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Let Hindsight Be Your Financial Guide

Updated: Apr 25

Lady reaching for the sky
Experience is a great teacher when investing.

Hindsight means to understand an event or situation only after it has happened. This very concise definition offers a humbling picture and many times after something has gone wrong. Think about it, no one cares about hindsight when things work out for the good, this is usually considered good decision making. People ponder on hindsight when things blow up, often knowing that the very thing that happened, was a bad idea in the beginning.

It’s not always that way, hindsight can also offer a view of things “we didn’t know, we didn’t know.” Therefore, there is also an innocent side to delving deeper into the cause and effect of our choices.

This whole hindsight thing made me think a bit, and I have decided to share my thoughts with you. Shamelessly, because of the work that I do, it is just natural for me to tie a financial consideration to almost everything. So, if you would be kind enough to travel down this road with me, I promise, there will be something in here you will find of value. In hindsight, some of you will have already put these ideas to work.

Would a mother not have life insurance if she was still taking care of minor children?

Would a pre-retired person liquidate their 401k retirement savings after being laid off, or pay bills or pay off the house?

Would a senior citizen stop taking their medication as prescribed because the prescription costs too much?

Would a person make the decision to live check to check?

Would a person rather save money in a bank, rather than invest it?

Would a person take the chance of letting the family decide how their final wishes are taken care of?

Would a person seek to secure generational wealth, if it was in their grasps?

These are just a few of the questions that I confront from time to time. Believe me, with many of them, they appear to be reasonable and logical answers to each and every question. However, what I have found is that while each of these situations has its own uniqueness, many of the questions would fall under the headline, If I only knew then, what I know now.

Which brings me back to hindsight and the reality of good financial decision making, and dare I say that becoming financially independent is a choice. I suggest that it is a choice because in its simplest form, if we all had saved just 10% of what we made from the day we started working, and invested it, we would all be better off. Or at least we would have the discipline necessary to support the idea of becoming financially independent, without dreaming to be an entertainer, an actor, or a doctor to achieve it. Financial independence is within reach.

Let’s use a little hindsight as our guide.

Earl J. Johnson is the Founder, CEO and Wealth Advisor for Lexus Wealth Management.

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