Why Your Next Big Transition Could Be a Flop

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As a trusted family advisor, I have a front row seat to just about every life event occurring in our clients’ financial lives. Our advisors have helped them through the good times and the challenging ones. Now more than ever, we’ve been brought into family meetings where making decisions is about far more than just finances. I could not imagine running JJ Burns & Company without the savvy, caring and hardworking family we have developed. And you know what? It is family—and it’s a real commitment to excellence that we’re bringing to every person we care about.

Despite all the struggles and negative impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic, many Americans have also found some silver linings. About a third of those recently surveyed by the Pew Research Center say they’ve been able to spend more time with family during this time, thanks in large part to the surge in remote work. Meanwhile, 26% have discovered a slower pace of life and new hobbies. We have found this to be quite true among many of our clients.

That’s not to say the pandemic hasn’t been devastating for others. It’s just that many people are rethinking how they spend their time and what they want out of their lives, relationships, careers and retirements. It’s a time of great transition, which may have you reexamining your goals. If you’re in this boat, know that you’re not alone—but you’ll need to prep your financial plan to get there. Otherwise, your next big transition could be a flop.

Common Lifestyle Transitions We’re Seeing Right Now

The pandemic has nudged many people to do some serious soul searching. Every person’s financial situation is unique, but my team and I have been flooded with questions around the following lifestyle transitions:

  • Folks reimagining their careers: Roughly one in five U.S. workers have considered a professional pivot since the pandemic began, according to a recent Washington Post For some, it’s about finding more meaningful work. Others are searching for a higher-paying career path or better work-life balance.
  • Relationships becoming front and center: It’s been an emotionally exhausting year and a half, and many are looking at their relationships with fresh eyes. Social isolation has taken a toll on our ability to engage in normal activities and spend time with the people we care about most. It’s also underscored the things that really matter—our relationships. As such, you may be thinking about tweaking your lifestyle to prioritize time and experiences with family and friends. This might have you toying with the idea of relocating, taking more family vacations, or even growing your family.
  • People rethinking their retirement plans: Many folks have suffered a job loss or underemployment during the pandemic, causing them to either stay in the workforce longer or retire earlier than expected. Others have simply looked inward, recognized that life’s too short, and have decided that they want their retirement to look different than they originally planned. This is all to say that retirement visions are shifting. 

How to Financially Prepare for Life’s Big Transitions

While every person is different and on their own individual journey, one thing remains true across the board—the best way to achieve the life you want is to make a plan. No matter what your big transition looks like, taking the steps to prep your finances can help you get there. It highlights just how important it is to have the right advisors by your side. An experienced financial advisor can help you do several important things.

For one, they can map out different scenarios and run the numbers so that you can see what a different lifestyle, career or retirement vision would really look like. You’re then empowered to make a more informed decision. To do this effectively, you need a team that understands your unique goals and also has experience helping people plan for similar life transitions. It’s finding the right balance of knowledge and expertise. At JJ Burns, we tackle questions like:

  • What do you need to do now?
  • What would that new life look like?
  • How would you feel?
  • What would your day-to-day be like once you get there?

The best advisor is also one who helps you plan for the things you can control—instead of fixating on things that are beyond our control. There are certain things that are simply out of our hands. Try as we might, no one can control uncertainty about the pandemic, economy or the markets. However, having a plan in place can significantly reduce anxiety and sleepless night because it gives you a path forward. Your plan of action may adjust and adapt when the unexpected happens, but its core direction stays the same.

Navigating life’s big moments can feel overwhelming, especially if you know where you want to go but aren’t sure how to get there. Our team is dedicated to helping people plan for all kinds of life transitions so they’ll be more likely to succeed. This sometimes means making difficult choices as some dreams require trade-offs, but the right advisor can guide you through it so you can live the life you envision. Get some time on the calendar with us today to take the first step.

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