We all are looking forward to this Holiday Season. The past 20+ months has been a time like no other. Throughout this season and as we move into a new (and hopefully better) year, we wish you peace and joy, renewed connections with family and friends, and the warmth of memories from holidays past, with wonderful glimpses of the joys that we can all look forward to in 2022.
Ora and I and the Diamond Group Wealth Advisors team thank you for your business, your support and your trust! We look forward to serving you and your families and businesses in 2022.
Best wishes, Marilyn and Ora
We all have had life changing transitions whether personal, career, health or relationships among many others. Each one of these is an opportunity for growth and a life event that may cause you to feel unexpected emotions.
For example, retirement for men and women, may cause one to feel a loss of identity and self-value. One day you were the person in charge, being compensated nicely, and the next week, you are Mr. or Mrs. “Retired in Place”, drawing Social Security and perhaps a pension.
The financial conversation is a whole another topic. Or you decide to leave a long standing love relationship and the transition to being on your own socially caused you to feel undervalued and of course under loved. This is where small actions can lead you to your next success. Focusing on what makes you happy and productive is a good way to take small steps to complete a transition.
How many of us have made big changes in our lives and have questioned ourselves day in and day out? We can share many more life transitions and decisions that we all make to move away or “forward” as we say in our wealth management practice. The words we use when talking to ourselves matter, and words like moving ahead; moving forward; are supportive of our internal decisions.
Take time to take good care of you when you are in a life transition. Healthy habits will help you to make healthy decisions daily. A successful transition usually does not happen in a few days, and sometime may take months, which we all know can be very challenging.
There is a saying we use, that “What we appreciate, Appreciates! Meaning that when we focus on a goal, a positive outcome, we usually will experience that result over time. Positive intention is one foundational technique for success. Equally important is having a support system of families, friends and colleagues that you can trust and share your feelings and ideas with when you are making a life transition. Moving through a life transition without a strong support system is challenging. Even if there is only one person that you can lean on, ask for support and guidance or just an ear that will listen. As we process our emotions, one at a time, we can move forward much more quickly.
Remember, transitions and change can produce positive growth in your life. Be open to the change, and life will open up for you.
Understanding family attitudes towards money may improve financial decisions and reduce financial stress.
People inherit more from their parents and grandparents than big feet, eye color, self-discipline, a passion for sports, or an artistic bent. Most also assume their families’ ideas and attitudes toward money. Money beliefs are often passed down from generation to generation, along with great grandma’s quilts, ancestral photos, and family culture.1
Researchers call these inherited money mindsets ‘money scripts.’ These are categories of belief associated with problematic financial decisions that create chronic stress.1, 2 The authors of Wired for Wealth explained:3
“A money script is not necessarily wrong, but neither is it necessarily right. Our scripts are often skewed, exaggerated, or one dimensional, consisting of incomplete or partial truths. They are usually highly contextual, true in one circumstance but false in many others…Since our money scripts are mostly unconscious, we don’t question their accuracy or examine the degree to which they are true and work for us, yet we continue to act on them as if they were entirely true.”
Understanding the scripts that underlie financial choices may help improve decision-making and reduce financial stress. Researchers at the University of Kansas studied four factors that encompass a variety of money scripts:
1. Money avoidance: Some money avoiders believe they don’t deserve to have money. Others think money is bad. Either way, money can be a source of fear, anxiety, or disgust. Money avoiders often sabotage their financial success. They may choose not to spend money on reasonable and essential items, or they may give money away so they have as little as possible.1, 2
2. Money worship: Money worshippers share a “belief that more money will solve all of life’s problems and bring happiness...”2 The reward of more money becomes a carrot dangling just ahead that is never quite reached. These beliefs have been associated with compulsive hoarding, unreasonable risk-taking, gambling, overspending, compulsive buying, and other destructive financial behaviors.1,
3. Money status: People whose beliefs register on this scale adhere to the idea that money confers status. They see a clear distinction between socio-economic classes, and their sense of self-worth is often linked to net worth. In addition, status scripters tend to equate success with money. Some may pretend to have more money than they do in order to appear successful.2
4. Money vigilance: The vigilant believe it is important to work and save. They are watchful, frugal, and concerned about finances. While these traits can support healthy financial decisions, the vigilant are often anxious about money matters and wary of financial risk. Consequently, their ability to enjoy the benefits and security of money may be limited.2
Within these categories, the 10 money scripts that result in chronic stress are:3
1.More money will make things better. Generations of families with this script may spend their lives accumulating more.
2.Money is bad. Grounded in the belief money makes people bad or unhappy, this script may lead to financial self-sabotage.
3.I don’t deserve money. This belief may accompany an inheritance or windfall. It may also lead to people earning below their potential.
