Major Keys For Estate Planning

A key focus of my blog is Financial Literacy/Money. A critical component to one’s financial strategy is their estate planning. It’s not the most comfortable and in some instances exciting area to deal with, but it has far reaching implications for one and one’s family. The following contributed post is entitled, Major Keys For Estate Planning.

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Estate planning is not just for the rich and famous. A well-thought-out estate plan can help alleviate stress from your family members when you have reached the end of your life. It can help get your affairs in order so that you can have the peace of mind knowing that your family is secure after you pass on. If you are looking to start estate planning, here are some major keys that will help you along the process.

Get Together A Team

Get a team of people that consists of your key financial advisor, your tax professional and your estate planning attorney from Wyolaw Law Firm. This team of very important people will help you draw up and navigate the perfect estate plan just for you. It may seem like having all these people involved will make things confusing, but quite the opposite. These people will ensure that all your assets will be given out to the appropriate people with little to no confusion.

Write Down Your Will

A part of every estate planning is writing down your wishes. This is not a sentimental exercise. This is a binding agreement, so make sure that you clearly list out all your wishes. Make plain how you would like to handle your probate assets and other possessions. It should include a healthcare power of attorney or proxy, a durable financial power of attorney, a living will, a health insurance portability and accountability act release form, and your last will and testament.

These things will assign the person who you want to make health decisions for you, who will make the financial decisions for you, what treatments you do and do not want if you are unable to speak for yourself, who can have access to your health records, who are the designated beneficiaries of your property and who will be the guardians for your children who are minors.

Set Up Guardianship For Minors

If you are caring for any minors, this is a very important step if you do not want the state to decide what to do with them. Determine who you want to look after your children or if you take care of someone with special needs. Before you give off that person’s name, make sure you consult with them first. You need their permission. Keep in mind that this person will also be managing any money you allocate for your child’s benefit.

Think About Getting A Trust

A trust is just a place that holds money for your children. You get to have a say in what goes into the trust, who has access to it, and how it will be allocated. As long as you execute it well, your estate plan will be executed just the way you intended.

Prepare For State And Federal Taxes

Find out if your estate will be subjected to state and federal taxes. If so, you will likely have to pay in cash up to nine months after your death. Some people’s assets are not in cash, which could cause some issues. If that is the case for you, you may have to sell your assets. Talking to an estate planning attorney can help clear this up.

3 Benefits of Working and Planning for the Future

The first principle of my blog is Creating Ecosystems of Success. They say that those who plan have many, many advantages over those who do not. Planning and looking into the future is in fact mentioned in many, many wealth building books. The following contributed post is entitled, 3 Benefits of Working and Planning for the Future.

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There are various different ways in which we can all choose to live our lives, across a variety of different dimensions.

One of the key differences in how people can choose to live their lives is that they can either decide to be focused on pursuing pleasure and satisfaction in the immediate to short-term, or they can be focused on working and planning for the future, and aiming for longer term and more enduring prizes.

Of course, as with all things in life, there needs to be a balance. There’s no point in being so future-focussed that you never stop to enjoy the present moment, or to be mindful of the blessings that are right in front of you.

But, here are some of the benefits of working and planning for the future, as a general rule, whether that means investing in universal life insurance, keeping up a regular fitness routine, or working on your own business.

Deferred gratification can lead to greater and more stable long-term happiness and reward

There’s some evidence in the field of psychology that suggests that a focus on short-term gratification primarily involves the neurotransmitter dopamine, which is associated with craving.

As a general principle, it’s impossible to “satisfy” the dopamine mechanism, but only to continue chasing after the next “hit.” Doubtless, this is why dopamine is highly implicated in the addiction cycle.

Deferred gratification, however, typically involves working on making progress towards desired and longer-term outcomes that are more carefully thought out, and that engage systems of the brain associated with the drive for happiness and fulfilment, rather than the satisfaction of craving. Such as, perhaps, the neurotransmitter serotonin.

The future is uncertain, by planning for it, you can potentially counteract some of its troubles

The future is always uncertain, and there are unfortunately bound to be struggles, troubles, and unpleasant events that we all have to confront down the line.

Working and planning for the future, however, can go a long way towards helping you to potentially counteract some of these troubles – and to at least reduce the sting a bit, if not to vanquish the potential trouble outright.

Being mindful of proper nutrition, exercise, and regular health checkups, for example, might save you from having to battle a tragic health condition later in life.

Efficacy is almost always built incrementally – but by keeping your eye on the prize, you can stay consistent in your daily habits and systems

With few exceptions, efficacy – skill, effectiveness, and insight – is always built up incrementally, rather than as a result of one-off, short-term actions.

