Have a podcast in 30 days

Without headaches or hassles

Have you inherited your parents’ money problems? Let me tell you a quick story:

The Dutch suffered through a famine towards the end of World War II after Nazis cut off their food and fuel. They had to survive on one loaf of bread and five potatoes per week.

Researchers studied what this did to children conceived during the famine.

Their results?

Across the board, these children were more prone to diseases, obesity, and financial woes for their entire lives.

Here’s why I bring it up:

Our lives aren’t as difficult as these children’s lives were. But the stress of being in their malnourished mothers’ wombs tormented them for their entire lives.

A recent study from Capital One CreditWise found that 73% of Americans rank their finances as their most significant source of stress. And the Dutch famine research proves that stress sabotages every aspect of your life and can steal your wealth.

In this episode, I’m revealing 7 ways to reduce your financial stress so you can live a happier, healthier, and wealthier life. Listen now!

Show Highlights Include:

  • The sneaky way stress burrows into your life to cause dire health and financial problems decades later (6:54)
  • The weird way Netflix pumping out more TV shows sucks your bank account dry (8:15)
  • Why an unhealthy relationship with money suffocates you with stress (9:14)
  • 7 scientifically proven ways to reduce your stress (and how reducing your stress makes you wealthier) (11:31)
  • Why regular exercise can be even more profitable than looking at your portfolio (12:23)

To schedule your free retirement tracking meeting, specifically for first responders, head to http://pensionattention.com/ or call us at 805-409-8150.

Read Full Transcript

Welcome to Pension Attention, the best show for first responders who want to take control of their finances.

After advising Los Angeles city firefighters for over 12 years, financial advisor, Brad Barrett now shares how you can grow your wealth, build your legacy and enjoy a life of freedom. And now here's your host, Brad Barrett. [00:19.9]

Brad: Welcome to Pension Attention, the show for you, first responders who want more out of their deferred compensation and pension plan. My goal with this podcast is to reach you where you are. At whatever stage in your career you are in, in order to provide my nearly 15 years of experience working with both active and retired service members on their investment and retirement planning. My team of fiduciary advisors here at ONE Fire and Police are dedicated to ensuring you not only take control of your finances and build the life you deserve. Before we get started today on this week's episode of Pension Attention and to find out more about myself or Toby Rodriguez or our advisory team here at ONE Fire and Police, you go to our website PensionAttention.com or give us a call. You can call us at (805) 409-8150. And as I do each and every week here on the Pension Attention podcast, I have to give a shout out to each of you listening here on a weekly basis, so I want to thank you. And again, if you haven't already downloaded or subscribed to the Pension Attention podcast, you can do so by going to PensionAttention.com, you can click on the media tab and there you can download and subscribe. You can also download the podcast on any platform where you would otherwise download podcasts, whether that's Spotify, Google podcasts, the apple app on your phone or SoundCloud. And again, leave us a message, let us know how we're doing. It's always good to get feedback. And if you like the show, tell somebody like, if you don't like the show, I guess tell someone you don't like. I like saying that because I want to give you the power to share it if you want. [01:54.3]

Cause today's episode of Pension Attention, I want to go through something that struck me as I was reading an article. It was actually on Jamesclear.com, I recommend that site. It's a really great article, James Clear is a great speaker and he was talking about stress management. And he wrote an article about surprising lessons learned from the children who survived a famine during the deadliest war in history. It was the middle of the terrible famine known as the Dutch Hunger Winter. By April of 1945, each person was limited to one loaf of bread and five potatoes for the entire week. World war II was nearing an end and at this time the allied forces were able to push the German army out of the Southern half of the Netherlands. Now, as the Nazis retreated, however, they destroyed docks and bridges. They flooded all the lines set up blockades in the Northern half of the country, which basically cut off, you can think about, if you look at the geography there, it cut off all the shipments of food and fuel. [02:54.8]

