Last updated: May 17 2023

Mental Health Awareness Month:  Real Wealth Managers Can Alleviate Financial Stressors

Kristin Ramlal, B. Comm (Hons.), PFP, CIM, FCSI, RWM, Chair of the Society of Real Wealth Managers, Evelyn Jacks

Perhaps appropriately positioned after the April tax filing deadline, May is Mental Health Awareness month. Nearly 1-in-4 Canadians say money is their top source of stress, and the number of people who feel regularly stressed almost doubled following the pandemic. Good news: almost 1-in-2 Canadians seek advice from a financial professional and/or engage financial literacy to strengthen their financial knowledge, and that can help. Working with a Real Wealth Manager™ can be particularly effective. Here’s why:  

Stress has a psychological impact that can manifest as aggression, a feeling of loss of control, insomnia, exhaustion, sadness.  It can also lead to mental health problems, such as depression and anxiety. As of 2022, 1-in-3 Canadians reported that financial stress did just that.

Nearly 1-in-2 Canadians will face some level of mental health issues by the time they turn 40, where those with lower-than-average incomes are 3-4 times more likely to have poor or fair mental health compared to those with incomes above the Canadian average.

This is exactly why engaging a Real Wealth Manager (RWM™) is more important than ever! A Real Wealth Manager’s primary responsibility is to help enable a client’s financial peace of mind by focusing on the accumulation, growth, preservation and transition of income and capital, after taxes, inflation and fees like interest costs.  

A Real Wealth Manager can address the risks associated with those big wealth eroders by collaborating with all the stakeholders needed to make the strategy for financial well-being work.  Joint decision-making is difficult – everyone must be on the same page – and the RWM can alleviate that burden.   

The key is to anticipate and plan for the “Real Wealth Management Triggers” that cause poor financial decision-making - including impulsive reactions or, often as damaging, no decision-making at all.  Those  RWM™ triggers generally occur in three categories: 

  • life events (new births, disability, deaths, marriages or divorces, losing or starting a new job,etc.),
  • financial events (over-spending by family members, unaffordable new mortgage, unexpected severance package, unanticipated tax audit, sale of cottage, start of pension, etc.) and
  • economic events (inflation, recession, high exchange or interest rates, etc.)

By entrusting a highly trained Real Wealth Manager (RWM), clients can feel more empowered and confident in their financial health.  They can be more at ease about longer term outcomes, knowing that their Real Wealth Manager is leading their sole and unique financial plan, ensuring all the financial professionals who are needed to make it work – tax specialists, legal advisors, insurance specialist, etc.  - are on the same page working towards common goals.

The ultimate benefit is the alignment of the important stakeholders – other family members, the family business and the community – depending on the circumstances, to the strategic wealth plan. Families tend to file tax returns and make economic decisions as a household, and so that makes plenty of sense, particularly for long term planning that can reduce stress. 

The Real Wealth Manager stays on top of the economic, financial and life triggers that may be impacting their clients’ financial decisions.  But most important, the RWM takes on the important and often stressful task of collaborates with the multi-stakeholders involved to maximize wealth sustainability, after taxes, fees and inflation.

This takes the pressure off the individual who is experiencing the stress to coordinate and engage all those relationships and most important, moves the needle towards the more positive goal of uncovering new financial for the future without conflict, or at least, by minimizing it. 

Quite often, that begins with a focus on the tax benefits for all the members of the family stakeholder group.  Especially if tax filing is incorrect or incomplete, a RWM can co-ordinate immediate resolution and then put in place tax efficient options, like savings in a TFSA or FHSA to meet future goals.  Filing a tax return accurately and on time is also the conduit to important government benefits that can help offset inflation and the cost of interest.

Bottom Line:   A vast majority of Canadians - nearly 7-in-10 - have reported that inflation and rising grocery prices have had a direct impact on their financial stress levels. The government provides some help – the upcoming Grocery Rebate Credit on July 5 is an example – but millions miss out on tax benefits and investment options because they don’t take advantage of the power of Real Wealth Management. 

An investment in good financial health can positively impact both mental and physical health.   A relationship with a Real Wealth Manager (RWM) can help to maximize after-tax income and build and sustain wealth, to enable financial peace of mind, by helping you make timely and astute financial decisions.

How to find an Real Wealth Manager:  Look for the RWM™ in your advisor’s credentials and the Society of RWMs for a referral.

Educational Resources for Advisors:  Take your practice to the next level by earning your RWM™ designation. 


Money is still the top source of stress for Canadians - and many feel less hopeful about their financial futures (

Mental Health Statistics in Canada for 2023 - Made in CA