I was recently listening to a few episodes of the “What’s Up Next” podcast and they had both financial planners and fitness focused individuals on separate episodes. These two topics have me thinking, can we compare a financial advisor in the finance world and the personal trainer in the health and fitness world? Here are a few reasons why I feel that the comparison is fair and why you should take advantage of both
They Are Experts in their Field
Both a Financial Advisor (FA) and a Personal Trainer (PT) are considered to be experts in their respective fields. FAs and PTs both work in a space that may just be a hobby to you. For some of us, it is an area that we have little interest but know deep down that we need to improve in these areas in order to lead a healthy and prosperous life. Both (if selected appropriately) will sift through all of the “noise” that can exist when attempting to figure out these fields on your own. With the 24-hour news cycle and everyone that has a blog online (Hey!) claiming to be an expert, it can be comforting to know that you have someone that is trained in the field that you are looking to improve in.
They Hold You Accountable
These professionals are also there when you want to jump off the deep end and spend all of your money on vacation or to keep you from eating that entire bag of chips on the couch and skip your workout all together. There are plenty of times when you don’t feel like getting up and working out at 5am before work, but having someone waiting for you (and money spent on it!) can be the perfect motivator for most people. The same can be said when you are bored at home shopping at amazon and you have a plan in place with your FA. You also can argue that you get more out of each workout when you hire someone. You work just a bit harder when you are working with someone else and this can be said for a FA as well. When a stranger knows about your spending habits and the plan you have made, you may not want to let them down at your next meeting by not achieving your goals.
They Cost Extra Money!
This may be the main reason that most in the FI (Financial Independence) community argue that a FA/PT are not worth having. To some, they are a luxury, to others they are a necessity. This is what makes personal finance, personal. You need to weigh the pros and the cons of capital spent versus capital gained from having an expert on your side. I believe the same can be said for a PT. We all want to be healthy and active into our late retirement years or else we wouldn’t be saving for this time. The investment made now will help us enjoy our healthy years now AND later in our retirement. The cost of hiring this out is well worth the benefit later in life.
Personally, I do not have either one of these professionals in my corner. I like to think that I am my own PT but this is something that I struggle with all of the time. Creating programs and motivation for yourself does not hold the same weight as it does when someone else creates it for you. This is something I anticipate to battle with and hope to hire out in the future. As far as a FA, this is again something I do not have currently. I was stung a bit in the past with one of these professionals “helping” me and leading me down a path that may not have been in my best interest. I did not have the experience of losing money, but I feel that at this time I am more comfortable controlling my own money. This is something that I KNOW I will look to research in the future to ensure I am not missing something to improve my future.
I hope that this helps you understand that these two worlds are not as different as they may seem at first glance. Physical and financial health are important at any time in your life, but the sooner you are able to contribute to these areas of your life, the more time it will compound and be there for you to enjoy late into your retirement life.
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