I know from working in the financial services industry that the constant focus on the client took away from the focus on my own well-being.

A few years ago I remember at an appointment with my doctor, she told me that her patients in banking and medical first responders experience the highest stress levels.

A 2015 study by Adhesion Wealth Advisor Solutions, an investment platform provider, found that nearly 80 percent of surveyed financial advisors rate their work-related stress levels at a 7 or higher (out of 10) and more than 60 percent say they’ve grown more stressed over the past year. The biggest culprits are “having responsibility for their clients’ futures” (52 percent peg it at level nine or 10), “marketing and building their businesses” (42 percent) and “client demands” (37 percent).

If you work in the financial services industry or are in a professional role that requires managing a portfolio of clients, this simple resource may be a good reminder to take care of yourself while you are taking care of your clients.

1.Your Eating Habits

Coffee, doughnuts and other unhealthy options can be the go-to snacks at meetings and at breaks.

How can you get better at planning your meals to ensure they are healthier?

How can you drink more water and increase the amount of fruit and vegetables you are eating at work and at home?

2.Your Physical Activity

How much physical activity do you do every week?  Are there times in the day you can fit it in?  Some examples are a 15-minute walk, a run at lunch, bike to work, go to the gym in the morning or at lunch, find a class or group to join. The health benefits are so positive if you find something that works for you to increase your physical activity level. Book it in your calendar and set boundaries so this a priority for you.

3.Your Time in Nature

The time we spend in nature can be so beneficial to our well-being.  Some ideas may include:

go to a park during lunch or a break, go for a hike on the weekend or find a tree to sit underneath.

How can you spend more time in nature?

4.Your Breath

Breathing is essential to life.  How we breathe can impact how we feel and our overall health.  It can be helpful to notice if you are breathing from your diaphragm vs. your chest.  Start with brief moments throughout the day and focus on your inhale and exhale.  You could do it every time you sit in your chair or before you pick up the phone.  You can gradually increase the time spent on this and work towards a regular practice.

5.Your Mental Health

Your mental health is so important to take care of.  In any given year, 1 in 5 people in Canada will personally experience a mental health problem or illness*.  How much time and energy do you invest in your mental health?  What resources and/or support do you have access to at work to help you with this?   (ex. Group medical benefit plan, coach, therapist, or books)

*Source: Mental Health Commission of Canada (2013). Making the case for investing in mental health in Canada.


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2015 study by Adhesion Wealth Advisor Solutions

What’s So Stressful about Being a Financial Advisor?