Do you associate teams with sports or professional settings? Teams help us reach goals in a more productive way and can be utilized in our daily lives as much as other fields. This week on our Live at 5 on Instagram, we hosted Erin Leslie, a leadership coach to share her story about how she created a ‘Life Team’ to help her conquer challenges, gain financial independence and reach goals in both her personal and professional life.
How can you take the reigns on your life?
To achieve all our goals in life, we need to have financial independence. Financial independence allows us to take the reins on our life when making life decisions, whether it is about where to live, what we want to accomplish, or how to achieve goals.
How can you assess if you are financially dependent?
- Relationships: Do you depend on your partner when making financial decisions? If you are not actively working toward financial goals and leave all the financial decisions to your spouse, you may struggle if you are forced to make financial decisions on your own –especially if its due to a separation death or divorce.
- Employment: Do you settle on what your company has to offer without asking for what you think you deserve? Your relationship with work is just as important as with a partner. You may not realize you are being underpaid if you avoid negotiating for what you believe you are worth as you look for better opportunities in the marketplace.
How can you gain financial independence to reach your life goals?
The truth is we can’t be experts on every topic, but that’s the point of having a life team! By surrounding yourself with people who can guide you, you can reach your goals in all aspects of your life while saving effort and time.
- A partner isn’t a plan: Depending on a partner to make financial decisions for you might lead to decisions you aren’t comfortable with and might leave you clueless about how your money is being managed if you separate from them. Even if you prefer your partner to manage your finances, be sure to stay in the loop to be aware of the financial decisions being made on behalf of your household.
- Work with an HR or legal professional for job negotiations: If you aren’t sure if you have a fair work contract, have a legal professional look over your contract to get guidance on what steps you can take towards your goals.
- Practice: Even if you have a life team to help you make decisions, you need to know how to negotiate when you have a conversation with your employer. Building your confidence and practicing are important ways to get better at negotiation.
- Put your goals before emotions: You might end up following your emotions in a romantic relationship and realize you have compromised your financial independence. Whether it is discussing how much you both earn, how you will deal with assets owned prior to the relationship or how you will deal with household expenses, we highly recommend talking to your partner at the beginning of a relationship to figure out financial boundaries you are both comfortable with and how you will work together to achieve your goals.
- Put your goals before emotions: You might end up following your emotions in a romantic relationship and realize you have compromised from your financial independence. Whether it’s working, owning assets or spending habits, we highly recommend talking to your partner at the beginning of a relationship to determine financial boundaries to align your relationship with your goals.
What if creating a life team is too expensive for you?
To build your life team, you need to get services from multiple professionals which might seem costly. However, remember that you are making an investment in people that will bring you higher returns in the future. So, acknowledge that building a life team is an investment in your future instead of an expense. Be sure to refer them if they offer good service. Often professionals you refer will reward you with going above to continue to build the relationship.
Who can be a part of your life team?
- Legal professionals: Having a legal professional in your team can ensure you have workplace protection and fair employment and business contracts.
- Health professionals: Taking care of your physical health is one of the keys to a healthy life. By having a physician, massage therapist, physiotherapist, naturopath or other health professionals, you can improve your awareness about your health situation and ensure you are taken care of. Although you might be healthy today, you might face difficulties in the future in which you would need help.
- Home/car maintenance, repair professionals: If you don’t want to deal with home repairs, having a trustworthy and skilled tradesperson can help you save time and money on taking care of your property.
- Financial professionals’ accountants/bookkeepers: Working with a financial expert allows you to let a professional manage your financial situation based on your own goals. By finding a financial expert you can trust and who involves you in the process, you can significantly improve your quality of life and reach your financial goals with a lot less worry.
- Many more: If you have any aspect of your life you might need help with that we haven’t mentioned, don’t be shy to seek guidance from a professional and build a long term relationship with them, that can grow with you as your needs change.
How can you get started with building your own team?
Most professionals offer complimentary consultations, and you can take advantage of it to find experts that you can trust and feel confident with. This way, you can build a team you feel confident with without spending too much during the process.
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