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Financial Counseling IS for Everyone

Since starting the Money Mastery program, I have talked to many of my friends and family about the benefits I am seeing and often encourage them to give it a try. When I see resistance, it is always for the same two beliefs or concerns:
1. Financial advising is only for those so far into debt that they can no longer manage on their own, or those who are very rich who need their investment portfolio managed.
2. I don’t have the money to spend on a service like that. And besides, we do okay as long as we stick to our budget.
I don’t really blame them, since that was exactly the mentality I had of the financial coaching industry. But unless you are aware of the many ways a financial coach can help you enhance the money you already have, you will continue to stay in debt much longer than you need to, over spend, and not be prepared for retirement. That’s just the bottom line.
Money Mastery’s motto is “wealth at any income.” I love this because it means that using the Money Mastery Principles, I can create wealth, no matter how much money I do or do not make. A good financial coach doesn’t just oversee a budget, they help you Puzzlecome up with a plan that stretches into however long it takes you to reach your goals and regardless of how much money you make. And they have a wealth of tips and tricks to help you do it as fast and effectively as possible. This doesn’t just include reducing debt. It also means creating a predictable retirement, savings for emotional wants and the needs an emergency creates, and determining the most effective way to pay and reduce taxes. A good financial coach is not a portfolio adviser, they are an expert that is able to help you see the big picture of your finances and how the way you spend, save, borrow and pay taxes are all interconnected and must work together harmoniously.  
This is how I have come to see financial coaching…
Clients who come into Money Mastery and set up a spending plan with a coach often find on average, around an extra $300 that they have been wasting due to the inefficient use of their money. I did and it shocked me to see how much I had been wasting.  Like others before they get Money Mastery coaching, my approach to paying off debt involved making at least the minimum payment and then adding extra when I could. After sitting down with my coach, Alan Williams, for an hour, he was able to show me three different plans that would allow me to pay down ALL my debt all while saving money in half the original estimated time, without requiring any additional money out of my pocket to do so!  In theory, this may have been something I could figure out if I spent hours working on it, but in all my years of budgeting and money managing, I didn’t come up with one-third of the ideas that Alan figured out for me in just a few hours.
Another fallacy people seem to have about financial coaching is that they will be told to sell their second car, move out of their house to shutterstock_44998930 (800x600)an apartment, stop ever going out to dinner, and put all their money toward debt, a la a Dave Ramsey approach. While it is true that paying down debt is an extreme priority, I am a little shocked every time Alan insists that I build some personal and emotional spending for me into my plan. Some months it is a very small amount, but I have come to believe what he says in that a spending plan needs to be sustainable (like an eating plan, or a workout plan…) and to do that, you have to give yourself a little room for a few extras (or as in a diet plan, a treat or two once in a while). As long as you track the way you spend your money, you can stay in control and still have a few things you want along the way. This has been ultra empowering to me!
My favorite thing is that this program allows people to set their own priorities, within their own parameters. This doesn’t mean that you may not have to make sacrifices to make your spending plan fit your income, but I feel like I am being expertly advised in the best way to hit MY personal goals. Expert advice and realistic goals in a kind and encouraging environment is what I have come to love about my personal coaching sessions. You will too.

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