Can Financial Security Contribute to Long-Term Happiness?

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Published by Kerry Meath-Sinkin

The other night (while folding laundry) I was listening to a podcast with Dan Buettner. Dan Buettner is well known for his work studying people and cultures around the world. He identifies the common factors that help people live long and healthy lives.  More recently he has shifted his research to focus on what helps people live not only long and healthy lives, but also happy lives. Not surprisingly, he found that financial security plays an important role in long term happiness.

“Financial security is huge. It really does deliver more happiness over time than most anything that money can be spent on—after your needs are taken care of and you maybe treat yourself occasionally. If you have money left over, you’re much better paying down your mortgage or buying insurance or signing up for an automatic savings plan than you are buying a new gadget or new pair of shoes…Financial security delivers more happiness over time than almost anything money can be spent on.”

~Dan Buettner, author of The Blue Zones of Happiness: Lessons From the World’s Happiest People.

This stuck out to me because I frequently find myself thinking about one’s relationship with money, and how that can make people’s lives better.  What surprised me is that financial security was among the most important factors in contributing to long-term happiness.

My Dad and I sit across from clients everyday who want to answer the question “Will I be okay in retirement? Do I have the confidence to live the life I want to live?”  This podcast was yet another confirmation for me that financial security can play an important role in bringing happiness to people’s lives.

A big part of this blog is the intersection of happiness and abundance.  Financial security can be part of a bridge from anxiety and constriction to abundance and greater happiness. It makes sense, right?  If you don’t feel safe in the world, how much harder is it to have an open heart, or feel free to do things that make you happy? Ok… sorry I just really feel passionate about this because I know how much even a simple plan can help people start to build the bridge of financial security.

What that plan looks like can vary, but it often involves the same basic building blocks such as developing a debt payment plan, automating retirement plan savings, covering your risks, developing a will (or more robust estate plan), and just knowing that you have a plan. It helps you understand that with the right planning you can be okay in the future. This in turn allows you to feel more secure in your life, which, as Dan Buettner has found, contributes to your long-term happiness.

Love and blessings,


Kerry Meath-Sinkin is a registered investment advisor and financial planner based in Minneapolis. She graduated with honors from Brown, and works with clients not only in the Twin Cities, but nationwide. Kerry believes in a holistic approach to finance.  She works with her clients to develop a practical plan with their finances, while also working on their inner relationship with money. Together, these aspects allow clients to feel healthy, abundant, and free. Kerry also has a passion for healthy living, is a certified Ayurvedic practitioner, and public health educator. Click here to learn more about Kerry.


Photo by Huyen Nguyen on Unsplash

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