I had my meeting and I learned tons. Mostly it made me realize how paranoid I am about dealing with this budgeting and organization of money things. Good thing I am not a spendthrift or I'd be in big trouble. I had tears in my eyes through most of the meeting. If he was a woman, I would have cried outright. But I held it in.
The guy was so, so patient with me. I think of myself as fairly intelligent, but meeting with him made me realize how my emotions get in the way of me handling this money organization thing. He went back to the very basics--and I needed it. I have been preparing our taxes and handling all the money now for 7 years. (since DH's stroke) We use dto rotate who did the books, but since I got pregnant in 1982, I gave it totally to him. I knew I'd be doing most of the work with the 'baby'/child/etc. so I "gave him" the responsibility of the bills. He got them all paid on time but , oh dear, the envelopes and the mail in general just piled higher and higher. He'd pick out the bills and all the other mail made a huge , growing pile on a table . When I took over after his stroke, I never did learn to manage all that mail. It is a huge source of my disorganization. I admitted this to "the money coach." They guy was so lean, professionally dressed, and in general professional that it was hard admitting that to him.
I walked in with a black bag filled with financial papers. I had this ready for the elder lawyer when I saw her last spring. It had way too much in it. But that is the best I could do.
He started asking me questions about my finances. I did not know the answers. He asked , Do you have an IRA?" I did not know. I cannot keep those kinds of information in my head. He asked me a couple of more questions and said, "Yes, you have an IRA." Then I handed him my last year's tax info given to me by the guy who does my taxes. I said, " Will this help you know the proper information? Because honestly I don't know offhand the answers to your questions." And--he went on to explain the basics to me, without making me feel inferior! Yeah! I suppose I have a mental block about this stuff. It feels like a foreign language to me. I can say the words like IRA, W2, deductions, investments, ....but mostly the words just confuse me. This is very hard to admit. Even if I got the book, "Money for Dummies" I'd read it without fully grasping the meaning.
You people who do your books efficiently must be rolling on the floor laughing!
But all this is making me understand myself. I know I was never very interested in money..... I never worried about it. I figured if both of us were working what was there to worry about? If we did not overspend, we'd be fine. Now, hubby, worried himself into a stroke (about money). That isn't too smart either. Right? So I don't think he had a great handle on this money matter either!
My parents had a Mom and Pop grocery store. My Mom 'did the books' daily for the store. An accountant showed her a simple way to do it and she just did it daily for as long as I can remember. Money in, money out, and get a bottom total. Dad went 'to market' Daily and bought things to sell in our store. The bills from that were totaled. And she would count the money in the cash register daily. So she did the math and had a daily figure. After that I don't know what happened. I mean around tax time.
Now here might be a reason I am not so great at organization of paperwork. My mom had a filing cabinet, but she used it like drawers!
There were NO file folders in it!
I know the top drawer had her scarf, gloves, prayer books--everything she needed to go to church --daily--for the rosary in the evenings, first Friday services, and Holy Saturday services, and of course Sunday Mass. you can see her priorities.
I am very glad I found "the Money Coach." My town hall suggested him to me. He volunteers (!) a day a week at the Jewish Family Services office. I give him lots of credit for that! And he specifically does not take on these clients as his clients or even send them to his friends for paid help. Wow! He said he had absolutely no stake in what advice he gave me! I have never met with a business person like that before. Even the guy who is my financial adviser I wonder sometimes if he does thing best for me --or for him....even though I trust him.