Withstanding and being resilient to the financial consequences of life’s curve balls is what financial health means to me.
Things happen in life. It’s not “if” they’ll happen but when and how much it’s going to cost. It’s in these times that your financial health is put to the test. Just as when you’re exposed to a virus or injury, the state of health your mind and body are in can determine the severity and recovery from your illness. The same goes for your financial health. To stay financially well, care needs to be given to prepare for financial problems.
For me to reach and maintain my definition of financial health, it takes two things: preparation and positivity.
In your personal health, you can’t control the unknowns that pop up, the colds, the injuries or serious illnesses. It’s not possible to plan for every possibility. But what is possible is to prepare as best you can. Eat right, drink in moderation, exercise, and take your vitamins. By taking those steps, you’re preparing to fight off infection or illness before it happens.
Being financial fit also takes planning and preparation to be ready to withstand the not so good money times. That means making a budget and living on less money than you earn, not going into debt. It’s putting cash in your savings account for emergencies. It’s having your car and home properly insured. It means doing homework before you invest your money. This is what it takes to prepare for your financial future.
Often illness creeps in when our bodies are run down, when we’re stressed out and not in a happy place. Being sick isn’t fun but once you’re ill, whining and complaining doesn’t make it go away, it fact, it probably makes it worse. Instead, the best things you can do are to relax, take care of yourself and know that it will be over soon.
The same things go with financially stressful times. When money is tight, or you have an emergency expense come up, being angry and unfocused isn’t going to help or make the situation disappear. It makes the problem harder to handle. A positive mindset goes a long way when there are money troubles. Positivity not only helps you adapt and overcome problems but to also bounce back from them quicker. As corny as it sounds, a can-do attitude helps you think outside the box to find solutions to problems. It’s better than the alternative of wallowing in the negativity and not getting anywhere.
For me, financial health is the combination of being in a positive mindset and prepared to whether the bad financial times. Your financial health is similar to your personal health—it’s all about choices. The day-to-day decisions you make affect your long-term financial health and future.