Updated: Oct 1
I help clients understand and organize their financial lives.
Each case has its own nuances and context, and my clients and I learn something new with each interaction. While I love working with every person I encounter, I get the most fulfillment from helping adults with ADHD.
Living with ADHD creates certain challenges in the areas of organization and attention to detail, which can create big problems in a person’s financial life. Here are some of the issues I’ve encountered. If you can relate to any of these stories, please reach out to me today and schedule a complimentary consultation.
My first experience working with an adult with ADHD was back in late 2008.
The client came to me when their house was nearly lost to foreclosure, and it wasn’t because they couldn’t afford the mortgage payment. It was because when they went to pay the mortgage, the money had already been spent on other things. One of the ways ADHD affects a person is through a high level of impulsivity. This client hadn’t practiced the skills needed to save money for other bills. If the money was in the checking account, it would be spent without a second thought. I created a system for this client to implement each pay day so they knew what bills needed to be paid and what would be left over. The key was to make it simple and interesting. In time, and with coaching, we were able to get their financial situation back on track without losing the house to foreclosure.
I also work with many clients who struggle with inattention.
They have many questions, but often ask more questions before the first one is answered. This is why I send meeting summary emails. At the end of each meeting, including the complimentary consultation, you will receive a summary email that highlights the conversation we had and what our next steps are. My clients always have something to refer back to so they know what to work on and what to do to prepare for our next meeting. This simple format has been extremely valuable for keeping track of progress toward goals and remembering answers to the many questions that come up during a meeting.
Small changes have the most long-term impact.
Finally, I wanted to highlight my approach with all clients, not just clients living with ADHD. When we are setting goals for your financial life, I have found small changes to have the most impact. Early in my career I wanted to help my clients see profound change, which, I thought, would make them very happy. Turns out, when people are presented with big changes, it’s frightening. No matter how much logical sense it makes, big changes are scary. I approach all financial plans with the idea that any goals we are working toward will be achieved with small, manageable changes that are more likely to be implemented and committed to over the long term. I once heard the phrase, “Break it down to the ridiculous,” when it comes to goal setting. When the change is too big, we lose our will power. Small, meaningful changes have more staying power.
In all, I work with clients of all kinds, but adults with ADHD are particularly suited for working with a financial planner. If you feel that inattention and impulsivity are getting in the way of creating a stronger and healthier financial life, schedule a complimentary consultation right now.
All my best,
Christina Gatteri, CFP
Certified Financial Planner
Warwick, Rhode Island 02886