Complacency killed the cat

It’s mid January 2016 and my phone is ringing off the hook.  The stock markets are in turmoil.  It’s the worst start to a year in stock market history.  Clients are worried.  They’re scared that their investments are losing money and want to know what my take is and if they are going to be okay.  Some of these clients have been through a financial plan.  Others haven’t, they’ve been just wanting us to handle an account or two.  Not one of my clients that had been through a financial plan called in overly worried about the market.  Why?  Because they’d done the front-end work to put together a plan that will help insure that they will retire when they want and with the lifestyle they desire.  They know that those fluctuations are expected and that their livelihood didn’t rely on only positive returns in the stock market.  The phone calls I received were from the people that didn’t want to put in the work on the front end, because it requires work, to put together a plan.  What I saw was an explosion of people wanting a plan.  Because they experienced a disruption.  A disruption that led to action that they should have done years ago.  But I can’t blame them.  I’m guilty of the same thing.  When times are good, I get complacent.  “Everything is fine”, “Everything will work out”.  It’s not until my life is disrupted in some form that I take action.  I see it every day.  People wait to work on their fitness until they’re experiencing pain, are massively overweight, until someone says something rude to them.  People don’t save an emergency fund when their incomes are sufficient enough, it’s not until income is decreased, there’s a job loss, or an unexpected expense (kids!).

Have you ever thought about why people that are successful got there.  Beyonce could stop singing now and have wealth to last generations.  But she’s a grinder.  She’s got a motor, a drive, to keep pushing.  She hasn’t let complacency get the best of her.  Nothing worth having comes easy.  When you find yourself getting comfortable make sure you’re not being complacent.  Take action now.  Do something today that your future self will thank you for.  Don’t wait until a stock market crash like ’08 happens to get your finances in order.  Don’t wait until you are obese before you decide to focus on your health and fitness.  Don’t wait for a disruption.  Prepare for disruptions now so that when they come, you are prepared.  You will thank your past self when those times come.

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