You know those moments when you learn something new that you can’t believe you did not know before now, and depending what it is, you may even feel like a bit of a dummy for not knowing?
We all have them.
I had one of these moments last week when my brother came over to change out a kitchen faucet. According to You Tube, this is a very simple task, but we may be about the worst homeowners ever when it comes to stuff like this. My brother, on the other hand, is great at this stuff and owns his own handyman business, CJD Property Specialists. We know it will end up costing us twice as much if we attempt is ourselves, so we gave him a call.
But that’s not even the “I feel like a dummy part”. That came when I asked my brother to fill the soap dispenser while he was down under the sink.
“What are you talking about Sue, you don’t fill that from under here, the pump dispenser comes off from up top.”
Wait a minute…WHAT? It does?!
We have been emptying all supplies out from under the sink for 20 years to crawl under, unscrew the plastic bottle and fill it up. We never knew! Is it just us?!?! We felt like idiots.
But here’s the thing, if someone has never been taught or shown something…has never studied, practiced or had any interest in the subject matter at hand… why should they beat up on themselves for not knowing it?
I often hear clients and others I speak with putting themselves down for being “horrible with financial stuff”. It really bothers me, in an empathetic way, because why would they or should they be good at it?
I’m good at it because I love it, study it, and practice it every day. If “financial stuff” is not something you love, study and keep up with every day, why would you be good at it? The tough part about this subject matter is that dealing with “financial stuff” is indeed a necessity in all of our day to day lives. And so is general plumbing, to some extent, but not as much.
We all have our strengths and passions in areas where we excel and then have those areas where we don’t, and that’s ok. That’s the beauty of being able to hire someone to handle what we don’t do well or don’t have the time or interest to do well.
I’ll leave you with a few financial savings tips that just may be a “I did not know that!” for you:
- You can make contributions to an IRA for the previous calendar year up until the tax filing deadline each year (for 2021 contributions, you have until Monday, April 18th this year, due to the usual April 15th deadline falling on Good Friday and Passover).
- If you max out your 401(k) contributions before year end, you may not be getting the full benefit of your employer match. Ask your HR department if they do what’s called a “year-end true up”, otherwise you may be leaving money on the table.
- If you start a new job with an employer that does not allow you to participate in their retirement savings plan right away, making you a “non-covered employee” by IRS standards, you may be eligible to make a deductible IRA contribution for that tax year, even if your income is above the threshold normally eligible to take the deduction.
My Favorite Quotes
Be that person who wakes up with purpose and intent. Be that person who shows up and never gives up. Be that person who believes anything is possible and is willing to work for it.