Back before ketchup bottles were squeezable we had to shake the glass bottle, tap the end, and wait for the ketchup to slowly make its way to the plate. There was a TV ad with a song about anticipation as some kids with big eyes waited and waited for the ketchup to finally fall on their hamburger. Much as I like to get the ketchup without a long wait today, there’s a place for taking your time in life. Making a big financial decision is one of them.

There are many times we’re faced with financial decisions that will affect us for years into the future. Times like when we change jobs, receive an inheritance, lose a family member, get divorced, sell a home, etc. If we don’t have a trusted advisor at a time like this but feel the need to do something, we can end up making decisions we later wish we could undo. It’s at this point that we need to slow down. A little procrastination while you look for the right team to help you can go a long way to saving you headaches later.

I’ve run into too many people who took quick action with their finances (either on their own or with an advisor they didn’t know well) and later regretted the speed of that decision. Making a quick decision that you’re not sure about or don’t understand carries a lot of risk. Be sure to take the time to find someone you can trust to advise you or just slow down. Many times, nothing needs to be done right away. And if it does, make it your job to keep searching for help until you find people you can work well with, who put your interests first, and can get you where you need to go. Checking a big decision off your list without the right people helping you isn’t usually the best way to go.

That squeeze ketchup bottle is great for speed but I’m still trying to figure out how to get just the right amount out without splattering my food. I’m feeling like Goldilocks here. I don’t want too slow, or too fast. I’m looking for just right. And I hope when you’re faced with big financial decisions, you are too.

Kristin Rodriguez