for NAIFA-West Virginia's
2012-2013 Officers, Regional Directors and Committee Chairs
By Herman Dixon, CLU, CLF, LUTCF, LTCP, RFC, MBA, NAIFA-West Virginia President
"You Have More Than You Think!"
Thank you NAIFA-WV for the honor and high privilege that I have had to serve as your state President. It is an experience that I shall always cherish. I have had the opportunity to serve some of the finest and most respected insurance and financial services professionals on earth. You gave me the spirit to lead and the support to carry forth your insights and needs on a national platform. Though we still have much work to do, I am certain that it will be done as long as we remain united in our focus and energetic in our efforts.
May the best of life always find your doorways and may your individual and collective successes and your love for this industry and the clients you serve be the beacon of light that guides your pathways. I was among men and women of honor and in that resolve; I have made my life better! Thank you so much and let's keep moving forward.
Please enjoy my final and yes, a little lengthy article. Live strong NAIFA-WV!
Too often we fail to understand that which we have on hand provides happiness and pursue avenues that most times fall short. Benjamin Franklin once remarked to a heckler who proclaimed his uncertainty of the new American Constitution:
THANK YOU TO
| For more information about sponsorship opportunities with NAIFA-West Virginia, please contact John Pauley at (304) 345-4343.
"My friend, the Constitution only guarantees the American people the right to pursue happiness; you have to catch it yourself." Former game show host Hugh Downs noted: "A happy person is not a person in a certain set of circumstances, but rather a person with a certain set of attitudes." Even Aristotle the famed philosopher said, "Happiness depends upon ourselves." In our world of doubt, negative thinking and chaos, it is easy for us to push aside the actions which can bring happiness, opportunity and an energy-filled positive attitude.
Too often, we mislead ourselves in thoughts of how bad times are and how everything is stacked against us. This catabolic view of victimization does nothing but make our lives miserable and in turn a misery for those around us. This "victim" view will adversely impact our business as we begin to think that maybe 2nd place is not such a bad position to occupy. When this happens our lives will change; but, not in the manner we had hoped.
In current times of uncertainty and challenge, I want to share with you a favorite story. I read the story in the Daily Herald
published in Provo, Utah. Its theme has great power that will bring fulfillment IF we will allow its advice to rule our minds and force our egos to take a rear seat in our trip along life's great pathways. It is the story entitled, "The Secret of the Touchtone."
"Raimundo de Ovies tells a story that when the great library of Alexandria was burned, one book was saved. It was not a valuable book and so a poor man who could read a little, bought it for a few coppers. It was not very interesting; yet, there was a most interesting thing in it. It was a thin strip of vellum on which was written the secret of the "touchstone."
"As J. Martin Choke tells us in "Your Greatest Power," the touchstone was a small pebble that could turn any common metal into pure gold. The writing explained that the touchstone was on the shores of the Black Sea, lying among thousands and thousands of other pebble stones would feel warm, while ordinary pebbles are cold. So the man sold his few belongings, bought some simple supplies, camped on the seashore, and began testing pebbles."
"He knew that if he picked up ordinary pebbles and threw them down again because they were cold, he might pick up the same pebble hundreds of times. So, when he felt one that was cold, he threw it into the sea. He spent a whole day doing this and there were none that were the touchstone. Then, he spent a week, a month, a year, three years; but, he did not find the touchstone. Yet he went on and on this way."
"One morning, he picked up a pebble and it was warm, and he immediately threw it into the sea. He had formed the habit of throwing pebbles into the sea to such a routine that when the one came along that he sought, he still threw it away." Such is the pursuit of happiness.
Searching for that one magic pebble, we expend countless hours of energy and effort. The search is so desperate and habitual that even when a happiness producing experience is realized, it is too often cast aside. Happiness is enjoying each pebble-like life experience because we have decided to focus on the good in all
of life's moments.
