It has now been a month since I quit my job of 12 years and left the only industry I have ever known. I started my career in the music industry 19 years ago at the ripe old age of 20 but due to changing technology and a deep personal need for my wife to be closer to family we pulled up stakes and are starting over.
At the age of 39 I hit the reset button on life. Read all about it in my post, “Turning the Page” from September 21.
Luckily we both had jobs to go to before our previous employment ended so that uncertainty was eliminated early. My wife started even before I was finished my old job and I just started my new career this past Monday. For the rest of 2011 I will be training to be a Financial Planner.
As I mentioned in my previous post at the end of September, I want to do something that can mesh with the objectives of The Meekonomics Project. What better place to start than in the world of insurance and investment planning? I don’t know about you but I don’t know too many financial planners that could be considered meekonomists.
Too often when we think of planning for the future we do so out of fear and financial planners are actually trained to play on those fears. Fear that we might out live our money. Fear that we might lose our jobs or become disabled. Fear that we might be unable to provide for our needs, or the needs of those who depend on us. But to a meekonomist fear needs to be a four letter word.
A good friend of mine who I worked with in my music business days, a rapper who goes by the name of Manafest (www.manafest.ca), once said that fear stands for False, Evidence, Appearing, Real. I love that definition but we all know that fear does not come from God.
For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7
You see, if you do your financial planning out of fear you are going to make bad decisions, you’re not acknowledging that you have a sound mind and you will miss opportunities. Fear will paralyze you and not only prevent you from doing the very things you are afraid of, but more importantly from a meekonomics perspective, you might miss the opportunity to have a positive impact.
Put simply, people who plan out of fear are the same people who are unable to respond to the needs of those around them. That my friends is a direct violation of Jesus command to care for the sick and the needy, it is a denial of the fact that we are made to be in community with one another and it leads to isolationism. Chronic fear is nothing short of a mental illness in our society to today.
Remember; the poster child for fear in financial planning is Ebenezer Scrooge. Scrooge was afraid of everything and it separated him from the things we need as human beings in order to function in community. It wasn’t until he put aside his fears and learned to live in the here and know that he truly started to live at all.
Michael Bloomberg; mayor of New York City and former Wall Street tycoon once said that the best financial plan involves bouncing the cheque to the undertaker. I love that too. That’s a man who understands that you can’t take it with you, so you mights as well give it all away. As a meekonomist I can get behind that sentiment and as a financial planner I hope to show my clients that they can to.
An honest assessment of risk is one thing, that’s wise, but there is no place for fear in financial planning.