The Life Planning Process

Life Planning sets the sail.Everyone wants to enjoy financial freedom and live a successful life, but few are willing to take the initiative to make it happen. More often than not, people cruise through life on ‘autopilot’ hoping that one day they’ll purchase a winning lottery ticket, or that their imaginary ship will come in. Sadly, for most this never happens. But for the few who DO seek professional financial guidance, create a life plan, stick to it, and monitor progress along the way, the rewards can be great.

After having been in the financial profession for for many years, I can say with certainty that Financial and Life Planning DOES work. I’ve seen it happen over and over with past and present clients and if you’ve got what it takes, YOU TOO can make your life better, save enough for retirement, plan college for the kids (or yourself), take dream vacations, buy a house, improve your financial standing and change your lifestyle. It all begins with a dream, a good plan, and you.

Life Planning vs. Financial Planning

Life Planning is different from Financial Planning, but both are important and related. According to Investorwords.com, a Financial Planner is an investment professional that helps individuals set and achieve long-term financial goals, through:

  • Investments
  • Tax planning
  • Asset allocation
  • Risk management
  • Retirement planning
  • Estate planning
  • The role of a Financial Planner is to find ways to increase the client’s net worth and help the client accomplish all of his/her financial objectives.

    Life Planning, on the other hand, is focused on who you are and who you want to be. People engaged in the Life Planning process don’t look ahead to figure how to maintain their current lifestyles in retirement, rather they look for ways to change their current lifestyle in order to achieve the lifestyle of their dreams.

    It’s not all about the money

    For life Planners, the concept of money is combined with the concepts of spirituality, family, community service, creativity and other emotional aspects of personal growth and satisfaction. It’s about getting the most out of life and doing what you truly love rather than what your pocketbook or financial plan dictates.

    Money, however, is an important element in the Life Planning process. Once you decide what it is you want to accomplish you must decide what you need to do (or do without) to achieve it. If your goal is to build a bigger nest-egg for retirement or send your child to college, you can always get a second job or start a side business, or you can give up the big house, trade in the expensive car or skip the month long trips to Europe. It all comes down to what is important to you.

    How to get started

    A good Life Planning Coach with certification as a Financial Planner (CFP®) can help you resolve these issues and assist you in developing a life plan that works based on your needs and desires. It’s not easy work and it takes determination and often sacrifice, but the results are worth it and can take you to the place where you want to be.

    For more financial planning resources, see my “Important Links” page.

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    © 2015 Chuck Jones & Associates, Inc., 7110 SW Fir Loop, Suite 240, Portland OR 97223-8025 (503) 291-1313. CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ are
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    the CFP® Board's initial and ongoing certification requirements.