I know my age will show when I write about this but I am sure many will still recall the disco song “I Will Survive” as sung by Gloria Gaynor.
Right after the People Power revolution of 1986, the comedy show Bubble Gang made light of that shining moment in the country’s history by depicting rich socialites joining the rallies. As the skit went, one socialite was asked how she felt when she joined the rallies. The socialite emotionally replied by paraphrasing that famous first line of Gloria Gaynor’s song, “At first I was afraid; then I was petrified.”
Emotions can wreak havoc in our finances, whether it is in cash, debt, risk or wealth management. For example, in cases of death of the family’s breadwinner, those left behind may say that the loss will be so tremendous that they will feel the loss in the same level of intensity forever. And those left behind may say that nothing in this world will ever be able to console them.
A 1998 study led by psychologist Daniel Gilbert entitled “Immune Neglect: A Source of Durability Bias in Affective Forecasting” says that affective forecasting is the way people predict their future moods. Durability bias is the tendency for people to assume that their feelings, especially negative ones, will last a very long time (longer than the period they usually do). The immune neglect, a major cause of the durability bias, is the tendency to ignore a person’s ability to adapt to unpleasant events in his life.
The brain is hardwired to go through affective forecasting and immune neglect to result in durability bias. But time heals. People do get over traumatic events in their life. The only requirement is that there must be openness to heal. A sign of this openness to heal is the act of people embracing a sense of positivity. I mean, come on, how can someone who just lost the love of his life recover when all he does is listen to sad songs?
Recovery will be faster if those left behind are financially prepared. And no they don’t have to be like the families on Doomsday Preppers, the National Geographic show where “otherwise ordinary Americans…go to whatever lengths they can to make sure they are prepared for any of life’s uncertainties.”
Traditional life insurance is a cheaper and more practical way of preparing the family for the untimely demise of the breadwinner. Just be sure to get the life insurance package and coverage that is appropriate for those you might prematurely leave behind.
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