At Thornton Chartered Financial Planners, we currently have four qualified financial planners (this is soon to be five, with our trainee, Rita, having just passed her final exam to be a Chartered Financial Planner! – but more on that story soon!).
We span a range of ages from mid-30s to 60s.
Our last Insight was from the young(ish) cohorts, Rita, Natalie and John, highlighting their key financial planning thoughts and tips for people in their 30’s and 40’s.
This week, it’s the turn for Thornton’s MD Sharon Sutton and eight times Island golf champion and former dentist Jools, on their financial planning tips for people in their 50’s and 60’s.
Jools also ended up a qualified financial planner after marrying Sharon. His top “life tip” is to do what you’re told! Sharon disagrees!!
Sharon – aged 56 – MD & Chartered Financial Planner.
1 – Find your purpose. If your work isn’t something you love, why haven’t you done something about it?
It sounds easier said than done, but taking some steps to change it, whether it’s changing your career or just your perception and motivation, is crucial for your wellbeing and being around to enjoy any retirement.
So, make a plan by starting with your numbers and figuring out how to get where you want to go.
I realised early on in my career that I loved being in the people business and helping others. Thornton was the chance to do that my own way and be effectively the Finance Director for the families of (too busy) business owners.
2 – I also realised a long time ago that it’s pointless to be wealthy if you’re not around and healthy enough to enjoy it, whilst hopefully also being able to enrich the lives of those you love.
So, rather than focussing on that elusive Return on Investment, more important is what is your Return on Life? Put another way, is your money providing you with a good life for yourself and those precious to you?
3 – The markets know more than I do! And what history has shown us is that stock markets permanently advance and have temporary declines.
My biggest fear is climate change. I worry about the planet’s effect on our kids and their kids.
I’m trying to do everything within my control to mitigate it by recently switching to an electric vehicle, growing my own vegetables and investing with a focus on ESG (ethical, social and governance).
Julian – Aged 67- Chief Operating Officer, Planner and Retired Dentist
My thoughts relate to the later years when you should be reasonably comfortable financially (having followed a regularly recalibrated financial plan from Thornton Chartered Financial Planners – only advert in this piece).
The issue is how to use your time in satisfying ways when more becomes available as you reduce working hours or even stop work entirely (retirement). As my colleagues extend their responsibilities to take tasks from me, this issue has become more evident.
Recently these ideas occurred to me as ‘The 5 Es.’
-Exercise. I have always enjoyed this, or more precisely, the satisfaction of having done it, whether it is trundling about on foot or with golf clubs (but only if played well !). Or, more seriously, beating yourself up on a bike outdoors or inside (like Zwift – great fun), running, gym work etc.
-Endeavours. The usual tasks about the house, the garden, and other hobbies that, when done, add a vital element of satisfaction to your day.
-Education. ‘A Life Scientific’ has some fascinating scientists interviewed on this podcast or interesting documentary TV, reading and similar. Good to exercise your brain reasonably frequently, I guess.
-Entertainment generally means connecting with family and friends or the community in general, in person, by phone or on video with those who may live further afield.
-Eating well. Keep to the natural stuff or that with the fewest ingredients on the package and drink plenty that is not just alcohol.
Fortunately, most of the above do not involve considerable wealth, just time and physical and mental health. With any luck, the above ideas might help towards those needs. I hope so. I am trying to follow them.
My biggest fear is not making the most of my time on this planet, but the above helps mitigate that.