I love the fanfare, the majesty, the tradition, the whole world coming together to celebrate the ancient glory of competitive sports. That’s right, I’m talking about the Olympics. And although I never had a prayer of being an Olympic athlete myself, the excitement of the games inspires all to tackle some personal hurdles of our own - perhaps even our financial goals!
Here are four lessons we can learn from the Olympic fanfare about how to achieve our financial dreams. By keeping these lessons in mind, we can all help ourselves save money today and build the right financial habits for a gold-medal future!
1. Get off to the right start
Many events in the Olympic games only take place after several preliminary or qualifying rounds. Even though every athlete knows that the qualifying rounds are not the final race, they still need to push their hardest in order to make it to the finals, as well as gain the confidence to compete well there.
College students in debt could certainly remember this tip when handling their money. While Olympic Athletes are disqualified for starting before the buzzer, there is no such thing as a false start on your way to saving money. Get going and get going soon on your financial goals. People ask, “When should I pay off my student loans?,” “How do I start building an emergency fund?” the answer is always “Right now, and it happens one step at a time.” You will never get there if you don’t start.2. Coaches
Coaches are almost as big a part of the Olympics as the athletes themselves. Young, promising stars will go through great lengths - even moving to a new country - to get the coaches they believe will help them earn that gold medal. The right coach can make all the difference when it comes to international competition.
In the same way, who do you let influence your financial know-how? From whom do you take money advice? If you need some encouragement to stop impulse buying, sign up for some positive savings help from ImpulseSave. If you need help finding creative ways to save money - check out our blog or the many other Personal Finance bloggers out there! There are so many great places, both online and off, to hear sound financial advice - all you have to do is take a look!3. The Support of Many
On the first day of the Olympics I watched a 250km bike race that took place through the streets of London. The winner, a 38-year-old from Kazakhstan, rode to victory for both himself and his proud country after 5 hours, 45 minutes, and 57 seconds of tough competition. The entire length of the course was lined with cheering fans and excited spectators who helped the athletes cross the finish line in spite of the challenges of this race.
While we each need to take responsibility for our own finances, having help along the way sure makes it easier. Find cheering fans wherever you can find them, whether that is in your friends and family, on the ImpulseSave savings feed, or on Twitter - together we can encourage and remind each other to save money today for our big goals tomorrow.4. Celebration
The road to the Olympics is a long one - it didn’t start on July 27th, or even when the athletes qualified for the team months ago. Olympians have been training, competing, and celebrating their accomplishments every step of the way for most of their lives. Ryan Lochte would never have won the Gold Medal in swimming if he had not first won the World Championships and hundreds of other swim meets before that.
In the same way, make sure you celebrate all along the way. Always be encouraged when you can find new ways to save money because you know that it’s one more step towards your financial goals. Set up smaller goals as pieces of your bigger dreams so that you can rejoice at your progress at every turn.
What financial lessons do you see from the Olympic games?