Defining Contentment

Matthew Cuplin, CFP® and partner at Midwest Financial Group, acknowledges that even the best-laid plans can be destroyed by fear and greed. “We have to constantly remember to trust the planning process and to keep a long term approach, adjusting as needed but not overreacting,” Cuplin said.

He believes the purpose of financial planning is to eliminate concern about the future. Knowing there’s a solid strategic plan in place to help make sure we won’t find ourselves out of money during retirement relieves some of this anxiety. In short, it’s about knowing an professional is doing the worrying for us.

Cuplin knows what his clients want most is greater peace of mind. In order to provide that, it is imperative to first understand each client and what they want from life.

Instead of beginning the relationship with asking how much money a client ultimately wants, Cuplin noted, “We start our conversations with a focus on each client’s definition of ‘quality of life’ and continue to include that through the whole planning and advising process.”

While this may sound simple, Cuplin explained that most people have never really taken the time to define their vision of contentment, which is the underpinning of any successful and sustainable financial plan.

“We want clients to reflect on, define and prioritize what’s important to them. From that definition, we can build a plan that allows them to realize and experience the things in life that are really, truly important.”

Cuplin added that, while achieving wealth may seem like an obvious answer, most people are more concerned with ensuring they never go broke. First and foremost, this means planning to make sure all of their expenses will be met, along with the kind of growth that allows for variables like inflation and longevity. This is the first step in providing clients with greater assurance they’ll have the money they need to live at any age.

Faced with a constant barrage of fear-invoking cable news, Cuplin reminds his clients that “regardless of what the present headlines – or headwinds – may be, it’s important to know that there’s always going to be some sort of challenge to overcome.”

Taking a long-term approach ensures clients don’t get waylaid by making costly, knee-jerk decisions. “If an advisor has created an appropriate, well-diversified and laid out plan, there should be no problem navigating next year and the years that follow, helping clients get to those long term goals,” Cuplin said.

He explained how, while the most effective tools and investment choices may change from year-to-year, nothing takes the place of diversified, long-range values-based planning.

Diversification and asset allocation do not guarantee positive results. Loss, including loss of principal, may result.

For more information visit:

Securities and advisory services offered through SII Investments, Inc.® (SII), member FINRA/SIPC and a Registered Investment Advisor.  SII and Midwest Financial Group, Inc. are separate and unrelated companies.

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