The Devil’s in the Details

devil's in the details

You’ve probably heard the phrase, “the devil’s in the details.”

Well today, let’s get into the details…

How many times have you heard someone say, “I’d like to have a comfortable retirement”?

Or use other generic words to describe the life they want to live?

Words like:

  • comfortable (see above)
  • nice
  • carefree
  • relaxed
  • you get the idea

Heck, maybe you’ve used some of these words yourself. I know I’ve heard ’em a lot over my career from folks probably a lot like you.

Of course, there’s not a thing wrong with any of these words.

And perhaps they get used a lot because, you know, people don’t like to talk about money.


What does that mean?

Certainly, it will mean different things to different folks, right?

My suspicion is that we talk in generic terms about the life we want to live because we haven’t had a process (or maybe the courage) to think through them.

For example, many folks I talk to have no idea how much they’re spending currently.

And I’m not talking about a budget here…

I’m talking about the blank look I often get when I ask someone what they spend on average each month.

Don’t get me wrong, some of you use spreadsheets or tools to help you keep an eye on this information.

But many – I think most – people don’t know how much they spend.

So how could you be expected to know how much you’ll need to spend to have that “comfortable” retirement you always hear people talking about.

Now, before you think I’m suggesting you need to track every penny, nickel and dime that you spend each month, I’m not.

Not at all.

Most of you spend less than you earn, so you’re not in any jeopardy because you don’t have a daily budget.

No one likes budgets anyway.

But how much you spend is just one example – an important example – of the type of details you’re going to need in order to:

  • Retire on your own terms.
  • Educate your children or grandchildren in the manner you’d like.
  • Care for your aging parents or other family or friends.
  • Or anything else that’s important to you and that you want to plan for in the future.

Let me repeat… I’m NOT talking about “majoring in the minors” here and getting so lost in the details you lose sight of the vision for your life.

Sure, maybe the devil’s in the details, but don’t lose yourself focusing on just the details.

It’s best to start with where you are today.

Right now.

And that involves accounting for some details.

But not too many details.

Yes, while the devil’s in the details, don’t lose sight of your big picture.

Where you’re going…

Like most things in financial planning – and in life – it’s about striking about balance.

It’s about progress, not perfection.

If you’d like to discuss some of your financial details, or if I can help you build out your personal vision for the future, I’d love to have that conversation.

Get in touch.

Thanks for reading. While you’re here, be sure to sign up for my weekly email newsletter where I share tips, advice, and stories about the intersection of money and our lives. Just click here to join the community.

Russ Thornton
Russ Thornton
Hi there! I'm Russ, and I help women in their 50s and 60s achieve and maintain their desired lifestyle leading up to and throughout their retirement years. Imagine being able to look forward to a comfortable and confident financial future...
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on pinterest
Share on email