A Tribute to Ivo, a life planning pioneer and visionary

By Thom Boot, Trainer with Kinder Institute

A wonderful human being has passed. Ivo Valkenburg (1966) was a man full of love, which he gave so much of to others. Love was the core, and it was the main reason he was here with us on this planet. His dream was to make the world a better place to live, for everybody. He carried this dream in how he worked, what he wrote, and how he spoke to us.

I met Ivo for the first time in 2007, when he spoke about a new way of financial advising. It was called Life Planning. At that time, he had already inspired me (and a lot of others) to go to the first workshop of The Seven Stages of Money Maturity® held in The Netherlands and later the EVOKE® training. I had the privilege to receive my training from George Kinder, Gerard van der Made, and Ivo himself. It was one of the most memorable weeks of my life, and I was inspired by Ivo to make some real changes.

Lili, Thom, and Ivo celebrating the building of Casa Maria in 2015.

Ivo and I ‘met’ again in 2014 when I participated in a Business Leap Workshop in Transylvania at his Retreat Centre that he had built with his wife Lili. Ivo started to work with Jelle Bartels in The Next Step Factory, a collective of entrepreneurs who worked together to make the world a little better every day. It was an intense reconnection between Ivo and me. The start of 8 years of wonderful meetings, working together with clients, campfire talks, and visits here and there. For the second time he inspired me to live the life I felt was most fulfilling. Live from the heart!

His heart was in Transylvania! There he had fully integrated into the local and regional community. Everybody knew him as the ‘tall Dutch man Ivo’, and he was seen as warm and kind. He did that in the typical ‘Ivo’ way: giving a lot of kindness, caring, and showing real interest in what the other might need. One thing kept chasing him: the Romanian language. We joked that he was still not speaking the language as well as he wanted to. His excuse: “Love does not need a language; it is the language itself.”

Ivo was a genius in connecting people. Over the last few years, I had the pleasure of connecting with Ivo and his family. Not only did I enjoyed the acquaintance of new friends in his community, but Ivo used his world wide network to bring people together who he thought could be of interest and inspiring for each of them. He did that with no self interest other then making him feel happy.

The big dream of Ivo and Lili was and still is the building a place for people to come, stay, relax, have meaningful meetings, and/or just to enjoy nature: the new retreat centre. It started in 2015 with the building of the Casa Maria next to their house and now also a very popular B&B. The next chapter is situated in a wonderful area on a plot by the lake Beliș-Fântânele, a few miles from their home. We had many talks about this dream, about how, when, where, and the finances around it. I dearly hope and expect that this dream still becomes reality in memory of Ivo.

“Ivo always playing.”

A wonderful human being has passed. I have lost a great friend. Many of his actions are a perfect example of the 7th Stage of Aloha: Ivo passed a lot of blessings from him to another person just because he felt it was needed. A couple of days before he passed away, I had the honour to have my last conversation with him. He intensively enjoyed the presence of Jelle Bartels and me, called all the attention and warm greetings a “God’s blessing” and asked himself how he deserved all that. Typical Ivo, no selfishness at all. We were happy for him that he felt the warmth of all the attention around the world that was sent to him and answered with “you get what you give, Ivo, and this is the moment to receive.”

Ivo will be missed, and at the same time, in the spirit of Ivo, he will live on in my heart and in the hearts of many people. Thank you, Ivo, for being in my life.

Live your magnificent life. Dream, dare, plan, and do it!

By Gerard van der Made, Trainer with Kinder Institute

In fond memory of the Dutch Life Planning pioneer Ivo Valkenburg

“If you don’t choose to let the voice of your heart speak now, if you don’t choose to follow the path of your heart now, when will you? Life is not a dress rehearsal; it is the big performance itself. Find out what you think is holding you back. Map it out. Make a plan you believe in and live it.”

The above quote typifies Ivo. Driven, passionate, full of conviction. With the fire burning in his heart, he wanted to move the world. He believed in a heaven on earth. Refused to discriminate based on nationality, background, education, or belief. He wanted nothing more than to contribute to the fact that the financial sector would help people to connect money and life in such a way that the pain and anxieties surrounding money would no longer devour the dreams of the heart. On the contrary: his dream was that the right advice on money matters would be useful for everyone to a life full of meaning.

