I recently went through a minor health and financial crisis. I became ill and was unable to work for a couple of weeks. My income took a hit and I am still getting caught up on my bills. But being down with the flu gave me time to think about my health in several ways. After all, I am not getting any younger and I watch both my parents struggle with chronic problems in their later years.
When I started to think more about health and fitness I really didn’t understand what that concept really means. I thought you had to go to the gym and run for miles to stay fit. That can help but it’s not the only way. As I searched the Web for ideas about how to stay healthy and fit I learned there are all sorts of options.
For example you can take up dancing as a fitness regimen. Dancing can be really fun. I wish I knew how to do it. I may sign up for dance lessons later this year.
But exercise is only part of the process. You also have to think about how to balance food with your lifestyle. I love junk food and I hate “foods that are good for me” but the truth is that you can probably find ways to enjoy food that is healthy for you.
There are websites that teach you how to live a health, natural lifestyle and that includes both exercise and food. But it’s also a lot about attitude. And attitude begins with what you believe in. What do you believe you can do? Because if you don’t believe you can lose weight you won’t. If you don’t believe you can exercise you won’t.
I was pretty stunned to learn that you can eat fast food and lose weight. It’s not that fast food makes you fat but that you make bad choices about food. Fast food offers some healthy choices now; we just need to choose to eat healthy no matter where we eat.
But the third part of the process for staying healthy and fit, in addition to exercise and diet (or maybe I should say being active and eating better), is to manage your money. That’s right, financial well-being contributes to a healthy lifestyle. Let me explain.
When you manage your money well you feel less stress in your life. When you feel less stress your health improves. But making good financial choices means you have the flexibility to make good health management choices, and that includes choosing the food you eat, how you stay active, and where you go for medical care. Obamacare really isn’t going to solve a lot of medical issues. It may exasperate some chronic health problems with inadequate treatment options. That remains to be seen.
Making good financial decisions begins with making good time management decisions. How you invest your time is as important as how you invest your money. After reading some tips on how to manage your time better I realized that we don’t have to make huge, radical changes in our lives to improve them. We make so many irrational choices that if we just stop to think about things more we’ll see we can be a little more efficient.
Whether you look at how to manage personal finance or just live a frugal lifestyle you’re still pursuing the same goal: spending less than you earn. That is such a great philosophy. I had never really thought about the frugal lifestyle as being empowered with so many good choices. I always thought you had to do without, rather than do smarter with less.
And it goes ever further than that. If you apply these same principles to creating wealth, not just improving health, then you begin to see there are alternative strategies that entail less risk and make better sense (in some cases).
I don’t know if I want to make money in the stock market but I know I want to improve my financial situation so that being down with the flu for a couple of weeks doesn’t impoverish me. Right now I am living without some things because I want to get back on track with my bills. But I don’t ever want to be in this position again.
So what I guess I am saying is that even if I can only save money in small ways, the next time I get sick I will have enough money to tide me over. And having that money means I won’t have to stop living the life I want to live. If I am taking dancing lessons at the time I will be able to continue taking them. If I am eating a better diet that costs a little more, I’ll continue to enjoy the better diet.
Every thing we do in life is tied together. I am starting to see that. I hope I am coming across clearly because it seems so clear to me.