Health is an investment. It begins early in life and can be a lifestyle as long as you are willing to consistently put forth the effort.
Why are most people not achieving their health and wellness goals?
Most people don’t realize that health is an investment. It is not a bill and should not be something that is taken lightly. Many people would rather spend their money on things that make them look better quickly or fulfill an urge that will ease a pain right then and there. Maybe it’s binge eating, maybe it’s going to the hair salon, maybe it’s buying a pair of name brand shoes or having an over-priced car payment each month in order to “fit in.” The fact is, we are more willing to spend on money on things that soothe us temporarily or give us status rather than our health.
How many of you have gym memberships?
How many of you are using them?
If you are not using them and have them, why are you just spending that money for nothing? Invest in a good coach and you can get some good home workouts and stop wasting your money on the gym membership…
The problem: we choose to “hide” and think things will just get better on their own rather than take responsibility and write down what we spend our money on so that we can truly get to the bottom of why we are not investing in our health.
“I can’t afford to hire someone to help me.”
This is a common phrase and it begins the excused actions you would rather take instead of finding ways to afford it. We are so quick to dismiss anything that may challenge us that we use the phrase “I can’t afford” to make us feel better. Why do I say us? Because I WAS the same. Instead of investing in myself and hiring mentors that could help me, I wanted to try and figure it out on my own. I was letting pride get the best of me. However, there is power in numbers. When you hire someone who has significant training in a certain area you are struggling in, you begin to open doors for yourself and you now have accountability (which is something we all need when starting something new).
I wasted more money and time trying to do it all on my own than I did just hiring a professional with experience in that area. Do you realize in using the excuse, “I can’t afford,” you are automatically creating a limitation in your mind that will allow you to stay comfortable where you are?
This is an epidemic and needs to be stopped.
Maybe full on coaching “isn’t in your budget at the moment.” Doesn’t that seem like a much better phrase to use?
So why is your health not valuable enough to you to make the investment?
When you have a goal of purchasing a home, what do you do? You save up. You stop eating out so much. You take a look at your bills and see where you may be able to downgrade or get rid of something to save that extra chunk of money you’ve been spending. You take a look at your debts and find ways to pay them down by taking out some of the luxuries you may have enjoyed previously. Maybe you only go out to eat once a month instead of twice a week. Maybe you start cutting coupons. Maybe you don’t go get that pair of shoes you wanted or get your hair done as often. You might cut off the cable, look at car insurance options, or even think twice about purchasing a new car you may have budgeted for.
So why don’t we do these things for our health? What’s the point in having a new house or car if you’re not around long enough to enjoy it?
What about those of us who have kids? What are we showing our kids? We may think we are doing right by them, but in all actuality, we are showing them that material things are more important than taking care of ourselves. I say this because I did the exact same thing…until one day, I woke up.
Health shouldn’t be an extra expense. It should be something we WANT to invest in. It took me losing my mother while I was pregnant to make me realize material things weren’t as important to me as being around for my daughter. I began my own health journey by investing in certifications that I had to make payments on, but that I knew would serve me in the long run so I wasn’t having to play the “guessing game to health.”
So let’s take a look at 15 things you are spending your money on that aren’t allowing you to invest in the most important person in your life: YOU
1) As mentioned above, cable TV. We would rather be able to watch other people’s problems or waste time on “the big game” rather than take care of ourselves. But what happens when your health becomes something you HAVE to take care of? The doctor bills take over and you have to rid yourself of your extra amenities. Why does it have to come to that? Why not save that money now and invest in your health so you don’t have to waste more money down the road? Think about it.
2) Bank Fees. Do you even know how much money you are spending in bank fees and interest rates? Have you checked your statements? Or do you just do what I did for so many years and pretend it doesn’t exist? Guess what, just paying attention to this portion of your finances could be huge in the long run.
3) Extended Warranties. How many of us pay for extended warranties and never use them? Have you ever added all that money up? Or, what if you pay for the warranty, then find out later the company is not going to reward it out of some sort of typo or miscommunication? This happened to me recently. Paid almost $80 for an extended warranty and when the product broke and I tried to use the warranty, the company kept giving me a hard time until it got to the point where even the extended warranty expired. What a waste of $80! This is why I now think long and hard about extended warranties. I don’t often take them because most of the time, to be honest and from my experience, they are a scam.
