Regular physical activity, a balanced diet and adequate sleep are some of the most recommended practices for maintaining your overall health. These habits also have a positive effect on your personal finances and your savings in general.
At first glance, it may be difficult to recognise the link between healthy habits and personal finances. Nevertheless, these concepts actually have a lot in common. On the one hand, when you take care of your physical and mental health, you also foster your personal and professional development. Furthermore, you prevent illnesses or afflictions that could become financial costs in the future, whether they be for medical treatments or your inability to work, among other consequences that affect your income.
On the other hand, when you adopt healthy habits you can also meet specific goals, such as saving or reducing expenses, as well as contribute to a more responsible consumption of natural resources through models such as the circular economy or collaborative economy.
Physical activity. When it comes to exercise, you may think of long gym sessions, running on the treadmill or lifting weights, just to name a few activities. But the reality is that, by making some adjustments to your daily life, you can improve your physical and mental health, save money and benefit the planet.
Walking or riding a bicycle (whenever possible) to where you work or study is a way to reduce the use of your private car. As a result, the cost of fossil fuel consumption, such as petrol, or electricity, will also be lower.. In any case, the most important thing is performing the physical activity that best suits your circumstances for at least two-and-a-half hours a week, as per the recommendation of the World Health Organisation (WHO), if you are in between the ages of 18 and 64.
Eat well. Sugary, processed or fried foods, among others, are often tempting when shopping but do not always provide the nutrients you need. It’s a good idea to make a shopping list before going to buy groceries to avoid impulse purchases, which are also an additional cost to your finances. You can also visit local markets and take advantage of the seasonal fruit and vegetables on offer, or choose produce that have not been prepared or packaged and instead cut and peel them yourself. This will help you save money while also consuming fresh, healthier food.
Get enough rest. There have surely been times when you’ve woken up already feeling physically or mentally tired, or simply in a bad mood. The answer to this may be in the amount and quality of sleep you’re getting. A lack of good-quality sleep affects abilities such as attention, focus, learning or memory, and can negatively impact important decisions, such as financial ones. It also increases the risk of injuries and accidents that can happen due to drowsiness, which can potentially burden your family’s financial situation due to the related medical costs or reduced income, for example – in addition to affecting your health.
Be consistent with your goals. The habit of discipline can also help you foster other habits, like those mentioned above. It also can be a driver to achieve goals you’ve set in different aspects of your life: exercising more, saving for a trip or learning a new language are just some goals that all have consistency in common. Creating a calendar with the days that you want to exercise or setting a monthly budget to better control your personal finances (and save up the money for holidays) are two examples of how, with a bit of planning, you can keep your goals in sight and focus on achieving them.
The same way it takes time and dedication to build the habit of exercising or eating healthy, the same applies to your financial health improvement goals.
Consume responsibly. Alcohol consumption or tobacco are some examples of negative habits that can harm your health and your savings. As they require you to spend money on them, they directly lead to a decrease in income. This is without taking into account the treatments or financial loss that may result from the illnesses they cause, the inability to work they may lead to or the dependency they generate, among other issues.
In the economic sphere, it is also possible to consume responsibly and in a way that helps care for society and the planet. For example, through sustainable finance, with responsible investment products such as green bonds or social bonds. Another option is to adopt habits such as using second-hand applications to give unused electronic devices a second life or reducing energy consumption in your home or office in order to not waste natural resources.
More and more companies are concerned with promoting healthy habits in the workplace. In addition to contributing to your employees’ well-being and to retaining or attracting talent, it also helps achieve targets and improve productivity.
Initiatives such as physical activity days at the workplace, discussions with specialists to raise awareness about the importance of caring for your physical and mental health both inside and outside the workplace, or first aid training offer companies benefits such as increased employee engagement and improved bonds among colleagues. In short, a healthy team works much better and drives business growth. A healthy lifestyle at work and beyond boosts your personal finances too.