There is a direct correlation between Personal Finance and Physical Fitness. Currency and calories, consumerism and consumption – they all affect how rich and fit we will become.
What we take in
Eating is a lot like earning money:
The more we eat, the more energy we can generate. The more we make, the more we can spend.
We are the healthiest physically when we eat enough food to enable us to perform the necessary duties to survive and thrive.
We are the healthiest financially when we have enough income to cover our expenses, save or invest, and give.
What we spend
Exercising is how our body takes the stored energy and uses it to propel us forward on a jogging trail, push us up a flight of stairs, lift things, and get work done. Physical activity can be fun, like participating in a sport, or it can be unpleasant – like carrying laundry baskets up and down stairs.
Spending is how we apply our income to obtain the things necessary for survival as well as other things we enjoy. It can be fun, like purchasing a new laptop or the next round at the bar, or it can be unpleasant – like paying bills.
What happens when we get out of balance
Eating more than your body needs will cause you to become fat. Buying more stuff than you need will cause you to become financially flabby.
Exercising without taking in the necessary amount of calories (food) can leave you weak and undernourished.
Spending without bringing in the necessary amount of money (income) will leave your wallet undernourished.
Unhealthy side effects
Too much or too little can cause unhealthy situations. Obesity and heart disease shortens one’s lifespan. A high debt-to-income ratio shortens one’s ability to live the life they desire.
Physical health and financial wealth are interdependent as well. Income opportunities can be limited by physical ailments and physical health can be affected by a stressful financial situation.
Start by walking, not fasting
I need to improve my physical health by eating less and exercising more. It would be foolish of me to stop eating altogether and run a marathon tomorrow. It would also be stupid of me to just give up and not do anything. Good things come to those who work on their weight.
Faster isn’t always better. Sometimes the best things are worth waiting for. My wife made a wonderful lamb stew this last weekend. She started prepping it on Friday buy trimming it, seasoning it, and letting it set in the refrigerator overnight. Saturday morning she put all the ingredients in a crock pot and cooked it for about eight hours. There was an unbelievable flavor emanating out of the broth that could never have come from a jar.
Taking your time and doing it right often pays the biggest dividends.
Become financially healthy
A happy medium of income and outgo will cause us to be happy, healthy, and – as Zac Bissonnette would say – better looking than your parents.
Start where you are:
- Don’t know where to start? Track your spending for 30 days until you know how much you spend on gas, food, eating out, etc…
- Already know how much you spend? Budget your income. Stick to your moneyplan and live within your means.
- Next step? Begin a debt elimination regime! Spend your extra financial calories on paying down debt. Burn it off!
- No consumer debt? Start investing and building financial wealth.
- Ready to run a marathon? It’s time to buy a house, start a business, or become a philanthropist.
Personal finance is not just for uptight nerds or people who love spreadsheets. It’s an activity that everyone must participate in if they want to win with money. Not everyone is born with a marathoner’s body and many of us don’t have the discipline to spend less than we make. However, putting small changes into practice over time will cause positive results and will help you live a life of abundance and financial wellbeing.