you hear “financial planning”?
You probably think about money management—investments, budgeting, saving, debt, etc. You might think about it as an endless loop of spreadsheets, numbers, statistics, and fact-based meetings with your advisor, all of which blur together. While financial planning will involve some data and money talk,
What if we told you that wasn’t even close to the complete picture?
Your investments, family budget, retirement projections, and more make up one view of your financial picture, but there’s another, even more poignant piece of the puzzle: your life.
Financial life planning helps you take your money a step further by aligning it with your goals, values, dreams, and priorities. We want your money to mean something to you and your life as a whole.
Ok, but aren’t financial planning and financial life planning the same thing?
Great question! In fact, they’re not. Certainly, financial planning is involved in both, but the approach is different.
Let’s explore what financial life planning is, what you want your money to do for you, and how to pivot your plan as life happens.
What Is Financial Life Planning?
Financial life planning connects your life with your money, and this inverts the process of a typical approach.
How exactly does life planning differ from your run-of-the-mill financial plan?
For starters, we don’t begin with your investments, risk tolerance, allocations, etc. Instead, we start with your goals, values, and dreams and build a plan that aligns specifically with those ideas.
We don’t let the numbers inform your goals; your goals/values inform the numbers. This mindset shift enables us to look at you, the person, to learn more about what makes you unique and how your money can support that throughout your life.
So financial life planning empowers you to understand how you want your money to serve you in life. We can guide you through specific “money talks” that help uncover your wealth’s purpose.
Money is a tool to help you live your most ideal and fulfilled life. Financial life planning isn’t just about picking investments; it’s about making intentional decisions that enrich your life.
Make Financial Planning Personal
In financial life planning, money becomes much more personal; and we’re putting the “personal” back in personal finance. We can help you:
- Identify your core values
- Understand what’s most important to you
- Turn those important elements into focused financial goals
- Create a tailored financial strategy for each goal
- Prioritize and balance competing goals
- Monitor and update your progress
Wealth management isn’t supposed to be a cold analysis of your money; it’s a conversation about your life. The more we ask, the more we know about your hopes and dreams and can tailor your financial plan to meet your goals!
While we need to ask you questions, it is just as important to ask yourself some, including,
- What would you do with more money or time?
- If money weren’t an object, what’s the first thing you’d change/add to your life?
- When are you the happiest?
- What brings you joy/fulfillment?
It is important that people have an advisor who cares about their values and helps them reach their goals. In a survey by the Financial Planning Association, advisors and investors “both recognized that reaching financial goals is a top priority.”
Perhaps you view family as a core value, and spending more quality time together is a top goal and priority. You may find immense fulfillment in spending quality time with family but don’t do enough of it with the demands of your career and the general busyness of life.
How could an advisor help?
They could encourage you to create a plan to do more of what you love—family vacations, a career path with more flexibility, saving for significant family milestones like a wedding, etc. You want someone who can help you redirect money to the places that improve your life.
Build Your Dream Life Today and Tomorrow
Someone’s goal is rarely to own the most diversified portfolio. If you asked a child, they would likely answer they wish to own a unicorn! For grown adults, their dreams may look slightly different but can still feel like they are chasing a unicorn. Their goal may be to build a dream house for their family, support charities and causes they care about, find adventure through vacations/travel, etc.
Not sure what your goals are? Ask yourself some questions, like,
- What’s most important to you?
- How can you spend more time doing that?
- What roadblocks stand in your way?
- What values guide those choices?
Financial life planning asks these deep, challenging questions so you can start using your money as a tool to help you reach your goals.
It isn’t just a guessing game. There’s a science to building wealth. Schedule a call to get personalized insights that can help you stay on track to financial success. This is just another way we look at the person first to find your way to financial freedom!
Life Changes, And So Will The Plan
The core of financial planning is examining your personal values and goals.
Specifically, at Chladek Wealth, we aim to find clarity and confidence to help you use your money in the best ways for you today, tomorrow, and into the future!
As your life changes, your financial plans will likely change too.
Don’t sit around as life moves around you. It’s crucial to be forward-thinking and adapt to your life changes.
Those life changes could look like:
- Welcoming a New Child Into Your Life
- Moving Out of State
- Getting Married
- Finding a New Job
There are many ways life can change, and your advisor can help answer your questions and create a plan built to grow and change with you. Say you just welcomed a child into the world. Your short-term and long-term financial views may vary from your household budget to updating your estate plan to saving for future education and more.
How We Approach Financial Life Planning
What drives us to do our best and go the distance for our clients? Our goal is to empower you to make educated decisions about your money and instill confidence and comfort in your financial life.
We keep our focus on you and help you navigate daily needs, college planning, retirement planning, and more.
We want you to “find your golden leaf.”
The Czech name Chladek translates to “in the cooling shade.” A birch tree and its golden leaves symbolize fortune and prosperity. It takes time for a tree to grow and produce an abundance of leaves—a fantastic example of how it takes time to build wealth and use it to fulfill your goals and dreams.
Give us a call today, and together, we will help you plant the seeds for your financial life, develop the roots, and eventually enjoy the shade of all you’ve accomplished.
The contents of this article are for general information and educational purposes and should not be construed as specific investment, financial planning, tax, accounting, or legal advice. Please consult with a professional advisor before taking any action based on the contents of this article.
All investment and financial planning strategies involve risk of loss that you should be prepared to bear. We cannot guarantee any investment performance whatsoever, and past performance is not indicative of potential future returns.