Category Archives: New York Times

Life Boat Drill

Do the Drill: A Lifeboat for Investors

Calm water makes a lifeboat drill much easier. We aren’t fighting the waves or the fear we feel during an emergency. Still, if the worst happens, and the drill becomes reality, at least we’ve rehearsed. We’ll know exactly what we are supposed do. With the markets relatively calm, now is…

Risk_Uncertainty

I Say Risk, You Hear Uncertainty

When I say “risk” and you say “risk,” chances are high we don’t mean the same thing. The finance industry defines risk as something measurable. It is variability within a set of known limits. You may have heard it referred to as standard deviation or even volatility. Ultimately, it represents…

The Third Way

Not My Way, Not Your Way. Pick a Third Way

“I can’t believe you see it that way!” Just last week, I said this to my wife in the middle of a discussion (O.K., a fight) about money. We were experiencing something many of you have probably also faced. We needed to make a very important financial decision about how…

Don't force

We Don’t Need to Force Our Decisions

I love rock climbing. Looking from the ground up, it seems almost impossible for climbers to balance themselves and find handholds where none seem to exist. And sure enough, even the most talented climbers can end up getting stuck on climbs well below their skill level. I’ve done it, and…

alignment

Do Your Values Align with Your Money & Time?

I’ve been surprised by a lot of things as a financial adviser. One of the biggest surprises has ended up playing a critical role in my development: the process of self-examination. It has mattered both professionally and personally, and it should to you too. Yet hardly anyone openly talks about…

PrescriptionDiagnosis

Financial Prescriptions: Proceed with Caution

Imagine you’re walking down the street. A woman approaches and hands you a small piece of paper. You glance down and realize it’s a prescription. “Well,” you think to yourself, “she was wearing a white coat, so she’s probably a doctor.” You then walk into a drugstore where other people…

Art16_UnclearGoalsFinancialUncertainty

Add Uncertainty to Your Financial Plans

Human beings don’t like uncertainty, especially when we’re contemplating our financial futures. It’s not enough for us to think that we’ll have enough money to send our kids to college, or to retire. We want to know exactly how much money we’ll need to achieve those goals — and precisely how we’re…

Simple not easy

Simple Financial Solutions Often Beat the Complex Ones

“Can it really be that simple?” Over my career, I’ve heard these words from so many people. Clients, friends and family all just assumed that the process of financial planning needed to be complex. This assumption doesn’t surprise me. The traditional financial industry is built, in large part, on the…

Risk

Risk and the Real Consequence of Failure

We left the trail head at 1 a.m. and headed for the summit of the Grand Teton. I had made this climb several times, but my friend was still new to mountaineering. This trip was his first attempt at the popular peak. Our goal was to reach the top by…

What Diversification Feels Like

Forget Diversification. You Just Need to Pick the Winner.

You made a huge mistake last year with your money. You know this now, right? The only investments in your portfolio that did very well were probably United States stocks. Bonds may have held their own, but everything else was just pitiful. International stocks performed horribly and emerging markets weren’t much better. What were you…

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