One of the biggest fears heard by wealth advisors is the fear of running out of money in retirement. Even among high-net-worth individuals, this is often the primary concern. And the wealth management industry is partly to blame for this. Built on the premise of scarcity, the messaging has incited fear, leading people to die rich, but not live richly.
You may have noticed, from some of our previous articles, that SignatureFD thinks differently about wealth. From offering tips on how veterinarian business owners can design a life that truly fulfills them to strategies for executives to find time for what matters most to them, we believe wealth goes beyond money. We partner with clients to “activate their wealth” in four key areas: Grow, Protect, Give, and Live (GPGL), so they can use their wealth to make an impact on the things that matter most to them.
We call this guiding principle Net Worthwhile™. It’s the intersection of the accumulation of more and the achievement of better. It is a wealth-building journey that is firmly rooted in what motivates you. Net Worthwhile is a complete shift in how people traditionally think of money. It invites clients to build a blueprint that enables them to enjoy wealth now and in the future because true joy is not driven just by a portfolio number.
Below are a few steps to help you shift your money mindset so you can start growing, protecting, giving, and living your wealth to the fullest.
Step #1: Perform a wealth-health check-up.
If you’re uncertain where you stand financially, shifting your money mindset can be especially difficult. However, understanding the current state of your finances can get you started. You don’t necessarily have to take a deep dive into paperwork. Instead, you can start with a few basic questions and a rough list.
- How much do you have today (savings, investments, insurance policies, retirement plans, estate plans, etc.)?
- How much will you need to acquire to live comfortably in retirement?
- What risks and challenges might prevent you from achieving your retirement goals?
- What options do you have for managing those risks and challenges?
Step #2: Set meaningful goals.
It’s easy to pick a number. But, a dollar value – in and of itself – doesn’t mean anything. We focus on
wealth fulfillment at SignatureFD because we believe wealth should be measured by the extent that
it allows you to enjoy what is most important to you. Therefore, we have found that it’s best for our
clients to define what is important first. At SignatureFD, we call it “Net Worthwhile™.”
Remember, the accumulation of more isn’t the end-goal, but rather a vehicle to enjoy more of what’s
worthwhile in life. To start setting meaningful goals, think about things you would enjoy doing – if money were no object. Is that spending time with family? Traveling? Volunteering within the community? Start with your why, then work your way back to the how.
Step #3: Bucket Your Goals In the Core Areas of Wealth
In truth, there are only four things you can do with money: Grow it, Protect it, Give it, or use it to Live. By bucketing in these categories, it enables you to attach what you’re doing to words with which you can easily understand and connect.
Special tip: often, people have a hard time knowing which causes they want to impact. Our SignatureGenerosity tool can help you align your resources with your why for you Give bucket.
Step #4: Examine your financial toolbox.
When most people think of financial planning and wealth management, the first thing that comes to mind is an investment portfolio. However, while investments can be a significant part of a financial blueprint, many other revenue and savings options exist. Working with a wealth advisor can help you identify unique solutions that map to your overarching goals.
Step #5: Talk about it.
Conversations about money, retirement, and end-of-life care can be difficult. However, discussing your current affairs and future goals with your loved ones early and often ensures everyone is marching toward the same goals (the same why).
Step #6: Hire the right professional.
Registered Investment Advisors must follow a strict fiduciary standard that requires that they always act in the client’s best interest, ensuring investment advice is based on what’s best for the client and not commission.
At SignatureFD, that means helping you shift your money mindset to define your Net Worthwhile™. Our financial design solutions help you maintain the authority of your wealth and worth by providing tools to give you confidence about tomorrow and use your resources to live the life you envision.
Are you interested in creating a custom financial plan that helps you grow, protect, give, and live your wealth and worth to the fullest? Take our quiz to get your free GPGL Blueprint!
SignatureFD is a financial advising firm headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia. We believe in helping our clients achieve wealth beyond money. Our team of investment, financial planning, and tax experts are committed to proactively helping clients take control of their financial lives and achieve their goals.
Jennifer Stephenson, CPA, is a partner and Chief Planning Officer at SignatureFD. She works with the planning, insurance, and generosity teams to deliver support to advisors and a personalized experience to the firm’s clients. She holds a Master of Professional Accountancy from Georgia State University.