Plot Holes.

In fiction, a plot hole is a gap or inconsistency in a storyline that goes against the flow of logic established by the story’s plot.  Plot holes are usually created unintentionally, often as a result of editing or the writers simply forgetting that a new event would contradict previous events.

If you’re a Gen Xer (yours truly), you likely loved the movie Karate Kid when you were a youngster.  Pure wholesome entertainment if you ask me, well, other than the violence and bullying.  The famous line, still used by me when I yell at my son to do hard work… “Wax on! Wax off! … Wax on! Wax off!”  Turns out, one of the biggest plot holes in movie history occurred during the film.  Midway through the storyline, the competitors are told that face kicks are illegal during the tournament.  Yet, at the climax of the movie, Danielson manages to pull out a win with…wait for it…a kick to the face.  Most fans ignore this plot hole, as it is one of the highest-ranking martial arts movies of all time.

Plot Twists.

A plot twist is an unexpected development in a book or film.  A few great examples come to mind.  (Spoiler alert!)  The Sixth Sense reveals that Dr. Malcolm Crowe is actually dead and has been a ghost throughout the film.  This is a shocking and emotional plot twist that changes the perspective and meaning of the whole story.  Star Wars anyone?  “Luke, I am your father.”  Or Fight Club where it turns out the main character suffers from dissociative identity disorder – he and Tyler Durden are the same person.

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Plot holes and plot twists.

Both form a unique and compelling storyline.  It causes us to buy the book or movie ticket, and spend hours of our lives trying to figure it all out.  Often fun, sometimes frustrating, holes and twists are what makes the world go round.  And often, in a twisted form of fate, these plot holes and twists can happen in real life.

Take me for example.

I grew up as a farm kid near a small town in Northwest Ohio.  I chose to get a degree in accounting at a nearby university so I could stay close to family…and my girlfriend (now wife).  And, having prepared a few hundred tax returns in 4 years at a CPA firm I was hired at, I realized that gig just wasn’t for me.  So, in 2002, my then business partner, Adam Zuercher (he has since retired) and I hung out our shingle to anyone who would trust us to help them make wise decisions with their money and to create and craft a unique retirement plan so they could… well… retire from their careers and enjoy their 2nd half.  And so, we did.

Eight years into my career as a Financial Advisor, I helped my mom transition into retirement.  Suffice it to say I’ve written an entire book about this experience, but to summarize, my life encountered the biggest plot hole ever devised.  A complete and utter gap and inconsistency from how the original story line was supposed to go.  You see, 6 months after retiring, my mom suffered from a lack of purpose and direction, she fell into a deep depression, and on the morning of March 22nd, 2011, she chose to take her life.  While, as a Financial Advisor, I confirmed she had enough money to sleep at night, I wasn’t alert enough to help her find significance and meaning beyond her job title, for her to have enough purpose to get up in the morning.

It’s not the way the script was supposed to be written. A plot hole.

And yet, by God’s grace, I chose to turn this tragedy into triumph, this stumbling block into a stepping stone, this plot hole into a plot twist.

In September of 2021 I released my book, Retirement Stepping Stones, into the world.  Thousands of readers have been touched by mom’s story and the book’s message.  Far be it for me to have my readers put my book back on a shelf and take no action.  So, we hired Life Coach, Scott Miller, to the Hixon Zuercher Capital Management Team to help clients navigate retirement from a non-financial perspective.  To give them tools and actionable content to help them understand who they are apart from their careers.  To help them craft a future that’s bigger and more exciting than their past.

And to that end, we’ve had hundreds of individuals and couples go through The Refocus on Retirement Workshop at our firm, and many have chosen to take a further step to engage in Private Coaching where Scott can provide a tailored Retirement Summary Plan to a client that wants accountability and actionable steps toward their goals.

As a result of the success of Refocus Coaching at our firm, the program and mission has been profiled on CBS Evening News, MarketWatch, Forbes Advisor, and multiple industry leading podcasts like Michael Kitces’ Financial Advisor Success.  And we’ve heard a resounding question from the nation-wide Financial Advisor community: “How can we do this for our own clients?”

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So, today, I’m beyond excited to announce that there’s a solution for advisors.

Another plot twist in the story, 13 years after my mom’s passing.

Our team has spent countless hours developing The Refocus Coaching Academy, an online training course designed to help financial advisors support clients in their transition to a purpose-filled retirement life, focusing on the non-financial aspects.

Through 22 video lessons instructed by Scott, a full client-facing workbook, and entire slide deck, they’ll gain the tools and skills needed to best serve clients in retirement planning, beyond the numbers! The Early Bird Pre-Sale is already live, and the Official Launch will occur on Monday, July 1st, 2024!

Do you have a financial advisor? I encourage you to invite them on this journey. We’ll rewrite the story of retirement—one filled with hope, happiness, and endless possibilities. Together, we can create a future where every client finds meaning and purpose.

My mom was a nurse. Her profession was to help others. She cared for her patients well.

We’re financial advisors. Our profession is to help others. We care for our clients well.

It’s time for our financial industry to twist the plot once again…to take our services beyond the dollars and cents, to focus on the non-financial aspects of retirement…and to help our clients continue a life of meaning in their second half.


Have an advisor? Share this blog with them… Or check to see if they’re on the list!