Taking care of yourself physically can drastically impact your daily life in addition to your overall wealth. The way in which physical health is connected to mental clarity, focus, and wealth is well documented.
According to Stuart Carter Dip. PT, a healthy lifestyle provides a “healthy flow of blood, oxygen, and nutrients [to the brain].” If your health declines, “cells [in your brain] will start to die, and your mental clarity will begin to suffer.”
Physical health and mental clarity
With physical health comes sharper focus and clarity to achieve our life’s goals. Building wealth requires a plan and focus on a specific purpose. To achieve wealth, you must balance the daily financial struggles of life while still moving forward with a long term plan focused on retirement.
As you progress through life, you undoubtedly have felt the snowball effect routines have on your health. When we get into daily habits of going to the gym, running, and exercising daily, it’s easy to keep up with this motivation and routine.
However, when you miss a day or two of exercising, it can have the opposite effect. Routine habits can quickly be broken, and unhealthy habits can replace them. Foods you never used to eat are now irresistible. Self-control quickly becomes a lack of control.
Heidi Godman, the Executive Editor for Harvard Health Letter, writes, “exercise improves mood and sleep, and reduces stress and anxiety. Problems in these areas frequently cause or contribute to cognitive impairment.”
It’s clear a healthy lifestyle positively contributes to a sharp mind and mental clarity. The ability to focus and maintain energy opens career doors that were previously closed.
The Marshmallow Experiment and delayed gratification
Several studies show why many of the most healthy people are also wealthy. The secret is the ability to take advantage of delayed gratification. A famous Standford University “Marshmallow Study” shows how self-control and delayed gratification are attributed to focus and determination.
The experiment promised a child two marshmallows if he could resist eating a marshmallow, which sat in front of him for 15 minutes. A study that followed the same children into college found that the children who were able to delay their gratification in the initial experiment scored higher on their SAT scores than the kids who gave in to the initial temptation.
The Dunedin Multidisciplinary Health and Development Study
A New Zealand study followed 1037 children from birth and found that increased health and self-control in kids were directly related to and the most significant predictor of their wealth and success as adults. Children who were able to avoid bad lifestyle choices and maintain positive habits could control many other aspects of their lives – to include building wealth.
The relationship between wealth and health
Marta Tiainen from the University of Helsinki proposed a thesis in 2018 that showed an increase in either wealth or health elevated the other. Her study showed that an increase in wealth made more healthy options and medicine available. On the flip side, an increase in health leads to more productivity and an individual’s economic growth.
Study after study shows how health and wealth are intricately connected. If you already have wealth, improving your health may further increase your prosperity. Conversely, if you’re struggling to build wealth, shift your focus to improve your overall lifestyle and physical health to significantly impact your wealth.
Start building healthy habits by making small but repetitive steps in your life. Commit to adding another serving of vegetables to your diet. Commit to adding another day to your exercise routine. If you need to begin an exercise program, reach out to a close friend or relative to hold you accountable.
Small positive steps over time can result in major achievements. Building positive habits takes time, but the results will pay off if you force yourself to stick with them. You owe it to yourself to improve both your health and your wealth.