So, what little food that had been stockpiled and saved was nearly impossible to transport. So, starving and without options, many people, they literally ate tulip bulbs and sugar beets. Now among those struggling and the article went on to discuss this, that to survive this actually was a nine-year-old boy from Amsterdam and his name was Henkie Holvast. During the worst period of the famine. Henkie was one of the many children who they would literally, he would carry spoons with them wherever they went, just in case. Now, just imagine that for a second. I know a lot of you listening right now, we've, we've heard a lot of stories from World War- II and myself being kind of a war history buff I, I, I enjoy reading these kinds of articles, but it always brings you back to just thinking about that for a second. He's walking around with a spoon, literally these little boys walking around with a spoon for a just-in-case scenario. [03:48.7]

Now there's actually a photographer, a guy named Martinus Meijboom, major boom. He captured this iconic image of hanky during the Dutch Hunger Winter. So, two of hankies, younger siblings, they died during the famine, but somehow, he managed. And you can actually go and look it up. You go and look Henkie Holvast and you'll see him walking around with a spoon and you'll see the travesty that's going on here. Now to make matters worse, the winter had come early that year. Canals and waterways they'd frozen, obviously further restricting the food transport and gas and electricity were either unavailable or basically inoperable because of the war. So, the Holvast family, like again, many others throughout the Netherlands, they'd begun burning their furniture to stay warm. So, by 1945, specifically, April of that year, the situation it got worse. Approximately 20,000 Dutch had died from specifically malnutrition. In April 45, the Royal Air Force flew from Great Britain and coordinated a series of air drops known as Operation Manna, many of you heard of that one. [04:49.8]

In total, they dropped more than 6,600 tons of food in German-occupied territory. The Dutch responded with a simple message of “MANY THANKS” written in tulips on the countryside. Again, you can Google that image, it's one you've probably seen before, but it's just, it's fascinating. Now, where am I going with this? The impact of stress, we all have it. We all know what that can mean for us, but this article I was reading it had a lot to do with some of the stresses I worked through in my own life, but also what I work with many clients when it comes to money. One of the top stresses for many people nowadays is money. In fact, according to a 2021 Capital One Credit wise survey, 73% of Americans ranked their finances as the most significant source of stress in their life. Think about that for a second. [05:39.3]

Now I know we're not in World War II era right now. We're not having the travesties that are going on that maybe the Dutch were having during that time period. But it's real to us. The stress of money can be real. Now, as far as famines go, the Dutch Hunger Winter that I was mentioning was remarkably unique. Most famines occur in areas that suffer from overpopulation or severe crop failure or repeated periods of political instability. The Netherlands experienced none of these influences. Once the war ended and allied troops arrived, the Dutch quickly recovered to basically a normal diet. So, it really was unique. Now from a scientific perspective, the Dutch survivors were perfect for a study. The population consisted of a well-defined group of people who experienced one period of malnutrition at exactly the same time. So, in the 1990s, Dr. Tessa Roseboom, a medical faculty member from the University of Amsterdam began diving into the data about the children conceived and born during the Dutch Hunger Winter. Now thanks to meticulous record keeping kept by the Dutch rose boom was able to track thousands of children throughout their lives. [06:52.5]

Now, what she discovered was remarkable, and this is in the article from James Clear and what I wanted to bring up today, as it relates to our stresses today, when it comes to money. Now, according to Roseboom’s research, children who were conceived during the Dutch Hunger Winter have the following

Higher risk of cardiovascular disease as an adult (up to 2x greater risk)

Higher rates of obesity throughout life

Increased risk of high blood pressure as an adult

Higher rates of hospitalization as an adult (basically increased illness) and

Lower likelihood of being employed

Now, in other words, the children who were still in their mother's wombs during this brutal winter have poor health, six decades later. So, these studies were groundbreaking because they revealed just how deeply stress can burrow into our lives. Not only do they effect the stress and malnutrition impact at the time they are happening, when they occur, they can have a lingering effect on ourselves and our children for decades to come. And that's how I want to look at this when it comes to stress on our own lives. [07:54.2]