I met Ivo in 2004. He almost literally pulled me from behind my desk to connect my knowledge about ‘brain and being’ with his passion for ‘money and meaning’. He introduced me to George Kinder and captivated by his vision on Financial Life Planning, we stormed onto various stages together with a lot of energy and passion. What followed were some unforgettable years. Ivo brought George to the Netherlands for the first time and introduced many people to ‘the idea’ of financial life planning. He organized a very special 5-day EVOKE training, which he partly led together with George and Susan Galvan. He taught me what he had learned from George and encouraged me to do the 6-day trainer course.

With George’s blessing, Ivo and I, in addition to our various broader team and organizational development trajectories, then provided the first Seven Stages and EVOKE training courses for the Kinder Institute in Dutch. And many KI trainings followed.

Of everything that can be remembered – and that is really very much – two memories stand out. Ivo was deeply moved by the emergence and impact of an evening that we organized in collaboration with a popular Dutch magazine (Happinez) in the Dutch famous ‘Duif’, a Catholic church in the heart of Amsterdam. I will never forget that evening where we taught the audience the importance of understanding and following the voice of your heart, linked to life planning as a method and means to give that voice the hands and feet which can transform a dream into action and reality.

Gerard and Ivo

A real big opportunity was offered to us by Paul Versteeg, the then CEO of Allianz, later taken over from the heart by Sjoerd Laarberg. In part to Ivo’s continuous efforts, and our earlier work for this company, we earned the opportunity to create a dream program, Pure Life, in which business strategy and life planning came together. Wonderful years in which Ivo managed to let hundreds of people to think about their business, their feelings, finance, and their life.

Ivo brought Life Planning to the Netherlands, now several Dutch people are bringing Life Planning further into the world. Without his faith, perseverance, and enthusiasm, it would not have happened in this way and on this scale.

Even later when Ivo, a free spirit as he was, wanted to free himself from forms and obligations and therefore also from his role as trainer for Kinder Institute, he continued to promote Life Planning and was an inspiration and beacon for many. And he still is. His lessons, his trainings, presentations, lectures and finally his books, they live on. Literally and in the hearts of many.

I was deeply touched by the overwhelming number of messages I received following Ivo’s death. The warmth of the memories of Ivo and of our joint work and even more, what this has done and still does in and for the lives of hundreds of people… deep gratitude fills my heart. All this thanks and love goes to Ivo, his wife Lili, their son Edwin, his family, and close friends. They have lost their dear husband, father, son, brother, brother-in-law, uncle, and friend. We all lose a living example of what can be done if you really believe in something and go for it completely.

Ivo has lived his Life Plan. What a privilege that he still invites us to follow his path in our own way. If it wasn’t time already, now is the time: “If you don’t choose to let the voice of your heart speak now, if you don’t choose to follow the path of your heart now, when will you? Life is not a dress rehearsal; it is the big performance itself. Find out what you think is holding you back. Map it out. Make a plan you believe in and live it.”

In memory of Ivo Valkenburg

By Louis Vollebregt, Lead Trainer with Kinder Institute

Today is the farewell of Ivo.

A sad thought that this rock is now also flooded.

I knew Ivo as an incredible optimist who was always genuinely willing to believe in the good of man! It takes guts!

Because of his enthusiasm, he had a particularly important role in bringing the founding father of Life Planning, George Kinder, to England and to the Netherlands. As a result, there are now tens of thousands of families in England, the Netherlands, Spain, Italy, South Africa, and Australia who experience much more quality and satisfaction in their lives.

Many of those people may never know that they owe it to Ivo’s passion, but I do know, and I will always be grateful to Ivo for all the good he has added in his far too short life!

Ivo, your work is done; it is now up to us to continue it! Thank you 🙏🏻

Rest gently.

A Vision of Freedom, Remembering Ivo Valkenburg

By George Kinder, Founder of Kinder Institute

Ivo was one of the most extraordinary people I’ve ever met. He was naturally charismatic, dynamic, and visionary. I was swept away by him, and I think he was swept away by the life planning work I was doing, so our meeting and work together was a match made in Heaven.

He and I shared an enthusiasm and a passion for healing people’s wounds around money. Even more than that, we wanted to bring them into a paradise of their life, of living the life of their dreams. We believed that if we were able to do that, then the world would be cured of its problems. It would be a much better place to live.

Ivo got the mission of Kinder Institute immediately, and he spoke with enormous enthusiasm about it. He brought me over to the UK, and we did a workshop in London that he organized, and he brought a lot of Dutch people to that training. Then he set up the first EVOKE courses in the Netherlands.

I don’t know that we would have a European presence outside of the UK if it weren’t for Ivo. That might also mean that we would not have the presence we currently have all over the world if it weren’t for Ivo. We certainly wouldn’t have the great train-the-trainer, Louis Vollebregt, without Ivo.

