Why You Need to Be Financially Fit

Individual Americans spend hundreds of dollars a year and at least as many hours on keeping themselves physically fit but too many people neglect their financial health. Just like physical health, being financially fit is crucial to your well-being, your future and your quality of life. 

Here’s why being financially fit is so important and how you can overcome common barriers to achieving financial wellness. 

Financial wellness: a ripple effect 

Being financially fit is about more than just having enough money in your account to cover your expenses and put away something for tomorrow. Managing money responsibly will affect many aspects of your life:

  • Marriage. According to a recent study by AARP, financial problems are the second leading cause for divorce in the country. Money brings resentment and arguments into a marriage. In a study reviewing over 740 instances of marital conflict between 100 couples, money was found to be the most common topic couples argued about.  
  • Mental health. Money stress can severely affect your mental health, causing depression, restlessness, anxiety and more.  
  • Physical health. Stressing over finances can also directly impact your physical health, leading to recurring symptoms like headaches, fatigue, upset stomach, insomnia, high blood pressure and an increased risk of heart disease and stroke.
  • Work life. Being bogged down by money worries can make it difficult to focus while at work, which can bring down productivity levels and hamper career growth. In addition, prospective employers tend to review the financial wellness of new hires as part of their background checks; high rates of debt and a poor credit score can cost an employee a new job. 
  • Parenting. Managing money irresponsibly can mean not having sufficient funds to pay for a child’s education, private lessons, medical needs and more. 

What are the leading causes of money stress? 

According to a survey by Credit Wise®, 73% of Americans rank money issues as the number one stressor in their lives. Here are the top causes for financial stress: 

  • High-interest debt
  • Insufficient savings
  • Medical bills
  • Living paycheck to paycheck
  • Lack of retirement planning

Stressing over money is never fun. Stressing over money, when any of the above applies to you, takes on its own form of angst by adding a level of long-term anxiety. It takes time, sometimes years, to undo the damage of any of these stressors but it can be done!

Barriers to financial wellness and how to overcome them

We’re convinced: being financially fit is super-important. But what happens now? Why are 80% of Americans in debt?  Why do only 39% of Americans have enough saved up to get them through a $1,000 emergency? 

Unfortunately, while many people may understand that financial fitness is crucial to their wellbeing, there are several barriers that make it difficult to follow through on their convictions. 

First, many lack the basic financial knowledge necessary to responsibly manage their money. Second, many people mistakenly believe that budgeting, saving and being more mindful of how they manage their money are too time-consuming and tedious. Finally, some people may have fallen so deeply into debt, they’ve begun believing they will never be capable of ever pulling themselves out. 

Here are some simple steps you can take today to help you achieve and maintain financial wellness:

  • Get educated. There is no shortage of financial literacy available to the interested consumer, from financial literacy blogs to personal finance books, podcasts, online classes and so much more. Learning how money works, the power of a long-term investment and how much you’re really paying each time you swipe that high-interest credit card can help you make better choices. 
  • Have the money talk with your partner. Whether you’ve only been sharing expenses for half a year or you’ve been married more than a decade, it’s important to be on the same financial page as your partner. Talk openly and honestly, being careful not to be judgmental in any way, and discuss your individual and shared long-term and short-term money goals. Then come up with a plan for how you intend to reach them together. 
  • Pay all bills on time. If you can’t take aggressive steps toward paying down debt just yet, be sure to make the minimum payment on each credit card bill each month. 
  • Create a budget. Giving every dollar a destination makes it easier to spend mindfully and cut down on extraneous expenses. 
  • Start saving. There’s no such thing as a sum of money that’s too small to put into savings. Every dollar counts, and once you get the ball rolling, you’ll be motivated to pack on the savings until they really grow. 

You give your abs a great workout each day now it’s time to get those money muscles into shape! Follow the tips outlined above to stay financially fit at all times

Your Turn: What are your best tips for maintaining financial wellness? Tell us about it in the comments. 

Top Three Dream Cars

What kind of car would you buy with a budget that knows no bounds?

Are you an absolute automotive fanatic? So much so that you find yourself daydreaming about owning several exotic models of all your favorites? Are you constantly surfing the web for the newest models of your preferred brand, reading reviews on car websites, pinning car-related pictures on Pinterest? Lamborghinis and Porsches and convertibles, oh my!

High-end luxurious cars constituting “dream cars” may not necessarily be the most affordable ones on the road, but they’re certainly the most to die for. And even though we could probably list many more, we’ve scoured the Internet for the top three top dream cars ranking among the world’s wish lists. Read on to find out more details about them:

1. Rolls Royce Phantom
Price: MSRP of $398,970

Luxurious. Powerful. Exotic. What else could you want? “With its powerful stance, iconic proportions and state-of-the-art technology, the latest expression of Phantom is a timeless interpretation of the modern luxury motor car,” the Rolls Royce website states. The exterior is decked out with both wood and metal is more than 19 feet long. The elegant interior boasts hand-stitched leather upholstery, lambswool rugs, as well as an 8.8-inch color screen, a multi-camera system and a USB port. It also has a 6.7-liter V12 with 453 hp and 531 lb/ft of torque. Sure, it may cost as much as a standard single-family home in most states, but as the director of design for the Phantom, Giles Taylor, says, “It has a sense of purpose, a simple clarity and effortless poise.”

2. Ferrari 458 Spider
Price: MSRP of $257,412

This convertible has it all — technology, design and above all, beauty. This stunner boasts a 4.5-liter V8 that produces 562 hp and 398 lb/ft of torque, and an estimated acceleration from zero-to 60-mph in 3.4 seconds. It has impressive equipment such as 20-inch wheels, carbon-ceramic brakes and adjustable driving and vehicle settings. The leather upholstery and trim give it a high-end luxury feel, and the Bluetooth and sound system, including an auxiliary audio jack, come standard to please the technology-savvy car owner. An aluminum retractable hardtop completes the work-of-art design.

3. Lamborghini Gallardo LP 570-4 Superleggera Edizone Tecnica
Price: $241,200

A type of Gallardo model, this jaw-dropping masterpiece features front- and rear-end styling, automated manual transmission and carbon-fiber components in both the exterior and interior. Its high-performance speed and acceleration is sure to please any joy-riding speed demon: A 5.2-liter V10, with 570 hp and 397 lb/ft of torque that gets the car up to 60 mph in about three seconds. In fact, in an article on Daily Mail UK, car reviewer Chris Evans calls this model “the most exciting and frightening road-legal car I have driven in 47 years.” You’ll also love the car’s 19-inch aluminum wheels and fixed rear spoiler, which give the exterior an exotic feel. Beautiful faux suede upholstery adorns the inside.

We can help finance your personal dream car (although probably far less expensive), so stop by today.

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