With the weather cooling after a hot summer, autumn is a big season for running, exercising, and other healthy activities. Additionally, with the holiday spending season just around the corner, now is also a great time to assess your finances and start toning your budget. So what do the two have in common?
Surprisingly there’s quite a bit of overlap in the philosophies behind exercising that also apply to personal finance. Sure you replace personal trainers with financial advisers but the concept is basically the same. In fact here are three things that exercising teaches us about money and how you can improve your finances.
You have to walk before you can run
Try this: put on your shoes, step out your door, and run a 26.2-mile marathon. That might seem silly but it’s about the equivalent of what many people try to do when they first dive into fixing their personal finances. Just like running a marathon, changing your financial situation is certainly possible but it won’t happen overnight.
Instead of instituting several changes at once, ween yourself off of your bad habits and start replacing them one by one. Additionally you should set smaller goals for yourself and raise the bar as you continue onward. That way you can keep heading in the right direction without causing too much shock. Besides, if you take on too much at once, you’re more likely to give up and cause even more damage in the long run (no pun intended).
Consistency is key
Whether you’re striving for better financial health or just better health in general, you have to stick to the plan. For example paying off your credit card just to run it back up doesn’t help your finances just like exercising once every three months won’t do a whole lot for you in terms of fitness. Once you set a budget, stick to it.
This is also key even after you reach your financial goals. Just because you were able to turn things around doesn’t mean it’s time to go back to your old ways. Stay the course, keep moving forward, and don’t let up on what’s working for you.
Get a spotter for encouragement
Admittedly doing what’s best for your finances isn’t always so easy. That’s where having a spotter, sponsor, or whatever you want to call them to hold you accountable and check up on you can be extremely helpful. Having a person that you can trust to not only encourage you and push you in the right direction but also help keep you out of trouble is important when you’re working out and equally as needed when you’re fixing your finances.
Why wait until the new year to start working on your body or your finances? Fall is a great time to focus on both and begin making strides to improve your life overall. Just remember to set goals for yourself, stick to your plan, and maybe even get a buddy to help you out along the way — you can do it!