The relationship between money and happiness has always been and remains a topic of intense debate. One of the first debates I had in school was “Does money make you happy?” The answer to that question was a big fat “No”, primarily because so many wealthy people suffer from anxiety and depression.
Conversely, whilst many poor people appear content and happy with their lives, the link between financial stress; i.e. not having enough money and psychological problems is well established. Research has shown that financial stress can lead to further problems such as lack of sleep and relationship conflict and breakdown. So could working with a financial adviser make you happier?
Setting and achieving goals makes you happier
Goals are essential to a sense of psychological well-being and the setting and achieving of goals are at the heart of financial advice. Whether it be planning for retirement, buying your dream home or educating one’s children, goals are an expression of our future and help set the purpose for life’s journey as well as its direction.
Your financial adviser could help you set and plan to achieve your goals, which could give you a greater sense of control, competence and capability, a happy place, surely.
Talking about it makes you happier
Many families don’t like talking about money. Some believe talking about it makes it a bit too real. Others may feel embarrassed about financial mistakes they may have made or worry that they may not be doing as well as others. This can lead to money being a taboo subject; and that’s a very unhealthy relationship to have with money.
If you recognise yourself here, it may be time to take a new look at why you feel the way you do. Speaking to a financial adviser would be a good start. For one, they wouldn’t judge you, but would listen and offer guidance on what to do going forward. And it may not all be as bad as you think!
Getting good advice makes you happier
You wouldn’t know it – given the media’s laser like focus on the negative. But the financial advice profession is apparently a verifiable happiness machine. That’s right; those who have received financial advice are happier than those who haven’t.
Studies have shown that receiving financial advice improves mental health, well-being, creates peace of mind and improves family relationships. There are also undoubted tangible benefits. Those who receive financial advice generally pay less tax, have less bad debt, generate greater lifetime income and earn greater returns on their investments.
It’s time to be happy
Several studies support the idea that the main benefits derived from financial advice are psychological, rather than financial. Life is complicated enough and a financial adviser can bring sense of certainty in an uncertain world. They can also be someone to bounce ideas off and bring families together to talk about that awful taboo subject that is money.
Whist financial advisers are not expected to be fully trained mental health experts, the advice process does have many therapeutic benefits. For most clients, their adviser is a mentor, counsellor and mediator supporting them as they live out the drama of day-to-day life. It’s time to get happy. Speak to your financial adviser!