Paul “Bear” Bryant quipped, “Offense sells tickets, but defense wins championships.” Few investors or advisors pay enough attention to the downside risks associated with wealth building. Yet, without using safeguards to defensively protect wealth generated, the risk is high that losses will be greater than the gains scored over the long run.
This is one reason why most 65-year-olds today only have enough money saved to last them 9.7 years into retirement, yet they are living 18 to 20 years. Markets drop fast but tend to recover slowly. This makes a 20% drop capable of wiping out years of solid gains in a flash. Of course, at age 65, time no longer permits the recovery of what is lost. A good defensive position would have been to never lose it in the first place because time is just as valuable in the earlier years as it is in the later years when it comes to building sustainable wealth.
Scoring points, turning a profit and experiencing great returns are wonderful, but if you have no defense to protect what your offensive game has produced, you can still lose the game. This is the essence of what “Bear” Bryant was trying to get across when he spoke about winning championships.
Most advisors will boast about their winnings, but few ever speak about their losses. Bryant had a saying about these types of people, “I have had players who are good, and who know they are good; I have had players who are bad and know they are bad; I have had players who are good, but don’t know they are good; I have had players who are bad, and don’t know they are bad. It is this last group that has won more games for me than the first three groups combined.” Bryant’s observation should be a warning to those who are tempted to pay closer attention to the greatest stock picks, the latest joint venture or the next huge opportunity instead of diligently keeping more of what they make and protecting it from loss.
Whole life insurance is the only way 70% of wage earners in America can affordably build an estate. For the other 30%, whole life insurance, with its contractual guarantees, is the most respected defensive tool in the financial world which can actually protect wealth which has been built or inherited. These contractual guarantees are only available to those who own certain whole life insurance contracts yet, most advisors don’t even understand how these contracts work, let alone acknowledge the defensive protection they provide.
“Bear” Bryant’s axiom was “Expect the unexpected,” which is an excellent defensive mindset for anyone, especially those who are trying to build sustainable wealth. Little things make an enormous difference, but few people want to sweat the little things, most tend to get excited about the big things like the next big move of the market or the next big trade.
Winners, conversely, focus on the little things. Quarterback Aaron Rogers recently told his team they only had 8 more quarters of football to play before they would be Super Bowl Champions. Thinking too big, past the current quarter being played, was detrimental for Green Bay because they overlooked the little things, like having to win 4 quarters of football to even have a chance at winning 4 quarters of football in the Super Bowl.
It takes a good offense and a tough defense to win consistently. You can have the best offense in the league, but if your defense is not tough enough, you will lose more than you can possibly win. This is why owning enough participating whole life insurance is critical in building sustainable wealth. Many an advisor can rack up winning streaks, but few have any ability or plan to retain the wealth they generate. Participating whole life insurance is like a defensive Pit Bull which once it takes hold of your money never lets it loose, thus guaranteeing your gains will not be lost due to market conditions, taxes or fees.
Those who realize it takes a good defense to win championships will continue to purchase and own participating whole life insurance, regardless of how well their offense is performing. In fact, with a good defense, the offense is given even more time to score, but that’s another topic for another day.
Don’t overlook your defensive options while building the wealth you need to sustain your lifestyle today and in your future. Call us at 702-660-7000. We can help you build the best defense to protect the wealth you are building today.
Dr. Tomas P. McFie
Most Americans depend on Social Security for retirement income. Even when people think they’re saving money, taxes, fees, investment losses and market volatility take most of their money away. Tom McFie is the founder of Life Benefits which helps people keep more of the money they make, so they can have financial peace of mind. His latest book, How to Build Sustainable Wealth, can be purchased here.