Monday Morning Quarter-Buck
“Many of us crucify ourselves between two thieves - regret for the past and fear of the future.” - Fulton Oursler
Several years ago, when my grandmother was clearly near the end of her life, I asked her if she could have a “do-over” was there anything in life that she would change. She looked at me with her chin pointed out and simply said, “no.”
I was shocked and immediately responded back, really, you have no regrets? She said, “that wasn’t your question. I have plenty of regrets, but I still wouldn’t have changed anything, because if I had changed one thing, everything would have been different.”
It’s been approximately six-years since I had that conversation with my grandmother, and the other day as I was wishing for a “do-over,” her words popped into my head. Have you ever had a moment where you wished you had or hadn’t said something, or that you acted differently, that you bought something, or shouldn’t have bought something, or perhaps you wish you had made a different decision on a job, car, or house? Perhaps you’ve experienced a moment of frustration with yourself, or perhaps you let yourself down?
I’ve had two such situations recently, one I followed up on immediately and apologized, ironically the person felt the same way, that they were off their game that day. I guess that goes to show that one of my favorite quotes is really true, “"Be kinder than necessary for everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle in their journey."
The second situation was much different, it didn’t affect anyone but me. Last Wednesday, at the Inspire Dinner (a fundraising dinner for the Fund For Women of the Southern Tier), I met someone that I have idolized for over 20 years. She was the first women I had ever “met” that talked about money! I’ve read all of her books (even one’s that you won’t find if you Google her), and for the past year I have faithfully listened to her podcast every Wednesday morning. I had so many things I wanted to say to this person who has been such an inspiration to me….and I couldn’t get any words out. I was was star-struck, immobile. I narrowly focused on the task that I had at hand, I allowed my ball of nerves to get the best of me, and I missed my opportunity to actually talk to her. Yes, I’m honored to have introduced her from the core of my heart, to have been hugged by her, and to have shaken her hand, but if only I could have a “do-over” and not let emotion get in the way.
I’m sure at this point you are wondering, AND what does this event have to do with finance? EMOTION! There is truth in the statements, “never go grocery shopping when you are hungry,” and “sleep on a big financial decision, tomorrow it might not look like such a great deal.” I often talk about the numbers behind the decisions that we make, but do we talk enough about the emotion behind the decision?
I’m sure Jean Chatzky would have gladly chatted with me about our joint passion to “get women talking about money,” and she would not have been the least bit judgemental about it! This is a similarity that I believe Ms. Chatzky and I share. We both truly also want people to learn not only from our own mistakes, but from those mistakes we’ve seen so many others experience.
So, my point is, the next time you have a big financial decision you are trying to make, think of my story and talk to someone who is not emotionally attached to the decision. Create some space between the emotion and the decision, and always feel free to give me a call to talk it through!
As a side note, I know that if I ever get the chance again to meet my “sister in finance,” I will talk to her like a cohort, someone who shares the love of personal financial education as much as I do, who also sees herself as a coach and who simply wants “to do something good.” I’d love to hear your stories, hindsight being 20/20, how would you have handled something different in your life?
As some of you may know, I work with Fiscal Fitness Clubs as a coach and educator in addition to delivering services through Irvine Wealth Planning Strategies. We are excited to have a new class starting soon - Adulting Class for Young Adults. For additional information - click here: FULL CLASS DETAILS HERE
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