Today we have a guest post from Maria McBride, of RatherBeSweating.com and she writes today to discuss why you should invest…in sweat!
Confused? So was I but read on and you’ll soon realize, she makes some great points about how sweating is a lot like investing – you have to make the time for it, find what works for you, and stay consistent in your plan. You and I both know that a healthy life is a wealthy life, but let’s hear more from Maria…
What if I told you that there are more similarities to sweating and investing than differences?
- Starting early will enable you to live off the interest for years to come.
- Putting away small, consistent amounts is more important than random chunks.
- Compounding interest works for your financial health in the same way that it works for your physical health.
While planning for your financial future is important, so is planning for the future of your physical health. What good would all that money be if you were too sick, too broken, or too injured to enjoy it? The great thing about taking care of the future physical YOU is that you can find fun ways to do so. Below are seven points on how to treat your sweating like your investing.
FIND A VERTICAL THAT WORKS FOR YOU
This is where you choose the activity that is going to have your “investments” pay off for years to come. It’s no secret that my sweating investment vertical is Bikram Yoga. I fell in love with it from the very first class I took. The healing benefits of Bikram Yoga combined with the challenging workout make it the perfect activity for me to gain energy, heal my body and mind, sweat, stretch, and feel my best. I’ve been practicing Bikram Yoga for ten years (including two pregnancies). My goal in explaining this isn’t to try to convince you that Bikram Yoga should be your vertical, but rather to encourage you to choose a form of sweating that you love and that makes you feel great. Whatever it is, it has to work for you in the senses that you’re gaining benefit and you will continue to do it.
CHOOSE HIGH INTEREST, LOW RISK
When choosing your vertical, choose something that will give you high rewards with very low risk. One of the reasons I love Bikram Yoga is because it’s a healing exercise. If you found a bank in which you could invest and receive 20% growth, would you put your money into that bank? Yes! Treating your sweating like your investing is not to say that you can never do anything risky or fun, but rather the main vertical of sweating should be something that will improve and then maintain your physical health. If you find that your body is getting more beat up the more you do your activity then you might be in a “high risk investment” situation. Allocate some of your time for that “risk,” especially if you love it, but diversify and pick up a sweating routine that will build health.
Once you come up with how you’re going to sweat, carve out the time to make it happen. I’ve found that sticking to something on a consistent basis, let’s say going to yoga twice a week, is far more manageable and easier to maintain than going to yoga six times a week for six weeks but then burning out and disappearing for six months. You might invest a small percentage of your monthly income each month. That’s manageable so you stick with it. After a few months the investing become routine and automatic which is exactly what happens with consistent sweating. The sweating and investing is not something you have to think about any more, it just happens. It’s part of your life.
START EARLY AND LIVE OFF THE INTEREST
We learn the power of compounding interest in a few high school math classes. If you start early, you don’t even have to invest much to take advantage of the compounding effect. The same is true for sweating. If physical exercise becomes part of your lifestyle early on, you end up creating interest – not of dollars but of health. Once you reach a certain point you can live off the interest of that healthy lifestyle. Say whaaat?! Think about it: You’ve exercised doing something you enjoy from an early age. That activity builds health. You maintain these healthy habits that you don’t even really need to think about. If you miss a few days of sweating, you’re able to live off the interest of the health (and wealth!) that you’ve already created. At this point, you don’t need to sweat to get healthy, you’re already there. You continue to invest in your sustainable vertical with manageable frequency. But that’s it. You don’t have to build up, you’re already operating in ultimate health.
SURROUND YOURSELF WITH LIKE-MINDED SWEATERS
People who keep you accountable and motivated and for whom you do the same are necessary in terms of your sweating success. Sure, you can operate as a lone wolf, but dragging yourself out of bed for that early morning run on a rainy day because you’re meeting your neighbor so you can sweat together is so much easier. If you want to build your investments, surround yourself with people who are on the same path for motivation. You can learn from one another, help each other, and share strategies. When you’re stuck or in need of some brainstorming, your network can help you make your next move.
It’s hard for me to think of an investment strategy that doesn’t take time. Everything from starting a small business to real estate, to gold, to stocks and bonds and company retirement plans (oh my!) take time. The wealth in all of these verticals is not created overnight. If you’ve never run a mile in your life and you want to run a marathon, will it happen overnight? Probably not. But more importantly, is it possible to achieve with training? Without a doubt. Physical changes happens with steady, consistent practice. Hopefully though, both your sweating and investing vehicles won’t make you wait decades to enjoy the fruits of your labor. While goals may not be met overnight, that doesn’t mean they can’t be met in a reasonably short amount of time. Stay persistent, consistent, and patient, especially in those first few months.
Speaking of retirement, it’s often an exciting time because of the freedom it offers, but the financial stress of retirement is less exciting. When your income is suddenly lower than the amount you are used to, it can present all sorts of problems, including difficulties paying your monthly bills. Accessing the equity in your home as spendable money through a reverse mortgage is a way to fix that problem. Unlike traditional lenders, reverse-loans brokers give special loans you can only qualify for when you retire. The reverse loan allows you to receive money on a set schedule without paying it back in full for as long as the home remains yours. To qualify, you must also prove you are able to pay the taxes and maintain the home for the duration of the loan.
The point of doing this sweating and investing is to bring joy. And enjoying the journey is a sweet benefit. If you’re sweating and investing, investing and sweating, but you’re not having fun, take inventory of your situation. Maybe you need a different vertical. Maybe you don’t have enough like-minded sweaters in your life. Maybe you’re expecting change overnight and you should really be looking six months out. Sometimes a shift in perspective or a recalibration of goals can help make the journey as fun as you assume to destination to be.
Maria McBride owns a Bikram Yoga studio in her hometown. She blogs about exercise, motherhood, business, and food on her blog, Rather Be Sweating. She is amazed on a daily basis at how much work yet also how much joy her son Joseph and daughter Winna bring. Someday, she’ll have the time to get back out onto the golf course with her husband Ben. You can find her on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.