February has always been a special month for me. For one, it is my birthday month and the month I proposed to my wife. February hosts one of my favorite holidays - Valentine's Day. For those of you who haven't met me in person, I am roughly the size of an NFL tight end, and while men, especially large men, may be considered less emotional, I love love. I dare you to find a Rom-Com I haven't seen. So, to celebrate the month of love, I want to ask you, "What is love?" (Cue Haddaway)
There are many good definitions, but since I only have five hundred words, let's agree that at its core, love is intentionally doing something for someone else because you care more about their well-being than that of your own. A few examples include:
- Anything to do with children's birthday parties.
- Shopping with your spouse for something you don't have a passion for.
- Attending events you don't care about but are compelled to go because someone you care about cares about it.
Up to this point, I imagine we are all on the same page. Now let me pose another question, "What is love, and what are the behaviors of love when it comes to money management?" One of the main ways we show our love is by planning to leave money behind. However, that intentionality plays a big role in what that looks like. For instance, if I take doing something for my wife that I know she likes, that is not a surefire way to make her feel loved. Often, and especially if I do it out of obligation, what she will say is, "I don't want you to do X; I want you to want to do X!" If you want to express love to its fullest to those around you, you need to become more intentional with your money and financial decisions during your lifetime.
Here are a few questions to help you self-diagnose how intentional you are with your resources:
- How much are you saving? Is that enough for you and your loved ones?
- Do you have life insurance? Do you need life insurance? Do you have enough life insurance?
- How are you investing? Is it representative of your risk tolerances? Does it align with your short and long-term goals?
- What is your estate planning? Do you have beneficiaries on accounts?
- What is your tax situation? What tax situation are you leaving behind?
Do you know the answer to all of these questions? 99.9% of people do not know the answer to these questions for themselves. That is perfectly acceptable if you know the names of the people looking over these questions for you. You should consult relevant professionals in the tax and estate planning areas. Concerning financial planning and investment strategy, we can help you express your love for those in your life more fully by helping you be more intentional with your investing and financial planning needs. Wait to put off what needs attention today until tomorrow.