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Financial Zen

Updated: Jul 20, 2023

Last year, I discovered yoga. And I mean really discovered it.


My experience is that yoga came into my life exactly when it was supposed to. I think I was like a lot of people who circle around yoga at different times in life, maybe when recovering from a sports injury or when a girlfriend was doing it, but the timing wasn’t quite right. And then, my time came, and my interest in yoga became complete.


Yoga has changed my life enormously. It has helped me deal with grief, launch my wealth management company, handle the recent stresses of the pandemic era and, most importantly, to focus on what matters most in life. I have gained a newfound appreciation for my daughters-- children are always so “present,” and I admire my girls very much for that. Moreover, I have learned a million lessons from yoga that help me to be a more mindful financial advisor. Here are a few:


Go With The Flow.

I might sometimes struggle to focus my mind at the beginning of a yoga class, thinking about the person next to me, or how hot it is, or whatever. However, I eventually feel surrender; all it takes is to be present and breathe. By the time I get to the final resting pose at the end of a class, my mind is more open, and I have let go of all the unnecessary chatter that does not serve me any purpose. The same thing happens when I meet new clients and we finalize their initial financial plan. The plan allows clients to prioritize their financial goals and provides a sense of direction. Clients are freed of worry and are able to live with a renewed sense of purpose and direction.


Focus.

At the start of yoga practice, the instructor will often tell you, “Set your intention,” in order to determine a goal and object of focus for your practice. You need to set your intention when it comes to money, too, whether it’s to pay down debt, increase your income, or invest more. Much like a good yoga instructor, I work with clients to set the intention and then devise a plan to reach it.


Stay on your mat.

Whatever your goal, staying focused is not always easy, at least not for me. My yoga instructor tells us not to get off our mat for anything but the three P’s (which I won’t name but that you may very well deduce on your own). It may be hotter than Hades, you may not be able to do a certain pose, you might just be having an off day-- but don’t worry about other people and what they can do. Block out distractions.


Try to do that when it comes to managing your money. We see what our neighbors, friends and relatives have or don’t have and want to know where we stand in comparison, but it’s not about them, it’s about you. Stick to your goals. Stay on your mat.


You are the best teacher.

My yoga instructor has trained extensively and has been practicing and teaching yoga for years. She has a great deal of knowledge about yoga. Nevertheless, I know infinitely better how my body and mind work, and that’s important because the right yoga for you is the yoga that accommodates your physical, emotional, and mental state. Whether you’re feeling down or tired, whether you have a sprained wrist, or whether you’re anxious. Therefore, you need to take what the instructor tells you and filter it through your own knowledge of yourself. You may even want to ask the instructor how you can modify the pose for your needs.


Same with your financial advisor. The advisor is the technical expert, and the client is the client expert. The best work comes out of a collaboration between the two.


It’s all about breathing.

Yoga teaches you to understand and eventually control your breathing. Investing may often come with bouts of volatility, and that can certainly be uncomfortable. Yoga teaches you to understand how to relax your mind in those situations and to be patient.


Everybody is flexible in some way.

The thing that often defeats people about yoga is that they get frustrated. They see someone else and think, “There’s no way I can do that.” The same, of course, pervades many peoples’ financial lives as they try to “keep up with the Joneses.” However, much like yoga, if you make a commitment to your finances, you’ll find things that you can do well. It’s important to let the success of those things help you maintain the struggle and persevere through the ones that are more difficult for you. It’s not about perfecting the pose, it’s about experiencing the process. That way, the financial challenge you’re struggling with doesn’t become a dead-end of unfulfilled perfection; rather, it becomes an ongoing evolution. Embrace the process, and your investing life will blossom.


Don't be afraid to admit you need help.

Don't allow fear and doubt to stop you from trying something new. Be open-minded. Don't underestimate who you can learn from. Have fun, smile, and always try your best.





For disclosure information please visit: https://www.rgbarinvestmentgroup.com/terms-and-conditions

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