What I really want to say is that I loved Ivo Valkenburg in a way that it is hard for me to speak about many other men. He was infectiously enthusiastic for doing the right thing, for living the right way, and for insisting that people hear the message and change their lives. He was 20 years younger than me, and yet we just bonded and made something happen. It was a real privilege to have him as my student and then as my partner for Kinder Institute events. A real privilege.

I’ve missed him enormously from the moment he chose to go and do his own path. I would have loved to have just gone on with him forever, his vision constantly renewing. A vision of freedom, of happiness, of a world that was healed, of a world that was filled with love. I’ve missed that, and I miss him. So few people are infectious with vision. Ivo was infectious.

“The feeling of freedom.” Ivo in Romania.

Do you have a story to tell? We want to hear your Journey in Life Planning. Email lora.woodward@kinderinstitute.com, to express interest in being featured in the Kinder Institute blog.

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I’m a Registered Life Planner®: Rahul Agarwal

Kinder Institute of Life Planning’s Money and Meaning Blog presents the “I’m a Registered Life Planner®” series. Host Lora Woodward, Communications Director for Kinder Institute, chats with Rahul Agarwal, Founder and Principal Adviser of Advent Financial in Mumbai, India. Rahul is one of nearly 600 professionals globally that have earned the prestigious Registered Life Planner® (RLP®) designation.

Chapters:

00:00 Welcome, Introductions

00:36 How Rahul got into financial planning and how he first heard about Kinder Institute

04:21 How taking a life-centered approach to financial planning allows him to get to the heart of what matters most to clients and helps him understand not only their goals but their motivations

06:32 A client success story about a father who realized that the most important thing for him was being able to spend the most time possible with his daughter before she went away to school

08:59 How life planning and being life planned has impacted Rahul in his own life and given him great professional satisfaction

10:00 How Rahul’s perspective changed with a prior client who hesitant to incorporate life planning after they did the Three Questions.

11:25 His advice to new life planners who are used to providing solutions and fixing their client’s problems

12:35 What’s next in Rahul’s life plan

14:38 Closing


Rahul Agarwal, CFP CM, RLP® is the founder of Advent Financial, a boutique advisory firm serving the unique needs of clients in the area of financial planning and wealth management through a personalized and outcome-oriented, life-centered approach. He has a rich and diverse experience of 20+ years in the financial services industry across product and service categories. From the very outset, “Client First” was the core principle upon which he wanted to build his practice, long before the fiduciary standard became a legal obligation. He completed his training to become a Registered Life Planner in 2019 and is passionate about spreading the gift of life centered financial planning to as many families as possible in his remaining years of active practice. When he is not working, he likes to spend his time reading and is curious about learning new things.

Kinder Institute of Life Planning, founded by George Kinder in 2003, advances the practice of “whole-life” Life Planning as the most fiduciary, most comprehensive, and most client-centered form of financial planning.

Experiential core training, mentoring, and continuing education programs unite our nearly 600 Registered Life Planners® (RLPs®) around the world meeting the growing demand for life-centered, client-centered financial planning. Kinder’s resources for consumers include a searchable database of RLPs and an interactive online life-planning guide. The designation of Registered Life Planner® (RLP®) is earned by completing an entire course of study including The Seven Stages of Money Maturity® Training, the EVOKE® Life Planning Training, and a subsequent Life Planning Mentorship Program.

www.kinderinstitute.com.

Do you have a story to tell? We want to hear your Journey in Life Planning. Email lora.woodward@kinderinstitute.com, to express interest in being featured in the Kinder Institute blog.

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I’m a Registered Life Planner®: Monique Weintjies

Kinder Institute of Life Planning’s Money and Meaning Blog presents the “I’m a Registered Life Planner®” series. Host Lora Woodward, Communications Director for Kinder Institute, chats with Monique Weintjes, Founder of Wientjes Advies, financial life planning is one of nearly 600 professionals globally that have earned the prestigious Registered Life Planner® (RLP®) designation.

