Wealth Management & Financial Planning

Wealth Management & Financial Planning

You Don't Know, What You Don't Know

You Don’t Know, What You Don’t Know

Feelings of regret and frustration are not emotions I am accustomed to having. I make a point to discuss in this column and on my radio program that “things change.”  Utilizing some of those changes could make a profound difference in your life. But how do you know when a potential upgrade has occurred?

On December 27th of last year, I injured my Achilles tendon. From the moment it happened, I knew I needed to seek medical attention, but six weeks passed before I visited the doctor.  A walking boot was in my future.

The delay in visiting a doctor stemmed from an experience of mine. Seven years ago, I had an injury that required “the boot,” and the fear and pain from that experience delayed my decision to see the doctor this time. Because I had a negative “experience” in the past, I assumed I knew what would happen this time around.

Walking boots immobilize your foot and protect the area of your body that is in distress. They also cause you to hobble as one foot is now taller than the other. My calf healed in six weeks, but my hip hurt for six months!  That experience clouded my judgment and my decision-making ability to take action.

With coaxing from my wife, mother, and team members at work, I relented and saw a doctor who quickly put me in a boot. I expressed my fears of the previous injury to the nurse.  “No problem Joe.  There is a solution to that problem.”  I was dumbfounded. I felt like such a hypocrite!

The boot is on, and my hip is well, thanks to good doctors and insightful nurses, but the relief should have occurred sooner. Hopefully, this incident can help us better understand how people miss financial opportunities every day.

Ronald Regan said, “Trust but verify.”  We ought to trust those we work with but should always be seeking improvements. We shouldn’t write the same checks to the same vendors just because “it’s what we’ve always done.” Take a moment to examine where your money is going and why.

The world of finance changes constantly. There have been two major tax code overhauls in the last four years. The investment world adds new fee structures and tools to help with risk reduction monthly. The state of Indiana has allowed new clauses in your trust not available five years ago. Change is everywhere. When you don’t know there is a new solution to a previous problem, it is not uncommon to go about your business as nothing has changed at all.

The double-curse of knowledge is that I don’t know what I don’t know, but I also don’t know what you don’t know. The medical world fixed a problem, but I didn’t know it was improved, and they did not know to tell me. Because of this, I didn’t get the relief I needed as soon as I could have, and the doctors missed out on providing me a service earlier. Don’t let this type of mistake hurt your financial future.

Disclaimer: Do not construe anything written in this post or this blog in its entirety as a recommendation, research, or an offer to buy or sell any securities. Everything in this post is meant for educational and entertainment purposes only. I or my affiliates may hold positions in securities mentioned in the blog. Please see our Disclosure page for the full disclaimer.

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