4) Your house. Did you know that you shouldn’t be spending more than 1/3 of your income on the roof over your head (recommendation from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development - HUD)? How many of us are living outside of our means just on that one portion of our lives? I will admit, I am right there too. I did it more for my daughter, but I tell you, knowing what I know now, I would have done it differently. Sometimes, we have to live within our means so that we don’t have to say “I can’t afford” and can instead say “I will save up for this because it is that important to me.”
5) Smartphones and smartphone data. The best way to analyze how much date you use is to analyze it. Also, don’t just buy the latest and greatest phone. It will be outdated in a few months anyway. When it comes to smartphones, get what you need. When it comes to data, purchase the unlimited data first, then over the next 3 months, analyze how much data you used. This will tell you what you can cut back to if needed. If you’re like me and do most of your business and communication via smartphone, you may need the unlimited package. However, if you are barely on your phone, getting the unlimited data package for longer than 3 months may serve as a great way to throw your hard earned money away. Save where you can and analyze what you are doing. You may find it can save you a lot of money each month just by paying more attention.
6) Online Shipping. Why are more people not using Amazon Prime? It may cost a little more up front, but if you’re like me and use Amazon for virtually anything you need, you may want to make the initial investment. Just shipping fees alone can cost you over $200 in a six-month timeframe. That’s your first initial health investment! Think about it! Write down your expenses and what you are spending your money on. You may just find you spend a lot more on unnecessary things than you thought. Shipping is a big one because we don’t often take it into consideration. But over time, it adds up!
7) Cheap Art/Extras. Don’t wait until the artist makes it big! Save huge by purchasing art from new artists or waiting until items go on sale. Extras are the “pretty” items we like to place in our homes: picture frames, candles, etc. These items add up. If you are someone who can’t go without purchasing the unnecessary “extras,” I challenge you to add up your spending on them and see if it’s more important to you to make your house look pretty than having a clean bill of health.
8) Fast Food. Have you ever written down just how much you spend on fast food? This includes coffee shops as well. How many people will go to Dunk’n donuts each day but then say they can’t afford to hire a personal trainer to help them in the gym? Add up those $3-4 (or more) latte’s you purchase each day and there’s your answer. I know people who spend so much money on fast food because they “can’t afford” to eat healthy. I get pretty perplexed by this. Track what you spend and you may just realize, you’re spending more on your unhealthy habits that are keeping you from being able to invest in your health.
9) Piecemeal Insurance. When you purchase life insurance, do you really KNOW what you are getting. I have recently teamed up with a company that has taught me so much about this and how to help others not get involved with companies that will scam them. This is an important piece of the puzzle, because many of us think we are doing what’s best when making insurance and IRA investments. However, banks will make sure they get their cuts. It’s your job to do the research and if you need assistance in this area, please reach out to me. I would love to help you more and make sure you are on the right track to save more money in the long run without losing any value in your purchases plan. We all need life insurance. Just make sure you are getting it from someone who cares about you and not just the amount of money they are going to make off of you.
10) Lousy Gifts. Stop buying gifts that people don’t want. Purchase a gift card. How many times have we purchased something for our kids or significant other thinking they would love it? This has definitely been an area that has NOT served me! I have spend hundreds of dollars on items that end up in a jewelry box or lost or kept in the box. Stop the madness! Buy them a gift card or take them somewhere they will enjoy. Besides, I’m sure they would rather you spend the money on investing in your health so you are around longer to enjoy more birthdays and anniversaries. Material things don’t buy happiness. They are only temporary satisfaction.
11) Weight Loss Traps. This is the one area I get so aggravated with. Stop giving your hard earned money away to the “get-skinny-quick” methods and learn how to maintain a healthy lifestyle! Ok, sure, you did a 7-day juice and you lost 5 lbs. What happens when you start eating again? You haven’t learned anything and unless you plan on juicing forever, save your money and invest in something that will educate you on how to actually implement real food to become healthier. Not only does it help you, but it carries over to your families as well. Make smarter choices. Stop wasting money on sweat suits and waste trimmers and diet pills! Not only are these things often harmful to you, they don’t produce lasting results. If you are going to take any type of supplement, make sure you research it and make sure it will help you sustain a healthier lifestyle. If it is temporary (30 day fix), it won’t serve you and will be a complete waste of money! Learn the science. Save that money to hire someone who has the training and expertise to give you tools you can use for the long run. If you’re going to purchase products, make sure they are products that are recommended for the long-term, not just temporary fads.
