“Every season has its peaks and valleys. What you have to try to do is eliminate the Grand Canyon.” -Baseball player Andy Van Slyk

While many of us may not feel that we’re getting any older, as the seasons change and the air grows crisp, the things that matter to us may, in fact, be shifting. In the “fall” of your clients’ lives (age 40-60) stress that now is the time to prioritize moving into the retirement phase of their lives with some confidence and assurance that they’re not going to be a burden to their children.

Most clients are entering the final stage of their professional careers and sending their children off to college during the “fall” of their lives. As baby boomers reach the empty nest stage of life and active parenting draws to a close, they should indeed be focused on planning for their retirement. As a trusted financial advisor, encourage your clients in this category to change their aggressive financial plans to more of a moderate growth plan.

In the “fall,” clients should move away from making the lives of their dependents a priority and instead take into serious consideration their own futures, both for the benefit of themselves and the benefit of their dependents. As I’ve stressed before, taking any action to prepare for retirement is better than doing nothing. Navigate your clients through a path of decisions regarding:

  • The lifestyle they want to maintain during retirement
  • The life income they will have available to support that lifestyle
  • The lifeboats they’ll need to sustain their lifestyle should the unforeseen occur

And we all know the unforeseen can and will occur. As most advisors are aware, life insurance policies were actually built for difficult economic times. Who would have thought that one of the best performing assets in a portfolio would be a life insurance policy that may be growing at a 4 percent guaranteed cash value? At a time when the interest in savings accounts and certificates of deposits is well below 4 percent, life insurance can be an excellent alternative, especially when you factor in an income tax-free death benefit for loved ones, and lifestyle, life income and lifeboats for your clients.

As trusted financial advisors it is up to you to steer your clients, especially those nearing retirement, in the right direction. Be sure they take time to prioritize.