Chapters:

00:00 Welcome, Introductions

00:35 How Monique started in financial services

01:00 What drew Monique to life planning and how it provides more value to clients than traditional financial planning

02:38 How life planning has changed her interactions with clients, both old and new

05:10 Her fears about first implementing life planning, especially with clients she was already working with and her tips for someone who might be feeling the same way

06:51 A client success story about a client who didn’t outwardly appear as excited

09:37 How life planning and being life planned during Kinder Institute’s training impacted Monique both personally and professionally

13:21 Her advice to financial planners considering becoming life planners

15:01 What is next in Monique’s life plan

17:23 Closing


Monique Wientjes CFP®, RLP®, FA, started her own financial and tax consultancy in 2002 after a career developing software for the home furnishing industry. At Wientjes Advies, Monique offered tax advice, prepared annual accounts, and filed tax returns for small businesses. She trained to become a Registered Life Planner in 2018 and found the process to be “life changing.” As part of her own life plan, she sold her accountancy portfolio so she could fully focus on delivering financial life planning to her clients and helping with inheritance law as an executor. She says, “I wish every financial planner would do the training to experience how meaningful life planning is – not only for yourself but especially for your clients. Every life planning trajectory is a gift.” Monique lives in the beautiful countryside of Voorst (near Zutphen), where she walks every day with her lovely dog along the floodplains of the IJssel river.

Kinder Institute of Life Planning, founded by George Kinder in 2003, advances the practice of “whole-life” Life Planning as the most fiduciary, most comprehensive, and most client-centered form of financial planning.

Experiential core training, mentoring, and continuing education programs unite our nearly 600 Registered Life Planners® (RLPs®) around the world meeting the growing demand for life-centered, client-centered financial planning. Kinder’s resources for consumers include a searchable database of RLPs and an interactive online life-planning guide. The designation of Registered Life Planner® (RLP®) is earned by completing an entire course of study including The Seven Stages of Money Maturity® Training, the EVOKE® Life Planning Training, and a subsequent Life Planning Mentorship Program.

www.kinderinstitute.com.

Do you have a story to tell? We want to hear your Journey in Life Planning. Email lora.woodward@kinderinstitute.com, to express interest in being featured in the Kinder Institute blog.

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I’m A Registered Life Planner®: Frank Stolarz

Kinder Institute of Life Planning’s Money and Meaning Blog presents the “I’m a Registered Life Planner®” series. Host Lora Woodward, Communications Director for Kinder Institute, chats with Frank Stolarz, RLP®, Founder of The Karma Barn Yoga Studio & Perfect Day Strategies Life Planning. Frank is one of over 580 professionals globally that have earned the prestigious Registered Life Planner® (RLP®) designation.

Chapters

00:00 Welcome, Introduction

00:53 How learning the Kinder Institute’s methodology and completing the Registered Life Planner® designation 10 years ago inspired Frank to bring Life Planning to his clients

01:57 How after completing his training, Frank implemented Life Planning into his financial practice of over 35 years.

03:35 What Frank learned about himself through the process of being Life Planned during our EVOKE® Training.

05:21 What Frank has been working on most recently: a book called Perfect Life Strategies.

07:24 How The Karma Barn gives Frank the perfect platform to combine the things he feels most passionately about: yoga and having conversations with clients about their fears about money and finding a way to achieve the life that they are meant to live

08:43 A client success story where Frank’s client was able to pivot and follow a passion later in life, one that might have been surprising to those that only knew her professionally!

10:14 How a conversation with a couple that started out focused on buying a house led to the couple discovering that they actually wanted to move to another country and how Frank still keeps in contact with them to this day!

13:32 What advice Frank would give to financial planners interested in becoming Life Planners.


Author, Life Planner, and Yoga Teacher, Frank Stolarz, RLP® helps guide people to “live more fully now” as the founder of Perfect Day Strategies Life Planning (TM). Frank has spent 34 years running his own financial planning practice with a major Canadian independent financial services company. During that time, he created “The Meaningful Money Associations Process”(TM) in 2003, which is his unique method for helping people discover and find meaning and clarity in relationship with their money. He started studying with George Kinder in 2011 and earned his Registered Life Planner® (RLP®) designation in 2012. Frank is a 500Hr Yoga Teacher and runs a yoga and meditation studio in a renovated barn on his property, The Karma Barn, where he combines ancient yoga teachings with life planning. In 2021, he published the book “Perfect Day Strategies (TM): A Life planning guide to finding meaning in a world of change.” Frank lives in Nova Scotia, Canada with his wife of 40 years. They have three beautiful children and three amazing grandchildren, who all bring great joy into their lives.

Kinder Institute of Life Planning is a training company that provides workshops, experiential trainings, and consulting services to financial advisors and professionals worldwide. Thousands of advisors and financial coaches have trained with Kinder Institute on client-centered life planning methodologies since it began in 2003. Advisors that complete the entire course of study including The Seven Stages of Money Maturity® 2-Day Training, the EVOKE® Life Planning Training, and a subsequent 6-month mentorship program earn the designation of Registered Life Planner® (RLP®), which signifies that they have become life planning experts. To learn more about life planning, trainings offered by Kinder Institute of Life Planning, or to find a Registered Life Planner®, visit www.kinderinstitute.com.

