Managing the Dissonance of Financial Stress

July 13, 2021

Managing the Dissonance of Financial Stress

Published in MMR Magazine.

Lesson # 1: If you want to resolve dominant cadence, end with the tonic.


COVID has motivated us to take stock of what matters to us.

With 25 million cases, 500,000 lives lost, countless businesses owners having to close their doors, and performing artists deprived of what they love to do most, this pandemic has forced us to self-reflect


The human condition requires the harmonization of our physical, spiritual, and financial health.

Like the mighty triad, change one note a half step and a minor chord turns into dissonance.


As an artist by nature and now a financial advisor by profession, I was able to see what was going on behind the black curtain when the subject of money was discussed. It didn’t matter if my client had a net worth of $80 million or $80 thousand. The experience of fear and scarcity was dominant.


The feeling of financial scarcity runs deep. Business owners, who others depend on for financial health, will resonate with this emotion. As the world continues to climb out of the darkest hours of the pandemic, your customers once again will look for the experience of spiritual joy, which music has always provided since the dawn of time.


Now is the time to look at your greatest assets. I’m not talking about your inventory. I’m talking about the people in your life who you depend on, and who depend on you. Your extended family. Your employees. From the level of care, and the level of good business sense, conversations about financial stress can make a difference in your employees' mental state while bringing harmony to you and all who you love.


It is well known that financial stress impacts the workplace. Financial stress results in approximately 11-14% of annual payroll costs in lost productivity and increased turnover, according to the Employer’s Guide to Financial Guide to Financial Wellness.  After all, music retailers are sharing and selling joy and harmony. It’s kind of hard for your staff to be authentic if they are worried about their own financial well-being. And the same goes for you.



401(k)’s has become the primary savings vehicle for most worker's retirement. It is the venue to create a culture of financial wellness. It’s a way for the owners to show up for their people with love in their hearts by showing they care.


For those owners that offer a 401(k), you’re probably familiar with the retirement tracking built into your 401(k) education portal. Knowing if you are on track to replace your income when you can no longer work offers comfort. Knowing that ownership cares enough about employees to create a culture of financial wellness, offers comfort.


Use the financial wellness tools available to all who offer 401(k)s to help your employees to:

Save now by using auto-enrollment.

Save more by using the retirement tracking tools

Save smarter through financial wellness education.

And most importantly, we are the creatives. Why not bring our creative talent to lighten up the financial discussion. For example I created a music video that shares some of the benefits of the 401(k) that’s light hearted and fun to watch.


Knowing that half of Americans don’t have access to a saving plan at their work, and your employees do, is something to be proud of. 


During times of crisis, you especially feel alone. You feel vulnerable. Having someone show up for you that authentically cares about you can help to resolve the dissonance back to the tonic The baton is passed to the leader of the band.


Jaimie Blackman — a former music educator & retailer— is co-founder of BH Wealth Management. The organization offers 401(k), insurance, and succession planning services. Download your complimentary copy of End Your War With Money at Registered Representative, First Allied Securities, Inc. Member FINRA/SIPC