I address my words today to the younger generation, those who still have time left to prepare for their retirement. You are growing up in a confusing world but there are some facts of life that do not change, and if you are to survive and thrive, you need to accept them.
I begin with the pile of participation trophies that cover your dresser. I know your coaches wanted you to feel good about yourself but let me tell you something from a business owner’s perspective. In the adult world, no one will pay you just to show up. If you don’t bring valuable skills and a solid education to the table, you will have great difficulty finding an employer willing to offer you a decent job. The soccer coach didn’t want to hurt your feelings by saying you weren’t really good enough for the team. Any good company will have no problem sending you packing if you don’t bring value to their team. And if you want to be paid more, become worth more.
Next, the country in which you live provides many safety nets to prevent you from falling into total disaster. Be aware that a safety net is just that; a bare minimum system put in place to keep you alive. If you think retiring on social security or whatever other assistance program the government may offer is the American dream, you have been sorely misled.
Young marrieds often tell me their budget is too tight to set aside money for retirement. They say they need every dollar they make. This is false and dangerous thinking. The truth is that one day you will no longer be able to work and the cost of those retirement years is just as essential today as your food and power bill. You simply must include it. We all know the story of the ants and the grasshopper. It is as true as it always was that the winter absolutely will come. When it does you will need to have set something aside.
During the hurricanes last year, I saw a disturbing scene on a news report. A lady was leaving a cleaned out grocery store when she began screaming at a reporter saying, “They have no water. How can they not have water? How am I supposed to survive this storm without water?” I felt sorry for her but was amazed that a person could live in a disaster prone area without even having a couple days of water stored. Maybe she thought her budget couldn’t afford it.
My young readers, there are many systems and people in place to help you through your lives but ultimately, you must take personal responsibility for your own future. To coin a phrase from your generation, you need to “own” your future. It’s your future and no one will care more about it, or be more affected by it, than you. The good news is; you have time to do this if you start now.
Hi, I'm Dan. I'm a CFP® Professional.
Securities and advisory services offered through Commonwealth Financial Network®.
Member www.finra.org / www.sipc.org , a Registered Investment Advisor. Wyson Financial, 375 E Riverside Dr, St. George, UT 84790
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