Many people now live well into their 90s, even to 100 years old. Healthy and wealthy individuals are not the only people blessed with longevity. People from all walks of life may live well past the average ages projected by researchers.
How many have the financial resources to support themselves through sickness and health when they live past a "certain age?"
Financial insecurity plagues people from all walks of life. Individuals who live from paycheck to paycheck -- whether below the poverty line or living comfortably in the middle class -- may incur financial setbacks such as accidents, illnesses, job losses, natural disasters or strings of bad luck. Even the very wealthy may suffer from insecurities about their financial sustainability.
Finding financial stability
Psychologists find that there are five factors that contribute to a person's feelings of financial stability:
- Livelihood: A steady income, even from a job you despise, can fill an emotional need for stability.
- Relationships: Comparing yourself to family members or your chosen friends can affect your sense of financial "place" in your life setting. If you are constantly trying to keep up with the Jones, the comparison game can wreak havoc on your financial well-being.
- Safety: Fear of theft, fraud, violence or other criminal acts can weigh heavily on your sense of financial security. If you are worried about potential heirs taking advantage of you should you become disability or infirm, you will deal with your money quite differently than if you felt safe from harm.
- Belonging: Your place within your social group can provide a sense of belonging and affirmation, which contributes to financial security as well.
- Protection: A natural disaster or unexpected death of a loved one can leave you feeling vulnerable, which can lead to fear about the future and finances.
While nothing can completely protect you from the arrows this life may throw at you, you can find peace about your future and the financial future of your family. Establish a comprehensive estate plan that covers elder law issues of life care, long-term health care and Medicaid planning.