Joeseph FalboDid you know that your past experiences with money can affect your financial future? You may have been raised in a home where extras were scarce, so now you tend to treat yourself a little too often. Or, if you were raised in a family where money wasn’t talked about at all, even if it was plentiful, you might have had to develop your own ideas about money without any example to look up to. When you examine your history with money it helps you to fully visualize your future and set your financial goals.

Grab a pen and a sheet of paper and answer these 20 questions to gain insight into how your past money experiences have affected you. If you don’t have time to do each question justice in one sitting, just spend ten minutes a day working your way through them.

  1. Tell me about your family when you were growing up.
  2. Was money discussed at the dinner table?
  3. What messages, direct or indirect, did you receive from your mother regarding money?
  4. What messages did you receive from your father?
  5. What messages did your grandparents pass down regarding money?
  6. Were there family stories about money?
  7. Describe your parents’ financial history
  8. What financial values and/or discussions with your parents continue to affect you today?
  9. What would you like to do differently from your parents regarding money? What would you like to do the same?
  10. What financial expectations did your parents and grandparents have of you?
  11. How much control did you have over the money you made or received as gifts?
  12. What is your first memory about money?
  13. What was learned from that experience?
  14. Describe a joyful memory about money.
  15. Describe a painful memory about money.
  16. Describe your work history.
  17. What were some of the best financial decisions you have made in the past?
  18. What were some of the financial decisions you have made in the past that you regret?
  19. What does money mean to you?
  20. What is important about money to you?
  21. Now you can use what you have discovered about your past experiences with money to create your vision for the future. As a guide, answer the following questions:

    1. How do I visualize my life in my 60’s 70’s and 80’s?
    2. How do I plan to change my lifestyle (if at all) if I retire?
    3. If I intend to retire, what will I miss most about the job I currently have?
    4. My biggest fears about the future.
    5. What do I most look forward to about the future?
    6. The top things I would like to accomplish/experience in my lifetime.

    If you are having trouble figuring all of this out or don’t know what steps to take next, drop me an email or schedule a complementary call. I’ll be happy to discuss your retirement goals or any financial topic you want.

    Joseph Falbo, CFP®, CRC®, AIF® is the founder and President of Falbo Wealth Management in Murray Hill, New Jersey. With over two decades of experience, his main goal is to help preserve and grow his clients’ wealth so that they can live their entire retirement with dignity and independence. FWM works with individuals, business owners, senior executives, retirees and their families who work toward financial success. Learn more about them at

    Certified Retirement Counselor (CRC) conferred by InFRE®