Nowadays, I think we all hear these stress management, whether it's meditation or different things. And, and look, the idea is to make sure that we understand the stress, but also look within to understand what is it that I'm stressed about? Is it not having enough? Is it having too many options? Is it not understanding what options I should choose from? I've said this before sometimes, but sometimes the decisions in life, whether it's money related or anything else related, quite frankly, it's easier when it's, Can We v/s Should We. Now what I mean by that is when it's, should we, it's usually choosing between two pretty good options, right? Oh, should we do this? Or should we do that? It's interesting when you think about it, because that comes from a society of abundance. When we have too many options, just take a Netflix account as an example. My kids, my five-year-old loves him to death, but I show him Netflix, he'll be scrolling through for 10 minutes, not sure, cause he doesn't know what show he wants to watch. That's overstimulation. He doesn't know, oh, should I watch this one or should I watch this one? OH…that one looks good, but this one looks maybe better. So, he ends up having paralysis by analysis. [09:01.4]

So, reducing stress, isn't something that only those in dire circumstances need to consider. It's something I think we all need to handle and understand and how it relates to money is quite important. Again, back to that study, when you look at, you know, 73% of Americans rank their finances as the most significant source of stress, that is a high majority. And I would, can see many of you listening right now have that. I know in our practice here at One Capital Management of the couple of thousand clients that we serve across the nation and in actually globally this point and the 4 billion or so that we're managing for clients, it's a big topic we discuss. You've heard me say this before, I'm a big believer in the behavioral financial traits of our clients. My job is a good advisor, any good advisors to understand where you are in your life, where you are in your financial picture. Yes, we need to put all the numbers together, but we also want to say, what is your relationship to money? One of the things that we do with clients behind the scenes and most don't know that. So, if you're a client right now and listening, we actually internally take a kind of a on our notes on our discovery meeting, our very first meeting with you. We'll actually go through what we call a mind map. And it's really essentially to, for us as advisors, to understand where you are to my point earlier around what are your interests? What are your hobbies? What are your relationships? What are your values? These are all really important things that help design the plan for you, but also for us as relational aspects is making sure that how do we can manage the relationship to understand where your values lie? What are your interests in, what are your ultimate goals that we've either designed together or you have for your money, maybe for your kids and they can be anything from, I want to have my house paid off to I want to put my kid through college to I'd like to have some cash to be able to travel. [10:52.8]

Do you know how much you should be contributing to your deferred compensation plan? Are you getting the most out of your current investment options? Looking at entering or about to exit the DROP program? Go to www.pensionattention.com to find out how we can help. [11:08.5]

The idea with financial stress and statistics. I don't want to necessarily say, okay, everyone's kind of blanketed into this statistic approach, but there are very interesting dynamics when it comes to life lessons learned from something as dramatic as a World War II experience and specifically this Dutch Hunger, Winter, which not a lot of people have read about when it comes to World War II but there's actually seven scientifically proven ways to reduce stress. And I want to talk about a few of them. Now it may seem like this is a Pension Attention gone awry podcast week, but I promise you, these actually have a lot to do with when you're thinking about something as stressful as money, whether it's a financial decision or it's, we're getting to retirement or it's investment related, especially nowadays with the news coming out saying, there's inflation this and there's going to be higher taxes here, that's all out there. Finding a good manager and a good advisor to kind of help you navigate those waters is really paramount and important. But there's also some ways you can help yourself with these stresses that has to do with not only money, but also with a lot of other things within your life. Some of them may be obvious, but I want to go through them anyways, because they are actually scientifically proven. [12:23.4]

