2013 New Year’s Resolutions to get Healthier & Wealthier

At the end of this month, millions of North Americans will be making New Year’s resolutions. Two of the top resolutions made are to get healthier & wealthier. While these two areas may seem unrelated, the opposite is actually true. Ask anyone who has witnessed their retirement savings vanish, suffered a layoff, experience their home value or portfolio value drop. Consider those who can’t seem to get out of debt, or have insufficient income. Money provides feelings of security, power, independence, and freedom. Worry stemmed from stress over financial issues such as those mentioned above, can lead to feelings of anxiety, depression and other mental & emotional distress. Chronic stress can then negatively affect physical health as well. Financial strain is among the top factors causing marital discord and breakup, and in turn, can often have a negative effect on children. In addition, differences in financial values & spending habits between spouses can contribute to producing financial stress & frustration.

If your 2013 New Year’s resolutions involve getting healthier & wealthier, it’s time to make a plan – for both. Whether you need to eat less, exercise more, spend less or save more, you will be more successful with a plan. Changing habits is never easy, and making small changes, slowly but surely is usually the best way to go. Get help from a professional – whether that be a doctor, a nutritionist, a trainer, or a financial planner. Research shows that people who work with a financial advisor have almost 5 times the level of investible assets compared to those who don’t have an advisor for households with incomes between $35,000 to $55,000. Further, these observations are consistent across all income levels and age groups; whereby households with incomes greater than $100,000 have 60% more in investible assets. Advisors provide a wide range of valuable services to clients, including the planning and maintenance of targets, helping them to choose the right vehicles and the right asset mix to achieve those targets. So whether your resolution involves better health or protecting your finances, get a coach!

When considering your financial health, ask yourself these questions:

    • Does your current tax preparer or accountant do active tax planning or just tax preparation? Do they communicate with your financial institution? Does your financial advisor review your tax situation?
    • Do you have a formal retirement plan (whether you are retired or not)? Does it include a income projection or strategic income planning? Are you saving enough? Are you at risk for running out of money? How much do you need for retirement?
    • Are your savings & investments well protected against all the risks that are out there? (market fluctuations, inflation, taxes, creditors, etc) What are you saving for? Are your future needs & dreams clear to you and your financial advisor?
    • Do you have a strategy to get & stay out of debt? Does your financial institution review your debt & interest rate situation regularly to make sure you’re in the best possible situation?
    • What if you die? What if your spouse dies? What if either one of you becomes disabled? Will your current protection be enough? Would a disability affect your retirement plan? What if you need to hire a caregiver or move into a care facility as you age, can you afford it?

Answering these and other financial questions, and coming up with a solution for any problem issues will give you a sense of security, reduce anxiety & stress, and give you a sense of financial well being. As important as it is to get your annual physical with your family doctor, a financial physical is equally important. Confirming that you have a healthy body or healthy finances will make you feel good, and learning what to do if there is a problem will put you on the right track.

Making resolutions & sticking to them are never easy, but getting started is the key. Make a decision to book an appointment for a check-up of your health & wealth. Identify the professionals who can help you make a plan. Communicate your goals to those advisors. Make a detailed, written plan. And work with your professional coaches to work on the steps in your plan. Good luck & Happy New Year!

To learn more about the importance of a comprehensive financial plan, call now to find out details about our upcoming: Wealth & Health Wellness Workshops
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