by Ellie Duncan

How many financial advisers think of themselves as life planners? 

George Kinder, founder of the Kinder Institute of Life Planning, believes advisers’ assumptions about their role have been shaped by providers and their focus on financial products.

He explains: “If you think about the history of financial advice it really started with insurance and providing widows, who were devastated with the death of their working husbands, with a way of funding their lives. Life insurance was sold. It was a sales process. 

Read full article here…

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by Tim Maurer

Not all financial planning—or financial planners—are equal.

The Certified Financial Planner™ Board has done much to standardize a substantive base level of knowledge for aspiring advisors. But the value of knowledge is vastly diminished without the ability to inspire understanding.

This is where organizations like the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA) and the Financial Planning Association (FPA) have helped advisors bring their knowledge to life in the form of understanding, encouraging the employment of second-order thinking on behalf of our clients.

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George Kinder's Seven Stages of Money Maturity is Featured on the Wall Street Journal's Top Financial Reads for the Summer



Nearing retirement? Consider George Kinder’s “The Seven Stages of Money Maturity: Understanding the Spirit and Value of Money in Your Life,” says Jake Engle, a certified financial planner at Wealth Planning & Management in Vancouver, Wash. “Kinder provides questions and answers to help people deal with what retirement is really like,” Mr. Engle says, and it isn’t just about the money—it also helps readers “understand that work isn’t your identity and that freedom is a great thing.”

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Three Life Lessons I Learned When My Wife Died at Age 32

With Valentine’s Day this past week, most people’s focus was on hearts and flowers as they considered ways to show their love.  It’s too bad that estate planning and life insurance — arguably the most appropriate gifts for a loved one when you really think about it — will not even remotely enter the mind of the vast majority of the people who need it most.  By the way, if you’re reading this post that means you if you haven’t already taken care of them.  

As previous readers know, last year my wife Sarah passed away after a long illness.  She was only 32.  We had been married for just under five years.  There’s nothing quite like the loss of a spouse at a young age to make you step back and think.  I’ve been doing a lot of journaling and reflecting over the past six months and here are some of the three most important things I’ve learned.  I hope that by sharing my story I can help encourage you to think about these things and take action if needed.  

by Daniel

Click here to

Why Life Planning Is Simply Financial Planning Done Right With George Kinder

This week’s guest is George Kinder, who is known to most as the “father” of the life planning – a way of holistically delivering financial planning that focuses on delving into clients’ real goals, beyond just their financial concerns, in an effort to help them use their money to deliver freedom into their lives.

What’s fascinating about George, though, is that he didn’t start out trying to create a movement towards life planning. George was actually a math major at Harvard, who then became a CPA (and earned the Bronze Medal for the third highest score in his entire state on the CPA exam!), and only began to explore the intersections between financial planning and psychology after forming a niche financial advisory practice delivering advanced tax strategies for self-employed psychologists and therapists!

What You’ll Learn In This Podcast Episode

  • How George went from being a Math major at Harvard, to doing tax returns as a CPA, and ultimately transitioning into financial planning. [2:14]
  • Why George believes that “freedom” is the most important aspect of personal and professional motivations. [5:51]
  • George’s definition of life planning: The most efficient process for delivering freedom into a person’s life. [7:13]
  • How life planning is distinct from the short- and long-term goals financial planners often pursue. [10:05]
  • George’s three life planning questions he asks of new clients, and their typical answers. [14:38]
  • How to work up to asking weighty, personal, and potentially awkward questions of your clients. [26:33]
  • Two of George’s most important questions for clients: why are you here? And who do you want to be? [28:23]
  • Why George always ended his first meeting with a soft sell, which often has clients dying to work with him right away anyway. [35:49]
  • How the concept of life planning was initially popularized, and why it resonates with financial planners in particular. [44:48]
  • Whether financial planning and life planning are complementary goals or on opposite ends of the planning spectrum. [57:17]
  • What George hopes for the future of financial planning, and how we could improve the CFP curriculum around the world. [1:00:28]
  • George’s thoughts on potential changes to the economy and society at large that would better align our lives with the goals of life planning. [1:08:41]

Click here to listen today.

Listen to Jenny Hoff's podcast with George Kinder

Listen to Jenny Hoff’s interview/podcast with George Kinder

Dubbed the “father of life planning” and author of the seminal book on money, “The Seven Stages of Money Maturity,” George Kinder has been an investment and wealth professional for more than 30 years, coaching thousands of advisers on how to do more than just talk about financial products, but how to get to the root of what people really want in life before creating a financial plan to make it happen.

With decades of experience as a mindfulness and meditation teacher as well, Kinder has a unique insight in helping people find their true wants in life and then finding the ability to fund those dreams. In this episode, Kinder talks about the three most important questions to ask yourself in order to understand your life goals, questions his thousands of advisers ask their clients through the Kinder Institute of Life Planning.

Get Charged Up about planning your life!

Jenny Hoff,

Three Questions that can change your finances and your life

Wall Street Journal


If your New Year’s resolution to save more is already in tatters, maybe you need extra motivation. My advice: Get yourself excited about your financial future—with the help of three questions. Read more