Investing in Happiness: A Mel Robbins Podcast Review

by | May 3, 2024 | Entrepreneurs, Financial Planning, Smart Finances, Women and Finance

I just listened to a podcast that really resonated with me, and I thought it might resonate with you as well. I don’t even listen to many podcasts, I think because I’m a visual learner, and my ‘self-help’ learning is done with books. Regardless, this one caught my attention. You need to check out The Mel Robbins Podcast, episode 161 with Dr. Robert Waldinger, “What Makes a Good Life? Lessons from the Longest Study on Happiness.” There are SO many good nuggets in there about happiness and relationships and money!

Mel’s guest, Dr. Robert Waldinger, is a Harvard professor and the Director of the 86-year-long study on happiness. The study began in 1938 with notable original participants, John F. Kennedy and the Boston Strangler! The biggest takeaway from the study is that “people who live the longest, stay the healthiest, and are the happiest, are the people who have more relationships with other people and warmer relationships with other people.” Stress and loneliness are the enemies of happiness. 

So, what about money?

How does money fit in? It was a fascinating discussion, and the answer is: it’s complicated. Having our basic needs met is vital. Everyone’s definition of ‘basic needs’ is different, though. Generally, it’s food and shelter. Is it peanut butter and jelly or Michelin star cuisine? Is it an inner-city apartment or a 10,000-sq ft beach house? Without these basic needs being covered, whatever each individual’s definition, it is that stress that blocks happiness.

Stress negatively affects your physical and mental health. So, above and beyond the basic needs, does money bring happiness? Oftentimes, with money and wealth comes debt, complicated financial decisions, and, you guessed it, stress. Dr. Waldinger said that money is a tool that can be used to find happiness, but it is not a happiness solution. 

The mission at BayView Financial Planning (BFP) is to empower women to invest in their own future financial security through the tides of life. You see what I did with the ocean metaphor there, right? Well, Dr. Waldinger shared his own ocean metaphor. He quoted John Kabat-Zinn, “you can’t stop the waves, but you can learn how to surf.” Isn’t that appropriate for what I’m doing at BFP? I’m your surfing instructor! I’m more of a paddleboarder myself, but I love this quote!

At the conclusion of the podcast, Dr. Waldinger summarized his thoughts with this: “invest in the people who you care about and invest in the things you care about, and if you keep your eye on those things, those are the most likely to make you feel like your life is good.” It’s all about relationships, using money as a tool to take care of those relationships, fostering those relationships through experiences, and minimizing stress.

THIS IS WHAT I’M DOING AT BAYVIEW FINANCIAL PLANNING! I’m relationship focused, rather than focused on transactions and performance. I want to build a relationship with you so that you can understand and trust that you can ride the waves of the market, of life’s transitions, and find your own good life. 

If you are ready to join me on this journey, schedule a complimentary call today!