As the scope of wellness has extended to mindfulness, gut health, and body image in recent years, another sea change is happening: This time, with your money. In other words, you may have noticed that finances have become a main topic of conversation at brunch with your best friends.
But why is this happening? Perhaps because we’re finally waking up to the fact that financial wellness is an important part of the happiness equation. In a recent survey, 87 percent of American respondents said nothing makes them happier or more confident than healthy finances.
Achieving money-related balance isn’t necessarily about a set dollar amount or your ability to pay for something expensive without flinching. It can be as simple as chatting about kickstarting your travel fund or whether or not your company offers a 401(k) match.
“Financial wellness is about developing a healthy relationship with money—to include feeling a sense of control over short-term financial obligations while also successfully working toward moderate and longer term goals,” says Dena Roten, Managing Director and Head of Citi® US Branch Network. “Americans demonstrate an increasing desire for financial independence. We see a lower likelihood of debt (especially among millennials) and a stronger appetite for online budgeting tools.”
“Financial independence affords us the opportunity to live the way that we want.”
So why are terms like “high-yield savings” and “compound interest” taking over your wellness lexicon? Shanna Tyler, a life coach who works with entrepreneurial women, posits that healthy pleasures and personal finances are inescapably intertwined. Ever pay $45 for a boutique spin class or $7 for collagen-boosted coffee? Exactly.
And while those items aren’t necessary to living a fulfilled life, an occasional splurge can add mileage to your overall positivity meter. “Financial independence affords us the opportunity to live the way that we want,” says Tyler.
You can also give credit to social media. Turns out, the same wellness influencers we’re following for golden milk recipes are inspiring us to chase financial autonomy with a constant, open dialogue about money and the freedom it affords. “I’ve seen an increase of financial podcasts run by women, social-media posts by women sharing their money stories, and honest conversations at the table amongst women on salaries, rates, and more,” Tyler says. “It’s so empowering.”