One of the prettiest places I’ve been horseback riding is at Dale Hollow Lake. The trails go out on the points of the lake and back in the coves. The trail between the coves has a steep hillside with trees on one side and a sharp drop off to the lake on the other. 

One spring day we had a group of nineteen riders. As we approached a portion of the trail, a downed tree was blocking the path.  While the riders up front began making a path around the tree, a few of us positioned our horses so that we could converse with other riders.  Barbara, one of our riders, set her gelding with his rear toward the cliff, standing a safe distance from the edge. 

A mare became impatient and began to fidget.  The rider tried to correct the mare, but she responded by spinning and pushing the other horses.  To avoid contact with the mare, Barbara’s gelding took two steps back and was about to take a third step off the cliff. 

Immediately I stepped down, grabbed the bridle and led her horse forward to stay on solid ground.  This all happened so fast, Barbara wasn’t even aware of how close she and her horse were to falling several hundred feet.

Our financial life can sometimes be like “Barbara”. We’re standing on solid ground and suddenly something out of our control happens.  Financial cliffs are very real and can be upon us without warning.  It is your financial professional’s job to know where the financial cliffs are and help insulate you from them. 

As a member of the Assurance Financial Partners team, I have witnessed first-hand, many families that had never been advised that the cliff existed or believed it would happen to someone else and not them.

It is important that you work with a knowledgeable and experienced advisor to help you avoid the financial cliffs as well as what to do if you are falling off one currently.  Happy Trails!

Editor’s Note: Article submitted by Donald Thomas, Assurance Financial Partners/AFP Elder Care, 615-764-0019 or