Do you have someone in your life who is very different from you?

Maybe they have different interests from you.

Maybe they have a different personality from you.

Maybe they have different strengths from you.

Maybe they look different from you.

Is it your spouse/partner, your child, another family member or friend? While you still love this person and enjoy being with them, you can’t help but notice the difference.

As a Certified Financial Planner™ professional, I hear about all types of differences when helping people develop their financial plan. Here are some examples (please note, names have been changed):

Kelly and Tom have been married for 10 years. Tom has suddenly taken up golf and wants Kelly to take lessons. Kelly has no interest in this activity.

Carol loves her daughter but is perplexed how she overreacts every time things don’t go her way.

Alan and Stuart have been partners for 8 years. Alan’s strength is planning which frustrates Stuart who enjoys being spontaneous.

Raj adores his son but can’t understand why he married someone who isn’t in the same culture.

What if we were all the same? Would life be easier?

Or would life be less interesting — perhaps even boring? It’s worth thinking about to put differences in perspective.

Is it possible to learn from our differences? Maybe that’s why this person is in your life?

More importantly, is your love for this person strong enough to overlook your differences?

Challenge yourself to shift your focus on the positives of your relationship to minimize differences. Life would not be easier if we were all the same. Life would be easier if we just learned to accept each other’s differences.



Niv PersaudNiv Persaud, CFP®, CDFA™, CRPC®, is the Founder of Transition Planning & Guidance, LLC. Life is more than money. It’s about living the lifestyle you want and can afford. For that reason, Niv consults with clients on money, life and work. Her approach capitalizes on techniques she learned throughout her career, including as a management consultant, executive recruiter and as a financial advisor. Her clients tend to be going through a major life transition (new graduate, marriage, growing family, divorce, widow/er, empty nest, etc.). Her services include spending plan, financial plan, divorce financial review, life strategy and professional progression. Niv actively gives back to her community through her volunteer efforts. She believes in living life to the fullest by cherishing friendships, enjoying the beauty of nature and laughing often — even at herself. Her favorite quote is by Erma Bombeck, “When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left and could say ‘I used everything you gave me’.”