Sorry to disappoint you, but I’m not talking about sex. Instead I’m talking about personal intimacy and the ability to empathize with your clients. You know, the whole “until you walk a mile in their shoes” idea. It’s often as important as life and death. Or at least it may seem so to your clients.

What’s worse than dying? It’s surviving or existing on this earth without enough money or basic resources. Or, even worse, it’s becoming a burden to your friends, family and children. It’s the worry of death, medical emergency or your children not being able to find employment that causes many of those sleepless nights for your clients.

One dad may worry about his kids drinking too much or living recklessly, while another mom is sleepless because after 20-plus years of making lunches, chauffeuring kids to and fro, playing soccer mom and medic on 24/7 call, tomorrow she begins a new job. She is re-starting her career in a new position with new people and intimidating tasks. 

Even if client fears seem like nonsense to you, it is paramount that you “get it,” and intimately understand how your clients feel about life and the financial unknown. To give the right guidance, you must find out what keeps your clients and prospects tossing and turning until 3 a.m. If you listen to the personal fears of a couple that comes to you for advice, you’ve just metaphorically slept with two people.

Once you know your clients’ deepest fears, you can focus on the bugga-boo and provide solutions. You can work with them to truly resolve and conquer their financial issues. You can offer predictability instead of probability. You can provide rock-solid financial safety nets instead of charts and graphs about earnings and track records. You can manage their expectations to comprehend realistic financial goals and future returns on their investments.

It’s a new era in the world financial markets, and it will take some time to work through and improve. It certainly will improve, however. In fact, it already has. The world doesn’t end today or tomorrow. We just need to learn to enjoy the ride and get a great night’s sleep.