Moving Away from God?: Life Lesson 27 of 50


Are You Moving Away From God?


moving away from god

Photo by Aaron Burden

One recent Sunday morning, Pastor Bob posed a question to the congregation that has stuck with me ever since. He asked, “Do your daily choices have you moving away from God?”

It’s a question that should make us all stop and think. If we haven’t reflected on our relationship with God lately, it might be an opportune moment to reassess our physical and spiritual standings. Our daily decisions, no matter how small, hold immense power to shape our lives. Life comprises countless choices, and it’s up to us to strive for the right ones every day, thereby following a path aligned with our beliefs.

Are we moving away from God?

Are we making the best decisions today that lead us closer to Him? If the answer isn’t always “Yes”, it’s time to reconsider our spiritual practice, recalibrate our focus, and work on strengthening our connection with God.

This introspection on our daily decisions and their spiritual impact should extend to our financial choices. Just as our actions influence our spiritual journey, our financial decisions wield significant influence in our lives.

Evaluating whether our financial practices align with our values and aspirations is important to our spiritual growth. Do our financial choices steer us toward or away from the life we aspire to lead? Similar to our spiritual path, financial decisions are integral to our daily existence.

It’s worth pondering whether our financial choices resonate with our core beliefs. Aligning our financial decisions with our values can foster a more meaningful and purposeful life.

Integrating intentional financial planning into our daily routine ensures that our monetary decisions support not only our immediate needs but also our long-term aspirations. Seeking guidance in financial planning acts as a guiding light, directing us toward a future that harmonizes both our spiritual and material goals.

Let’s embrace this opportunity to reassess not only our spiritual but also our financial well-being. Aligning our daily actions, both spiritually and financially, lays the groundwork for a more fulfilling and purpose-driven life.

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Ask yourself- can my portfolio support my lifestyle in my retirement? 

13 + 9 =

Marry Right the First Time: Life Lesson 26 of 50


Marry Right the First Time


marry right

Photo by Samantha Gades

Choosing the perfect life partner isn’t easy. When you first start dating, you’re always trying to present your best self. During courtship, whether we intend to or not, we typically showcase our most polished attributes while holding back certain aspects of our personalities.

It’s over time that genuine traits, preferences, and values surface, painting a more authentic picture of who we are. “Till death do you part” can be a very long time, especially if you’re spending it with the wrong person. If your values don’t link up with your partner’s, keep searching until you find the right one.

For example, these are some attributes I think are important for both individuals to share before deciding to tie the knot:

  • Both of you enjoy the same foods. If they don’t like pizza, move on.
  • You have similar financial values. If they are a spender rather than a saver, move on (and if you are the spender, change your own habits before dating or marrying anyone.)
  • Both of you should be believers.
  • Your partner should make you want to be a better person. If they don’t, move on.

Your list might be a little different or include extra items, and that’s fine. (After all, I’m not the one you’re marrying!)

In general, consider the following aspects:

Shared Interests: Having some common interests can foster connection, but it’s equally valuable to appreciate and respect each other’s differences. Instead of dismissing a potential partner for not sharing a particular preference, consider the joy that comes from exploring new experiences together.

Financial Attitudes: Aligning financial goals and habits can contribute to a harmonious relationship. While differing approaches to spending and saving exist, a willingness to understand each other’s perspectives and find a middle ground can strengthen financial harmony.

Spiritual or Belief Alignment: Shared spiritual beliefs can provide a profound sense of unity.

Mutual Growth: A supportive partner can inspire personal growth. Look for someone who encourages you to be your best self, but understand that growth is a personal journey that doesn’t solely rely on a partner’s influence.

As you build a life together, aligning your values and goals is key. Seeking professional advice can transform the way you approach financial planning as a couple.

My role is to provide personalized strategies, facilitate discussions, and empower you both to make informed decisions that align with your shared vision. Let’s embark on this journey together, crafting a solid financial plan that not only secures your future but also strengthens the bond you share. Contact me today for a free consultation.

Also, sign up for our eNewsletter blog that includes timely financial matters, news, and planning strategies that you can implement today.

Ask yourself- can my portfolio support my lifestyle in my retirement? 

11 + 4 =

Finding Gratitude in Turbulent Times


Finding Gratitude in Turbulent Times


Maintaining a heart of Thanksgiving 365 days a year isn’t always easy.

Recently, I came across an insightful article by Bryce Sanders, the president of Perceptive Business Solutions, titled Is Economic Anxiety Paralyzing Your Clients? It’s not just retirees who worry about the economy; it’s everyone.

