The Pulse

Changing The Conversation This Holiday Season

Americans want to talk about anything besides politics and COVID-19, even willing to discuss money and financial planning instead

New survey from Haven Life reveals that millions of Americans are looking to conversation topics that have long been considered off-limits, including money.

NEW YORK, Nov. 11, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — A new survey of more than 1,000 individuals from Haven Life, the digital life insurance agency backed and wholly owned by Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual), finds that while many are excited to gather in-person with friends and family this holiday season, some conversations will be off the table.

According to the survey, individuals are least excited to have conversations about politics (54%) and COVID-19 (45%). Instead, in an effort to avoid debating opposing political beliefs or discussing who is and isn’t vaccinated this holiday season, millions of Americans are looking to conversation topics that have long been considered off-limits, including money. In many cases, such conversations are already underway, with the plurality (39%) of respondents saying that they’ve actually already started related financial conversations within the past three months and 58% having done so within the past six months.

For those who plan to continue or start the money conversation, insurance and long-term financial planning are paramount topics. For many, the holidays are a good time to have these critical conversations as such “difficult” discussions are often better face-to-face (59%), can be done without being rushed (42%) and can benefit from others–including friends and family members–providing support (27%).

While it is encouraging that many individuals are having these heart-to-heart conversations, hurdles remain. For around one-third (35%) of individuals, money is still an uncomfortable conversation topic and 29% find the holidays to be stressful enough as is. Of particular concern, however, is that even with more people discussing insurance and financial planning, acting on these conversations remains a challenge. In fact, just 35% say that they are “very likely” or “likely” to act on insurance or financial planning conversations had over the holidays.

Fortunately, there are a number of ways individuals can take the next step when it comes to financially protecting their families, because simply talking about it is not enough. Some suggestions include:

  • Set aside one hour to review your options. In many cases, life insurance can now be purchased online within minutes, and might not even require a medical exam to finalize coverage.
  • Take a look at what benefits and coverage you have in-force, if any, through your employer. That can help determine how much additional coverage you might need. Also, remember that, unlike most employer-provided coverage, the individual policies you purchase directly are often portable–meaning you keep them even if you change jobs.
  • Think about what related services you could benefit from now, including trust and will creation, end-of-life planning or secure digital document storage. Some life insurance agencies will provide these types of services via partnerships to policyholders at no additional charge.
  • Consider who you want as your beneficiary and, once purchased, give them the gift of financial security as a (belated) holiday present. According to the survey, individuals said the most popular terms they would use to describe receiving the gift of life insurance from a loved one would be “surprising” (33%), but also “well-intentioned” (33%) and “thoughtful” (26%).
    For more information about the survey, or how to purchase a term life insurance policy, visit




About the Survey
Haven Life conducted a quantitative survey between October 18-22, 2021 and collected 1,103 completed responses. Respondents were between 18 and 65 and identified as either full-time or part-time employees with a minimum household income of $50,000. Forty-nine percent of respondents were male and 51% were female.
About Haven Life
Haven Life Insurance Agency, LLC (Haven Life) is re-thinking how people financially protect the ones they love. Haven Life is committed to delivering exceptional products, delightful purchasing experiences, and meaningful moments of service to the modern life insurance customer.