Do you have a story to tell? We want to hear your Journey in Life Planning. Email lora.woodward@kinderinstitute.com, to express interest in being featured in the Kinder Institute blog.

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I’m a Registered Life Planner®: Diana Yáñez and Elliott Appel

Kinder Institute of Life Planning’s Money and Meaning Blog presents the “I’m a Registered Life Planner®” series. Host Lora Woodward, Communications Director of Kinder Institute, chats with Diana Yáñez, MA, CFP®, RLP®, Founder and Financial Empowerment Coach of All the Colors based in Mexico and Elliott Appel, CFP®, CLU®, RLP®, Financial Planner and Founder of Kindness Financial Planning, LLC. Diana and Elliott are two of over 580 professionals globally that have earned the prestigious Registered Life Planner® (RLP®) designation.

Chapters

00:00 Welcomes, Introduction

00:45 How Diana and Elliott came to be financial planners

02:56 How Elliott found his niche serving widows and women undergoing big life changes

03:36 Why Diana felt called to found All the Colors and its mission

4:55 What financial life planning means to Elliot and Diana

06:38 How being an RLP® has helped them differentiate themselves from other financial planners

09:08 How Diana and Elliot’s relationship has continued beyond their first meeting at an EVOKE® Life Planning training

14:12 What advice they would give to a new Life Planner just starting down this path

16:10 How advisors going through our programs might practice their life planning skills if they don’t have the freedom to do so at their current position.

18:45 The importance (and significance) of silence

19:20 Closing


Diana G. Yáñez, CFP®, RLP® (she/her) is a financial empowerment coach. At All the Colors, Diana facilitates group coaching to help individuals underserved by the financial services industry build confidence in their money decisions. Beyond financial literacy, All the Colors focuses on financial capability to support participants as they implement decisions to reach their financial and life goals. By providing this service in a group setting participants get to learn from other’s experience in a supportive environment. Before founding All the Colors, Diana worked as a financial planner, business analyst, demographer, and in social work. She is an active member of her Quaker meeting and enjoys traveling, reading, and dancing bachata.

Elliott Appel, CFP®, CLU®, RLP®, is a Financial Planner and Founder of Kindness Financial Planning, LLC, a fee-only financial planning firm located in Madison, WI that works virtually with people across the country. Kindness Financial Planning is focused on helping widows, caregivers, and people affected by major health events organize and simplify their financial lives. Elliott offers proactive tax planning, insurance guidance, investment advice, and ensures estate planning is coordinated with the financial independence plan. He is passionate about helping people discover what their ideal life looks like and making sure their money aligns with it.

Kinder Institute of Life Planning, is a training company that provides workshops, experiential trainings, and consulting services to financial advisors and professionals worldwide. Thousands of advisors and financial coaches have trained with Kinder Institute on client-centered life planning methodologies since it began in 2003. Advisors that complete the entire course of study including The Seven Stages of Money Maturity® 2-Day Training, the EVOKE® Life Planning Training, and a subsequent 6-month mentorship program earn the designation of Registered Life Planner® (RLP®), which signifies that they have become life planning experts. To learn more about life planning, trainings offered by Kinder Institute of Life Planning, or to find a Registered Life Planner®, visit www.kinderinstitute.com.

Do you have a story to tell? We want to hear your Journey in Life Planning. Email lora.woodward@kinderinstitute.com, to express interest in being featured in the Kinder Institute blog.

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I’m a Registered Life Planner®: Hugoline van Hoorn, RLP®

This month’s episode of the I’m a Registered Life Planner® series features Registered Life Planner® Hugoline van Hoorn. Kinder Institute Communications Director and webinar host Lora Woodward interviews Hugoline about how Life Planning has impacted her life, both personally and professionally.

Hugoline is one of over 500 professionals globally who have earned the prestigious Registered Life Planner® (RLP®) designation.

Chapters:

00:00 Welcome, Introductions

00:58 What it means to Hugoline to be a Registered Life Planner® three years after earning her designation.

01:45 How Hugoline describes Life Planning to her clients.

04:35 Why Hugoline still offers financial services without Life Planning as an option for those that ask for it.