Number one, exercise. Okay. I can't tell how many times exercise has saved my sanity personally. Now, for any of you who know me, I'm a big workout nut. I like to be in the water a lot. So, I'm a big swimmer, a big surfer, that's kinda my thing. But I also like to push weights around. It kind of came from my teenage years of when I was playing hockey and just pushing weights around were really therapeutic for me. And there are many studies linking exercise to reduce stress levels. So, my method of choice is strength training and again, I like to be more active and dynamic, but all types of exercise are useful. For example, one of these we're going to go into next, which is kind of the newer age thing. Yoga is an exercise, but meditation or deep breathing is number two. [13:08.4]

So yes, meditation can reduce stress. If I'm being honest, I have tried it and I'm not very successful at it. Now I will say this. There is something to be said about Eastern Meditation, where you tend to quiet the mind kind of thing Versus for me, if I'm being honest, biblical meditation is different. That's where you fill your mind with something from such as the Bible that has a lot to do with my life and hopefully a lot of your lives. But I think there's also different types of meditation. Before you try to escape yourself a meditation to say, oh, I can't clear my mind. My mind just races. How do I meditate? Right. It's interesting. Kind of put those two things together. Now the third thing is music. I love this one. [13:52.2]

Listening to music can actually trigger the release of stress reducing chemicals in your body, which is I think pretty awesome. My go-to playlist is anything from Zeplin. Zeplin one, two, all the way up to Houses of the holy. Coda was a little suspect, but you get my drift big rock and roll fan. Usually in all of these kind of guy, but find your own music that actually again, can scientifically trigger the release of stress, reducing chemicals, sleep. Okay. Number four is sleep never feeling stressed, a nap or a solid eight or nine hours of sleep can really help. Now I know I'm speaking to many first responders here. I know this is something I've talked about in stations. I know in our own family; we've talked about it because sleep is the one thing that gets disrupted when you are literally saving our community 15 days a month. Okay. But it is important to be able to take stock in your sleep work through those days when you can, clear some schedule, try not to over commit to things because it does matter. [14:51.9]

The fifth thing is laughter. Everything is better when you laugh, including your stress levels. You want to know why I did a financial podcast. I was trying to make it a little bit lighter than just some hearing some stockbroker kind of guy be like, well, the index was this today and the inflation was going to be this today. Like no one wants to listen to that it. Have some fun, laugh a little. All right. Number six, stand up straight. Sound like my grandfather right now. I remember as a kid stand up straight boy, I loved him. He's old military kind of guy still talking today, 93 years old. He literally told me the saying a rolling stone carries no Moss. The guy's still mowing his lawn. Love him to death. Paul John, if you're listening, love you. Stand up straight though. Surprisingly research from Harvard has revealed that your body language can impact the amount of testosterone and cortisol in your bloodstream. Pretty interesting. Right? So, stand up straight is a way to reduce stress. [15:46.9]

Now the seventh and final thing that was scientifically proven to reduce stress is art. Now don't confuse creating art with being artistic. What we are really talking about here is creating something rather than sitting around and passively consuming. I've actually said this a lot before where it doesn't matter what it is you're doing, but I would actually rather see someone create than consume. So instead of bingeing on something, do something. We've heard the expression, it's more of an art than a science. I think it's important when you look at the seventh item here, reducing stress is find something you want to do and enjoy it. Like for my father-in-law. I am using him as an example, he'll go in the garage and tinker around whether it's on a dirt bike or building something that's art to him. So, I'm not talking about becoming Pablo Picasso here. I'm just talking about finding your outlet, creating something, being creative. That's important. [16:43.9]

So, these seven things that I just mentioned, exercise meditation or deep breathing music sleep, laughter stand up straight and art. It's pretty interesting. Those are seven scientifically proven ways to reduce stress. Now notice that stress, whether you are from the Dutch Hunger era, which I don't think any of you listening right now are, or have family members or know people who were, that's an interesting stress marker, but it also has to do with stress in general. So, it has to do with money stress, which is really what we're talking about today and what I always talk about when it comes to Pension Attention, but one source of stress usually has multiple outlets. So, if you're stressed about money, there's usually something else going on. We're either overspending in certain areas, we have a spending problem, maybe. We have a savings problem potentially. So, some of our own actions actually increase our stress. [17:40.9]

