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Financial Goal Setting In 2010

By Rich Strehl

Whether you read this article in the beginning of the year or later in 2010 a great question to ask yourself is “What are my financial goals this year”?

There are so many products and strategies out there from annuities and life insurance to mutual funds and fee based planning. One could argue that one investment option is better than the next one but any solid financial advisor will quickly tell you that it depends on the situation. We are coached by our compliance departments to learn about our clients’ risk tolerance and time horizon before making investment advice. However, one of the main reasons I win clients is because of my ability to help my clients indentify and set their financial goals. This is based on the responses I get from my clients who interviewed other advisors before they chose to do business with me.

Stephen Covey says in The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People to “Begin with the end in mind”. I use this strategy in my financial planning practice. Together with my client, we drill down to paint the picture of how they want their retirement to look. Once they begin to feel excited about some of the things they will enjoy during retirement they can prepare to stay disciplined along the way. When you walk past the refrigerator on your way out the door to work and see those pictures of what your retirement future holds it is easier to work harder with greater hope and conviction that you will succeed.

I love working with clients who have a passion for where they are headed. People with a dream and a goal are easier to advise and respond with more enthusiasm to appointments and phone calls.

I encourage you to sit and think about what kind of retirement you want. Talk to your spouse and set realistic goals. Goals should be out of reach but not out of sight. Don’t be afraid to stretch yourself. We tell our kids that they can have and be anything they want in life. In most cases, this is still true of each of us as adults.

As you consider this, read a couple of other great authors on goal setting: Zig Ziglar and Brian Tracy. Make 2010 your year and do something significant. Just remember, life is like a boomerang. What you throw out in life eventually comes back to you. And finally, as you achieve success along the way don’t forget to reach out and pull someone along with you. The journey is much more enjoyable when you share it with others. May God Bless you and may all your dreams come true.

Rich Strehl, is a Financial Advisor in Tampa, Florida. His book is Building Foundations By Setting Goals.

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