05:10 How Hugoline first was drawn to Life Planning and why she decided to take the EVOKE® course four years ago

08:10 How the client interactions and relationships were different for Hugoline after she became a Registered Life Planner®

10:53 A client success story

15:02 What’s next in Hugoline’s Life Plan

20:02 Closing


Hugoline van Hoorn, RLP® founded Huug! Financial Life Planning in 2018 after 20 years as a banker. Prior to a career in finance, Hugoline spent 10 years as a professional squash player. She is 52 years old and lives in Eindhoven with her wife and dog. After earning the Registered Life Planner® designation, she discovered there were no job offers for Financial Life Planners so she started her own practice and called it Huug! (short for Hugoline). This turned out to be the best decision because it facilitated living her Life Plan to the fullest, balancing all things/persons important and meaningful to her! Hugoline loves helping her clients on their journey: starting with guiding them through the Life Planning Process and witnessing how they (re)discover their ideal life, then combining their ideal life with their numbers, resulting in a complete plan for them. She says, “That’s a great start of a life-long collaboration. The power of Life Planning and the results of a trajectory still give me goosebumps every time I help people through Financial Life Planning!”

Kinder Institute of Life Planning is a training company that provides workshops, experiential trainings, and consulting services to financial advisors and professionals worldwide. Thousands of advisors and financial coaches have trained with the Kinder Institute on client-centered life planning methodologies since it began in 2003. Advisors that complete the entire course of study including The Seven Stages of Money Maturity® 2-Day Training, the EVOKE® Life Planning Training, and a subsequent 6-month mentorship program earn the designation of Registered Life Planner® (RLP®), which signifies that they have become life planning experts. To learn more about life planning, trainings offered by Kinder Institute of Life Planning, or to find an RLP®, visit www.kinderinstitute.com.

Do you have a story to tell? We want to hear your Journey in Life Planning. Email lora.woodward@kinderinstitute.com, to express interest in being featured in the Kinder Institute blog.

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I’m a Registered Life Planner: George Kinder

In this episode of Kinder Institute of Life Planning’s “I’m a Registered Life Planner®” series, host Lora Woodward chats with George Kinder, Founder and President of Kinder Institute of Life Planning! George Kinder shares his thoughts on creating and living your life plan, including some very exciting news that is the latest part of his own!

George is one of over 550 professionals globally that have earned the prestigious Registered Life Planner® (RLP®) designation. #RegisteredLifePlanner

See below for a timestamped overview of their conversation!

Chapters:

00:45 How George Kinder’s new book can be a model for Life Planners living their own Life Plan

03:00 The details of George’s Third Question and how it ties to the creation of this book, that has been 30 years in the making

03:50 How the Kinder Institute of Life Planning and its trainers have been instrumental in helping George dedicate his time to this project

06:30 How this book can be a guide to living in the present moment and in nature

08:02 His plans for the next books

08:07 George’s advice to living your life plan, and living a life of freedom

13:20 The advantages clients experience when their Life Planners have been life planned themselves

14:50 Why Registered Life Planners are the most trustworthy advisors

19:20 George’s advice to committing to live your life plan

21:18 What is next in George’s life plan

Find out more about George Kinder’s new book of photography and poetry, Reflections on Spectacle Pond: the Weekly Edition here. Make sure to sign up to receive it for free by email, one week at a time!


Internationally recognized as the father of the Life Planning movement, Harvard-educated George Kinder revolutionized financial advice for over 30 years by training thousands of professionals in 30 countries in the field of financial Life Planning. After 30 years as a practicing tax adviser and financial planner, he founded Kinder Institute of Life Planning, delivering experiential training programs for professionals that help clients identify their most profound dreams of freedom and then use financial skills to deliver it. You can find Registered Life Planners through the company’s Life Planner Search. George is the author of seven books, including three books on money, The Seven Stages of Money Maturity, Lighting the Torch, and Life Planning for You; a book on mindfulness, Transforming Suffering into Wisdom; two books of poetry and photography, including his latest project, Reflections on Spectacle Pond; and his recently acclaimed, A Golden Civilization & The Map of Mindfulness. Kinder was the first winner of the Financial Planning Association’s Heart of Financial Planning Award which recognizes “individuals who demonstrate commitment and passion in doing extraordinary work to contribute or give back to the financial planning community and/or the public.” He has been named “One of the 35 most influential people in financial services,” “One of the top Icons & Innovators in the financial planning industry,” “the first of 15 transformational advisors whose vision most changed the industry,” and has been inducted into the Financial Planning Magazine Hall of Fame.

