Why? Financial Curiosity Opens Doors

My granddaughter Zaylee is almost three and talking up a storm.  “Why?” tumbles out of her mouth like water flowing over rocks – continuously! Experiencing that deep quest for understanding the world is refreshing.  I also admit, at times humorously taxing as her questions are insatiable. I talk to many parents and grandparents and know you can relate!

Curiosity can wane as we put life under our belt and experiences in our back pocket.  Financially speaking, we acquiesce to our days – bringing money in, spending it, sharing it, growing it and protecting it.  What if we were to pause and ask why around the financial tools, temperaments and techniques we have put in place and take for granted?  Dig in, drill down on the purpose, reason, or motivation of our cash causalities.  At Wealth By Design, we contend that by asking questions we will make better decisions around our dollars.  Here are a few you can ask of yourself:

Why do I have this career?

Why do I want to retire?

Why draw money out of this account versus a different one?

Why do I have this life insurance policy or these employee benefits?

Why did I make that purchase?

Why do I give to these causes?

Why do I own these stocks?

Why can it be difficult to discuss money?

 If your why doesn’t address current tax environment, legislative policies, and economic season you may be missing out on opportunities.  If your why doesn’t align with your integrity or core values, you will probably experience some financial or relational angst somewhere down the road.  If you don’t ask why, money will leak out of your life like a slow, unnoticed drip under your sink. It will cause damage and the sooner you discover it, the less costly it will be.  Asking why questions around money will lead to more questions, unveiling hopes, joys, fears, or regrets.

Lets’ play this out. Q – Why do I own this stock portfolio? A – Because I want to make money in the markets.  Q – Why do you want to make money?  A – So I have security for the future.  Q – Why do you want security?  A – I don’t want to be burden on my family or community.

Attention is followed by intention.  When you pay attention to the why of your financial life, you will be increasingly intentional about the how, what, and where details of your dollars.  You will make subtle, yet poignant shifts in your monetary mindsets or modalities.

Why do I own this stock portfolio? Your answers could head in a multitude of directions as you unpack the how, what and where questions.  You may find yourself digging into tax efficiencies either in the vehicle you are utilizing (401K, SEP, IRA) or as you manage tax loss gain or harvesting techniques. It may lead you to look at your cash flow needs and how it is being produced in our current economic climate.  This same question could start conversations with family members or friends around what you want your fall season of life to look like. It may facilitate a discussion around what does security look like, or how much is enough.  You could also head down the path of investing in or staying away from certain companies as a matter of principal.  Everyone’s why answers are unique and warrant investigation.  It is our calling at WBD to help you unpack the process before putting your numbers to work for you.

Asking why is about taking responsibility for your financial choices – small or substantial.  Asking why builds on your financial agency as you do the best you can with what you have.  You let go of blame – of the government, the markets, others and yourself.  You embrace possibilities and potential. You take steps to move forward on your financial journey and we are here for you as educator, guide and advocate.

At Wealth By Design, we help you unpack your why.  We then align the financial tools you have worked hard at accumulating over the years to support you.  You can combine the enthusiasm of a three year old and the sophistication of an adult in a safe space to get curious about your financial life.  Set up a time now to discuss how we may be able to work with you.

Share this episode