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Thankful for You, Health and Wealth

It’s hard to believe we have year-end in our sights. The crisp air and shorter days welcome a season many look forward to all year long.

Thanksgiving has always held special meaning for our team. And in a year filled with so many challenges in our communities, country, and worldwide, that meaning is doubly important.

The holiday reminds us to acknowledge all the blessings in our lives. Which, for our team, includes being able to work with you and your family. We are so grateful for the trust you’ve placed in us, for your loyalty, and for your willingness to share your challenges, successes, and lifetime goals.

This time of year can also be a stressful time full of demands to cook, decorate, and spend money. Sometimes the stresses crowd out the fun, so we have to remember to take time to be thankful and practice gratitude for our blessings. And, it turns out that feeling thankful can have a tremendously positive impact on your health, happiness, and even financial wellness.

The good news? Research has found that as we age, gratitude and other positive feelings come more easily. Could that explain why we feel more happiness as we age?

The Importance of being Thankful and Practicing Gratitude

Rituals of thanksgiving around the world are ancient, and all of them celebrate our resilience and joy as we overcome life’s obstacles. Science now shows us why being thankful and practicing gratitude are so good for us.

Feeling Grateful Improves Your Health

The fact that our ability to feel grateful increases as we age is great news because feeling grateful actually improves your overall health and well-being.

Dr. Glenn Fox, the Head of Program Design, Strategy, and Outreach at the USC Performance Science Institute, has done extensive research on the topic of gratitude and your health. He has found that higher levels of gratitude generally predict that someone has:

  • Less anxiety and depression
  • More optimism
  • More social connected-ness
  • Less anger
  • Better sleep patterns
  • Lower blood pressure

Dr. Fox’s research showed that practicing gratitude actually re-wires your brain to reduce the negative health impacts of bad news and improve the health effects associated with good news.

Giving Thanks Makes You Better with Money

Researchers from Northeastern University, the University of California, Riverside, and Harvard Kennedy School conducted a study that found “Feelings of gratitude automatically reduce financial impatience.”

The implications of the finding are enormous. “Showing that emotion can foster self-control and discovering a way to reduce impatience with a simple gratitude exercise opens up tremendous possibilities for reducing a wide range of societal ills from impulse buying and insufficient saving to obesity and smoking,” according to Assistant Professor Ye Li from the University of California, Riverside School of Business Administration.

How does an act of gratitude prompt us to save our money and delay instant gratification? The researchers hypothesize that it may be because feeling thankful provides the fulfillment that otherwise we’d seek in bad behaviors, like “retail therapy.” They also speculate gratitude makes us feel like we need to “pay back” in the future.

Be Thankful, Healthy and Wealthy!

Whatever your personal gratitude rituals have been in the past, long standing traditions or ones uniquely yours, now you have two new reasons to continue them and add to your thanks. During this busy season, we hope you create wonderful memories that you’ll reflect upon often. And we want to hear all about it when we next speak.

M & A Consulting Group, LLC, doing business as CAM Investor Solutions is an SEC registered investment adviser. As a fee-only firm, we do not receive commissions nor sell any insurance products. We provide financial planning and investment information that we believe to be useful and accurate. However, there cannot be any guarantees. 

This blog has been provided solely for informational purposes and does not represent investment advice or provide an opinion regarding fairness of any transaction. It does not constitute an offer, solicitation or a recommendation to buy or sell any particular security or instrument or to adopt any investment strategy. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Diversification does not eliminate the risk of market loss. Tax planning and investment illustrations are provided for educational purposes and should not be considered tax advice or recommendations. Investors should seek additional advice from their financial advisor or tax professional.

As Director of Client Communications, Alyssa engages with all of the firm’s clients to better their experience and make a positive impact on their lives. As an Associate Wealth Advisor and member of the Investment Committee she specializes in working with women, mid-career professionals and families. As an advisor that embodies all these characteristics herself, she is able to easily connect with her clients and their lives.