Kinder Institute of Life Planning is a training company that provides workshops, experiential trainings, and consulting services to financial advisors and professionals worldwide. Thousands of advisors and financial coaches have trained with the Kinder Institute on client-centered life planning methodologies since it began in 2003. Advisors that complete the entire course of study including The Seven Stages of Money Maturity® 2-Day Training, the EVOKE® Life Planning Training, and a subsequent 6-month mentorship program earn the designation of Registered Life Planner® (RLP®), which signifies that they have become life planning experts. To learn more about life planning, trainings offered by Kinder Institute of Life Planning , or to find an RLP®, visit http://www.kinderinstitute.com.

Do you have a story to tell? We want to hear your Journey in Life Planning. Email lora.woodward@kinderinstitute.com, to express interest in being featured in the Kinder Institute blog.

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I’m A Registered Life Planner®: Jos Drees

Meet Registered Life Planner® Joss Drees. Jos is one of over 500 professionals globally that have earned the prestigious Registered Life Planner® (RLP®) designation from the Kinder Institute of Life Planning. In this episode of Kinder Institute’s “I’m a Registered Life Planner®” series, Jos Drees of Life Planning firm Drees Life Services shares what it is like to be an RLP®.

Jos Drees was the first Registered Life Planner® in Belgium, and actually was present at the first EVOKE® Life Planning training held in the UK back in 2008. In his interview, Jos shares how he got into Life Planning and why he was so attracted to the skills George was teaching back when he was considering the second half of his career.

In his conversation with Kinder Institute’s Communications Director, Lora Woodward, Jos discusses a variety of topics, including how Life Planning is different than traditional financial advice and why he loves taking the most Life Planning Mastery (and Mastery Shorts) out of anyone in the world! Stay until the end to hear what is next in his Life Planning journey. See below for a timestamped overview of their conversation.

Chapters:

00:40 What Jos remembers about attending the first UK EVOKE training back in 2008.

01:42 How Jos, who is based in Belgium, found out about Kinder Institute’s trainings

04:40 How Kinder Institute’s training differs from other courses that he has taken as a financial professional

05:18 Jos’s description of what Life Planning is about

07:03 Jos became the first Registered Life Planner® in Belgium. How this second half of his professional career is more fitting for what he was looking for at the time

09:22: A client success story

13:07 How financial life planning is different than financial advise (and sales)

17:12 The importance of listening in client relationships

19:17 Why Jos takes the most Kinder Institute continuing education out of an RLP® in the world

25:05 What’s next in Jos’s personal life plan

Jos Drees, RLP® started his career in the financial industry in 1986 in Belgium (EU). After 22 years of successfully selling financial products, he felt he was missing out on the real thing: helping people live the life they always wanted to live and use the financial products as a means, not as an end. As founder of Drees Life Services he loves using the Kinder Institute of Life Planning‘s EVOKE® process, while guiding his clients towards their goals and aspirations. Yearly client compass-meetings look at his clients lives. Financial returns are looked at briefly as all of his clients know that the markets do what they’ll do and Drees Life Services helps them to get the most out of it. There’s no need for action or reaction every time some hot topic is in the media. Jos’s clients feel comfortable with their goals in mind and living their planned life. Jos has been married for 26 years and has one son that will be joining the team at Drees Life Services next year. Jos serves as member of a local board of financial professionals in Belgium, specialized in Life Insurance and Financial Planning, and he blogs on these two subjects twice a month. Jos is an appreciated volunteer with the MIT Agelab and helps with research on retirement and longevity planning as a PLAN (Preparing for Longevity Advisory Network) member. He loves hanging out in nature and going on walks with his whippet, friends, and family. Traveling, fine food, and selected wines are also high on his own description of an ideal life.

Do you have a story to tell? We want to hear your Journey in Life Planning. Email lora.woodward@kinderinstitute.com, to express interest in being featured in the Kinder Institute blog.

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I’m a Registered Life Planner®: Sarah Byrd

Meet Registered Life Planner® Sarah Byrd. Sarah is one of over 500 professionals globally that have earned the prestigious Registered Life Planner® (RLP®) designation from the Kinder Institute of Life Planning. In this episode of Kinder Institute’s “I’m a Registered Life Planner®” series, Sarah Byrd of Life Planning firm Alpha Advisors shares what it is like to be an RLP®.

Alpha Advisors was one of the first financial life planning firms that used our Life Planning curriculum as a blueprint for their team-led business. In her interview, Sarah talks about how she was able to draw on her colleagues’ experience as they were setting up the Life Planning side of the business and even now as they learn more through continuing education programs.

