As a kid, I played sports and spent time in nature all the time. When adulthood came along, complete with a sedentary desk job, exercise suddenly felt like a chore. I preferred to ski, mountain bike, or spend time with my family…not go to the gym. Although I knew exercise was important, I struggled to make time for it. As my business grew, my overall health began to suffer.
I resolved to start biking, but everything else in my life kept pulling me elsewhere. Eventually, I admitted to myself that I lacked the expertise and commitment to achieve a meaningful result. I finally gave in and hired a personal trainer. And it’s been a game-changer.
My trainer put together a holistic wellness plan for me, which included many things I hadn’t considered before. Not only did he plan and provide accountability for my workouts, but he also coached me on nutrition, hydration, breathing, and sleep. Quite suddenly, my fitness became a priority. I began to lose weight, increase my strength, and gain more energy. My physical gains also translated to mental and emotional gains, as I noticed my focus and composure improve. It was a big shift in my life. All because I turned to an expert who pushed me to take a holistic approach and provided accountability.
The same idea applies to financial health. Most people manage their money by applying one or two obvious tactics, like debt reduction and savings. They think that will be enough to carry them toward their long-term financial goals. What they lack; however, is someone who can coach them on all the other important tactics––like taxes, insurance, credit, retirement, and more––and then guide them along as they achieve the objectives of that plan.
Just as my trainer addressed my total wellness, a holistic financial plan requires that smart financial decisions be made in all areas of your finances. (And as a person’s wealth grows, there will be increasingly large lists of decisions to make.) If just one or two key areas are missed, the whole plan suffers.
My personal trainer didn’t reinvent the principles of physical wellness. He used a proven template. Then together, we tweaked the details to suit my needs and constraints. Similarly, financial advisors need to work from a solid framework to address their client’s big picture. From there, advisors are able to cover all the details, ensuring a thorough plan.
Over the long run, people who are guided by a holistic financial advisor will enjoy the meaningful results that come from adhering to solid principles, and advisors will rest well knowing they have made a meaningful difference.