Has the pandemic altered your priorities? (and how the change could impact your money)

We’ve entered year three of the Covid-19 pandemic, and it’s safe to say the virus will forever impact our day-to-day lives. 

Whether you lost a loved one, experienced sickness and isolation, or have a tough time adjusting to the “new normal,” Covid has made us rethink our priorities—especially how fleeting and precious time can be.

This awakening may mean different things to different people. Some have realized they want to spend more time with family, friends, and loved ones. Others know they’d rather work for a company that treats them better. 

However the pandemic has shifted your priorities, it’s essential to stop and consider how that may impact your greater financial picture.

5 ways to re-prioritize your financial plan

What does a change in priorities have to do with your financial plan? 

A lot, actually. 

Below, I’ve identified five ways to help realign your change in priorities with your short- and long-term financial goals.

1. Put your changing priorities in the spotlight.

Think back over the past few years. What goals or milestones did you have to put on hold during the pandemic? Maybe you had to cancel a family vacation (or two), postpone wedding celebrations, or forego time with loved ones?

Missing out on these significant moments can make them all the more meaningful. Take some time to think about what matters most to you and what you’d like to keep top of mind moving forward.

Maybe you want to shift more of your retirement budget towards travel and vacation, or you’d like to establish a fund to help pay for a grandchild’s wedding. When you know what’s most important, you can align your financial goals to reflect these desires better.

2. Align your resources with your new vision.

Your money can and should support the life you want to live. So, now might be the time to make changes. Let’s examine some examples. 

If recent revelations leave you wanting to retire earlier than planned, what adjustments do we need to make to ensure a smooth transition? Perhaps you’ll want to prioritize maxing out your retirement accounts and your HSA, start making a plan for your healthcare coverage, ensure you and your assets are properly protected, re-evaluate your spending plan, etc.

Before the pandemic, you may have been dead set on purchasing a vacation home in your favorite spot. But if the sustained lack of travel sets your wanderlust on fire, you could realize that you’re more interested in traveling the world and exploring unique places throughout retirement instead of staying in just one. 

Say you’re considering a career change or searching for a job that can bring you more fulfillment. If this means a decrease in salary or benefits, how will that impact your short-term financial well-being and long-term goals?

Before making an impactful decision like any of the above examples, you and I can work together to figure out how it may affect your larger financial picture. 

3. Set (and get excited) about fresh long-term goals.

New priorities can mean a whole new set of goals. Look at some of the long-term goals you set before the pandemic. Do they still resonate with you? If not, let’s make some intentional changes.

Taking the time to realign your long-term goals, like when you want to retire, how you want to structure an inheritance, how you want to spend your time, etc., could impact your lifestyle decisions and opportunities over the next five, 10, even 20+ years.

Even as we slowly ease out of the pandemic, reevaluating your long-term goals regularly isn’t a bad idea. As you evolve and your priorities shift, you’ll want to ensure your financial goals are well-aligned with those ongoing changes.

4. Don’t be afraid of change.

Your financial plan is not set in stone. Think of it as a living, breathing entity designed to evolve and grow alongside you. It’s okay to step back and decide that what’s been working pre-pandemic won’t be what’s best for you as we come out the other side.

If you’ve experienced significant changes during Covid, your financial plan should reflect and accommodate them.

5. Consider your relocation options.

Zoom, Slack, Google Meet—we never thought we’d hear those words as much as we have during Covid. But the pandemic has changed how people work as employees find themselves working remote full-time either by choice or requirement.

If it’s no longer necessary to live within reasonable commuting distance of your office, now could be the time to consider relocating.

Traditionally, most of us had to live where we worked. But now that you can pick up and work from anywhere, where do you want to be? The beach, the mountains, closer to family and friends—the options open up quite a bit when your commute is shortened to a couple of feet.

Have you considered traveling full-time? During the pandemic, I’ve seen some workers choose to adopt a more nomadic lifestyle, spending a few months in one location before checking out another. If you’re considering it, this could be a fun, low-cost, low-commitment way to test out places you’re thinking about relocating to permanently.

Reprioritizing with Wealthcare for Women

In times of change, it’s important to work with someone you know and trust. I’d love to sit down and chat about how your priorities may have shifted during Covid. 

Together, we can build a plan that best aligns with your changing priorities and addresses your long-term financial goals.