The American Dream

First Financial Coaching's experiential approach for living and leaving a legacy

The American Dream is alive and well. But it isn’t defined by status or material possession or even a number in a bank account. 

“For us, it’s dwelling in a world where you’re driven by your purpose and you’re able to create experiences with your family, pursue a job you want and live in freedom, fulfillment and love and have that now rather than one day when you can afford it,” says Jonathan Furest, financial coach at First Financial Coaching in Mount Clemens. 

“Helping families isn’t a job, it’s a calling,” adds President Jeffrey Furest. “Not too many financial advisors can say they look forward to helping people. My father Bill, started our company in 1977, I joined the firm in 1984 and we’ve always prided ourselves on taking our time guiding our clients in learning about money and investing, especially the value of their money and their purpose for money, before we let anyone invest.”

The company decisively steers clients away from investment decisions and strategies that aren’t in their best interest. It’s a rare trait that sets them apart from other advisors, as is introducing the academics and scientific side of investing, rather than using economic and political forecasts and market timing.  

“There are behavioral aspects around money that most investors don’t consider. That’s where the power of coaching comes in,” says Vice President Michael Sarcheck. “We look at two distinct worlds that exist: One that uses predicting the future with gambling and stock picking and one that’s grounded in 50-plus years of Nobel Prize-winning principles. We then give people an opportunity to make a choice.” 

For three decades, First Financial Coaching has educated and coached thousands of families to understand that money is not a measure of success, but rather a tool available to achieve their goals and dreams. Even more remarkable is the experiential learning the firm provides through the American Dream Experience, a free, two-day seminar held both virtually and in person around the country, as well as Canada and Puerto Rico. 

“The purpose of the experience is really to help investors and families get a clear picture of what money means to them and give them an opportunity to create a powerful relationship with it,” says Michael. “The entire process is not about a sale; it’s about helping them discover how they can be more prudent and give them good insight into how portfolios are really built. We’re actually looking at it from the inside.”  

“It seems like a lot of investors don’t have a true choice – there’s too much information available, investors get overwhelmed, and they simply follow what their parents, friends or social media says,” adds Jonathan. “For the first time, investors have an opportunity to make an informed choice about investing, and not one based on what someone else predicts, but on science, empirically tested data, and discovery.” 

Saving, investment and wealth management is where many exert time and energy, focused on accumulating money and relying on the unstable conditions of the market. It’s a struggle First Financial Coaching sees too often, along with viewing money as a source of survival. The American Dream Experience shifts participants’ mindsets to focus on the life they want to live today. 

“It gives them opportunities and tools to pull their purpose out, make it real and bring it to life,” Michael says. “Purpose is powerful, purpose provides direction …  it can create new meaning.”

“It provides clarity for why they’re working for money in the first place – to be a contribution to the community, to live a loving and adventurous life, to be of service to the world. It’s bigger than itself,” says Jonathan.  

During the event, attendees hear from speakers and meet in groups. 

“Often what is disclosed in the group setting makes the biggest difference,” Jonathan notes. “When someone shares a discovery, or they completed an assignment and then transitioned, or there is something they’re grappling with … it’s very valuable.”

Each American Dream Experience not only benefits attendees, it also reminds the financial coaches of why they continue to do what they do.

For Michael, “It makes you feel proud that you’re really making a difference for families and helping them live their purpose. It brings you hope. There is this newly created future they didn’t know they had.”

“It’s very fulfilling to see the changes they make and the accomplishments they reach that they never thought were possible. It’s quite incredible,” Jeffrey says.

“Some people have seen that for their entire life, money was a certain way, and in two days, that perspective can be thrown away and they can be empowered around money and investing going forward,” adds Jonathan. “It’s a shame this isn’t the focus of the entire investment industry.”


"The American Dream gives them opportunities and tools to pull their purpose out, make it real and bring it to life."

“The purpose of the experience is really to help investors and families get a clear picture of what money means to them and give them an opportunity to create a powerful relationship with it." 

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