Happy New Year!

This month’s featured article, "Easy Ways to Add a Little More Joy to Your Day," seems especially important as we pass through these winter months and look to gain some routine in our lives. I selected it, as many of you during our conversations, have shared fears of boredom and isolation. When we feel that we have all the time in the world, it’s typically when we get the least amount of work done. Much of the stress we feel on a daily basis is not from having done too much, but rather from the perception we haven’t done enough.

The article reinforces the importance of adopting everyday goals and a daily purpose. As we continue to stay home and stay safe, it’s a wonderful opportunity to consider picking up new tasks. In December for instance, I purchased a chess set along with the book, How to Beat Anyone at Chess. Inspired by watching the Queen’s Gambit on Netflix, I have been studying chess to the point of obsession (and dreaming about it). The book walks the reader through the Queen's Gambit, one of the oldest openings in chess. Reading the book gave me the confidence that I could literally "beat anyone." The bravado was short-lived after my competitive family challenged me virtually via iPad App. After several surrenders and defeats, I am now learning how to “beat anyone” in checkers!

We can still have goals, new hobbies and interests, all while staying safe and protecting our loved ones. The last lesson in the article is one that’s especially close to my heart – don't go to bed angry. Growing up, my mother would always say, “Never go to bed angry.” I would always jokingly respond, "Does that mean we have to stay up and fight?"

From the bottom of my heart, thank you for blessing me and the KIG Team with the opportunity to serve you.

Best Regards,

Any opinions are those of Jack W. Kennedy and not necessarily those of RJFS or Raymond James. There is no guarantee that these statements, opinions or forecasts provided herein will prove to be correct. Past performance is not indicative of future results. Investing involves risk and you may incur a profit or loss regardless of strategy selected. Sector investments are companies engaged in business related to a specific sector. They are subject to fierce competition and their products and services may be subject to rapid obsolescence. There are additional risks associated with investing in an individual sector, including limited diversification.

Easy Ways to Add a Little More Joy to Your Day

Add a small splash of happiness to your regular routine with these suggestions.

Start your day on the right foot

Have something to look forward to. This can be anything, from your favorite cup of coffee to a planned catch-up session with a friend.

Kiss (or hug) someone you love. Psychologists believe that starting the day with affection can help foster a positive attitude and healthier lifestyle. In fact, a 10-year study concluded that men who kiss their spouse before work live five years longer, make 20-30% more money and are 50% less likely to get in a car accident.

Cross a dreaded task off your to-do list. The earlier you do it, the better, as your willpower is at its strongest in the morning.

Feel a sense of purpose. Think about how your day-to-day work impacts the lives of others. Ask yourself, “How is the work I’m doing helping someone down the road? What meaning can I find here?”

Say thank you. Help others feel appreciated and boost your own mood by actively practicing gratitude.

End your evening on a good note

Let go of work. Make a to-do list for the next day and include notes on how you’ll tackle each task. Once done, make sure to disconnect.

Turn your Tuesdays into Saturdays. Studies show what we most treasure about weekends is extra time with those we love, so schedule weeknight plans with family or friends.

Practice. Instead of spending your evening watching TV, a habit that’s been linked to lower life satisfaction, try practicing something you enjoy, such as knitting, creative writing or Sudoku.

Remember the good. Write down at least three good things that happened during the day, including why they were good.

Dim the lights. Ease into a good night’s sleep by turning off your phone, TV and computer at least one hour before bedtime. Using a smartphone for 10 minutes is the equivalent of spending an hour in bright daylight.

Don’t go to bed angry. Instead, aim to go to bed feeling grateful.

Sources: bakadesuyo.com; Time magazine; Journal of Personality and Social Psychology

All expressions of opinion reflect the judgment of Raymond James & Associates, Inc. and are subject to change. There is no assurance any of the trends mentioned will continue or that any of the forecasts mentioned will occur. Economic and market conditions are subject to change. Investing involves risk including the possible loss of capital. The S&P 500 is an unmanaged index of 500 widely held stocks. It is not possible to invest directly in an index. The market performance noted does not include fees and charges which would affect an investor’s returns. Past performance may not be indicative of future results.

Investment products are: not deposits, not FDIC/NCUA insured, not insured by any government agency, not bank guaranteed, subject to risk and may lose value. Raymond James financial advisors do not render legal or tax advice. Please consult a qualified professional regarding legal or tax advice.