Welcome (back) to our Six Stones series. Our financial adviser, Jordan, is sharing as many tips, ideas and advice for people going through a divorce as a humble blog will allow. He’s staying away from specific financial advice – it’s all general advice over here, be sure to get personal financial advice before doing anything – but we hope you find some useful information in here as you navigate through/out of your divorce.
“No, I don’t like risk, I’m a very low risk person.”
“That seems really risky.”
“I don’t want to risk it.”
“How do they sleep at night, taking on that much risk?”
A lot of people fear it, a lot of people avoid it, a lot of people profit from it.
But what is it, what are we referring to, why does it matter – and most crucially, why should you care?
This second part of our Six Stones series is dedicated to helping you answer these questions as you rebuild after your divorce.
And to try and help you better recognise the risks in your life so that you can make informed decisions about how to best protect yourself (and your loved ones) from the damage they could cause.
– Showing you the different types of risk, you face every day;
– The options you have when it comes to living with these risks;
– What can happen when the coin doesn’t land your way;
– How insurance can help soften the hit of some risks;
– Giving you the information that you need to make great decisions about some of the most important insurances you’ll ever hold.
Risk Management Plan
Shocking term, isn’t it?
Smacks of jargon, corporate doublespeak designed to look like its saying something, without ever committing.
It’s an ugly term, but it can be an apt one.
Because risk is ever-present. I honestly cannot think of a situation where you would not be accepting – knowingly or not – some type or level of risk.
Especially when you accept the definition of ‘risk’ as:
“The potential for uncontrolled loss of something of value.”
It’s the ‘uncontrolled’ that’s important there.
I think that’s why people fear risk so much – accepting the loss of control over something we value is a big leap to make.
(Particularly for those that have been through the uncontrolled experience of divorce or separation…).
This fear is why it’s worth going through the motions of preparing your own, personal Risk Management Plan.
What are we talking about, really?
If we accept that risk is always in our lives, then it’s also worth talking about what some of those risks might be.
There are the obvious ones:
– The risk of the plane crashing;
– The risk of the car accident;
– The risk of an unfortunate medical event;
– The risk of robbery;
– The risk of divorce.
These risks are the headline grabbers. But there are the smaller risks too.
– Of getting slightly injured;
– Of tripping over that cord;
– Of missing your train;
– Of getting stuck talking to the one oddball at the work event you’ve been made to go to.
You also have the risks of something occurring to somebody else you value:
– Your parents needing to move to a care facility;
– A loved one catching their hand in the car door;
– Your child being beaten at a sports event they really wanted.
The list of risks we face is a very, very long one. While I’m a big advocate of having a plan in place to accommodate a lot of them, worrying about all of them, all of the time, is a one-way ticket to anxiety, stress and fear.
Which is why a key part of the process is deciding which risks you’re going to worry about – and which ones you’ll just accept.
Either way, I ask one thing of you: give up on the illusion of ‘safety’.
Whenever I’m told somebody wants a ‘risk-free’ arrangement, I’m reminded of Ali Larter’s first scenes in Final Destination 2 – she’s committed herself to a padded room to avoid the risk of Death catching up with her.
I can’t think of many locations with a lower level of ‘apparent’ risks than a secure, padded room. And even there, risk persists!
This concept of ‘risk-free’ (basically the idea of total safety) is a comforting myth.
There is no such thing as a ‘risk-free’ life. Which can be a slightly disappointing revelation for people.
Especially people seeking safe harbour, or security, after they’ve been through the hurricane of divorce.
Liberation from Safety
Yet, if you think about it, it’s also tremendously liberating.
Risk is real, and it’s always there. So spending time or energy – or both – to try and avoid all risk is simply a waste of time.
Or energy. Or both.
What’s more important is how you think about risk.
My hope in writing this is that, by the end, you’ll be able to accept that risk is an inevitable (and even positive) part of life.
That you’ll feel comfortable using our framework to help you think about the risks in your life.
And that can then help you work out the best way to protect yourself and your loved ones from life’s inevitable dangers.