The best advisor is someone who is sympathetic to your goal and who remains detached and can give you realistic answers to questions and not just the answers you may want to hear.
Take time now to go through your “Life Plan and Goals for Next Year Worksheet” at the end of Chapter 9 and identify which goals may need one time or ongoing professional advice or assistance. Sometimes, it’s smart to save money and use a do it yourself approach. Or you may decide it is best to spend the money to hire a pro to help when starting your own business or a new career. Bear in mind you’re putting your goals, health, and safety in someone’s hands. So, choose advisors you can trust.
Referrals can direct you to trustworthy advisors. Get referrals from people you know and trust, who have obtained assistance in the same areas where you need help. Ask them who they have used, if they are or are not satisfied, and why. Recommendations from others aren’t enough. Take the time to interview candidates. Ask about their general experiences, because you will want an advisor with lots of experience in the services you need. Many professionals specialize. Always discuss cost and ask about any additional fees that might be charged. Find out what you will get for your money. Ask if your advisor has insurance that covers error or loss. Check local community services, some expert advice may be found free of charge.
Then, make a decision and try them out. If it isn’t working, give them feedback. If it’s still not working, find someone else. Your goals are too important to be slowed down by working with an advisor who isn’t helpful or compatible. Remember to check your hidden agendas to make sure you are not sabotaging your own plans by frequently changing advisors.
You may have discovered, as you were doing your life plan that you need to address some complex emotional issues. You may need the help of a uniquely skilled professional for issues such as: violence and anger management, experiences of abuse or abusing, and complex family dysfunction. If you are seeking a therapist, check out the professional organization websites for information on how to find help. Interview your counselor first, before diving into therapy. A therapist should be willing to answer any questions you may have about their methods, training, experience, approach, length of treatment, and fees. If a therapist is reluctant to answer your questions or if you do not feel comfortable, find someone else.