Are You Financially Fit?
Over the last several years the fitness industry has exploded.
Unique diets, strength training regiments for all ages, you name it. Many people have shown a level of dedication to becoming healthier, both mentally and physically, and are enjoying healthier golden years as a result.
I love fitness, so this focus and passion around the industry has been very exciting – fitness goals set and crushed by thousands! But let’s pause...
When was the last time you checked (or even talked about) your financial health?
One of the building blocks of financial health and fitness is the fantasized and dreamt about topic of retirement. That’s right, retirement. Have you thought about it?
Close your eyes. What does your ideal retirement look like?
Retiring young and trying van life? Traveling to different countries? Retiring at 65, and finding a part time job that brings you extreme joy? Living comfortably and volunteering? Moving to a warm climate and kicking your feet back?
Whatever it might look like, let’s open up about this topic.
Have you been told you are too young and have years – or even decades – to worry about retirement? Maybe it’s the opposite, and you believe you’re way past the point of saving enough to ever retire!
Think again. I truly believe that it is never too early to start planning for retirement and it’s never too late.
In any fitness journey, you must start somewhere. You can’t expect yourself to lace up a pair of running shoes and crush five miles on day one. Instead, breaking out for a 15-minute walk on your lunch or after dinner is a little more realistic when you’re just beginning. The same goes for investing and starting to prepare for retirement.
Break it down into smaller, more manageable actions.
One simple step that I suggest you start with today is, check to see if you have a 401(k) or retirement plan offered through your employer. If so, do they match your contributions up to a certain percentage?
If you find out that your employer does offer you a chance to participate in a plan, great! Start small. Two or three percent of your paycheck adds up over time. For an employee making 40,000 per year paid biweekly, 2% is roughly 30 dollars per paycheck. This might seem like a lot to give up now, but your future self will thank you when you start to consider the retirement possibilities.
By contributing to an employer sponsored plan like a 401(k), it makes investing mindless. The money is directly taken from your paycheck, pre-tax, and invested in the plan. Thus, you never see it deposited into your bank account. However, the contribution will show on your paystub so you can keep track of how much you've added year to date. Lastly, most plans allow you to choose how your contributions are invested based on your risk tolerance. Do not be intimidated. Do not be embarrassed. Everyone starts somewhere.
Ask the questions, do the research. Reach out to your Human Resources contact because, remember: it’s never too late and never too early to start planning for your retirement.