Whether you want to become the best you can at some sport, or as a professional blogger, writer, entrepreneur, or anything else, keeping your eye on the future prize can help you to remain consistent in your daily habits and systems, so that you can keep putting in the steady and regular work that gets you to where you want to be.

If, on the other hand, you keep a much more short-term focus, those more ambitious goals and skills are likely to remain out of reach.

Your Five-Year Plan

Two of the principles of my blog are “Creating Ecosystems of Success” and “Long-Term Thinking and Delayed Gratification”. A key to being successful is looking into the future, setting goals and planning the steps towards achieving those goals. The following contributed post is thus entitled; Your Five-Year Plan.

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Do you often find yourself just going through the motions of your life, without any clear goals or targets? Just living life day to day, without purpose or focus? Many of us do. Then, a few years down the line, we look back at what we’ve achieved and find that nothing has changed. We still have debts, we still live in the same place, our relationship hasn’t developed or grown, we’re no closer to getting what we really want from our life, and our career has stalled.

Well, this happens when we don’t have a plan. You’re never going to hit your goals if you don’t have any. You get one life, you should be making the most of it. A five-year master plan can help you to do this. Five years is a great period of time. A lot can change in five years. Think about who you were five years ago, what you enjoyed doing, who your friends were. Now, look at your life today. In five years, we grow, we change, we start to enjoy different things, we meet a lot of people. You might eat differently, look after yourself more or less, and even go to bed at a different time. Five years is long enough to make massive changes and achieve a lot, but not too long that you can’t look ahead with focus and determination. So, here’s a look at how to create a five-year master plan to help you to develop and get what you want from life, as well as some ideas of things that you should include.


The Benefits of a Five-Year Plan

If you are the kind of person that just lives day to day, you might not see the point of a five-year plan. But, it can have some definite benefits. It gives you focus. Instead of a general idea of what you want to do with your life, you’ll have clear and well-defined goals for all areas. Five-years means that you’ve still got time to be spontaneous and do what you want, as long as you get back to your plan and continue working towards your aims. It also helps you to prioritize, to stay on track, to keep motivated and to say no to things that would take you off course.

Merely sitting down and writing goals forces you to think about what you want and reflect on your choices so far. You are also statistically more likely to achieve things if you’ve written them down. Something about writing down a target makes it real and gives you a greater focus to achieve it.

How to Create One

Sit down and think about your life so far. Think about what your dreams were when you were younger, and if you still want the same things now. Then, write yourself a Wishlist. Think of your ultimate goals and dreams, no matter how outlandish they might seem. Write them all down. Even those that might take longer than five years to achieve.

Then, ask yourself why you want these things? Will hitting these goals make you happy or improve your quality of life? Try to picture your life if you reach these targets? Take some time to imagine your ideal life. Now, look at your list again, do you need to add or remove anything?

Now you’ve got the what’s and the why’s. It’s time to think about the how’s. This is potentially the most crucial part of your master plan. Without plans, your goals are vague and unreachable. Ask yourself what you can do to meet your targets, or to get significantly closer to them. Write these down too. Now, let’s take a look at some of the things that you might want to include.



Money is often a big part of our future plans, and your goals might depend heavily on your current financial situation and what you want from your future. If you need to borrow to help you achieve other goals, this is the website to help. If you need to save, or pay off debts, work out how much you need to save each year.

You might have something specific that you’d like to achieve financially, perhaps saving enough to start a business, or to buy a house. Or, you might want to improve your credit score and pay off your debts. Five years is long enough to make massive changes to your financial situation. Think about your goals and take the time to make a household budget to match.



Your relationships will also depend on where you are now and what you want in the future. If you are in a relationship, marriage and children might be in your near future. If not, you might want to think about meeting the right person and starting down the road to settling down.

Wherever you are romantically, there will be other relationships that you need to nurture. Make giving your friendships plenty of love and attention a goal. You might also want to rekindle old relationships, mend family feuds or meet new friends and expand your circle.


Your career is a big one. Getting your career right can improve your financial situation and allow you to take more time for your relationships. Do you have any burning ambitions? Do you want to start your own business, or would you like to dive into a career change? If you are happy where you are now, you might just want to aim for a promotion or try to learn more about your industry to become more confident at work.

Health and Fitness


Our health is something we often neglect when making plans for the future. Especially when we are young and healthy. But, it shouldn’t be. Your health and fitness are essential to a happy and long life. But, your goals don’t need to be huge. They might just be to carry on what you are doing or to make small improvements to your diet. Think about small, realistic changes that you can make that will improve your health and fitness.

Break it Down

Now you’ve got your five-year targets, you should think about breaking them down. A five-year master plan is fantastic, but it can be hard to stay focused when something is so far away. So, break it down and make plans for the year ahead. Thin about what you can do in the next 12 months to help you to reach your goals.