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Image credit: Johns Hopkins Medicine

We are in an unparalleled time in history with the risk of the Coronavirus affecting our everyday lives. As Financial Coaches, we are committed to helping our clients plan ahead and be prepared for the unexpected. We emphasize the importance of having a plan for life’s unexpected life events.

Depending on where you live, this may be a source of concern, as we experience cancellations of major events and the possibility of a period of sheltering in place. We believe that there are steps you can take to increase your readiness and to act sensibly through this period of time.

  1. Prepare and Plan:
    • The World Health Organization has suggested that we may need to quarantine ourselves for several weeks. We suggest making a mock menu that includes the proteins and staples you will need. Yes, you will need toilet paper, but save some for your neighbors!
    • Educate yourself on the symptoms of the virus: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/symptoms.html
    • Familiarize yourself with the location of the nearest hospital
    • Have some cash on hand
  2. Contact your creditors: if there is a possibility of losing some of your regular income due to not being able to go to work for several weeks, be proactive in contacting any creditors. As hard as it is to admit we can’t pay a bill, it’s always better to reach out to creditors before they are contacting you.
  3. Pause: as our clients know, learning to pause while making financial decisions can increase your chances of evaluating the choices we make. In this scenario, we suggest that you practice pausing, rather than succumbing to some of the hype that circulates through news outlets and social media channels. We believe that the smartest specialists in the world are doing their best to work on the solution to this situation and remain optimistic in their abilities.
  4. Mind your mindset: it’s difficult to control our fears. We are being bombarded by the news channels with an excess amount of varying information. We suggest using the information from the CDC website  to find out who is most at risk and staying current with the latest information. By going straight to the source of information, you may lower your anxiety. Remember, your kids are taking their cues from you! By modeling behavior that is positive and proactive, without panic, will serve them for future life events.
  5. Take lessons forward: once we have put this situation behind us, it’s important to evaluate what you would do differently, or what went well. Did you overact? Did you not prepare enough? It’s easy to become complacent, but this period offers a chance for some life lessons in regards to our action steps in this type of scenario. If you need to make adjustments, do so before the next emergency.

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