So again, taking a look inward, maybe using some of these seven things to curtail some of those things, but one of the best ways to do it is also find that counselor, find that advisor, if you haven't done so already, you can also reach out to us, we're here to do that, to help reduce the stress of the questions that the anxieties, I guess, around a lot of what you guys have, especially as you get closer to retirement. Do I have enough to retire? What does my pension look like now versus if I waited a year or two? That whole chasing the carrot analogy, is it better for me to drop or just continue in getting a higher pension? Do I buy back time? I mean, there's countless questions that can cause stress and anxiety when it comes to just the retirement aspect, let alone, when you're active, right? How much should I contribute to my deferred comp plan? Something we talked about on an episode here on Pension Attention. So, I contribute to the tax defer or the Roth? Am I contributing too much or too little? What's it going to look like if I contribute this amount right now in 5 or 10 years, or when I retire? If you have an answer to any of those questions or if those questions are being asked and it's causing you stress, do a couple things. [18:48.9]

One from today's episode, maybe try one of those seven things. I prefer exercise and music. In fact, I do them together kind of crazy, but then also reach out to someone to be able to set this plan, to help you answer to those specific questions, cause those questions, the example I just gave can be answered. And that's important. So, reach out and find that person you can build in to make sure that the stress doesn't get too much. Cause one of the things that I've seen happen is we get into a category where reaching out to an advisor, it's almost like pulling teeth. It's uncomfortable. And I said this before, it's almost like a financial undressing, if you will. It's almost kind of like this weird doctor's visit. I don't want it to be that way, that’s why I wanted to communicate each week on some topics, everything from again, like I said, how much to contribute to a deferred comp plan all the way down to managing your stress level, because all of it is intertwined when it comes to your investing, comes to your retirement plan, your deferred comp plan comes to all those questions that you could ask or you're thinking about. [19:48.6]

So, if you are thinking about that and it is causing some level of, I don't know, which then evolves into some stress or anxiety, reach out, you can give us a call at (805) 409-8150. You can also go on our website at PensionAttention.com and set some time with myself, Toby Rodriguez my advisor partner, or any one of our staff here, we're here to help. And we're here to help you reduce those stresses when it comes to your deferred comp plan. And again, if any of those seven things work for you, let us know, it's great. A lot of those aren't items that we haven't heard before, but it was just interesting that list that I was reading again from Jamesclear.com was very cool because I thought it was just seven. Again, I'm a somewhat of a nerd. It was scientifically proven, not just something you hear from a friend like, oh, you should do this. Or, you know, rub CBD on that. You know, everything we hear about nowadays, these are scientifically proven methods to look at. Now with that, there are questions that come around when it comes to money. And again, those are questions that can be answered and reach out (805) 409-8150 or again, you go on our website at PensionAttention.com. [20:55.4]

Thank you for tuning into our episode of pension attention this week before acting on anything discussed today, remember speak with a financial advisor near you about your specific situation or again, if you'd like our help, you can visit us at PensionAttention.com or give us a call (805) 409-8150. Have you asked yourself recently, do I have too much cash? Well tune in next week to Pension Attention, we're going to be going through that exact question. I'm looking forward to it until then stay safe. [21:24.6]

The information in this podcast is educational and general in nature and does not take into consideration the listeners personal circumstances. Therefore, it is not intended to be a substitute for specific individualized, financial, legal, or tax advice.

To determine which strategies or investments may be suitable for you consult the appropriate qualified professional prior to making a final decision. [21:47.8]

Have a podcast in 30 days

Without headaches or hassles


Copyright Marketing 2.0 16877 E.Colonial Dr #203 Orlando, FL 32820