Let me start by saying neither my health nor my budget is perfect. But every day I wake up and do my best with both of them. They are very high priorities in my life. I consider myself one of the world’s leading authorities to discuss the roadblocks to both. (Insert exasperated grin here).
And why does it seem like I’m always talking about budgets and a health regimen like they are so similar? Because they are.
1. It’s overwhelming to start.
I’ve heard from a lot of my followers that they don’t have a household budget because it seems too complicated. I’ve also had countless conversations in real life with women who tell me they stick to cardio only because they wouldn’t have a clue what to do with weights. And nutrition…that’s a whole subject unto itself. The only way to overcome this obstacle is to start small and build on your knowledge. You might see me say this a time or two in this list. The internet, while sometimes dark and full of terrors, is also vast and full of information.
2. I don’t know where to begin, so I just don’t.
When something seems overwhelming and you don’t know where to start, chances are you just won’t. People are busy these days. Nobody has time to sit down and figure out a whole new way of life. How do we overcome this feeling? Start small and build, which leads to the next issue…
3. I would need to hire a professional and I can’t afford it.
Personal trainers, financial advisors and nutrition coaches can be expensive, that’s a fact. However, in today’s world, there is so much information online that unless you need face to face interaction, you can get the information you need at very low prices and often for free.
4. I have to make drastic changes to my lifestyle all at once.
With an overwhelming task, like creating a budget or implementing a fitness routine into your life, it is easy to think that assoon as it starts your whole life will change. This is actually a great way to fail. The best way to implement either strategy is to start small and build. (Is this becoming repetitive or what?) For a budgeting beginner, a great place to start is by tracking your spending for one week.
5. Things are so out of control that I feel helpless.
“My credit card debt is insurmountable.” “I think I need to lose 60 pounds and that going to be so much work.” “What’s the point in even trying?” I’ve been there, done that and bought the t-shirt. Thinking of huge debt or huge changes all at once can lead to a feeling of utter hopelessness. This is when you start small and build on your success.
6. I don’t want to spend my free time doing something tedious.
Who wants to sit around planning meals or mapping out a spending plan? Maybe a few, shall we say “unique” individuals, but not most of us. We would rather be having fun doing whatever it is that we like. But guess what? I’m here to tell you that after you establish these routines, they will take up very little of your time and become a way of life. And you will enjoy doing the things you love to do even more. I promise.
7. Other people don’t have to put in so much effort, I just have bad luck.
“Sally’s parents are loaded and she works for their company and makes a ton of money.” “John has good genes and can eat whatever he wants without gaining a pound.” Maybe these things are true for a small percentage of the population, but probably not for most people. I know plenty of people that could blow through a huge salary or inheritance and be buried in debt. Unless you have inherited Warren Buffet’s fortune, you’ll need to budget or you’ll end up more like MC Hammer. (Bankrupt)
And while there certainly are people who are more genetically blessed than others, I’ve been around enough people who I thought were “lucky” to know that often these people have a great talent for self control. That is not luck, that is discipline. It turns out that good old hard work might be the key to success after all.
8. I like my luxuries and indulgences too much to change.
“I’m not going to give up my Sunday morning donuts and coffee.” “I’m not going to stop buying designer purses.” Nobody is perfect. Eat your donuts. Buy your purses. Hey, buy a designer purse that LOOKS like a donut. Just do it in a way that makes sense for your fitness or budget plan.
9. My spouse/significant other doesn’t do it, so it will be impossible to be successful.
I’m not going to lie, if you face this roadblock you are going to have a very hard time being successful in either budgeting or fitness. If the person who shares a home and a life with you doesn’t want to make the same changes you want to make, it will make your journey very difficult. You will need loads of grit and determination to get started, but once there are results, it will help to build a convincing case to get on board.
10. I will have to restrict my behaviors for the rest of my life.
This is a huge one, and one that I have felt so many times in the past. Say you’re on a diet and you eat one thing that doesn’t fit the prescribed plan. The whole thing goes out the window and we just eat whatever the rest of the day because it’s already “ruined.” Right? Then one day leads to another and another and you are “off the wagon.” The same rule applies with budgeting. You blow the budget and all of a sudden you decide it’s not working and you slip back into your old ways of spending indiscriminately. The next thing you know, your credit card balances are high again and you’re back to square one.
This behavior is very hard to break, but it can be done. Just because you have one slip or deviation doesn’t mean you have failed. You know what it does mean? That you are living your life. Life happens and nobody can stick to a strict plan for a long period of time. Nobody. Something that my (online) trainer says is that you are only one meal or workout away from being “on.” The same is true with budgets, raising kids, keeping your house clean, and everything else under the sun. Nobody is perfect, nobody is going to stick with a regimented plan 100% of the time. If you stray from the plan once in awhile, OH WELL, just get back with it. Don’t throw the whole thing out the window.