When working toward building and executing a successful retirement plan, it is important to stay focused on your personal goals for life in retirement. Have you ever pursued something to such an extreme level that you lost sight of the original goal?  The other day I was watching one of the pre-game sports shows where the expert commentators break down every aspect of the game. One of them had an interesting take on what makes a defense great.  He said the best defenses didn’t get caught up in trying to lead the league in sacks, interceptions, or any other statistical category.  Instead, he argued that the best defenses had a shared common goal to do just one thing, get the ball back for the offense.

On the surface this may sound very elemental and obvious, but it really does separate the good from the great.  By staying focused on the desired outcome rather than any one element, the entire defense works in unison to achieve their goal.  This mindset shifts the focus from merely tackling someone, to purposely trying to get the ball back.  So the goal isn’t just to sack the quarterback, it’s to stop the play and more importantly strip the ball.

This made me think about the people we meet with who seem to have lost sight of their retirement goals.  It happens all the time when people get fixated on a singular outcome and lose sight of the overall goal.  For instance, there are people who become obsessed with beating the market. They sit there glued to their computers and TV’s fixating on every move the market makes.  Meanwhile they’re no longer paying focused attention to the rest of the elements that make up a successful retirement plan.

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Now don’t get me wrong, being actively involved with your finances is never a bad thing but there needs to be a healthy balance. Isn’t the real purpose of proper retirement planning about achieving your goals?  Shouldn’t the focus be on making sure you hit your main goals of financial independence, security, and leaving a legacy behind for your loved ones?  Oh, and let’s not forget about enjoying yourself too. Like I said in the beginning of this piece, sometimes it’s easy to lose sight of our original goals when we start obsessively chasing just one singular aspect of them.

If this sounds familiar, and your original goals seem to have gotten lost in the shuffle, perhaps it’s time for a second opinion.  We offer complimentary, no obligation second opinion reviews just for that reason.  Your retirement plan is too important to get caught up in hype or the ego of an overzealous advisor, so make sure your plan is singularly focused on achieving your goals.

Remember, it can be easy to get distracted from your goal by chasing a great sounding statistic. To really “win” in retirement, stay focused on achieving your goals and you’ll be just fine.