Modern American capitalism may not value loyalty, but there are distinct advantages to staying committed to a relationship or an employer for multiple years.

Over the years, I've encouraged you not to be loyal as a customer. Let's face it: Deals generally go to new customers, not existing ones. It's a bizarre fact of marketing that we punish loyalists, but that's just the way it is.

We rent companies and they rent us, both as customers and as employees.

Yet researchers in a variety of studies have found that the more loyal you are as a person, the better your health and the greater the likelihood that you'll live longer, according to what I read in The Wall Street Journal.

You can see it among people who are in the diaspora from the Rust Belt and are big time sports fans of whatever team they grew up with, whether it’s the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Chicago Bears or the Green Bay Packers.

People migrate elsewhere over time, but their loyalty often remains with the sports team they rooted for as a kid. Those who stay loyal like that and can hang out with others in a new city tend to have better health, more friends, and increased lifespan.

Here's another one: Job jumping is not the key. Staying with single employer for longer cycles makes more money over time for you than if you job hop. "People who had a minimum of experience of five years with a single employer typically got 8% increases in compensation a year compared with about 5% for people with a history of job hopping," according the write-up in the Journal.

Am I saying you should get into a rut in your career? No. But all other things being equal, being loyal and true blue in long-term relationships and jobs leads to healthier, happier longer lives.

Image of Clark Howard About the author: Clark Howard

Clark Howard is a consumer expert whose goal is to help you keep more of the money you make. His national radio show and website show you ways to put more money in your pocket, with advice you can trust. View More Articles

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