Are you trying to live a healthy life? Or better mange your finances? They are both common New Years resolutions. We want to lose weight, fix that part of our life that we are not happy with, but in reality we rarely achieve our objectives.
It also happens that many times people who achieve one of the two objectives do not usually get the other. I’m sick of hearing complaints about money, so what can be done?
Finance and health require willpower
Both finances and health require willpower. We all know what we have to do if we want better health (eat healthy and exercise), or good finances (earn money, save and invest wisely), but it is also true that changing both of these aspects of our life require willpower.
However, as some studies have indicated, it seems that willpower is exhausted after multiple uses in our day to day. This is cited as a justification for why people in a bad economic situation make bad financial decisions. However, there are also those who believe (as recent studies show) that willpower is not spent. In other words, it is not a finite resource that gets depleted on a daily basis.
There is an industry dedicated to not getting it
It is not that the industry conspires against us so that we maintain bad finances or bad health, but marketing techniques and competitiveness in saturated markets make it very difficult to get clients. In addition, the most impulsive clients are the most beneficial.
In the case of finance, in addition to the current low interest rates, banks are willing to lend us money. For example every few days, I get messages offering consumer loans.
And we are bombarded by unhealthy food advertising and restaurants that do not offer a better menu either. Do you want something delicious and insane? You got it. We should not blame the industry alone as it is also our decisions as consumers (getting into debt instead of saving and preferting to eat carbohydrates with fat to protein and vegetables) that make companies adapt to what we ask them to do.
You may even have friends who aren’t helping. For example, they support you when buying a new car, but not when saving for a reliable old second hand one. Just like if you go out to dinner with them, they will not like to see you choose a salad with chicken breast while they choose burgers with bacon and melted cheese. Neither do you go to the gym instead of going for a spin or reviewing financial products.
Our social relationships are often built around behaviors that are often detrimental to our overall well being. So most likely, whether you want to run a marathon or want to save for a new house, your environment will boycott you.
No pain, no gain
Both having a healthy life and solid finances require sacrifices. Not only on the side of not spending and eating healthy, but of investing and having an active life.
I hear and see your emails, but those of us who write here are tired of being asked for a financial product in which to invest that has no risk, but that is immensely more profitable than your savings account. You can not have one without the other, but since you do not want to hear this response, many times they end up buying what the sales representative suggests, who may not have told you the whole truth about it.
It requires learning to content yourself
When you want to eat healthy you come to realize that you can learn to enjoy a salad, steamed vegetables with perhaps garlic and pepper to flavor them or grilled lean meat. With time, eating healthy becomes the norm.
Something similar happens with finances. Maybe we wanted a sport model, but a utility one gets us from point A to B. Maybe we would like to go on vacation and stay at four star hotels on the beach, but many times a simpler establishment allows us to sleep as well and enjoy the destination. We may not be enjoying a restaurant that appears in the Michelin guide, but a picnic in a park feels good and allows us to use the money for other things.
Obesity, and specifically morbid obesity and childhood obesity, are growing, causing coronary heart disease and cancer. Bad personal finances and poor health cause problems that create greater pressure on the entire economy so that it is no longer a personal issue – but a national one that affects us all. Help yourself or someone you know make a change today.