How Gratitude Can Help Your Financial Life | Smart Change: Personal Finance


Gratitude can help couples navigate money conflicts

Gratitude can help couples weather financial conflicts, a 2015 study by researchers at the University of Georgia found.

Feeling appreciated and expressing appreciation are hallmarks of strong partnerships, says Ed Coambs, a certified financial planner and couples therapist in Charlotte, North Carolina.

“In a flourishing, healthy relationship, gratitude flows naturally and pretty easily,” Coambs says. “In a functioning relationship, it’s more intermittent, a little less consistent. In a dysfunctional relationship, it’s absent.”

Lurtz believes many couples’ disputes over money stem from partners not feeling appreciated. For example, one partner may reward themselves with purchases because they don’t feel adequately rewarded elsewhere in their lives. Meanwhile, the other partner may feel underappreciated for their efforts to save money and look after the couples’ future.

The future-focused spouse isn’t “right” and the present-focused one isn’t “wrong.” Financial planning is all about finding a balance between the present and the future. Expressing gratitude for each other can help couples strengthen their bonds and cultivate feelings of well-being so they can find that balance, Lurtz says.