In the beginning of my work, I had a number of people who abruptly cancelled their meetings with me. Some were due to business or family issues, while others were due to “not being prepared to meet” or “not sure this is the road I want to go” or, in rare instances, not saying anything at all. Over the years, I’ve learned that many people cancel appointments with financial planners out of fear, and I’ve come to accept this as a fact of life.
Let me give you a little background first. When faced with a financial crisis, many people now turn to the internet for assistance—to Google, YouTube, or a personal finance blogger they trust. When they can’t find a solution on their own, they may seek support from a trusted friend or family member. Even getting to this stage takes time; the inquiry may have to be placed on hold for another day. Assuming this is a major problem, like purchasing a new house and financing two residences for a period of time, let’s say it’s a minor issue. This individual urgently needs guidance from a qualified specialist. As a result, they may ask for a reference or go back to the search engine and look for other people to contact. They’ve made it this far, and now they’re ready to call it a day and go away.
Why? Even among our closest family members, we seldom talk about money. We’ve been trained not to talk about it, but then we’re subjected to years of hearing about how the Joneses have the latest and greatest costly possession. When we compare ourselves to others, we feel inadequate, even though our financial path has been relatively devoid of obstacles thanks to Facebook and Instagram. It might be tough to open up about our finances to a professional because of this. But I’m here to tell you that it doesn’t have to be like this.
As a counselor, I strive to remain objective. Your financial life up to now is what it is, and we cannot alter those circumstances. Debt, lack of savings, being late to the party, or pure chance are all factors that don’t matter in the grand scheme of things. In reality, it has no effect on who you are as a human being. If you ask for advice, a good adviser will take the time to explain their reasoning and make you comfortable with their recommendations.
When looking for an adviser, seek someone that you feel comfortable working with. Try another one if the first one does not work out. In fact, check out our blog entries on what to look for in an adviser and the 10 reasons why customers select us. It might be nerve-wracking to tell a stranger about financial mistakes you’ve made in the past, but we’re not the “financial confessional” someone once described to me. We are here to assist and would love to meet you.