As I am writing this, Russia invaded Ukraine two days ago. The stock market is on a whirlwind, down and back up again. The uncertainty around Russia and Ukraine is filling the airwaves on radio and television. Every other news article mentions the incursion as it is the biggest story. But something hit me last night as I drove home, something I do think about pretty frequently. It’s that life really does go on, no matter the news. I’m not trying to downplay what is and could happen, but I am saying that we shouldn’t stress ourselves out on things we cannot control. There are more things in life that could happen than actually do happen.
I have had several meetings and phone calls over the last couple of weeks, few to none have been about the issues going on abroad. What have the calls been about? I’m glad you asked! They’ve ranged from trying to save money for kids’ education, to estate planning, stock options strategies, and entering retirement years. Pretty normal questions we get around here.
As I drove home last night, cars are still on the road, traffic is back, and we are all just trying to get home after a long day’s work. We want to see our kids and ask them about their day. We want to cook dinner with our significant other. We want to binge the latest miniseries on our favorite streaming platform. Events and news that are out of our control are constantly happening. As it does, we continue to do things within our control and normal lives. These actions keep the economy and markets moving, though at times it may feel like it's moving in the wrong direction.
Stress comes from focusing on all of the things that could happen, that rarely ever do. At KWB we provide value by taking the stress out of your life by evaluating the things that could happen, that are out of our control, and determining how we may respond. We don’t project the future — we help you plan for it. That’s why most of the calls I get are about planning and are focused on the things that we can control. Making retirement plan contributions, setting up an estate plan to protect the family’s financial interests, building strategies that maximize your tax bracket.
Time and money can be lost in avoiding the “could happen” versus focusing on the plan. At this point, I could show you a chart of all the geopolitical issues that have happened over history, and how they have impacted the market. But we are here today, and not too long ago the market was touching all-time highs, so I think you can figure out what has happened since those various occurrences. In times like these, we need to focus on what we can control, our work, our family, our goals, and our passions. The stress of focusing on the “could happen” will take the joy out of those items just mentioned.
We could make predictions and projections about the future. That’s not how we provide value to you though. Our value comes through the plans we build with you and the discussions we have around the future. We equip your plans with shock absorbers and airbags and are always here to talk through situations with you. More can happen than does. KWB is here to help plan for what does happen.
~ Quentin Bubb