At Mack­ey Advi­sors™ we do some things a bit dif­fer­ent­ly than the rest of the finan­cial world.  Prospec­tive clients are look­ing for finan­cial advice they are encour­aged not to show up to our office with brief­cas­es bulging with invest­ment state­ments and tax returns.  Num­bers are num­bers and too often they bring on feel­ings of fear and resent­ment of the past.

We feel that is no mind­set to be in when engag­ing with a new wealth advo­cate.  Para­mount to the dis­cus­sion is “Who you are”, and “Where you want to be”.  It’s more engag­ing, more excit­ing, and frankly much more fun.  From our dis­cus­sion we facil­i­tate a goal set­ting process where we ask peo­ple to dream big!

When seek­ing finan­cial advice or cre­at­ing a finan­cial plan we all tend to think about only one set of goals, and many of us set para­me­ters so small we would feel deprived mov­ing through life. Our goal set­ting process focus­es in on what is “Ide­al” and what is “Accept­able”.  Most of us have all had some goal or idea that we dis­missed as impos­si­ble.  Maybe it is to retire at 55, buy a beach house, or have the mon­ey in the bank to send your kids off to an Ivy League school.  If you have, then you should make those your “Ide­al” goals. 

Most of us also have that more prac­ti­cal side to us as well.  Per­haps a beach house would be nice, but just spend­ing 3 months each win­ter in one might still be pret­ty awe­some. (Espe­cial­ly when it’s 5 below back home!)  That should be your “Accept­able” goal.

Think of “Ide­al” and “Accept­able’ in this manner:


  • Wow!  Awe­some!  This is incredible!
  • Don’t dis­miss any­thing, dream big!


  • I like that.  Con­tent­ment.  This is good.
  • I can enjoy my life and make it work.

This builds a deci­sion mak­ing frame­work where you can build a life that incor­po­rates the things that mean the most to you.  Per­haps you make that “Ide­al” goal of retir­ing at 55, because you decid­ed that it was more impor­tant than own­ing in beach house.  Upon fur­ther thought you may have had the epiphany that even if you owned your beach house, you would only have time to use it 3 months any­way, and the rest of the year its main­te­nance and expens­es would just be nui­sances in the way of oth­er things you would like to do.

If you are trav­el­ing some­where new it is often hard to get there with­out a map or nowa­days a GPS device.  How­ev­er, if we have those tools, there may still be a few wrong turns, but we usu­al­ly find our desired des­ti­na­tion.  Artic­u­lat­ing your goals, under­stand­ing what among them are most and least impor­tant, and con­struct­ing a finan­cial plan around them will get you where you want to be and help you avoid the dead ends.

After work­ing with dozens of indi­vid­u­als and fam­i­lies, take it from me.  The process works.  Decide what is impor­tant to you, dis­miss noth­ing, and hold no judg­ment on the past.  You are where you are, so focus on where you want to be and take action to get there. This is more than just finan­cial advice, this is a great life lesson!

Relat­ed Posts:

Finan­cial Plan­ning — Help­ing you see the Big Picture

4 Steps to Achiev­ing Your Dream

Sched­ule a Plan Date with Your Finances