Wolfe Kobes Journal
January 2020 Promises to yourself or the challenge with resolutions.
We have this comment in our investment history – “past performance of the market is no indication of future results”. As we contemplated the investment returns of 2019 to the past (2018) and the future (2020) - this seems a very appropriate commentary. The markets and investment results can vary greatly from year to year. In financial planning, how we plan and react to these changing markets as well as other planned actions can impact your success in financial management. So, what are some timely resolutions we consider with you?
1. Automate the goals you want to achieve – remove the emotions from money management. From scheduling your exercise to auto savings and investing in your 401k, as well as emergency reserves and increased payoff of your debts (credit cards, student loans, car loans and even your mortgage) can help lead to financial stability. I discovered this insight nearly 30 years ago, that by investing regularly regardless of headlines on impending doom or boom, it impacted the success time and time again.
2. Remove the impediments that prevent the above – this may also mean “friends” that are too expensive for your economic lifestyle. From purging the cherished chocolate and salty chips from your cupboard to cutting back on spending that appears too high for your budget. This may include friends with vastly different economic level. This is painful lesson on your reality vs. others. This may mean your winter vacation may be a staycation with cheaper forms of entertainment.
3. Small bites of change, then review and increase slowly. This works for financial goals as well as selfcare. Just as in swim lessons we don’t advocate throwing you into the deep end of the pool until you’ve mastered the dog paddle in shallow waters. For those that follow Dave Ramsey’s snowball methods – achieving the joy of success on small wins with debt payoff can increase your likely success at the larger goals.
4. Measure and monitor. In planning, we coach you in your own personal measure of success. In financial planning we are not necessarily comparing your success to others but building your own race and measure of success. FOMO (Fear of Missing out) is alive and present today with the market roaring ahead but as we witnessed 12 months ago fear and emotions can lead you to making irrational changes. Your race is personal. Your risk and return goals are very much tied to the financial goals that you share with us.
Below is another good article on financial resolutions. We hope we all have 2020 vision by the end of this new year!