Attention to our business demands nothing short of a daily "Super Bowl" playing mentality. Each day brings challenges involving rules changes, new processes, transition errors, regulatory matters...the list is endless! Too often we allow these outside challenges to zap our positive, empowering energy and plunge us into feelings of victimization, anger, disgust, defiance. We rationalize that it is ok to accept lesser than excelling results because the "cards are stacked against us." When we do get a break-through, too often just like the "touchstone", we set aside that break-through because we are conditioned to feel that we are not good enough or that we can't achieve. Due to limiting beliefs and assumptions, we have in essence conditioned ourselves to believe that opportunity and happiness can never be achieved. Realize that we must slow down the process.
Take a look at your "pebbles" one by one and then grasp hold of the "warm" ones when they appear and convert that energy to your benefit as we gain wisdom and joy from finally discovering that happiness is within our grip! Therefore, it is so very important that we make the secret of the touchstone work for us each and every day. We do this by not throwing our "warm" pebbles back into the ocean but by realizing that what we have in our hands and in our minds will enable us to turn our ordinary metals into the finest gold the world has ever seen!
The question becomes, "Are we up to the challenge?"
Best wishes for continued success and happiness!!!
Special thanks to all of the speakers, sponsors, exhibitors and
attendees who made our 2013 NAIFA-West Virginia State
Convention on May 16th and 17th a success! CLICK HERE FOR PHOTO HIGHLIGHTS!
2013 Association of the Year presented to NAIFA-Charleston,
from left to right: John E. Pauley, CLU, ChFC, CLTC, NAIFA-West Virginia
Executive Director; Dale A. Goff, CFP, CLU, NAIFA-Charleston President;
and George A. Webb, NAIFA-West Virginia Board Member.
Insurance Products and Financial Security
THE ISSUE: As Congress continues to debate deficit reduction and approaches to tax reform, policy-makers must carefully consider the negative effect on families and workers if changes to public policy make it more difficult and expensive to obtain financial and retirement security.
BACKGROUND: Insurance products and employer-provided benefits help Americans provide financial protection and security for themselves and their loved ones. Whether it's the financial costs from dying, becoming ill or disabled, or outliving savings in retirement, most individuals do not have the resources to manage risk on their own.
Insurance products are unique in their ability to successfully and affordably transfer risk from the individual to a larger pool of savers or insureds. Whether people seek protection and security products on their own or as part of a group with the assistance of their employer, our nation's tax system should not discourage these actions.
The earnings in life insurance and annuities do not escape taxation. Policy earnings are taxed upon receipt, at ordinary income tax rates, when withdrawals are made from annuity or life insurance policies. A pre-death benefit withdrawal can trigger a loss of valuable insurance protection and make the policies more costly. It is important to note that policy cash values are not realized until a policyholder receives a distribution from the policy. Realization is a necessary condition for income tax liability. In addition, life insurance and annuity owners pay premiums with after-tax dollars.
Long-term care and disability insurance offer critical protection against the risk of depleting savings to pay for long-term care services, and the ability to meet ongoing living expenses.
Employer-sponsored benefits, including retirement and health insurance options, are an important component of financial security. They provide working Americans with incentives to save for the long-term and manage life's financial risks.
Generally, employer-provided benefits are tax-deductible to the employer and non-taxable to the employee.
The current tax treatment of insurance, retirement annuities and employer-provided benefits encourages people to prepare and plan for the future and thus relieves pressure on government programs.
NAIFA POSITION: Americans need public policy that continues to encourage them to plan ahead, protect their families' financial security, and address unprecedented retirement challenges. With the strain on federal entitlement programs as well as on state and local programs, now is not the time to make it more difficult or more expensive for families to plan for the long-term. Current tax treatment of insurance products is sound public policy that provides efficient ways for Americans to manage financial risks and take responsibility for their financial security.
Life Insurers and West Virginia 2013
- The life insurance industry generates approximately 6,000 jobs in West Virginia, including 3,000 direct employees and 3,000 non-insurance jobs.
- 448 life insurers are licensed to do business in West Virginia and none are
domiciled in the state.
- West Virginia residents have $103 billion in total life insurance coverage.
- State residents own 963,000 individual life insurance policies, with coverage averaging $55,000 per policyholder.
- Group life insurance coverage amounts to $49 billion.
- Individual life insurance coverage purchased in 2011 in West Virginia totaled $5 billion.
- $2 billion was paid to West Virginia residents in the form of death benefits, matured endowments, policy dividends, surrender values, and other payments in 2011.
- Annuity benefits paid in the state in 2011 totaled $402 million.
- Life insurance companies invest approximately $21 billion in West Virginia's economy.
- About $18 billion of this investment is in stocks and bonds that help finance business development, job creation, and services in the state.
- Life insurers provide $321 million in mortgage loans on farm, residential, and commercial properties, and own $219,000 in real estate in West Virginia.
- Life insurers purchased $20 million of West Virginia-related Build America Bonds, or 22 percent of these bonds issued.
- 75 million American families depend on life insurance industry products to protect their financial and retirement security.
- The life insurance industry generates approximately 2.5 million jobs in the U.S., including direct employees, those who sell life insurance products, and non-insurance jobs supported by the industry.
- 20 percent of Americans' long-term savings is in life insurance and annuities. These savings are key to the protection and guarantees these products provide.
- In 2011, life insurers provided payments in excess of $545 billion, helping families guarantee long-term financial security now and in retirement.
- With $4.9 trillion-90 percent of the industry's total assets-invested in the U.S. economy, life insurers are one of the largest sources of investment capital in the nation.
- Life insurers are the largest single source of bond financing for American business, holding 18 percent of all U.S. corporate bonds.
Sources: ACLI calculations based on National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) 2011 annual statement data; U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, 2011 data; U.S. Census Bureau, 2011 data; U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2011 data; and U.S. Treasury Department, 2011 data.
Attention NAIFA-WV members!
Have you ever found yourself stuck and unable to bring forth that solution to a nagging problem or to better expand that great idea? If so, coaching might be of great value to you.
As part of securing my coaching accreditation in preparation for launching a small business/executive coaching and training practice later this year, I am offering complimentary, no obligation coaching sessions for the first 6 members
to respond on this offer. This session can cover virtually anything you desire: addressing a present challenge; working through potential block on an idea; or, simply looking at what you feel might need to be changed.
If you have interest or desire further insight, please respond to Herman Dixon at firstname.lastname@example.org
. Please provide your name, good number to call and an email address if the one transmitted is not valid for this potential interaction.
Thanks for your interest and I look forward to working with you. Think BIG! Herman Dixon, CLU, CLF, LTCP, LUTCF, RFC, MBA
Health Care Highlights
Hi, I'm Thom Stevens
, NAIFA - West Virginia Lobbyist and Editor of Health Care Highlights.
FOR OUR CURRENT ISSUE AND ARCHIVE.
We are celebrating the 25th anniversary of our unique health care publication and this year we welcome communications expert Andy Wessels
to our team. Our newsletter reaches more than 5,000 health professionals and health policy makers. Health Care Highlights is your best source for West Virginia Legislative and Governmental health information!
All hands are on deck to ensure that our business climate does not suffer from tax reform. Please ask yourself this question:
"How much would I be willing to spend to protect my career?"
Is the protection of your livelihood worth $5,000 a year to you? $500? $50?
NAIFA's Insurance and Financial Advisors Political Action Committee (IFAPAC) is a critical component of NAIFA's advocacy strategy. The ability to pool resources and contribute in a meaningful way to political campaigns on the state and national level is extremely crucial, as it helps to gain access to these legislators down the road. By law, your membership dues cannot be used to make political contributions - you must make a separate monetary donation to help make a difference.
Can you start today with a contribution of $10/month? For more information about IFAPAC and to contribute securely online, please click HERE
Mark Your Calendars for San Antonio!
NAIFA 2013 Career Conference & Annual Meeting
September 28 - October 1, 2013
San Antonio, Texas
for complete details and registration!
CONNECTIONS THAT COUNT!
For more information about the National Association of Insurance and
Financial Advisors - West Virginia, contact John Pauley, CLU, ChFC, CLTC
IT PAYS TO BELONG!