What Were the Most Beneficial Things We Learned Last Year?

As we approach the halfway mark of 2022, it seems like a great time to revisit what we learned last year. Reflection on the past can lead us through the three stages of gratitude: recognition, acknowledgment, and appreciation. Tune in as the Wise Counsel Wealth advisory team shares their stories.

Last year when a side hustle turned into a full-fledged business, I quickly learned the importance of saying “no”- not saying “no” for the sake of saying “no” but in order to be able to say “yes” to the things and people that matter most. By allowing myself permission to say “no”, I’ve been able to set healthy boundaries to maintain a work-life balance and spend more time with family and friends. As someone who aims to please others in all areas of my life, saying “no” hasn’t come naturally to me but it’s been especially valuable.

Excerpt by Jillian Gilbert

Director of Operations



My condo flooded last year, and I delayed getting it repaired because it wasn’t clear for over 10 months who would be paying for the repair. I also delayed getting professional designations for years because I felt like it wasn’t the ‘right’ time yet. In both cases, I stymied progress in exchange for anticipated certainty, clarity, and ease. Ultimately, I was wrong to delay… During that time my life has become generally more complicated (that trend will likely continue, for most of us), I never received the clarity I thought I would, and the cost of educational classes, home renovation services, and most everything else in the world has dramatically risen. What I learned is sometimes it’s best to start an endeavor/process even if the path to success or even the destination is not entirely clear. I’m currently in classes pursuing that additional professional designation and the flooded condo has contractors hard at work. Not sure when either will be finished, but it sure feels good to be making progress.

Excerpt by Zach Langan CFP®

Wealth Advisor



The most beneficial thing I learned last year was the concept of living life with no regrets requires much resiliency. It forced me to decide and not get too wrapped up in the what-ifs of the future outcome.  I knew it was time for me to make a change in the way I was running my business. I closed it down to take control of my life, slow down from the constant ripping and running that had become my normal, and reevaluate my business’ mission. The closing down stage took about 4 months to complete and I thought many times that I wouldn’t go through with it. I am glad to say that I did push forward, and I am in the process of being intentional about me-time, narrowing down on the aspects of my former business that I want to bring into a future endeavor, and finding joy each day.

Excerpt by Jasmine Cormier

Communications and Marketing Manager




2021 was a year of change and growth for me in ways I’d never experienced. I lived alone for the first time, I passed the CFP® exam, and after 4 years at Wise Counsel, I became an advisor. The most beneficial thing I learned through these changes and many others is that we aren’t meant to walk through life without community.

I’ve always been someone who surrounded myself with a lot of people and keeps a very full calendar. Those things are great, but it’s not the same as a true, intentional, real community. People who study endless hours with you for a life-altering exam. People who commit to weekly coffee dates to pray with you, be in the Word together, and keep each other accountable. People who you know when life is tough will show up for you, and when it’s your turn to show up you don’t think twice about it.

2021 was a year of learning what doing life with your community, day-in, and day-out, through the good and bad looks like.

Excerpt by Sidney Meriweather CFP®

Associate Wealth Advisor



The most beneficial thing I learned this past year is to only focus on things I can control. In the past I have caught myself worrying about things out of my control and I have let that effect my attitude and sometimes happiness. For example, I have been concerned about other people’s actions or the way something works in the world. This past year I really started making a point to focus on the one thing I can control, my attitude. This really helped me with my senior year of college. There were points throughout the semester where I felt burnt out or had a serious case of senioritis but keeping a positive attitude and living in the moment made my last semester the most enjoyable of them all. I plan on carrying this into my professional career by attacking everything with an open mind and eager to learn.

Excerpt by Trent Connor

Relationship Manager


Christmas 2020 our son and daughter in law surprised us at the kitchen table with the news they had been matched with three siblings in Hungary for potential adoption. The children were 7, 4 and 3 at the time and were living with a foster family the past three years.

We were so happy. Mallory would be an aunty. Brooks an uncle. Linda and I grandparents. Jared and Jen, a mommy and daddy. What a moment for our family.

Over the next 8 months, we waited eagerly. Jared and Jen travelled to Hungary and lived there with the children for 6 weeks. It was emotional and difficult as they adapted to each other and dealt with the language barrier. Finally, the big day when a Judge in Budapest signed the forms making the adoption official. A legal transaction. An act of love. Our family had just grown by three precious souls.

Linda and I were at the airport on August 14th in Washington DC when they landed. Joshua, Joanna, and Caleb were tired and overwhelmed, but they still had hugs for these smiling, teary strangers waiting for them in the terminal. We enjoyed several days with them as they settled into their new home.

What is adoption? Choosing to love a stranger, with all the hopes, dreams, joys, risk and heartache that come with any decision to love. It’s a legal transaction powered by unconditional love.

My thoughts turn to the day I stood before a judge in 1980. I was twenty years old at the time and four decades later I more fully understand and appreciate the weight of that moment. I was a stranger, a foreigner, yet a loving father wanted to adopt me. A legal transaction happened that day and I was adopted into God’s family, my life changed forever. I was adopted by the King of kings who spared no expense and did everything necessary for my adoption to be possible. By grace, through faith in Jesus Christ, I became an adopted son and joint heir with Christ.

2021 taught me to appreciate adoption more. It is one of the highest forms of unconditional love we know. For the Christian, we’re all adopted sons and daughters of the most-high King. With our adoption comes a new identity with all the rights and privileges of family. It’s not who we will be one day. It’s who we are today. What a mystery. What a joy.

Excerpt by Robert Huntley CFP®, CHFC, CKA

Founder and Wealth Advisor



The Wise Counsel Wealth staff has certainly learned a lot in 2021 that is helping shape their 2022 for an even better year through mindfulness, acceptance, and unconditional love. We hope that you can share in our lessons and even share yours with us over on our Facebook or LinkedIn pages.

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