12) Lottery tickets. My daughter asked me the other day if I would rather not win the lottery or have my health. I said I’d rather have my health, of course. For one, you have to actually spend money to play the lottery in order to actually win the lottery. I do not waste my money on it. If I am going to earn millions of dollars, I am going to do it through carrying out my purpose in life. I know people who will spend all their earnings on lottery tickets but can’t afford to buy food. This is the world we live in. The dream. The fantasy. We would rather spend our money on hope instead of investing in something that is sustainable and guaranteed in life. I watched a lady (who happened to be older and overweight) spend over $50 on scratch off tickets. As I was standing beside her checking out at the register, I mentioned that I hoped she won something with all those tickets. She said that sometimes she does and sometimes she doesn’t. Think about how much she could save by not wishing and investing the money she is spending on those tickets. The investments would go a whole lot farther, I’m sure.
13) Brand New Cars. As mentioned above, we will save money up to get a new car, but we won’t spend money on a healthier lifestyle. If you have a car and it’s paid off and there is nothing wrong with it, why do you need to go out and buy a new car? Then you say “I can’t afford.” In reality, we all have a choice. We choose material objects over ourselves to satisfy a temporary urge and to make ourselves “feel better.” What happens after that initial happiness wears off though? Where do you stand then? If your car payment is keeping you from enjoying life and creating better habits in your life through education, you may want to reevaluate some things.
14) Subscriptions. Have you ever written down how much you spend on magazine or any type of subscription? We tend to impulse buy online and then we end up not even using the purchased subscription after a few months or we even forget about it. But you better believe, that company is taking their money out each month. What about monthly gym memberships (as mentioned above)? What are you spending each month? If you aren’t using the membership, that adds up and becomes a complete waste! If you are spending $20/month on a gym membership that you don’t use, you are wasting $240/year! It adds up! A couple months ago, I wrote down all my expenses, personal and business. I realized that just by writing down everything, I not only ended up finding money I was spending monthly unknowingly, but I also ended up saving myself over $200/month. This is huge! So go ahead and do this today: write down everything you have purchased. If you can’t remember, look at your bank statements. That’s what I had to do. Once you have done that, look at the ones you either forgot about or no longer use. Hmmm, maybe now you can invest in your health…
15) Walmart. Nuff said here right? I think we all have strayed from our lists from time to time going to this one store. Stop the madness! When you decide to take a trip to Walmart, decide what you are going for before you even step into the store. Make a list on your phone or a sheet of paper (most of us have smartphones and can easily create a list). Don’t deviate from your list unless it is something absolutely crucial you need and may have forgotten to write down. Do this at the grocery store as well. Also, never go to to grocery store hungry! You will end up spending way more money on food than you initially intended to. Make a list and stick to the list. Even my daughter knows to stop asking for stuff all the time. I have a list. If she is good, I may allow her to purchase something that costs $1, but that is it. We don’t splurge because we don’t need to. I would rather keep my money and use it for things we need or save it for things I need to invest in. This should be your mentality as well.
Thank you for hanging in there with me through this. I know it’s a long one, but it’s things we don’t often think about. We are so quick to dismiss our shortcomings by saying things like, “I can’t afford.” In reality, if we really take a look at our finances and get real clear about what we are spending, we may just find we do have more money than we thought we did and we CAN afford!
Investing in you (whether it’s your health or just plain mentorship period) should be the single most important thing in your life. If you’re not willing to invest in yourself, how do you expect for anything to change? If you want the results you yearn for, it may take scaling back in certain areas of your life that are less important or keeping you from your goals. If you continue to make excuses, you will continue to live the life you are currently living.
We do it because it’s comfortable. We do it out of fear. We do it because we don’t want to change. We don’t want to fail. But what we don’t realize is that taking chances is what we were designed to do. If we are not willing to take chances every now and then, we can’t expect change to occur in our lives. Take care of you. People around you need you. You are important to them, so why are you not important to yourself?