What makes the Golden Years golden. Well, it’s certainly not the wording!

For photographers the “golden” hour takes place usually around 6 pm each day. That’s when the colors and hues are the most golden; and wow, the photographs at this time of day are beautiful. But it’s not a one-time event.

Those looking toward retirement need to adopt this same attitude—it’s not a onetime thing but something that has richness and continues on for years.

I want my clients to learn how to look forward to their “golden years” with anticipation and not dread. In fact, I want some of them to begin to experience these now rather than later. The word “golden” is not an ending because that’s not what life is about.

Life is NOT about fading off into the sunset on some island while holding on to a glass of liquid with a fancy little pink umbrella placed in it. It’s about living life to its fullest now and then later as well.

So, let me ask you: Have you ever envisioned what your life may be like in 20, 30 or 40 years? Will you travel the world? Start a business? Spend the winter months at your second home overlooking a beach? Or will you continue to pluck away at your 9 to 5 job?

Planning for the future involves—planning and acting on that plan.

Far too many people, make a plan and before the laser ink dries on the paper, they have thought of ways to abandoned it—jump ship and fearfully re-enter their enclave of “safety.”

I actually have had clients, who do the hard work to get a life plan in place only to abandon it before they get to their cars. Was something wrong with the plan?! Not at all. Not on my watch!

They were masters of their own universe and the control they wanted to have included clicking along like they have done for so many years. If you are serious about getting ahead of the tidal wave of this current financial crunch, then you will need:

• Courage to take the first step is always the hardest. Just do it! Take the step and you will immediately be glad you did!

• Trust in your advisor is crucial. If you don’t feel you can trust the person you are working with, then it is time to switch advisors. I can show you what comes next.

• Determination better described as stick-to-it-ness. You stay the course no matter the financial climate

• A willingness to learn what you need to learn so that you know your investments and any fees that are attached

• A willingness to keep going where your advisor suggests for you to go. These times may seem truly uncharted, but a trusted advisor knows how to navigate you safely to a place where you achieve your goals and dreams.

Learning to draw “inside the lines” can be fun, and it also can be creative. You need an action plan in place before it was too late, i.e. the sun really does set, and you are sitting in the ER with an emergency! Don’t wait for that to happen.

This financial environment is not a “crap shoot.” It takes discipline, determination, along with flexibility to navigate the waters of our current financial atmosphere.

Other clients seem bored with the process and say all financial advisors offer the same thing. This is not true. For example, I don’t just look at the money you have on a spread sheet and advise you. Yes, anyone with a degree can do that but the key to success is to find an advisor who goes further and works holistically.

In other words, that advisor creates a spread sheet of your life where you explain what you want your life plan to contain for yourself and for those you love.

There’s a layer of complication that most of us have never experienced—challenges, conflicts, and dashed dreams all waiting to rise out of this pile of ashes that we have seen mound up over the last several months.

One entrepreneur put it this way, “If my 401K survives this, then I’ll know there is a true light at the end of the tunnel.”

Another, who actually practiced retirement at age 42, said, “The sabbatical I took taught me to re-think the concept of retirement. I used to want to retire early, but I realize now that I love to work. Still, having the option to not work makes working even better because my career is still something that I enjoy doing.

“It gives me something to talk about and keeps my mind active. While I do intend to put in fewer hours, there’s something tremendously powerful about having the structure of a work routine in your life—I believe it helps keep you young!” So, you don’t retire! You re-purpose your life with new purpose and energy.

If I have learned anything over the past few months, it has been to practice what I tell people to do every day in regard to their finances and their lives and that is to be grateful.

You can incorporate all of the things you love most into your retirement plan: exercise, travel, nature and learning, but if you do not have a sense of gratitude within, then you will retire and be miserable.

Maybe you feel like you have missed out on far too much to catch up. It’s never too late! Start right now—where you are today with a free 411 Reset Strategy Meeting. Let’s talk and let me show you how to create a financial plan that works for you!