I hear from a lot of people that they feel embarrassed to admit they don’t know much about their finances, or their investments, or haven’t really given anything much thought at all in this area. They fear being seen as silly, uncoordinated, or clumsy. And it’s often more difficult as we get a bit older, as we’re then accustomed to being an expert in our business lives and other activities that we’ve done for a while, and the prospect of learning new skills can seem daunting.
Believe me, I can fully relate to these feelings as I think about my second Tae Kwon Do lesson yesterday. After the long hard winter I decided that I needed to try a new activity to stretch my body and channel physical energy in a focused way. Good intentions, but it took some reminders to myself to go with the flow and keep an open mind during this lesson as I was asked to hop on one foot along the ladder exercise (haven’t done anything like that since I was six) and go along the length of the mats in the forward stance while staying balanced with weight on the appropriate foot (wait, this left or the other left…what do you mean pivot my knee first). Sigh. I’m very proficient as a singer and pianist, pretty coordinated with my horse riding and driving, manage outside chores and fixes well, and have expertise in my business – so going back to square one in a new venture is a different ball game and I was tempted to just label myself clearly as silly, uncoordinated, and clumsy too.
However, instead of focusing on those limiting labels I really tried substituting words like let’s give this a try, making progress, better than last week, still upright, and whatever else popped into my head at the time. So while I’m not sure I’m really even entitled to wear the white belt yet that I was given, I am sure that I will be going back next week and listening to the instructor and getting more movements done than I did yesterday. And I’m quite sure that if I (as a not particularly athletic person) can make incremental progress with this dedicated martial arts instructor, then you all have an even better chance to succeed in expanding your knowledge base to understand and own your personal finances. Start today and keep going onward and upwards!