What I’m Grateful for This Holiday Season

Reflecting on 2023

On a personal level, 2023 was especially challenging for me. I suffered the loss of three dear family members: my dad, my stepfather-in-law, and my 33-year-old nephew. The silver lining to these setbacks is that I gained a clearer vision of the importance of counting the blessings in my life. 

The start of a new year is the perfect time for me to share my thoughts and feelings with all of you. Here are the ways in which I feel truly blessed.


I’m a glass-half-full type of person. The family losses I endured last year remind me that I had the luxury of experiencing those relationships in the first place. For many years, I enjoyed genuine connections, grounded in purpose and joy, with family members who are no longer with us. I’ll never forget that. 

Additionally, my grown children (a huge source of love and pride) are adulting well, enjoying the fruitful lives they’ve built for themselves as a result of their own unique abilities.

I also have a husband with whom I can share my love for giving back. We both agree that opening our home to others in need is a priority. We’ve welcomed many people over the years—including someone staying with us right now! 

It’s true that families can be challenging at times, but always having a consistent network of loved ones to rely on is absolutely priceless.

Personal Growth

Believe it or not, middle age has benefits. Who knew? Now comfortable in my own skin, much to my delight, I’ve noticed that I’m able to manage situations that would have felt nerve-racking (to say the least) in my youth.

I can now enjoy people by really listening to who they are and what’s important to them. I’m much more equipped to know people on a deeper level and truly understand what it would be like to walk in their shoes.

Another unexpected benefit of middle age: I feel like I have a larger appreciation of the brevity of life. And along with that appreciation comes a full understanding of the importance of living each and every day as if it were my last.


Have you noticed that, collectively, the world seems to be gaining an awareness of our connectedness?

I’m not just talking about environmental concerns, but things like breathing, being in tune with your body, getting outside, moving, meditating, and generally surrounding yourself with peaceful things like animals and laughter. I love it all.

Another community attribute I’m grateful for is my church. It’s situated close to where I live, aligns with my beliefs, and—best of all—within walking distance of my house. Serendipity? Maybe. Whatever the reason, I’m super grateful.

Look Forward With Gratitude

At Deerfield Financial Advisors, we firmly believe planning is more effective when it’s rooted in a spirit of purpose. When building their financial road map, we encourage clients to focus on what’s most important to them, whether that be family, careers, or making an impact in their community. To that end, our unique three-step process (developed after decades in financial planning) helps our clients use their wealth to create more of what’s worthwhile in their lives. 

To learn more about how to live your WealthwhileSM, call (317) 469-2455 or email ssteel@t8j.01f.mywebsitetransfer.com.

About Susie

Susie Steel is COO, Wealth Manager, and Senior Shareholder at Deerfield Financial Advisors, a fee-only financial services and wealth management firm with offices in Indianapolis and Chicago. With over three decades of experience in financial planning, Susie’s approach has always been rooted in a spirit of service, treating each client as an extension of her own family. She simplifies the complex for clients, with the goal of creating a calm, trusting, and nurturing environment. Her unwavering commitment to the principle of “To whom much is given, much will be required” serves as the driving force behind her dedication, diligence, and empathy.

Susie obtained a business management degree from Ball State University, holds the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ designation, and held the Accredited Estate Planner (AEP®) designation from the National Association of Estate Planners & Councils (NAEPC) from 2013 to 2018. Susie is actively involved with an extensive list of professional organizations, including NAPFA (The National Association of Personal Financial Advisors), a premier association of fee-only financial advisors, and has served on multiple boards, committees, and councils. Her consistent recognition as one of Indianapolis Monthly’s “Five Star Wealth Managers” for the past decade attests to her outstanding accomplishments (2009-2023).

Outside the professional realm, Susie gives back to her community through her involvement in the Financial Center First Credit Union (FCFCU) to the Indianapolis Children’s Museum Planned Giving Council and Kiwanis Club of Northwest Indianapolis to Junior Achievement. She mentors women through the CFP® Board’s “WIN-to-WIN” program, embodies the spirit of Rotary Club of Carmel, advocates for Indiana Canine Assistant Network (ICAN), and actively serves on the board of the Mary Rigg Neighborhood Center (MRNC).
Susie and her husband, Kevin, reside in Carmel, Indiana, where they raised their three children. Outside the office, her focus centers around family, spirituality, and fostering meaningful connections. Embracing the concept of the body as a temple, her personal growth is nurtured through practices like strength training, yoga, and meditation. In her leisure time, she enjoys strolls with her dog, Lulu, and indulges in movies, podcasts, books, and the theater. To learn more about Susie, connect with her on LinkedIn.


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