2024 Spring Newsletter: Kansas City

In Newsletters, Newsletters: Kansas City Office, Newsletters: Kansas City Office by Scott Dougan

Do you remember being young and…broke?

Whether it was when you were 12 and mowed a neighbor’s lawn for a few bucks or being in college living on a fast food income or the generosity of your parents, you found so much joy in life, in spite of having almost no money. Look at you now! Could that kid or college student have even imagined having the money you have today? And yet, you worry about money a lot, don’t you? You worry that the next stock market decline will take your accounts to zero, or the next Presidential election will change everything, and you’ll somehow lose all the financial security you’ve worked so hard for. Or a sudden illness or a prolonged nursing home stay. What a cruel game this is. We’re happy with little and somehow unhappy with so much.

Money is a very relative game. We seem wired to measure our financial success relative to how well those around us are doing. If we’re all in college and poor together, it’s no matter; if we’re living in a very nice house, but next to a couple who have a newer boat and a big place in Siesta Key, we’re wondering what we’re doing wrong financially.

So, what’s the point of this? Hopefully, we can remind ourselves that the point of the wealth building game is to arrive at a point where we can support ourselves financially, without risk of being broke again. To achieve financial independence is to have enough income sources and assets to generate income sufficient to support our chosen lifestyle. See how easy that is? Yet, we struggle daily to reconcile our own desire for contentedness with the people we see on social media and on TV, all of whom appear to be doing better than us? It truly doesn’t matter. The goal is to win our own game, not someone else’s.

I hope you enjoy this month’s edition of the Insider. Since Spring has sprung, we wanted to inspire you to take advantage of the new season with a list of some ideas for making the most of that spring energy. And since we continue to hear from folks who are concerned about the health – or lack thereof – of Social Security, a summary of how the program is funded and taxed seemed appropriate.

As always, we’re so happy to have the opportunity to serve you and your planning needs. If there’s anything we can do to make your spring, your year, or your retirement better, please let us know. It would be our pleasure.