Have you read any good books lately on the importance of financial planning? There are plenty of them out there if you are will to spend a bit of time on Amazon or at the local bookstore. Is financial planning enough, though? Not many people understand the big picture about financial wellness. It takes much more than just planning.
Planning is important, for sure, but to have real financial wellness, it takes knowledge and self-empowerment. Many of us are afraid of money and financial empowerment and money causes us endless stress and discomfort. It seems crazy, to me, to get upset about money. Just because money and the importance of financial planning may seem a little complicated at times is no reason to turn responsibility for your financial wellness over to an inexperienced financial planner. If you do this, then basically, you are guaranteeing yourself a retirement of fixed incomes and poverty. That, of course, assumes that the social safety net will still be there when you retire.
The financial world, particularly in 2009 and beyond is more unstable and unpredictable than an Atlantic Ocean crossing in the early 1900’s. Does anyone remember the Titanic? This instability is one reason why there are so many books on the importance of financial planning.
True financial wellness is not just about planning. It is about problem solving and critical thinking. Without these important skills, the importance of financial planning is completely irrelevant. It will, simply, never matter how many fundamentals of financial management, financial tips, and financial strategies you read about or hear about if you cannot evaluate what you are learning and apply the information to your life.
The consequences of being lazy about staying on top of your financial wellness are huge. The vast majority of my wellness categories grow much worse if you do not achieve and maintain financial wellness. It is not necessary to be rich. You just have to be knowledgeable and you have to be in control.
There are a million options out there to help you improve your financial wellness and planning tools are just one small area. It is time to get off the couch and start sorting out your finances. Do you need to increase your knowledge? Are you up to speed on banking and investing, debt and credit, mortgages and rental agreements, pensions and benefits, taxes and savings? Have you thought about your job lately or your income lately? Do you make enough money? Is your boss taking the right deductions each month? Do you have any forms of passive income? What will you do if you get hurt and cannot work?
If you do not have a clear handle on all these questions, then it is time to get busy. It is time to learn problem solving and critical thinking skills. Without these key stress management assets, you can never solve your wellness challenges and take back control of your health and your life.