It was clear to us from Mark and Lindsay’s Money Wheel that improvement in one or two areas would have a significant impact on their financial life. We started by working with them to create a vision of their ideal life (now and in retirement) . This helped them to clearly see their priority order, which enabled them to focus their time, energy and ability on doing first things first. Once they knew what they wanted their lives to look like, making big decisions about their financial future became much easier. We created a plan that aligned their finances to their plan for retirement. As part of the planning process we looked at a number of ‘disaster scenarios’ and stress tested their plan. This gave them the peace of mind that they were going to be OK in retirement. This greatly reduced Lindsay’s anxiety and enabled them both to enjoy life more and argue about money less. Lindsay came to realise that her financial knowledge was actually pretty good. She hadn’t realised how much she knew. We pointed her in the direction of a few online resources to ‘fill in’ some gaps in a couple of areas. She came back with a few questions which we were able to answer with some specific examples. With a clear plan in place Mark and Lindsay they found that they had the motivation to take their budgeting to the next level. They knew (from the financial forecast in their financial plan) that if they could get even more efficient with how they spent their money they could reach financial independence* sooner (perhaps 3 year sooner). This proved to be a huge motivation for them to work together towards a common goal. Their shared vision for the future all but eliminated money related conflict and they were both more accepting of each other’s attitude to money. This is Lindsay’s Money Wheel now: The blue (very bumpy) lines were her original scores. The red arrows showed the specific areas we addressed. The green (much rounder) lines are how she scored herself at our next forward planning meeting. What a difference a year of financial planning makes…and a much smoother financial ride for Lindsay. *Financial independence is that magical moment in time when you know that you no longer need to work for the money you need to support your ideal lifestyle. Financial freedom comes from knowing how much is enough for you to achieve Financial independence. The result is the liberation of your time to make room for more happiness, more choices and more meaning in your life. Say firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to find out how to get a retirement plan to go with your pension plans.