As a wealth advisor who has been in the industry for decades, I have witnessed many women experience monumental financial and emotional tragedies due to unanticipated financial needs. I have also personally experienced some of the common fears shared between many of my clients. One of these events completely changed my life.
In 2005, I unexpectedly became a foster mother to four teenage girls, raising them alongside my three teenage daughters. Being a foster mother was no simple task and taking care of seven girls on my own while also running my practice as an independent wealth advisor added to my already overfilled plate. This required some major adjustments to our budgeting and schedule, but we were lucky enough to have caring neighbors and friends who helped in any way they could, whether it was driving the girls to school or bringing over a meal. After nine months, my journey as a foster mother came to an end and the girls returned to their family. Each of our lives fell back into place and, over this past decade, I have watched these girls transform into strong and capable women.
I share this story because this experience changed my life, my perspective, and my purpose as a wealth advisor. I witnessed four young girls go through an unpredictable series of tragic events where they had no say or control in what was going to happen to them. While this was an overwhelming and sometimes frightening time in my life, by taking these risks I found a purpose for the rest of my life: helping women plan for the unexpected and take control of their financial lives so they can be prepared for any challenge that comes their way.
Over the years, I have worked with so many women who have experienced unanticipated hardships, both financially and emotionally. Everyday, I am inspired by these women who persevere and take control, no matter how frightening it may seem at first. Through workshops, events, and one-on-one planning, I challenge women to reach deep inside and discover their passions, their wants, and their fears.
The key to taking control of your financial future is simply to get started! It may be intimidating at first, but once their confidence begins to outweigh their fears, many clients become passionate about being involved in every step of planning for their financial future. No matter what situation in which you find yourself, I’d like to share a few recommendations for anyone who wants to build their confidence and take control of their financial future:
Get organized, starting with one task at a time.
This is an important step and may seem overwhelming at first, but you can make it fun! Treat yourself to a new purse or briefcase to organize important documents. Arrange your financial papers with folders or labels in matching colors. Once you’ve gathered your financial information, your wealth advisor can help you begin to sort through and make sense of it all.
One of the biggest challenges is knowing which questions to ask. Use the Internet and books to explore financial planning subjects you find interesting. Share what you have found with your friends and associates. Don’t be afraid to ask your financial advisor questions about what you read. At Engaging Women in Wealth, we host monthly events where women can learn more about personal finances, from little-known Social Security facts to understanding your financial statements.
Surround yourself with a trustworthy team of experts.
The people on your team should be there to help you. At Engaging Women in Wealth, we partner with estate planning attorneys and tax professionals to help simplify our clients’ lives. With in-depth knowledge of wealth management, clients come to us because we focus on what is important to them before creating their financial strategy.
At the end of the day, unpredictable events can occur at any time; but with a little guidance and a plan in hand, I believe every woman can feel more confident in her financial decision-making and can better adapt to life’s circumstances.
What have you learned from your life experiences?
What financial fears do you face today?
We invite you to share your story with us and other women by attending one of our upcoming events or sending us an email at [email protected].