The Importance of Being Clear
A few days ago I was walking through an outdoor mall here in Las Vegas called Town Square. My wife had gone into another store leaving me outside. I started to wander around because I like to observe and meet people. Almost instantly a lady came up to me and asked me if I knew where the Mac store was.
“Oh yeah, I know where the Mac store is,” I told her. I then gave her directions to the Apple computer store and she went on her way. After giving her directions I felt happy and pleased that I could help somebody.
I finally met up with my wife a few minutes later, and she asked me how things went. I told her about the lady looking for the Mac store and how I gave her directions.
“You really didn’t, did you?” my wife asked. Confused I told her that I did. “Did she really say the Mac store?”
“Yeah, Apple computer,” I said. “The Mac store.”
“No, no, no, no,” she said disbelievingly. “The Mac store is a beauty product store.”
I was so sure of myself as I gave the woman directions to what I thought was the Mac store—Apple Computers—when in reality she was looking for a completely different beauty product store.
This experience reemphasized to me the importance of clarity. To give and receive accurate directions we need to be clear. It is really important to have clear financial goals. Not only do they need to be clear, but we need to constantly restate them, verify them, and confirm with clarity what those financial goals are.
Do you want to retire in 2016? Well, what does that look like? What amount of monthly income will you specifically need? What other sources of income have you planned for? What plans have you made with your skills, hobbies, and interests? These are the types of questions we need to ask ourselves to assure that we have the right goals and the proper steps to reach those goals.
We need clear goals, and objectives to be get to where we want to go.
Just as I should have asked that lady in the mall if she was referring to the computer or the cosmetic store to be able to give her correct directions, you need to ask yourself, and maybe your financial advisor, the right questions to know if your goals are the right ones.
Go over your short-term and long-term financial goals. Evaluate how clear they are. If they are not clear enough, what steps do you need to take to clarify them?