Here’s Sanders’s list of common concerns:

  • Inflation is out of control.
  • I think interest rates are going up.
  • The stock market is too high. I missed the move.
  • The stock market is due for a massive correction.
  • I think Social Security will go broke.
  • The government spends more than it takes in.
  • I am worried about the outcome of the next national election.
  • Climate change will make the planet uninhabitable.
  • Everyone on TV tells me to be scared.
  • I see all these ads on TV for diseases I never knew I could get.
  • The war in Ukraine will never end.
  • Oil prices will never come down.
  • Immigration is a problem.
  • Will the Vikings win the Super Bowl this year? (OK, that last one was mine… but the answer is still no.)

These concerns seem inescapable, inundating our lives through news, social media, radio, and conversations with friends and family. It’s no wonder that maintaining a heart full of thanksgiving faces daily pressure. Or is it just me?

I indeed have a roof over my head and a two-car garage, but I can’t help but daydream about how much better life might be with a three-car garage. My refrigerator is well-stocked with food, yet curiously, I often struggle to find something truly appetizing. I enjoy the privilege of saving approximately 30 cents per gallon at the Costco gas station, even if it means enduring a brief wait of five to seven minutes. My list could go on.

I admit, there are times like these I do overlook my own daily blessings. Nevertheless, over the past few years, I’ve been dedicated to working on my gratitude.

I’ve written about and discussed this numerous times. Every day, I set out to do one good deed, which sometimes turns into two or three. These gestures can range from financial acts of kindness to simple courtesies like holding a door for someone.

Undoubtedly, maintaining a heart filled with Thanksgiving isn’t always a simple endeavor. But the knowledge that I can strive to make a positive impact on one or two individuals each day warms my heart. It’s through these small acts of kindness that a heart brimming with gratitude becomes much more attainable.

Additionally, I have a heart of Thanksgiving for you. Thank you for your continued trust in our ability to help you reach your goals.

Also, sign up for our eNewsletter blog that includes timely financial matters, news, and planning strategies that you can implement today.

Ask yourself- can my portfolio support my lifestyle in my retirement? 

10 + 14 =

Everyone Needs a Prenup: Life Lesson 25 of 50


Everyone Needs a Prenup


everyone needs a prenup

Photo by Alvin Mahmudov

Yes, I firmly believe everyone needs a prenup. No, I don’t believe it has to take the love or romance out of your relationship.

Not everyone agrees with me. In fact, no one is on my case about this subject more than my wife, Mrs. Anderson. Every time I mention prenuptial agreements, she says they’re not right, they kill the love, that future spouses should trust in their relationship. But the harsh reality is that regardless of how deeply in love we are, the future remains unpredictable.

In the event of a death or divorce, if we haven’t made our own plans, the government makes them for us. Isn’t it in everyone’s best interest to have an open and honest conversation around these topics? In the event of a divorce, wouldn’t you want clarity on how your investments, checking accounts, and other finances will be handled?

Make big decisions before making the big decision.

If there’s one thing more romantic than marrying the person you love, it’s marrying the person you love secure in the knowledge that there’s a plan in place for dealing with your finances in any contingency: for better or for worse, in sickness and in health (you know the rest).

With everything agreed upon ahead of time, you and your spouse can move forward together in security and trust. That’s why everyone needs a prenup: the only people who lose financially in this process are the divorce attorneys!

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Ask yourself- can my portfolio support my lifestyle in my retirement? 

6 + 10 =

Asking for Permission – Done: Life Lesson 24 of 50


I’m Done Asking for Permission


asking for permission

Photo by Ben White

“Forty years I’ve been asking for permission to piss. I can’t squeeze a drop without say-so.” This quote by Red, portrayed by Morgan Freeman in The Shawshank Redemption, captured it perfectly: throughout our lives, we are constantly asking for permission. It never ends.

Well, one day, I decided to make a change: I was done asking for permission. If I wanted something, and if I could afford it—on my own, without having to ask—I’d buy it. And if I couldn’t afford it, I wouldn’t.

It may sound unbelievable, but you too can embrace this mindset in your own life. Let me give you an example.

You and your lovely spouse are watching TV when you notice the big, beautiful house the main characters live in. You have the great idea that it’s time for you to move, but purchasing that dream house outright isn’t feasible. So, you consider applying for a mortgage to afford it.

Seems like a good plan, right? Yet, here’s the hitch: opting for a loan means seeking permission to repay the bank (with interest) over the next 15 or 30 years. Debt, well, debt sucks.

How would I approach this situation? If I don’t have the money upfront—and if I’m really done asking for permission—I just won’t buy it. It takes willpower, but I know that the benefits of living within my means far outweigh the cost of taking out that loan.

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Ask yourself- can my portfolio support my lifestyle in my retirement? 

13 + 3 =