Friday, January 23, 2009

Back with a new mission

I'm back. Did you miss me? Or maybe even more telling, did you even realize I was gone? (Don't answer that.)

It's been nearly a year since my last post, but I've used the time away well. In fact, by the grace of God, my life's gone through a big change. Instead of writing blog posts this past year, I used the time studying to get my Series 7 and Series 66 licenses, and to pass the very tough CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER (tm) comprehensive exam. Today, I'm no longer writing about personal finance and investing; I'm working with individual clients and advising them as an official financial planner.

I've been three months on the job and I love it, which is saying something given the financial state of mind of people today. I started advising on October 7, less than a week before the Dow Jones plummeted 11% in a single day. If I can love this job after advising clients in what's been the worst financial meltdown in 80 years, I'm guessing it was a pretty good career choice.

A cool revelation
And this brief time in my new role has helped confirm something in my mind. Financial success comes down to this: You are how you manage your money.

Plenty of books, blogs, videos, etc. exist on how to build an investment portfolio, how to save, how to spend wisely, what vehicles to invest in to reach your financial goals. But I'm realizing more and more that you can know everything there is about stocks and bonds, savings accounts and 401(k)s, and still make poor decisions that leave you poorer.

When it comes to money, the most important thing to understand is you. How you act. How you think. What motivates you, what deflates you. Only by discerning the inner-workings of your own mind, and particularly your spirit, can you effectively create a sensible financial plan. You have to know what fits, what doesn’t, and then what that means in the financial vehicles and strategies you use to pursue your own goals.

It's really what I love about my job, getting to know people, helping them to know themselves, and then applying those findings to their investments . Much to my surprise (and thrill!), being a financial planner is as much about helping people understand themselves as it is about understanding correlation coefficients, betas, and other complex math formulas (which make me say yuck! as much as any non-financial person).

My new mission
And that's what I'm hoping to bring you here at The Coin Jar: Ways to help you think about who you are, how you relate to money, and how you can use those findings to achieve success. It'll be a journey we go on together, because I'm applying these ways in my own life today, as I've written about in the past, and will continue to do so.

So please forgive the lengthy absence. I hope we both find it ultimately rewarding.


Jessica Torrez-Riley said...

Glad you're back! I just randomly checked in with your blog again after reading about the Economides family for work (Google them, I think you would like them.), and here you are just having posted again. Haha.

Speaking of being financially responsible, I just signed up to volunteer usher this morning, which means I get to see a Broadway play for free in a couple of weeks after just giving a couple of hours of my time.


Whats the new mission.