Why consider financial coaching?
Is Financial Coaching for you? We all know, even if just in the back of our minds, what makes sense and what doesn’t. But we often get caught up in the moment and just don’t think things through. Marketing and sales techniques are so sophisticated. Because of good marketing, we purchase items and make financial decisions without really thinking. We often don’t even realize what we are really doing. Or, even worse, we get in unexpected situations that get us off-track with our plans.
Financial coaching means facing your fears
The more you think you should know about managing your finances, the harder it is to “face your fears”. Do you dread bill paying time? Do you worry what might be in the mail? Maybe you are one of those people who wakes up in the middle of the night wondering how you will make it through to retirement, or through the month, or even through the week or the next day. And maybe you are among the many people who may be considered successful with your finances. but are not satisfied with your relationship with money or may think you are not where you should be financially.
Statistics show that almost 80% of Americans live paycheck to paycheck (CareerBuilder, 2017) and about 70% of us don’t even have a budget (FPU Member Survey, 2017). And we worry when the unexpected crisis comes (and we’ve experienced a few of late). So if you are worrying or unsatisfied with your finances, you’re not alone. But it can still be embarrassing to lay it all on the line and get the help you need. However, if you don’t eventually face your fears sooner, it is likely to be much worse later.
Where to turn for help with your finances
It’s hard to face those fears. But even if you think you’re ready to fix your situation, it’s hard to know where to turn for help. Financial advisors, your insurance agent, and even your favorite lender are often there to sell you financial products that may or may not be right for you at the moment. It all depends on your personal goals and plans. If you think you’re in financial trouble, a payday lender, consolidation loan, or pawn shop may seem like a way out. But these are probably are not the real answer to your problems.
And if you think you are in deep financial trouble, seeing an attorney about bankruptcy may be on your mind. But bankruptcy may not be what you need. And without understanding what got you there, bankruptcy is only a short-term sub-optimal solution. These professions and services may have their time and place in you plans. But is is best to engage these as part of YOUR financial plan. Then you know the alternatives and consequences and are making mindful decisions. That is the best way to get your finances sorted out once and for all.
What does a financial coach do?
A good financial coach can help you sort out your priorities, dreams, and goals, and help you set a plan to make it happen in a way that gives you control over your finances, your relationship with money, and your life. A good financial coach should not be there to sell you some financial product. Financial coaching is about your overall financial and personal situation. It is tailored to your particular concerns and challenges. There is no one-size-fits all cookbook or product you can purchase off the shelf that will fix your finances now or in the future.
A plan without action is nothing– a good financial coach can help you set realistic, manageable goals and objectives based on sound financial practices. A good financial coach can provide you with motivation and accountability so you can actually DO specific actions to reach those goals and continue sound financial behavior.
Financial coaching has three main goals. First, your coach will guide you to better understand your current situation. This is the assessment or the “face your fears” step. Secondly, your coach will guide you to set a realistic budget and prioritize your spending. Next, your coach will guide you through a process to work through your challenges, change your attitude and behavior with finances, so you can reach your goals. Lastly, but perhaps most importantly, your coach will guide you to make a realistic plan that you can work with to sustain your financial peace and prosperity.
Of course your personalized plan may include consulting with appropriate resources (that may include lenders, creditors, attorneys, insurance professionals, etc.) to enable you to reach your goals, but it will be from YOUR educated perspective and driven by YOU to meet YOUR needs and goals.
Even (especially?) really smart people can benefit from financial coaching
It’s not about how smart you are or how much you know about finances and money management. It’s about what you DO–it’s about your behavior.
If you’d like to find out more about financial coaching, please don’t hesitate to contact me to set up a complimentary initial consultation. This initial consultation is a 15 minute introduction call to help you to determine if working with a financial coach is right for you. We will discuss what challenges with money you are experiencing and hoping to solve. Together we will determine if coaching is right for you.