Gratitude in a Challenging Year

    3 minutes
    Ways to improve the way we manage money with an attitude of gratitude.
    Gratitude makes us more aware of the wonder and hope in our lives. Being grateful also may reduce stress, improve health, strengthen relationships and help us manage our money. After interviewing thousands of people about their experiences with gratitude, BreneĢ Brown, PhD, says her research reveals gratitude promotes a kindness toward others and self, stating gratitude is “…gracefully strung together by trust, inspiration and faith.” So, how does this tie into better finances? A gratitude mindset can encourage generosity, improve relationships with others, cultivate both physical and financial health, and lead to greater patience in spending decisions.


    Gratitude builds patience in spending
    An attitude of gratitude can foster patience. And that helps us fight impulse and instant gratification in our spending decisions. A recent study indicates, feelings of gratitude can help us differentiate “feelings of happiness” from “buying more stuff."

    For example, say you are thinking about swiping your credit card to buy something you’d like right now. An attitude of gratitude leaves you more fulfilled in life – helping you to pause and perhaps decide this purchase can wait. By feeling grateful you’re already coming out ahead financially!
    • You saved money you may have normally put on a credit card.
    • You saved money on any interest accrued if the balance was carried over month-to-month.
    • You saved your future self from financial stress by not buying something you may not have even needed.

    Gratitude improves health
    As our money mindset shifts, a spirit of gratitude helps to cultivate health: financially, physically and in our relationships leading to more satisfaction with life.

    With thousands interviewed on their gratitude experiences; research reveals those who practice gratitude in their life experience fewer symptoms of physical illness, improved quality of sleep and increased likelihood to help others.

    Feeling appreciated and expressing appreciation are hallmarks of strong relationships and research suggests practicing gratitude may act as a kind of “booster-shot” for our relationships. Feelings of gratitude come in two stages:

    1. An affirmation of goodness or ‘good things’ in one’s life
    2. The recognition that the sources of this goodness lie at least partly outside the self
    Some psychologists have likened gratitude to other emotions which bring us closer to people such as trust. People often times reward themselves with spending habits and purchases because they don’t feel appreciated elsewhere in their lives. Think about someone who may have helped you financially through good advice or by being there at the right time. Then consider taking the time to thank them somehow. A note can let them know what they’ve meant to you.

    We’re grateful for you
    At Credit Human, we are incredibly grateful for you and your membership. Please consider stopping by your neighborhood Financial Health Center anytime and we can begin helping you build the financial slack you need to stress less.