MONEY matters

Mark Zaifman's thoughts on money, global economic trends and politics

Keeping the Faith on the Road to Financial Independence

Mark Zaifman   |    Sun, Sep 22, 2013 @ 09:49 AM

achieving financial independance

If you’re a fan of the New York Times bestselling book Your Money or Your Life - Transforming Your Relationship with Money and Achieving Financial Independence, it’s likely that 'achieving financial independence' (FI) part of the title that initially sparked your interest in deciding to read this seminal book on money.

But whatever the reason, as you find yourself dreaming and visualizing about financial independence you may also feel burdened and thrown off track by obstacles that are in the way of becoming FI. As you sit in yet another two hour commute to get to a job that drives you crazy, as you go through the third re-org in two years or get your fourth new direct report in two years or feel those crappy Sunday night blahs as you think about going to work Monday morning - as crazy as it sounds, these are all blessings in disguise.

Why are events that cause you such stress and frustration blessings in disguise? For the same reason most challenges, hurts and sorrows are often blessings and lessons. Being on the road to financial independence is no different, and if you are looking to achieve FI earlier than most, be prepared as you will run into hurdles and difficulties that will test you. Keeping the faith on the road to financial independence requires perseverance, discipline, trust and perhaps most importantly, resilience.

In the beginning of your journey to FI, you will second guess yourself and the decisions you need to make.Yet every time doubt seeps in to your mind, these blessings in disguise will be the prime motivators that help you overcome obstacles. That burning desire to be free, to choose how you will spend your precious life energy, to work in a profession or career that inspires you,  to wake up and ask, how may I be of service, these are the rewards that come to those that set an intention to live the life they desire.

Dwell in Possibilities

There are many roads that lead to financial independence. The possibilities of how to create a financial road map that illustrate step-by-step how to reach this life goal is where the art and science of financial planning come in to play.

Through a holistic discovery process that aligns your core values and aspirations with your money and your life, construction of a financial plan begins in earnest that slowly but surely maps out the financial strategies that take you from where you are today to where you want to be tomorrow.

Your financial plan is customized to fit your lifestyle and individual situation. Some clients prefer to take the superfast highway to reach FI, some will take the regular highway while others want a few pit stops on the road to FI while still others want to take the slow road as long as they know they’re on track.

For too long, in my humble opinion, financial planning has meant boring numbers on a spread sheet or financial lingo and jargon that puts most people to sleep. But as Dylan sang, ‘the times, they are a changin’.

Clients that seek out my financial planning services are interested in a deeper and more holistic discussion around their money and their life. They want to explore the many options and possibilities life has to offer. They want money to be their servant, not their master and perhaps most importantly, they want, maybe for the first time or in a long time, their money and their life to be in alignment with their core values. Because they know that when there is money and life alignment, there is financial integrity and authentic power that fuels their desires.

To dwell in all the possibilities…..that’s your starting point when aiming for a goal such as early financial independence. It’s your imagination and visualization that will play a pivotal role when designing your financial plan.  Too many of us have been conditioned to aim low when setting life goals. Why not aim high? Mark Twain said it best:

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails."



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