Regardless of what words we want to put to our journey with our money, there are a few realities that we need to face.
First – everything we do is linked to money, whether we pay for it ourselves or rely on a benefactor.
Second – some of our wealth-generation depends on luck and circumstance, but most of it depends on our ability to intentionally earn an income and manage the money we have.
Third – our intention to earn an income is only so good as our ability to act on that intention.
Fourth – external factors will always influence the first three.
In the financial planning profession, there are many titles held and roles played by experienced and qualified people to help us engage with our money in a way that covers all four of the above points. Sometimes they can be handled by one person, and in other cases, you might choose several people to play the different roles in the journey.
Two popular titles are those of financial coach and financial planner. These two roles enable us to have different conversations with our money, and often overlap. A good financial planner will have skills that help you articulate your journey and align your goals and needs with financial products that will add value. The goal is to create a plan that you not only implement, but that can grow and mature with you, your family and your changing needs. This is why a financial planner is not simply a broker – they have skills and knowledge that will help you engage with more than just financial products.
A financial coach is less concerned with the products and the plan and will focus more on identifying behaviors and habits that are holding you back from experiencing the best value from your financial plan. Even the best-laid plans can be left to ruin if they are not appropriately implemented or are derailed by other events and external factors.
It’s helpful to know how these different conversations shape our overall ability to create and keep our wealth in a way that enables us to provide for ourselves and others. It’s easy to look at one area (typically the second or third) and ignore the others because it is a lot to keep in mind, and when we sit with each area, we can be overwhelmed with how intricate and complex they can be.
Working with planning and coaching professionals who are qualified and experienced can help you strengthen your vulnerabilities and fortify your strengths.