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I’m just not into working out.

I’m just not a saver.

I’m just not someone that’s going to count every calorie.

That’s me, take it or leave it.

While maybe not always this obvious, there are times when we all make statements like this.  This can be attributed to a healthy dose of self-awareness, of knowing one’s self and accepting our respective strengths and weaknesses.

It can also be a crutch.  Self-awareness should be step one in assessing how we interact with others, the world around us and set ourselves up for success in accomplishing our goals.  It shouldn’t let us off the hook.  When we allow this to occur, self-awareness becomes self-sabotage.

When we know our strengths and weaknesses, we can learn not only to embrace them, but use that awareness to set up processes that play to strengths, account for weaknesses and help us meet our goals.

As part of training for an upcoming running race, I know I can occasionally be prone to skip a workout in favor of the snooze button.  But, this race is important to me and I’ve decided while I’m aware of my occasional weakness, it doesn’t have to be something I blindly accept.

As a result, I’ve changed a lot about how I go to sleep, how I wake up and the rest of my morning routine.  While admittedly a little nutty, I even put my clothes for the next day in the car the night before to help ensure I fight through those few seconds where I try to talk myself into rolling back over in bed as opposed to heading out the door to get through my workout.

The same can be true of how we interact with our finances.  Saving is hard.  Tracking our spending can be even harder, but there are more tools than ever to help.

The first step is awareness.  In our discovery and regular checkup meetings with clients, our goal is to help increase that awareness, determine how much saving is needed to meet goals and identify what is truly most important to each client in determining how best to use resources today and in retirement.

From there, it’s often up to the client to execute on that plan, but we can help.  Sometimes it’s as simple as sending a monthly “paycheck” from a portfolio to help streamline spending.  When more is called for, we want to make sure clients have the best tools available to set up whatever works best for them to play to strengths, avoid weaknesses and set themselves and their financial plans up for the greatest chance at success.

We’re excited this fall to be launching a tool that will be another step towards that goal.  TAAG 360° is a client facing portal and website that will allow clients to see their investment portfolio, how performance impacts their retirement plan, set budgets, monitor spending and view all financial data in one place.

Self-awareness is only the beginning in thoughtfully attempting to meet our goals.  For our readers that are already working with us, let’s talk about what plans we can put in place to help improve your chances for success.  If you’re not, but have related questions or challenges, let’s talk about how we might help.

Have a great week!