The accountability gap is the difference between “who you think you are” and “who you are.” You might say that retiring early and being financially independent is a priority. Still, if you are not saving for retirement, there is a gap between your values and action.
We all need help
It does not necessarily mean you are a hypocrite. It does not mean that you are a terrible person. For example, sometimes things happen, and we do not even realize them. You wake up one day, look back, and realize that you wish you had more in your 401k or more of your mortgage paid off.
One of the best reasons to hire a financial planner is that they can hold you accountable. Above all, goals are hard. Big goals like retirement take a ton of effort over decades! It isn’t as cut and dry for most people as signing up for your company’s 401k and calling it a day.
Things do not always go as planned. For instance, you get laid off or realize you are working in a job you hate. The graduate degree you didn’t anticipate isn’t cheap. You might even switch careers entirely and take a pay cut to do it! All of this happens, though most don’t talk about it in a public forum. One thing is sure: life is not linear. Most don’t end up where they thought they would when they graduate college.
This is where professional help comes into play. Do you think professional athletes get where they are alone? Any individual or team gets great through coaching. Similarly, building the financial life you want is no different. There is nothing wrong with being a do-it-yourself investor, but get a professional to double-check your work. Be open-minded and ask for help. One of the biggest threats to the average DIY investor is the risks they don’t even know!
Either you conclude that your dream has changed, or you snap into action and get back to who you want to be!
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