Financial Advisors and Personal Trainers
Many people have made comparisons between financial advisors and personal trainers because of the role both play in a person’s life and because it’s an easy parallel to draw. Far be it from me to pass up a good cliche, I wanted to look at the similarities between how an advisor operates and how that compares to a personal trainer. In many ways the root of not being in shape and making poor financial decisions contains the same underlying reasoning.
Enjoyment- Many people don’t enjoy finding time, going to the gym, figuring out a workout to do, making sure they’re doing it correctly, and then repeating that process every few days. For those that do find enjoyment in figuring out workouts and getting to the gym, it’s much easier to be disciplined and make working out a habit. Because doctors and nurses are already living with limited time, having a personal trainer to streamline the process without spending brain power is generally a good investment. This same attitude applies to finance, most people don’t enjoy looking over their retirement account options and figuring out the best investments, or figuring out how to put what they want to do into an effective financial plan. Enter the advisor who can be that coach that you can utilize (if you pick the right one) to streamline the process and save you time in order to reduce the barriers you have to getting involved in your financial well-being.
Lost Progress- Those who have worked out in the past and stopped for a few weeks for whatever reason can attest to how quickly any gains you’ve made are lost. It only takes a little bit of time before you’re back to square 1 and essentially starting over again. Having a personal trainer keeps you focused and on track with a schedule for you to follow. This provides a level of accountability so that you’re more easily able to stay on track and avoid lapsing on your workouts. The same is true in finance, one lapse can undo a lot of hard work. If you quit saving and pull investments to buy a sports car or take a long vacation, it can undo the work you had put in previously. Having a financial advisor gives you the accountability partner to work through these decisions with to see if it truly makes sense or if you’re simply giving in to impulse. This also greatly helps in times of uncertainty, where having an objective opinion can be the difference between staying in the market or pulling out. Becoming wealthy, like developing your muscles, is a process and not a destination. The important thing is to keep on the path or you’ll see your all your gains lost, for both finance and working out.
Busy- People are busy, and nurses and doctors are very busy, so it’s very easy to not carve out time to work out. You’re dealing with crazy hours as well as balancing spending time with your family, perhaps there are hobbies or other passions, organizations you’re involved in, as well as just taking time for yourself. It’s tough to set time aside for yourself to workout, so having a trainer to keep you focused on yourself and making sure you’re sticking with the workouts can be invaluable. With a financial advisor, they can take care of the paperwork and the research of options, and then condense everything down to what’s important. This also means educating you on the choices so that you can make an informed decision and be the driver of the process.
There are many comparisons between personal trainers and financial advisors, and while that’s certainly true, it’s the underlying causes of setbacks and poor decisions that drive the comparison. Working out and doing what’s best financially are similar processes, so attacking them with similar mindsets can prove valuable. If you’re interested in learning about how I would be able to help you by being an accountability partner, send me an email. If you’re interested in me being your personal trainer, please don’t email me, but do look here.