Post-Traumatic Growth: Our Year in Review

post-traumatic growth

Post-Traumatic Growth: Our Year in Review

People already equate 2020 with a metaphorical dumpster fire. Many will likely remember this historic year as a joke’s punchline and as a scar.

To buck this trend, our team chose to skew toward the positive angle in this week’s blog. We feel fortunate that our team, families, and direct communities can say that this year has been more of a major inconvenience than life-altering. We understand that not everyone can say that, and our thoughts go out to all of those people suffering. 

Part of your financial planning process includes reminders of what’s in your control. You can control your savings, your spending, how you invest, and other areas we discuss in your financial plan. But you can’t control the financial markets, global pandemics, and your neighbors running around maskless. 

To help you control what you can control, we invite you to practice a habit to hopefully improve your well-being when remembering 2020.

Post-Traumatic Growth

We won’t promote the Pollyanna-ish type of mindset that “This year was amazing.” Instead, “Ugh” comes to mind when thinking about 2020, and I’m happy that it’s almost past tense.

Yet, for people experiencing challenges as well as those who aren’t, practicing gratitude can boost your sense of well-being and appreciation for life. 

For example, in a study of Vietnam War veterans, researchers analyzed groups with and without post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The study concluded that practicing gratitude was “a significant, unique predictor of well-being.” 

Researchers also discuss a transformative state called post-traumatic growth (PTG). The American Psychological Association identifies that people who experience PTG after a traumatic event then experience positive responses in these five areas:

1. Appreciation of life.
2. Relationships with others.
3. New possibilities in life.
4. Personal strength.
5. Spiritual change.

So to blend these two principles together, we hope you’ll join us as we practice gratitude with the hope of achieving PTG. We’re all going through a traumatic event this year, and we hope to inspire you to see 2020 as an opportunity to embrace PTG in your personal, professional, and financial lives.

Our Team Will Practice What We Preach

We invite you to join us as we reflect on this historic year with reminders that some positive events occurred. To hopefully lead by example, our team chose to reflect on this 2020 year with some themes of gratitude. We shared some positive events and experiences internally, with our clients, and in our personal lives.

▶︎ Regina is grateful to have started a professional endeavor to become a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™. As they progress through their studies, Regina has stepped up by helping our clients in the insurance and cash-flow areas within the financial planning process. On a personal note, Regina shares that they’re grateful for modern-day technology to bridge virtual meetings (aka virtual happy hours) with family and friends.

▶︎ Jason is grateful that he leads a team that could survive and thrive in a year like 2020. The team grew by 50%, he’s happy that the overall client experience has improved, he invested to enhance the employee experience by offering an employee benefits package, and he also made it through an elongated six-month tax season. On a personal note, Jason’s grateful that his family has a new puppy who frequently snores on his lap during team web-meetings.

▶︎ I’m grateful that I joined the Financial Planning Fort Collins team, which has reignited my passion for this profession. After being solo for around six years, it feels nice to be part of a group — especially in this year of isolation. And on a personal note, I got to witness the first year of my son’s life so much more by working from home. He’s a goofball.

Onto Another Chapter

As you know, our team likes to plan (which is why you hired us, right?!), so we developed our 2021 goals during a strategy retreat in October. This allowed us to envision better years ahead and gain confidence that our efforts were contributing to a more prosperous company. We learned that we’re excited to continue helping clients like you as well as our future clients who are on their way. 

With PTG in mind, we invite you to update your personal, professional, and financial plans so you can confidently confront 2021. The lessons you learned from this last year will remain in your minds for years to come. So take that knowledge and use it to better plan your next life chapters.

We choose to acknowledge that good things happened in this dumpster fire of a year, and we can grow from this traumatic experience. We hope that you feel the same and are excited to continue working with us as you experience your own PTG next year.

Happy New Year, and bring on 2021!

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Dan Andrews
Dan Andrews
dan@fpfoco.com

Dan Andrews is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional and the Director of Estate and Financial Planning at Financial Planning Fort Collins. With unique experience working with members of generations X and Y, he has served clients of all ages and backgrounds since 2012. Dan enjoys a light-hearted approach toward Financial Planning to make the process more fun for clients. He enjoys giving back to the profession and the community. Dan has served as the Vice President of the XY Planning Network Diversity Committee and as the Public Relations Director for the Financial Planning Association of Colorado. To learn more, read Dan's blogs or the articles he’s been featured in.