The perks of pencil writing

October 11, 2023

The smell of freshly made shavings. 

That perfect point of lead. 

Is there anything quite as visceral as the memory of a sharp #2 pencil? 

I was listening to a podcast the other day about the importance of handwriting.

Science says our brains can process and retain the notes we take when writing by hand better than typing the notes on a computer.

This holds true especially well when it comes to students taking notes. Fortunately, my girls’ schools taught them cursive in 4th grade, and a majority of their work is still hand-written. 

So why not try it for myself?  

As it is, I spend so much time on a computer for Mosaic. And by habit, I just start typing on my computer when I do my writing, too. 

I decided to try out the theory of handwriting on actual paper with a pencil while I was getting my thoughts out for this newsletter.  

The result?  

Three filled pages with my brain wandering. 

As all wanderings do, at some point, they kept coming back to one clear signpost: the need for a Financial Wellness Program.

For some time now, I’ve been observing the growing need for benefits employers could offer employees beyond saving in their 401k, something that wasn’t a foosball table or free Cinnamon Toast Crunch in the breakroom. What could a program like this look like? 

I began to write down what it should look like, what would be important to include, and how it should work… 

…and I realized something. 

This path I was traveling was one so familiar to me because it was something already intrinsic to Mosaic.  

The process I go through with my clients… 

The tools I use to guide clients on their financial journey is financial wellness… 

The way we work with clients to form their financial mosaic picture… 

…that’s financial wellness.  

And all these are already a piece of Mosaic.  

Mosaic is already a financial wellness program. 

These last few weeks, I’ve been getting lost in the weeds in some really crucial administrative projects for Mosaic. It’s detailed work and takes all my energy to focus on the operation side. It’s important: The checklists, processes, and detailed work build the foundation of Mosaic. 

Throughout the process, I was talking with my marketing team about some of the logistics of these projects. I commented to one of them about how I felt in the weeds in navigating some of the next steps with Mosaic. Her response: 

“Sometimes you need to get stuck in the weeds to realize what kind of field you are playing in.” 

Isn’t that the truth.  

One of my biggest fears for Mosaic is it would just be more noise in the financial space. I have been very intentional in making sure that it isn’t just words but actual actionable steps that people can take to move forward on their financial journey.  

Financial wellness can’t be achieved by just listening to a keynote speaker, or by watching videos, or even (my favorite way to learn) by reading about it. 

You have to take action.  

Just like in our physical health wellness, you can’t just watch workout videos and hope you get healthier through osmosis; you have to actually move, eat nutritious foods, and understand your own body. Once you know the right actions to take toward physical health, you have to choose to take action.  

Mosaic has tools that current clients have found helpful to move forward on their journey. We start with understanding where you are currently at—what kind of field are you standing in? Savology, for example, has proven to be a great tool. Then we open accounts at Schwab, and we walk you through the process of understanding investing. We set the accounts up with you and continue to monitor them. Clients have access to where they are guided through a digital process to create their estate planning documents. When you’re ready to go further into retirement planning and goal tracking, we have more robust planning tools to use together.  

As businesses, these tools, in the form of a Mosaic financial wellness program, can also be offered as employee benefits. Often, small businesses struggle to find ways to keep or recruit talent, and financial wellness programs are a win-win for the business and its employees alike. I’m excited to share this with the community in the future. 

Financial wellness is taking actionable steps that move you forward to confidence within your financial life. Finances really are a foundation within each of our lives. Now that Mosaic has a firm foundation to build on, it’s inviting others to come along and see where it can go together.

We just have to start. 


The opinions expressed herein are those of Anna Nelson and are subject to change without notice. This material is not financial advice or an offer to sell any product. Forward-looking statements cannot be guaranteed. This document may contain certain information that constitutes “forward-looking statements” which can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as “may,” “expect,” “will,” “hope,” “forecast,” “intend,” “target,” “believe,” and/or comparable terminology. No assurance, representation, or warranty is made by any person that any of Anna Nelson’s assumptions, expectations, objectives, and/or goals will be achieved. Nothing contained in this document may be relied upon as a guarantee, promise, assurance, or representation as to the future. Anna Nelson is an investment adviser registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Registration does not imply a certain level of skill or training.