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Blending Life, Wealth, Work & What's Next
October 15, 2015

Did Someone Say Life Planning?

By Lisa Kirchenbauer, CFP®, RLP®, CeFT®

Why is life planning important to the financial planning process?

A number of years ago, I began bringing life planning into our work with clients.  This was after nearly 18 years as a traditional financial planner.  I had actually already come to the conclusion that something was missing from my discussions with clients but I didn’t really have a process or a place to bring the more meaningful discussions with clients into their financial planning analysis. 

Thanks to training from The Kinder Institute of Life Planning and the Sudden Money Institute, I have had the opportunity to integrate life planning into our financial planning process (now called: financial life planning).  I can’t imagine going back to the days where we spent those initial meetings with a new client focused on a surface-level conversation about goals and then the rest of the time going back and forth about financial data. 

Now we spend the first 3 meetings focused almost exclusively on discovering our clients’ strengths and needs and then creating a vision for that ideal life.   Now the numbers are in service to the life goals rather than the numbers speaking for what’s possible in our clients’ lives.  The connections are deeper, the engagement is higher and the client's ability to know what’s the “right” move in life, career or money is clearer.  In the end, this work is about people and relationships. 

I can’t imagine doing anything else.

Categories: life planning

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