Written By: Scott Inman
I’ve had the privilege of serving as the pre-game show host for Arkansas Razorback football radio broadcasts since 2007. It’s something I was prepared to give up when I left TV News in 2016, but, both my former employer and my new one, encouraged me to continue in the role.
In those years, I’ve traveled to every SEC town at least once. Excluding the actual games, one of the most memorable trips was to Gainesville, Florida in 2013. The Hogs lost the game, and I almost lost my ride home.
As most of us do, I used the GPS in my smart phone to navigate, and for most of the trip, it efficiently got me from Point A to Point B. I made it from the airport to the hotel, from the hotel to the stadium, and back again. However, in the pre-dawn hours of the day I flew home, my GPS failed miserably.
I noticed it was sending me on a different route than the one I took from the airport just 2 days earlier, but I trusted the navigation, because, I certainly didn’t know where I was going. Well, after a few left turns, and right turns, the GPS sent me into a subdivision, then into a cul de sac. That’s where it seemingly proudly announced, “Arrived.” At this point, I began arguing with a smart phone. “I most certainly have not arrived at the Gainesville airport.” This was clearly unproductive.
It was a very helpless feeling. It was dark. I had no one to ask for help, and my flight was leaving very soon. Eventually, I found a convenience store that was open, asked for directions like we all used to do, and made it to the airport just in time to catch my flight home.
Since that weekend trip, I’ve never left home without an old-fashioned atlas. You remember those? As efficient as my GPS is, it’s not always accurate. When in doubt, I can unfold that monstrously sized atlas and see where I am. It provides perspective. It provides clarity.
There’s a lesson to be learned for your retirement. It can feel pretty lonely trying to navigate your own way. Many of our clients tell us this. They feel much like I did in that cul de sac: in the dark, with no one to ask for help.
Relying on homogenized computerized portfolio models, the financial media, or so-called conventional wisdom about investing or withdrawal strategies, is like relying solely on your GPS. It works until it doesn’t. This is especially true when you get closer to retirement and need to figure out how to make your life savings last for the rest of your life.
Instead, doesn’t it make sense to get a retirement atlas? Creating a written retirement plan, one that is built by you and your financial advisor, can provide the perspective and clarity that you need to pursue your retirement goals.
At the end of your road trip, do you want to catch your flight, or do you want to end up at a dead end in the middle of the night?
The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.