‘Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.’ These are the words uttered by one of the greatest boxers ever to walk the earth. The inimitable Muhammad Ali.
If you closely scrutinise the quote, you would find that it not only holds true in the boxing ring, but in real life as well. In fact, it even applies when investing in Mutual Funds. Stick with your investments through their ups and downs and you could come out on top in the long run.
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One of the greatest things about sports is that it not only makes you physically fit, but it prepares you for the challenges of life. One such sport that teaches a great deal about life and money is martial arts. Considered to be one of the toughest forms of sport, it requires utmost discipline, endurance to pain and years of dedication to be a master of martial arts.
Using the principles of martial arts, one can learn a lot about how to handle money and how to take financial decisions during important phases of life. Without any further delay, let’s check out what money lessons one can learn by practicing martial arts:
- Principle #1: Discipline is the key to success
Money Lesson: Savings will build only when a budget is followed with utmost discipline.
Ever wondered what makes a person successful? While there are numerous factors like hard work, determination etc., which are essential to succeed. In fact, discipline is a key ingredient of success. Martial arts is one such form of sport where discipline is considered to be of utmost importance.
When it comes to money matters, the lack of discipline in following a budget or the absence of a budget are some of the prime reasons why so many people fail to build substantial savings. By applying the principles of success and discipline inherent to martial arts, one can learn that savings will only accumulate if following a budget is practiced with utmost discipline.
If you have planned to include cost cutting in your budget, make sure you follow it. If you have decided to avoid certain unnecessary expenses in your budget, ensure that you don’t give in to temptation. Once you master the art of being a disciplined budget follower, results will show in the form of growth in savings.
Additional Reading: 6 Lazy Habits To Build Your Savings
- Principle #2: Patience is the most desirable virtue
Money Lesson: One needs to be patient with their investments in order to see their money grow.
We are in the era of the fast and the furious, where speed and aggression are the most desirable virtues. Unfortunately, people have forgotten the value of patience. In martial arts, there is a strict emphasis on patience. Diligent practice is the norm as there is no quick way to success. