Last fall, I passed my exams for the certified financial planner designation. This month, I was approved to start using those letters behind my name.

For most of you, this will not seem like a big deal. In truth, it probably isn’t. It’s one of many financial acronyms that people in the finance industry carry around.

But I’m quite proud of it.

I’m proud of it because it was not easy for me. Passing those exams and coursework was difficult. I know I’m not supposed to say that. I’m supposed to pretend like it was easy. But it wasn’t, and I won’t… and I think that’s an important thing to say.

I continually find myself needing to translate the language of finance into something I can more readily understand. It’s why I write in metaphors and indirect language so often. That’s not for other people, it’s for me.

Being good at spreadsheets and reading the tax code is not why I’m a good financial coach and planner. It’s a thing I have learned (and am continuing to learn) so that I can become a better coach and planner.

The same is true for all of you.

If you don’t feel at home in financial language, that’s okay. You’re not alone. Remember that the real complexity of figuring out your money is in the big questions of ‘what do I want to do’ and ‘how do I decide what’s most important’. Remember that you can learn things that don’t come naturally to you.

… and remember that once you do, it will feel all the more satisfying.