A lot of Bank ads seems to be talking about Financial Wellness. I am not so sure Banks really help this, but it’s an incredibly important topic. And one thing is certain and that is, money challenges can contribute to stress levels, or ‘money stress’. Feeling out of control of your financial situation, living with high debt, dealing with health problems that threaten your income (especially if you’re inadequately insured), worrying about your children struggling with debt or being unable to establish themselves financially; all these things can increase your stress. And in a circular way, financial stress can make many of these problems worse. It’s far easier to deal with a major health scare if you know your financial future is safe.
All that said, the best financial situation in the world isn’t much use to you if you’re living an overly stressful lifestyle. Although I work in finance, I’ve long understood that a person’s financial position is only part of the equation of their financial wellbeing.
Staying mentally and physically healthy, maintaining a positive outlook and getting the balance between work and life are all critical. I’m always amazed that so many people feel a greater responsibility to their employer than to their family or health.
The bottom line is this: you can’t spend it if you’re dead, so do look after yourself.
This is why when I work with my coaching clients I try to understand them as people, not just as clients with whom I’m undertaking a transaction. I want to know about their goals, hopes and dreams, and the things that keep them up at night, whether they are financial or otherwise. This makes my relationship with them so much more than about the singular dimension of helping them to plan their finances.
It doesn’t matter what you do, whether that is sport, yoga, spending time with friends, reading or just trying to be positive, it is important to have work/life balance and realise family, friends and yourself should be your priority (definitely not work!).
I am also a big advocate of having someone in your life who keeps you accountable, and it can be a number of people. But we shouldn’t assume that we will be able to motivate ourselves, as let’s count those new year resolutions that didn’t last past March! The top sportspeople, even in individual sports like tennis, still have coaches. So do the most successful business people. If you can find a coach or coaches that will work for you, they will almost certainly be worth the investment. So if you’re going to sign up to a gym, pay the extra money and get a trainer, or at least find a gym buddy who’ll motivate you to turn up with them. At the end of the day, you want to live a long life, and most importantly to ensure that it is quality, not just quantity.
Article by Marc Bineham – Money coach, speaker and award-winning author of The Money Sandwich