October is here so gather around the campfire. With Halloween round the corner, we are highlighting a few spooky financial stories that have scary circumstances. The type of fearful feelings that typically bleed in to stock markets this time of year. October is often wrongly characterized as the worst month for people to invest. Primarily because people remember the historical market drops that happen during October. But scary moves for your portfolio aren’t the only thing to fear in your financial planning. For all our listeners who love movies, you’re in for a treat. We’ve picked 5 spooky financial stories that pair up with some classic Halloween movies. Listen in for some truly terrifying financial stories.
Missing the Forest for the Trees
Remember Jack Nicholson’s classic movie, The Shining? “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.” Finding a work-life balance is difficult for so many of us. We had a client that saved diligently over a hard-working career. While building an impressive savings for retirement, he put off vacations, opting for promotions up the corporate ladder. But once he was finally ready to retire and enjoy his savings, he was diagnosed with a nebulous nerve condition that required daily care and limited physical motor functions preventing him from enjoying his hard earned savings. While we can’t prevent crippling medical conditions, we can build in balance to our financial plans. Understanding how your savings and spending will transform throughout your life helps you make more confident decisions while enjoying time with those most important to you.
Seeing Something Others Can’t
“I see dead people.” A now infamous quote from The Sixth Sense. This is because Haley Jo Osmond’s character can see things others can’t. Similar scenarios occur when life is full of busyness that blinds us to opportunities that could make a noticeable long-term differences. Instead, by surrounding yourself with people who can spot things you can’t see, you set yourself up for new opportunities to bolster your financial progress. The back-door Roth provides a great example. You may think you make too much money to enjoy the benefits of a Roth IRA, but maybe you didn’t have enough time to fully understand and follow through with it.
How to Avoid the Blair Witch Scenario
The Blair Witch Project is a frightening scenario about a group of friends that wander into the woods without a plan. They lose their map which leads them into trouble. If you don’t have a plan you can swerve off course and lose your way to the retirement you desire. Many pre-retirees lose sleep over not having enough money because they didn’t set spending limits. Having a plan in place helps you comfortably understand how much you can afford to spend and how much to save. Do you have a specific and customized plan for your life and your retirement?
Nightmares that Bring Confusion
Some employees are confused about how best to handle employee income incentives. This is much like the people in Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas who are confused when Halloween comes to Christmas Town. Many employees don’t have the time or expertise of how best to deal with RSUs, ESPPs, and Stock Options. Partly due to the tough decisions of when to exercise, sell or hold. So many tend to hold, where positions build and concentration risk grows. This is breeding ground for nightmare scenarios of holding too long and not diversifying. Listen to this episode to learn how to deal with the familiarity bias and ensure that all your financial eggs are not in one basket.
Don’t Neglect to Invest in your Human Capital
Ghostbusters 2 is a classic tale of reinvention. The Ghostbusters are forced to reinvent themselves after their business goes bust at the end of the first movie. But there is beauty in their resilience and how they trust in their expertise. This is a good metaphor for our own lives. It’s important to invest in your own human capital and have the resilience to face negative events that will happen in your life. If you continually improve your knowledge, you’re better prepared to bounce back from challenges and change the trajectory of your career. Investing in yourself will always bring a high return on your investment.
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