In her conversation with Kinder Institute’s Communications Director, Lora Woodward, Sarah discusses a variety of topics, including what originally attracted her to our training programs and how they have influenced the way Alpha Advisors interacts with their clients. She shares the personal impact that Life Planning has had on her own life and what is next in her Life Planning journey. See below for a timestamped overview of their conversation.

Chapters:

00:33 Sarah’s background and journey to the financial life planning space

01:33 How Alpha Advisors became a Life Planning firm and how they fit the Kinder Institute curriculum into their team structure

03:09 What Life Planning means to Sarah and how that has impacted her interactions with clients

04:02 What about Kinder Institute’s curriculum spoke to Sarah

04:59 How Sarah uses EVOKE® with her clients to take them through the Life Planning process and how it’s important to customize this process for every client

07:26 How being Life Planned in the EVOKE® Life Planning Training impacted Sarah’s personal life, and still has been affecting her life over 6 years after taking the training!

12:22 Client success stories inspired by realizations that wouldn’t be part of a traditional financial planning conversation

16:03 Sarah’s advice for aspiring Life Planners and how she and the rest of her team support each other in their journey to become better guides for their clients

20:55 What is next in Sarah’s Life Planning journey


Sarah Byrd, RLP® is a financial life planner and the Chief Compliance Officer at Alpha Advisors, a financial life planning and wealth management firm in Richmond, VA. She co-advises clients with RLP® colleagues Mark Leimberger and Alex Scott. Sarah is passionate about helping clients discover and define their joy and then map a path to delivering it in short order. She graduated from James Madison University with a bachelor’s degree in business administration and held many jobs before landing a role with Alpha Advisors in 2004 that turned into her calling. She earned her Registered Life Planner® designation in 2015. Sarah has been married for 40 years, has two daughters, two sons-in-law, and seven grandchildren. She serves on the board of directors for The Barnabas Center in Richmond, VA.

Do you have a story to tell? We want to hear your Journey in Life Planning. Email lora.woodward@kinderinstitute.com, to express interest in being featured in the Kinder Institute blog.

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I’m A Registered Life Planner: Kris Amliwala

Meet Registered Life Planner® Kris Amliwala, ChFP. Kris is one of over 500 professionals globally that have earned the prestigious Registered Life Planner® (RLP®) designation from the Kinder Institute of Life Planning. In this episode of Kinder Institute’s “I’m a Registered Life Planner®” series, Kris Amliwala shares what it is like to be an RLP®.

Strongly believing that “Personal Finance, is way more Personal, than Finance”, Kris helps focus client conversations on what is really important to his clients. Kris aims to increase “Return on Life” for pre-retirees as a Chartered Financial Planner & Registered Life Planner®.

In his conversation with Kinder Institute’s Communications Director, Lora Woodward, Kris discusses a variety of topics, including what originally attracted him to our training programs and how they affected his personal and professional life. He shares how he integrated Life Planning into his practice and what is next on his own Life Planning journey. See below for a timestamped overview of their conversation.

Chapters:

00:30 Kris’s background and journey to the financial advice sector

01:30 What Life Planning means to Kris

02:00 Why Kris was attracted to Life Planning and why he wanted to become a Registered Life Planner®

02:53 How Kris’s personal life changed as an effect of going through Kinder Institute’s Life Planning program

04:26 How becoming an RLP® has affected how Kris conducts client meetings

05:48 A client success story

06:39 Kris’s advice for aspiring Life Planners

07:35 How Kris introduced Life Planning into his business and to his clients

08:33 What’s next in Kris’s Life Planning journey


Kris Amliwala, ChFP, RLP® is Principal and Financial Planner at Designer Wealth Management. He is passionate about helping his clients “Increase their Return on Life,” not just their returns on investments (although that is part of it!). While originally, Kris had pursued a career in Pharmaceutical Sciences, he found his passion for finance by chance: through fulfilling a short term need at a family business. Through this short-term introduction to financial advice, Kris knew he had to become more involved in helping couples make their money work harder for them! Kris was committed to learning all that he could to be a better adviser for his clients and part of that involved becoming a Registered Life Planner® with the Kinder Institute of Life Planning. Kris was named a 2020 Professional Advisor by the New Talent Awards and was Highly Commended For The Personal Finance Awards Education Champion of the Year in 2020 and 2021. You can learn more about Kris at his professional website mypensionplanner.co.uk.

Do you have a story to tell? We want to hear your Journey in Life Planning. Email lora.woodward@kinderinstitute.com, to express interest in being featured in the Kinder Institute blog.

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