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Don't Listen to My Advice


Sometimes, when making a decision, you shouldn't listen to me. It's true. Well, go ahead and listen, and I hope you listen very closely in fact, and then make your decision. Make it thinking about you. And know that I can live with you doing something I wouldn't do. Maybe it's taking a cruise when I don't think you can afford it. Maybe it's opting for a 15 year mortgage instead of the 30. Maybe it's buying a new house when I think the real estate market looks risky. Whatever it is, recognize that there comes a time in every financial planner's life when he or she presents a perfectly well-reasoned argument to a client where the analysis is spot on, the math supportive and the contingencies considered, but it doesn't matter. Whether you prefer your advice from Emily Dickinson or Selena Gomez both women agree, the heart wants what it wants. And in the end it's going to get it.

Numbers only mean so much and you have to do what lets you sleep best at night. I've never "won" a decision that a client walked away from still not agreeing with. You've got to be onboard, too. Which isn't to say you should never listen to me when you have doubts. It's to say that I view my job as to help you; to show you the options; to discuss the pros and cons of varying paths and to then show you the ramifications of your decisions. What you decide, that's up to you. I want you to be happy, I want you to succeed, I want you to enjoy a life well-lived.

By the way, I hope you tell me what you decide as soon as you make your decision. Even if I don't agree, maybe I can still help you maximize Plan B. So please, if there comes a time when you feel like you've listened to me, and listened well, and you still disagree, then go ahead and follow your heart. It's what I would tell you to do.

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