Posts in Jobs, Careers and Benefits

The Realities of Being Wonder Woman

February 15th, 2016 Posted by Family Finances, Generational Financial Planning, Investor Behavior, Jobs, Careers and Benefits, Life Planning, Loans and Debt, Marriage and Finances, Retirement Planning, Saving 0 thoughts on “The Realities of Being Wonder Woman”

Wonder Woman is 75! No, that’s not her age in comic books, but it is how many years have passed since her character was created in 1941. Her “diamond” anniversary has sparked renewed interest in this unusual heroine and reminded many of us about her accomplishments. From the days of World War II through the present, she has confronted and beaten many of the challenges that real women face. She has served as a role model and a trendsetter; she has emulated and fostered that we-can-do-it attitude. She is also a reflection of the world around us.

We see regular reports about the progress women have made in recent times. They are better educated than ever before, with more women than men currently in college. There are more women than men in the workforce. Many more women are the primary breadwinners for their families than in the past. They are leaders in many professional fields and have made great strides in the business world.

With all this progress, however, women must still cope with difficult odds. While the gap is slowly narrowing, women continue to earn less money than men for equal work. While men are taking on more responsibilities in the home, women still shoulder more than their share of childcare and housework. They often end up with the bulk of caregiving for aging parents and other family members in need. And they continue to confront invisible barriers in the scientific and corporate worlds. The demands on their personal time can be overwhelming and the rewards of paid employment may be less than satisfying.

As if all this weren’t challenging enough, many women worry about having no one to care for them in their later years. They also worry about having a financial safety net that will withstand the unexpected. Concern about the cost of healthcare adds to overall anxiety levels.

Many women know that they need to do something about financial planning. They may feel, however, that they do not have the time to deal with it, adding to the emotional stress of their daily lives. They may believe that they should find professional advice, but may not know where to turn. While women as a group are becoming increasingly educated and informed about financial matters, they may not feel comfortable asking for help. At times like this, they do not feel very much like Wonder Woman.

The demands of 21st century life do not show any signs of diminishing. And as women are controlling more and more of the world’s personal wealth, the need for each of them to create and implement a solid plan for financial management is growing stronger. They need to find a way to do it that helps relieve stress, rather than adding to it.

At OpenCircle Wealth Partners, we can help. We have years of experience assisting women with the particular issues they face. We take great satisfaction in helping them find their way through the financial jungle to a place where they feel more in charge of their lives – to a place where they feel more like the Wonder Women they really are. Please give us a call at 203-985-0448 for a free, no-obligation, consultation. We look forward to hearing from you.

[Photo Credit: Paolo Rivera]

Surviving Divorce Without Going Broke

September 10th, 2015 Posted by Budgeting, Family Finances, Homes and Mortgages, Jobs, Careers and Benefits, Marriage and Finances 0 thoughts on “Surviving Divorce Without Going Broke”

Many of my clients are happily single or married, but a good number of them are not so fortunate. It’s a fact of life in today’s world that many people are divorced or wish they were. Making the decision to end a marriage is never easy. When you add the issues around money, it is even more difficult. And the emotional stress can seriously cloud your thinking.

If you are considering divorce, you should try to understand what it will cost you, not just emotionally, but financially. If you are experienced in money matters, you may have a good sense of how to proceed. On the other hand, you may not have any financial background and do not even know where to begin. The best way to start is with some questions.

Here are some of the financial questions to think about before you make the final decision to file for divorce:

  • Do I have an independent source of income?
  • Do I have assets of my own that I need to protect before I file for divorce?
  • Will I need to request/provide alimony or child support?
  • Do I have a good sense of what my spouse may request?
  • Do my spouse and I have assets that are shared jointly?
  • Can we split the assets as they are, or do we need to sell them first?
  • Will there be expenses or other consequences as a result of splitting our assets?
  • Can I afford a divorce lawyer?
  • Should I consult a financial advisor?

Even if you think you have a good grasp of the issues involved with divorce, things can get fairly complicated, and some things can take you by surprise. You might be able to find answers by doing research on your own, or it may seem overwhelming. This could be the most important time in your life to turn to a financial advisor for advice.

If you are already in the middle of a divorce, and do not have answers to the important questions, it is not necessarily too late.  Nothing is final until you sign your settlement in court. And even if you have answers, new questions will very likely come to the surface.  Keep your head on your shoulders as best you can, and try to avoid making decisions based on your feelings. If necessary, ask someone you trust to help you make decisions. You do not need to “cast your fate to the wind” and give up.

What if you are already divorced? Perhaps your financial house is not in order, or maybe the picture is so bleak you are not sure how you are going to make ends meet. Do not despair. There is no time like the present to assess your situation and create a plan for moving forward. You may have to downsize or tighten your belt until you can get your head above water and start rebuilding your life. You may need a plan for your retirement that takes into account that you will be on your own. Whatever your challenges, there is a rational way to handle them. You may need to live your life one day at a time, but how you deal with your money should be part of a long term vision.