Importance of a positive attitude in financial planning

By Kenney Khew

Many of us know the importance of financial planning especially to achieve life goals such as retirement fund, to travel around the world , free from financial debt land building emergency fund, estate and tax planning.

Accordingly to Financial Planning Association of Malaysia’s (FPAM) Consumer Financial Planning Awareness Survey 2019, the top five reasons why an individual do not engage a financial planner for their financial planning are:-

i. Do not know who to trust

ii. Do not where to start

iii. Too confusing

iv. Too busy

v. Too much work

Essentially, these problems stem either externally (40%) or internally (60%) from the individual

For example, based on the top five reasons stated earlier, iii to v are due to the individuals themselves.

Whereas, the reasons i and ii can be categorised as external problems of the individual.

In fact, poor personal financial planning is evident during the various stages of the Movement Control Orders in the country due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Many people are in dire situation and face cash flow problems with insufficient emergency fund.

Attitude of the individual is of utmost importance

According to Winston Churchill, attitude is a small thing that makes a big difference. Attitude refers to sets of your belief, behaviors, and emotions toward a particular person, matter or thing.

Hence, having a positive attitude is important towards attaining your financial goals!

Actually there are three components of attitude namely:-

1. Affection – this is about feeling and emotions of a person towards a subject

2. Behavioral – how we behave or act towards a subject

3. Cognitive – it is involves a person knowledge and belief towards subject.

Let me explain each one of the above by giving examples:-

1. A person should show affection or great interest in financial planning since we are talking about money.

2. Many people give the excuse that they have no time or too busy with work. But we are living in the technology era, where everything can be done easily.

For examples, we can gain financial planning knowledge by attending online class, quiz, reading articles online, and using apps to monitor our money.

We should be calm when facing different market cycles especially in a downturn.

3. Mny people strongly believe in strategies for investment risk management and follow closely the advice of licensed financial planners.

Please avoid the mindset of ‘I have less knowledge in investment and think all the investment products are risky.

In the case of insurance planning, we should believe in utmost in good faith principal for purchasing insurance policy whenever we are healthy as earlier as possible not other wise. Thereafter, we can transfer our risk to insurance company by paying insurance premium

In the case of estate planning, we should not have negative belief or being too superstitious

By doing so, our estate will be distributed faster without delays to our family as living expenses, university fees, etc in the event of demise.

In the case of tax planning, we should not think that tax planning is difficult and a complex matter.

We should change our mindset towards tax planning by learning personal tax relief yearly in order to minimise our tax payable amount and enjoy the tax saved .

Essentially, we need to have a positive attitude and give no excuses in executing our personal financial planning.

Kenney Khew is chairman of FPAM Johor and also a licensed financial planner of Phillip Wealth Planners Sdn Bhd. He can be contacted at

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