How to know your goal will succeed

GOALS. Love them or hate them, they’re a popular topic of conversation this time of year.

Next to the New Year, fall seems to be the most natural time for a fresh start.

We’ve enjoyed the freedom and flexibility of summer, and as kids go back to school, we naturally shift our focus to be, well, more focused.

We set goals and change our habits, including money goals and habits.

This fall, I’ll be entering my goal-setting season number 12 as a financial advisor, and it’s safe to say I’ve picked up on some patterns over those years.

During my time in this industry, I have talked to thousands of people about their finances, and many of them have the same goals in mind in our first meeting: Pay Off Debt, Save for Retirement, Improve Credit, Save for a House, Optimize Insurance.

All of these are great goals! And I help people daily on their path to achieving them.

The only problem is… They aren’t all great for all people.

The temptation with finances is to set goals based on what you know. Maybe you want to save for a house because someone you know just paid off their home and tout the benefits of owning. Or you’re itching to pay off your student loan debt as soon as possible because your buddy did it.

But… What if you love to travel and would like to move to a few different states before settling down? Or you’re eligible for a student loan repayment program with your employer over the next several years?

The problem with generic goals is that there’s no such thing as a generic person.

Not only is your current situation unique and complex, but the vision you have for the future is up to YOUR values and YOUR definition of success.

So, 12 years in, I still ask my clients what their goals are in the first meetings.

But I ask WHY and WHAT about them is important.

I ask them to dig deeper and identify what really terrifies them and what excites them about the potential of their financial life.

Not only does this help me create a more effective financial strategy for that client, but they are MOTIVATED and EXCITED to get started and keep going, full speed ahead to making their finances a source of strength and comfort.

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James Jaderborg, CLU®, ChFC®

Author: James Jaderborg, CLU®, ChFC®

James Jaderborg specializes in working with business owners, physicians, and medical professionals to help them overcome financial challenges unique to their careers.

Registered Representative of Cetera Advisor Networks, LLC and Investment Advisor Representative of Cetera Investment Advisers, LLC.

James is a registered representative and investment advisor representative of CRI Securities, LLC and Securian Financial Services, Inc. 3854202/DOFU 10-2021