First Steps to Making a Personal Financial Plan

Holiday Financial Planning Tips

Each one of us carries any number of life goals or desires that we wish to achieve over our lifetime. In many cases, we lose sight of these yearnings and become consumed with day to day life. Sometimes, these dreams can seem to be become unachievable and we ultimately give up on them.

What has this got to do with financial planning, money, investments, superannuation, cash-flow, net worth? It seems like an odd juxtaposition, as it is not often that we think of these things in the context of a deeper meaning.

However, the most important part of any financial plan is the outcome. What does the plan deliver to you? Does your life become richer, along with your monetary wealth?

The first step in being able to work toward a fulfilling life that provides financial freedom is knowing what you want. For many of us, knowing what we want can seem to be the most difficult part.

I was reading a very interesting book that offered a set of three questions that can really help uncover an individual’s deepest goals. The questions are designed to provoke thought and really get to the essence of your being.

If you have never made the time to really consider what it is you are working toward, I would strongly recommend sitting down and working through these questions.

The questions to ask when making a personal financial plan:

  1. “I want you to imagine that you are financially secure, that you have enough money to take care of your needs, now and in the future. The question is, how would you live your life? What would you do with the money? Would you change anything? Let yourself go, don’t hold back your dreams. Describe a life that is complete, that is richly yours.
  2. This time, you visit your doctor who tells you that you have five to ten years left to live. The good part is that you won’t ever feel sick. The bad news is that you will have no notice of the moment of your death. What will you do in the times you have remaining to live? Will you change your life and how will you do it?
  3. This time your doctor shocks you with the news that you have only one day left to live. Notice what feelings arise as you confront your very real morality. Ask yourself:

What dreams will be left unfulfilled? What do I wish I had finished or had been? What do I wish I had done? What did I miss?”1

You will find that the questions challenge you to think about what you hold as your most important goals and dreams. It also forces you to prioritise these as you are given a shorter time frame and reduced opportunity to achieve your goals.

Building wealth, on its own, does not bring with it meaning and will not deliver fulfilment without a strong understanding of what the wealth is for.

Taking the next step once you have worked out what you want, will require the expertise of skilled professionals who will work with you to build a financial plan. As financial advisors, we help our clients work through these goals and dreams and start taking action to making them a reality.

“What man actually needs is not a tensionless state but rather the striving and struggling for some goal worth of him. What he needs is not the discharge of tension at any cost, but the call of a potential meaning waiting to be fulfilled by him”2 Victor Frankl

  1. Kinder G D, 2006, Lighting the Torch, FPA Press, Denver p. 12-13
  2. Ibid. p. 1

Daniel Viola is a financial advisor at Blueprint Wealth.

Blueprint Planning Pty Ltd ABN 78 097 264 554 trading as Blueprint Wealth and Daniel Viola are Authorised Representatives sand Credit Representatives of AMP Financial Planning Pty Limited ABN 89 051 208 327 Australian Financial Services Licence 232706 and Australian Credit Licence 232706

Disclaimer: This article contains general information only. It does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. Please consider the appropriateness of the information in light of your personal circumstances.