Health and Wealth
How being proactive can help you shape up both your personal health
and your financial wellness.
By Cramer Soebbing
The overlap of personal health and wealth is much more significant than franchise owners realize. Each plays a fundamental role in our lives. Success (and difficulties) in one can lead to similar outcomes in the other. Parallel to how you might take an approach to good health, good financial wellness takes planning, discipline and – typically for best results – guidance from specialists to ensure individuals are held accountable and ultimately goals are achieved.
More and more, the overlapping of these two subjects is coming to the forefront of people’s minds. On one end, exercise has been shown to improve mood, productivity and boost energy. Each of these can easily lead to improved decision-making and positively support financial outcomes. Alternatively, poor habits can lead to coping mechanisms that lend themselves to poor health and financial decisions. Examples include low morale creating low workplace productivity, unhealthy and expensive eating out, and even the misuse of drugs, alcohol or tobacco.
Coaching for Accountability
Such as when you seek out a trainer or nutritionist, when it comes to staying financially fit, seeking guidance or advice can make a huge difference. Humans tend to fear and stress about things they don’t understand or the unknown. Working with a financial advisor serving as your advocate can make a difference in making long-term decisions and positively affect financial outcomes.
Similarly to working with a trainer for your personal health, financial planners can help you create realistic goals specific to your life situation, create a customized path to help you reach those goals and help hold you accountable in your journey to accomplishing those goals.
Cutting Financial Cravings
Staying physically and mentally healthy is certainly a challenge. Many of us know we should exercise and choose not to; similarly, many of us know we should save more, but don’t. If we know these things, why do we choose to avoid them?
In today’s fast-paced society with fast-food readily available, it’s easy to avoid eating healthy. (Restaurant franchisees especially must weigh their passion for the food they serve with healthy habits.) The emergence of many food-delivery services has compounded this. Fast food also provides more instant gratification than say, preparing a homemade lunch or dinner.
The instant gratification of purchasing something now versus saving for future purchases is a similar cause for many people failing to reach their financial goals. It is important in each facet of our lives to focus on the long term. Financially, that typically means retirement.
Balance is crucial, across both health and wealth facets, and for all franchise owners. A fulfilling lifestyle and one’s happiness in the now shouldn’t be sacrificed due to anxiety over retirement, and vice versa. Our advice to franchise owners and all clients is to be cognizant of going overboard on hefty purchases or investments that provide momentary, fleeting happiness, but could severely hinder retirement plans.
Forced into Early Retirement
A recent study of retirees age 50 and over found that 81 percent viewed having good health as being the most important ingredient for a happy retirement. However, many individuals anticipate working until a certain age, and don’t realize health considerations can often derail those plans, impacting their long-term financial outlook.
In fact, more than half of retirees retired earlier than they expected, and studies have found the No. 1 reason for their early retirement was a health problem. Dreams of spending retirement cruising around the world in good health can easily be shattered if physical and mental health are not nurtured in the present.
Customizing a Game Plan
Taking proactive steps to stay healthy is crucial to your wealth. Eating well and staying active can reduce the likelihood of a significant ailment that could stifle long-term earnings or eat into retirement savings for care. Franchise owners should consider the following actions, applicable in their personal lives and in their workforce:
- Treat a bike ride as the new boardroom – The Wall Street Journal reports that many business leaders are using cycling as a new means of getting to know their peers and potential clients.
- Take a walk while you take that next phone call – Dozens of studies show that even 30 minutes of walking a day lowers your risk for diabetes, heart disease, osteoporosis and certain cancers.3 If you’re on the phone at least 30 minutes a day, consider walking while on those calls, or at a minimum taking them standing up!
- Make it hard for employees to say no – Because a leading reason for avoiding physical fitness is lack of time, franchisees should consider bringing fitness to the workplace. Yoga classes have risen in popularity in the workplace because of the little space and equipment they require.
Remember, these decisions have longstanding financial ramifications. One study by the American Heart Association pegged savings from exercising to be as high as $2,500 a year. It is important to be proactive in your financial situation as well. Taking specific, attainable steps today to save versus splurge will most certainly protect your retirement nest egg over the long-term.
Cramer Soebbing is a wealth advisor at Mariner Wealth Advisors’ Chicago office. The information contained herein is not intended to be personal legal, investment or tax advice or a solicitation to buy or sell any security or engage in a particular investment strategy.