An APPLE a day

When I lived in Phoenix back in 2012, I participated in men’s bible study offered through the Phoenix Seminary, it was lead by it’s president Dr Darryl DelHousaye.  I remember one such session where he mentioned always having a framed picture of apple in his kitchen above the table where he and his wife had breakfast each morning.  He said we should think of that apple as being on a conveyor belt and each day an apple moves in front of us.  Now we cannot reach back to grab yesterday’s apple since it is gone and there is no guarantee tomorrow’s apple, so all we can do on this day is grab and enjoy the apple in front of us!


With all of today’s issues facing us it is really difficult to live one day at a time.  We worry about things that are totally out of our control.  Take today’s headlines dealing with Ukraine, COVID, Crime, Gas prices, Inflation, the border, etc. etc.  We look to our past that we can no longer change, it’s gone!  We worry about tomorrow, but who promised you tomorrow and some day we won’t have a tomorrow. Thus, all we can deal with is the present moment which is today and today’s apple.

We need to be Thankful for today and to live in the moment, in a state of Abundance (to have an abundance of something is to have more than you need.  It’s often used to describe positive qualities such as “an abundance of love.”)  That’s not to say we shouldn’t plan for the future (Social Security benefits, etc.) but we should all get on our knees and be Thankful for what we do have.

15 Ways to Live an Abundant Life

I came across this list yesterday while preparing for a zoom call to 300 financial advisors across the country and thought of sharing it with them.

  • Make the best use of your time
  • Know your strengths
  • Celebrate your success
  • Rise early
  • Learn new skills
  • Never miss an opportunity
  • Have few true friends
  • Enjoy life
  • Forgive and forget
  • Stay away from doubt and fear
  • Make your own decisions
  • Feed your brain with positive thoughts
  • Travel more
  • Learn to say no
  • Follow your passions

Hopefully you can all take this list, print it, tape it your bathroom mirror, on the dash of your car, next to your computer or wherever you’ll see it several times per day.  Work on it, think about it and try to practice incorporating these tips into your daily lives.

Even Financial Advisors Make Mistakes

In the last week I had 2 financial advisors make mistakes in claiming on their own Social Security benefits.  In one case he is 66 years old and a high earner and is waiting until age 70 to claim, his wife who just turned 62 decided to claim on her own record and processed her application for benefits. I inquired as to how much was her projected check and he told me a couple of hundred dollars per month.  Her check at Full Retirement was projected to be $470 per month, since she claimed at 62 she incurred a 30% reduction / penalty in benefits thus her check was estimated to be $329 per month.  That it and of itself is not the problem, the problem is that when her husband claims benefits at 70 she will incur the 30% penalty on her spousal benefits!  His check at 66 was $3000 which means she would be eligible to receive $1,500 per month at her Full Retirement Age which is 67, by claiming at 62 that 30% penalty will be on her spousal benefits thus her check would be $1,050 or a loss of $450 per month or $5,400 per year.  The penalty will be applied until he dies, if he lives until 90 which is reasonable since both of his parents are still alive she’ll have forfeited over $100,000 in benefits in order to claim $329 per month.  Since she had just filed for benefits, we reached out to Social Security and WITHDREW her application.

The other advisor was paying his spouse a salary so that she could get to her 40 quarters.  Once again her spousal benefits would far exceed the benefits she might be eligible for on her own record!  It doesn’t make sense to pay 15% in FICA taxes to get her to the 40 quarters.

Carpenter’s Rule –   Measure Twice – Saw Once

Always here for you, have a great month!

Dave Zander, CFP®
MLS# 1603774