Invest in Yourself - Pt. 2 Health
"Man sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money in order to recuperate his health." -Dalai Lama
Hopefully one thing this pandemic has taught all of us; all we have is our health and our sanity. You can have all the money in the world but you can never buy back lost time or health. In fact, it will cost much more in the long run to regain your health than it would to make health a priority in the first place. For those who have parents in a home, I'm sure you understand how much of their wealth they have made over the years is bleeding from paying for that assisted living. That's their hard earned money that should be going to you, not the government. Between the food you eat, the people you spend time with, what you read/watch/listen to, how you handle stress and what kind of physical activity you take part in are all part of the investment. Everything matters. If you have the perfect body and job but are always lonely and depressed, you won't be happy. If you are always surrounded by love ones but live an unhealthy lifestyle, then it will leave you feeling like garbage often. This is why you need to invest in all areas of health, and as early as possible.
Let's use an IRA as an example. The earlier you begin to invest, the more interest you will earn and the more your money will compound on itself. If you invest the $6,000 per year, you're net assets don't increase by $6,000. There will also be a percentage on top of that $6,000. Each year your account will gain more money. If you wait until your 50s and try to play catch up, where you can invest extra money each year, you'll never accrue the same type of money. Your retirement account and your health are both long term gains. The more you put in at an early age, the healthier you will be. And a healthy life is a much happier life.
This does not always require expensive supplements or hiring a trainer for 3x per week. But it will require you to get out of your comfort zone and start taking responsibility. Start by taking care of the basics. Exercise 3-5 times per week. Eat whole, nutritious foods often. Spend time laughing with loved ones. Sleep well every night. Have sex often. Find things that help you manage your stress. It sounds super simple and it is. But not everyone takes the time to prioritize. They wait to get unhappy, sick or unhealthy. They wait for someone to post a motivational quote with a tiger. It's time to get off your butt and take control of your life and your health.
Think about how miserable you felt during COVID. Laying around like a sack of potatoes because you couldn't go to the gym, snacking on everything in site because you're always home and bored, stressed out because of riots and bad news on TV, lack of physical, social and emotional connection. There were plenty of days and nights I didn't feel myself because I was lacking these things. Let's leave all of that in the past and start fresh. This is going to be the reset everyone needs.
I don't want to hear the excuse "I don't have time." We all know you burn through a new series on Netflix every weekend and you catch up on your DVR during the week. STOP BEING LAZY AND START DOING SOMETHING FOR YOURSELF. I don't want to hear the excuse "I don't have money." Yes money is tight at the moment, but everyone has money to go out to fancy restaurants every weekend or spend hundreds of dollars drinking. Right there you are pushing yourself even further away from your health and fitness goals. Make the sacrifice. Skip two Saturday nights out per month and hire a trainer for a couple of months. You can manage it IF IT'S A PRIORITY. Then when you hit your goals you can start to fit these things back into your lifestyle and create a healthy balance.
If you wait until you're already sick then I promise you'll be spending even more money in the end. Make it part of your lifestyle and be a leader for your children and your family. One day you're going to wake up feeling amazing and not looking for motivation because it's already a part of who you are. So whether it's sacrificing some time where you can't watch Netflix or sacrificing a night out every month so you can hire a trainer, the sooner you invest the better!
P.S. generally the bigger the investment the bigger the return. If you want great results in a short period of time you are going to have to invest in a great personal trainer. You may think finding a cheap trainer to see multiple times per week is better than seeing a more expensive one once per week. Don't be cheap, you may pay more up front but you'll pay less in the long run. $40/session 3x a week, taking over 6 months to reach your goal (or never!) is more expensive than $100/session 1x/week but getting to your goal in 3 months.