The many similarities between becoming wealthy and healthy
After recently reading Becoming Rich: One step at a time, a friend of mine, Jenni, noted that when she read the advice regarding saving money and building wealth, she was constantly making the link to dieting.
And, the more I think about it, the stronger the link becomes.
Let’s break it down, stage by stage.
Saving: Short-term and medium-term goals tend to involve increasing our net wealth by X%, decreasing our monthly spending by Y pounds or saving up for a specific one-off event (such as a holiday or wedding).
Dieting: Similarly, goals with dieting involve increasing our fitness levels by X%, decreasing our weight by Y pounds or working towards a specific one-off event (such as a sponsored run or cycle).
Saving: Now that we have a goal, we need to plan how we intend to reach this goal. We may need to reduce our spending on specific items, spend more of our time earning additional income or find better investments to help our money grow.
Dieting: Once we have our dieting goal set, we may plan to reach these goals by reducing our consumption of a certain group of foods, spend more of our time exercising or find alternative exercises or activities that can help our fitness levels grow.
Saving: Next, we need to keep track of our progress. We may notice that after a week, we have saved 100 pounds and moved further towards our goal. If we haven’t progressed well, we need to determine where we have gone wrong and modify our plan accordingly.
Dieting: We may have lost 2 pounds and moved towards our goal. Otherwise, we need to revisit our actions to determine why we aren’t moving closer to that goal.
Falling off the wagon
Saving: Jenni particularly noted the similarities here. What do we do if we fall off the wagon? We should understand why, and fix the factors which may cause us to have spent more this month. Most importantly, we mustn’t fall foul of “compound errors” (the evil twin of compound interest) which I will make a full post on later in the week.
Dieting: Yep, you guessed it! Same approach required. We may have been out 3 times this week with friends for pizza. It is important to address why we have done this and determine how we can avoid it in the future. Don’t compound the error by thinking “well, I’ve already had three pizzas this week, what harm can a fourth one do!!”.
Achieving your goals
Saving: Great, we’ve achieved our targets. What do we do now? For starters, celebrate a little. Then, set new goals to reach a new level of net wealth.
Dieting: Same again. We celebrate reaching our target and then we set new targets to become even fitter and healthier.
Saving: In an attempt to increase net wealth, it isn’t short term improvements that will eventually make you wealthy. It’s a way of life. It’s a change in the way we think.
Dieting: Equally, yo-yo dieters are never really successful in becoming fit and healthy. This isn’t a short-term think – we need to change our attitude in the long-term.
So, do you agree with Jenni that there is a strong link between saving and dieting? Are there any other similarities you have noticed? How about any differences?