Stretching to Wealth

When you’re sitting in front of a computer for most of the day, interspersed with meetings with your direct reports, maybe a stop-by from your boss, multiple telephone conference calls, a quick lunch outside or in the canteen or at your desk, you might be advancing your career and probably your wealth, but what’s it doing to your body?

Your career, in the traditional office sense is time-limited, your body is something you have to live with for a longer period. Whether your goal is to start your own business, do something charitable, travel or just spend time with family and friends after your office-life comes to an end, you’ll need a fit and strong body to go with that.

I don’t recall coming across a blog post in the finance community that talks about health and body strength, but it could be that I haven’t looked hard enough. In any case, I think it is important and I also know it is something I have not been focusing on as much as I did a few years ago.

You’ve probably read lots of blogs talk about savings rates and frugality. I wonder how many have talked about the obvious concept that building greater wealth can also come from having greater revenue.

It may sound obvious, but I feel I need to write it down for you to read.

Sure, savings and frugality are other paths to wealth, and applying some of the concepts touted by the savings and frugality gurus definitely help.

I’ve just found another path and applied the concepts I’ve learnt over the years and they helped me increase my revenue by a factor of 10x over an 8-year period.

You’ll read in my blog articles the concepts that helped me increase my revenue in such a significant manner in such a short period. One of those concepts is the image you give off :

Do you look like a leader?

Great leaders exhibit a number of characteristics and I believe an important one is their physical stature. You don’t have to be a fashion model, you don’t need to be tall, but if you show that you take your health seriously, then that gives off an image that you take other things seriously as well.

You need to fit the part.

People want to feel safe and secure with a leader and physical fitness is an important element in constructing the leadership persona. It also helps give you the stamina needed for important roles, which is critical as well.

Obviously, there are a number of other characteristics that you can read about on this blog and I apply them still today to a great and rewarding extent and my wealth is still growing exponentially.

Having a fit body is also another element in securing a longer comfortable life. Having wealth and money is one part of a complex equation. You need to work on a holistic plan as you approach your career, your leadership image and your long-term wealth creation and live-ability.

Eating good food aside, having a strong, fit body has lots of advantages. These are some of the ones I see:

  • You tire less easily, so you can probably spend more time concentrating on tasks in front of you
  • When you get home at the end of the day and your kids jump on you – you can still carry them and still have fun and play with them
  • You probably end up having more time after work to focus on other projects as you don’t need to go to sleep when the sun goes down
  • When the weekend arrives you’ll more likely want to do something fun or adventurous rather than relax on the couch

Over the last few years, I’ve tried odd ways to stay in shape, from setting an objective to do 100 push-ups (I got to 60 before I got bored) to getting a personal coach, whom I was sure tried to kill me in every session.

My latest goal is to get myself to the company gym 3 times a week and do some cardio exercise and then get to my personal gym at least two evenings a week. I think going 5 times a week should help 1/ get me into a routine of doing sport and 2/ get me back in shape over the next 6 months. Once I get there, I’ll just need to maintain it (easier said than done…)

I’m also doing a lot of stretching. The last time I could touch my toes was back in University when I was playing basketball. Two weeks ago, I could get my palms to just under my knees. Go on, try it, it is not as easy as it sounds. Currently I’m touching the bottom of my ankle and in a week’s time, I want to be comfortably touching my toes. Then I want to try yoga and make that a routine as well.

Why stretching you might ask?

  1. Stretching increases blood flow through your body and that helps you pick up extra energy. Who doesn’t want that?
  2. Stretching helps your coordination to – or at least the ability your muscles have to react to changes in balance.
  3. You reduce the probability of injuries. I’ve been injured a few times over the years and most often that not I saw that my body wasn’t able to bend enough to avoid the “breaking point”. A little more supple and I would have been fine. Stretching helps with that. Less injuries equals more time to do other things.
  4. Stretching helps release the tension that your muscles hold. That’s only a good thing.

After having done research on the above benefits of stretching, it got me hooked. I’m not doing 30 minutes every morning – more like 3 to 5 at the moment, but it’ll build up over time and soon become a routine.

One thing I like about it, is that I see real progress quite rapidly after starting.

Progress is important as it keeps you motivated.

So, go out and get your fitness on. Not only can it help your career and importantly, your wealth creation, it is an important part of living well, living long and enjoying your life.



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