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Want to Get Financially Fit? 10 Reasons To Hire a “Trainer.”

May 15, 2017 - 0 comments

How awesome would it be if you could stay in shape without ever breaking a sweat? Sorry, “no pain, no gain” still applies. That’s why those who are serious about taking their physical fitness to the next level often hire a personal trainer to improve their odds of success.

Similar principles apply to your financial fitness. Here are 10 ways the right financial advisor can be like a personal trainer as you seek to flex your money muscles.

1. Offering preparatory power

Whether you’re training for the next Iron Man Triathlon, or just trying to lose those little love handles, the first step to success is to define where you stand (or jiggle) today, what you’d like to achieve, and what realistic steps you can take to get there. Ditto to all that when you’re preparing your financial future. Improving on your money and muscle mass alike often calls for a fresh look at old habits.

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2. Resetting your rules

As part of the prep work, an advisor/trainer will often lead the way by first requiring you to take a step back. You may be too close to the subject of yourself to shift your mindset and your models into the new direction you want them to go. It can help to have an objective and experienced advisor/trainer who’s “been there, done that” for others like you.  

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3. Finessing your form

As you start pumping those real or proverbial irons, your advisor/trainer can also help you fine-tune your form. In the gym, you may have been doing deadlifts all along … but improperly. No wonder your back is always aching! Similarly, you may have been investing in the markets for years, without ever feeling confident about your decisions. An advisor with your best interests at heart should be able to do far more than just tell you what to buy and sell. He or she should help you understand how to apply proper form to your financial fitness.

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4. Personalizing the experience

Sure, there are best practices that apply to everyone in fitness and finance. But your body and mind are unique. Your advisor/trainer should help you apply evidence-based principles to a customized program designed to fit your distinct obstacles and opportunities.  

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5. Crunching the numbers

Some forms of progress are more obvious than others. Even if you can’t see those pounds dropping off or muscles bulking up just yet, there may be encouraging data to show that you’re on your way … stick with it! Or, conversely, the data may suggest that adjustments are warranted. Advisors/trainers experienced in the science of their profession can provide empirical analyses to help you accurately assess how your program is really working for you.

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6. Adding accountability

Even the most dedicated athlete or disciplined investor has “those days” when it seems easier to backslide into old habits. Knowing that someone else cares about how you’re doing can spell the difference between giving into temptations versus sticking with the program you know is right for you in the long run.

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7. Applauding your progress

Just as you don’t want to face the challenges on your own, it also can be a lot easier if you have an ally with whom to celebrate the milestones you do achieve.

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8. Lightening the load

The exercise is still up to you, as is the saving, investing and spending you do with your personal wealth. But an advisor/trainer should help you accomplish your goals by shouldering the details for you. A personal trainer can help you set up/take down your weights, adjust the machines, plot reps or courses for you, and so on. In your financial routine, a good advisor can help you plan, build and maintain your personalized portfolio, assist with transactional paperwork, eliminate unnecessary expenses, and more.

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9. Keeping your eyes on the prize

Once you’ve got your physical or financial goals defined, there are usually any number of ways to reach them. For your physical fitness, you want to define the right mix of diet, exercise and mental resolve. For your financial well-being, there’s investing, retirement planning, risk management (insurance), estate planning, charitable giving and more related to your total wealth. Your advisor/trainer should be well-versed in the granular details as well as the big-picture mix that will best contribute to your ideal “fitness” program.

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10. Above all … serving YOUR best interests!

Even if your advisor/trainer knows the ropes and has solid credentials, the advice is for naught if it’s not in your best interests. For your physical fitness, you may prefer outdoor activities to indoor routines. You may have a torn tendon. You may be allergic to nuts. These are the details that should most heavily influence any recommendations made, regardless of what your trainer may prefer or profit from. Similarly, your advisor should be attuned to the particulars that can make or break your financial fitness: How much investment risk should you or can you take? What life risks pose the greatest threats to you and your family? What priorities are most important in your life? Your advisor should always place these sorts of considerations ahead of any conflicting interests they may have.

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By: Jennifer Vachon with 0 comments.
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