4.I deserve to spend money. Everyone does. However, when this leads to overspending it creates financial problems.
5.There will never be enough money. Fear and anxiety may cause people to work long hours, neglect relationships, and fail to enjoy the benefits of their labor.
6.There will always be enough money. A belief the universe will always provide, whether a person takes action or not.
7.Money is unimportant. This rationalization is used to excuse poor financial decisions.
8.Money will give my life meaning. People with this script often immediately and strongly reject it. Their actions may tel a different story.
9.It’s not nice (or necessary) to talk about money. This attitude may be formed by the idea it is not polite to talk about money, politics, or religion.
10.If you are good, the universe will supply all your needs. This belief is prevalent among people in helping professions and those from strong religious backgrounds.
Many people who earn substantial incomes and make sound decisions in other areas of their lives compromise their financial security by making poor financial choices. In some cases, inherited money scripts are the issue. The good news is it’s possible to change the way you think about money. First, it’s important to identify the money beliefs that may be stunting your ability to grow wealth. The next step is adopting new ways of thinking, and that often means learning more about money. Financial knowledge can be a powerful tool.2, 3
If you would like to discuss your current financial situation or explore your relationship with money, give us a call.
Growing up, every kid has the dream of becoming a millionaire and today, more than ever before, this dream is finally within reach. Savings and income are increasing across the board, allowing people to save and invest more to build their wealth for retirement. The number of people retiring with a million dollars plus has increased drastically due to the broadening awareness of managing and investing your money.
Unfortunately, the downside to this cycle is that people feel that the learning curve to understand how to manage their financials is higher than ever. People are being easily driven away from investments and understanding due to the burgeoning idea that financial planning is for the wealthy and the personal finance ecosystem requires high dedication of time and resources. However, taking simple steps can easily lead to a start in financial asset growth. We have compiled a few key steps to take to start your investment journey.
Make a Financial Plan
If you want to achieve any goal, it’s important to plan how to get there. A financial plan is necessary and must be customized to each person as a one-size-fits-all plan will never accurately fulfill your individual needs and goals. This financial plan will set you on track to creating an accurate budget and understanding how money is flowing through your household. It can help show you where to pay off debt and where to put money into investments, as well as budgeting in for times to treat yourself without worrying about the guilt in having other obligations.
The most important aspect to financial planning is ensuring that the plan is flexible, and you update it every time something drastic happens in your life. Periodical evaluation is necessary to keep your goals aligned and getting them back on track if they’re impacted by market or personal factors.
Maximize your Contributions
The best way to build funds for retirement is to start saving as soon as possible. With a greater lump sum for investment, more opportunities become available. Even if you go the traditional route with a Roth or 401K, you should try to maximize your contributions to grow your wealth. It’s important to start putting money into any type of retirement account as soon as possible.
One way to increase your contribution is to check the benefit plans when accepting a job. Many companies will match your retirement contributions to a certain amount, an advantage that should be capitalized on while working. Any opportunity for free money should be taken when planning for retirement.
Playing the Long Game
We all like to see our money increase quickly; however, it’s important that you think long-term with stocks, bonds, and alternative assets. People get caught up in immediate unchanging investment numbers and become discouraged quickly, but retirement planning is solely about playing the long game. Your portfolio will move with you throughout the stages of your life, even if mix of assets within it changes as you age. Although the long-term mindset works best, make sure to check on your accounts often.
Overall, don’t give up on your financial goals because of a lack of information or direction. You can figure it out! If you need more help, financial advisors are a great resource in your financial journey. They can help with initial choice in program as well as how to add, budget, and manage your finances.
Regardless of how you choose to invest, start planning now to work towards fulfilling your dreams of becoming a millionaire by retirement.
We all have fears…Some more nagging than others. How do we overcome these fears and have the courage to forge ahead? How do we quiet that little voice that says, “You have not tried this golf shot before”…why now?
Well, why not now? How will we ever know how good we can be, if we don’t try? Whether on the golf course overlooking a big barranca or lake or on the Yellow Brick Road of Life, facing a steep mountain path…Challenge yourself to be better, to grow inside and out. And smile after you try!
Do one thing every day that scares you.—Eleanor Roosevelt
F-E-A-R has two meanings: 'Forget Everything and Run' or ‘Face Everything and Rise.' The choice is yours. —Zig Ziglar
Author: Becky Hardin - The Cookie Rookie
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 15 minutes
This Brussels Sprouts Recipe with Pears, Blue Cheese, and Walnuts is our favorite way to dress up a healthy side dish. These Brussels Sprouts are unique and so full of flavor. The pear pairs (ha!) beautifully with the blue cheese and toasted walnuts, making sure even the pickiest eater want to eat their greens. Such a great holiday side dish!