This holiday season my teen daughter and I discussed finding an organization in need of volunteer time, money or both.  We would love to be able to spend time giving this season to those in need. I personally need to do something like this every year in order to keep the proper perspective during the holidays.  I truly believe being generous and grateful will lead to a more joyous holiday season and there is science to back up this idea!

According to Michael Norton of Harvard Business School, it turns out that money CAN buy happiness – you just have to spend it the right way.  His team conducted numerous studies and determined that if you give your money away you will be happier.  Seriously!  He shared a fantastic (and brief) TedTalk about what they discovered. I encourage you to take a few minutes to watch the video to the right.

At Leading Edge, we work with families of all kinds of income levels; our client’s net worth spans a very wide spectrum.  One of the things we have learned is that there is very little correlation between high net worth and high levels of happiness.  But giving your time or money tends to offer a big boost in morale.

This holiday season, take some time to seek out giving opportunities either of your time or money or both!  It will make you happier (and will teach your children an extremely valuable lesson as well).

Be generous… be happy!


“Generosity makes people happier, even if they are only a little generous. People who act solely out of self-interest are less happy. Merely promising to be more generous is enough to trigger a change in our brains that makes us happier, neuroeconomists found in a recent study.”  (Science Daily 2017)

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