Recently, an acquaintance of our family stopped by my office unannounced. He was visibly shaken. He shared his most personal financial issues with me. He told me he had made some poor real estate investment choices, compounded by a horrible real estate market (bad timing) just after he invested back in 2008. The result was that he is in serious debt. At sixty years old, he just took a second job (manual labor) and has been unable to think about anything other than the mounting debt for the past several years. He didn’t see a way out. He has been carrying this burden for far too long.
I’m not sure why he decided to finally come see me, but thank goodness he did. We talked for a while and it seemed like the only way out would be filing for bankruptcy, but just before the meeting was coming to an end he mentioned he had earned a couple pensions from former employers. “Hold Everything” I said. It is likely those monthly income pensions could also be withdrawn as a lump sum before the pension income process starts. Therefore, he can pay off his debt with the lump sum (after-tax) and be debt free! His eyes lit up and I could see a little grin on his face. This man was in a stressful nightmare day in and day out and now he could see the light. He didn’t mind working longer and giving up the pension, he just wanted out from the weight of the debt.
I only wish he had come to see me sooner.
I think some combination of pride and procrastination are the major reasons that we don’t seek help when we have an important issue in our life that is ignored rather than attended to. And like my friend, there are many open issues that have solutions we didn’t know existed. As I reflect on my own circumstances, I realize that there are many things that I should seek help in doing.
My partial list includes
- Household repairs (specifically dry wall and painting) that have been put off or never completed that would have added to my quality of life.
- Doctor check-ups – I found out my joints painfully inflame when I eat sugar, or wheat or grains that turn into sugar. I also found out that my prostate is on the high side. If I procrastinate much more, the condition could turn into cancer. I need to get this checked out again.
- I’m too busy working “in” my business to work “on” my business, I need a business coach or advisor.
My conclusion is that:
“We don’t know what we don’t know.”
Seek out Professional Guidance sooner rather than later.
What I am trying to say is stop procrastinating and get help. You may never find the time to learn or do things yourself and you may learn a great deal from getting expert help in whatever you are trying to accomplish.
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