What Motivates Me More Than Powerball
In two words…my clients
It’s very difficult right now to not think about the Powerball lottery and the difference that close to $1bn in winnings after taxes will mean to someone or a group of people, but Powerball, like any other lottery is temporary. It’s a one-time event in someone’s life that only requires the effort of actually purchasing a ticket.
While I confess that I have thought about what I would do if I were to win Powerball (see my bonus section at the end of this), I spend more time thinking about and getting inspired by my client’s daily grind toward financially healthier lives.
I always feel for my January clients because just like most of us tend to gain physical weight over the holiday season, most of us tend to gain money weight over the holiday season. It’s tough to have a “weigh in” with your financial planner after one of the worst periods of your year, yet rather than stick their heads in the sand and avoid me; every single one of my January clients is stepping up to face their realities.
Despite cautioning me in advance as to their financial state, all of my clients scheduled a time to meet with me. Truthfully, I expected a number of them to try to delay our meetings until February to give them some time to catch up, but not a single one opted to delay.
What’s So Motivating?
Unlike winning the Powerball, financial wellness takes months and years to achieve and even after achieving it, you still need to work on maintaining it. Where most of us would love to have overnight success, the reality is that success takes time and I love watching my client’s commitment to achieving success despite setbacks.
No matter how much we might focus on getting financially fit, we are bound to run into obstacles like the holidays, or emergencies or emotionally challenging times, and when we do, we have to remember that our journey is not defined by the obstacles but rather the way that we overcome those obstacles.
Each one of my January clients has felt some degree of failure as they struggled to meet their goals, but I don’t see their failures as they do. First of all, I think they are a success just for committing to a meeting and facing their results. Second, I think you can only define yourself as a failure if you do nothing about your setbacks. As long as you keep pushing forward and keep focused on your goals, in my eyes you are not only a success, but also you motivate me to continue to focus on my goals.
I Know How My Clients Feel
I remember sitting down to a performance review with a previous manager of mine and I felt a lot like many of my clients, despite the fact that I worked hard to achieve my goals, I didn’t reach a few of them. I expressed my dissatisfaction to my boss, and he immediately told me that he felt the opposite. He shared with me that despite my results; my behaviors were on target and that eventually he knew that my behaviors would pay off.
I truly understand what he was sharing with me 10 years ago because I feel the same way with my clients. Even though a handful of them may not reach their number goals, they are continuing to practice financially responsible behaviors that I know will start to show results. The more that they practice those behaviors, the better their numbers will be, so I never want to see any of them disappointed. Disappointments can lead to quitting and quitting is not an outcome I like to see from anyone.
So if you don’t win the Powerball tonight or sometime in the future, continue to work towards your goals and understand that it’s not always about the results, it’s also about the process and the more you practice, the better you will get. I thank my clients for continuing to show this to me. They inspire and motivate me all the time and I am proud of their commitment and focus on living financially fit lives.
While I love the focus and long-term commitment of my clients, I would be remiss to not talk about Powerball and share with you what I would do if I won the money. The first thing I would do is fully fund The Financial Gym and begin the process of building financial gyms in communities across the country. I would fund my son’s college education. I would pay off my mortgage. I would establish a charitable fund that would provide scholarships to graduates from my high school (which was an all-girls high school) who wanted to pursue degrees in business or finance. I would establish another fund that would provide grants to women business owners; and finally I would set money aside so that I could take my son on one big international trip a year so that he could experience the world.
Gif Source: Giphy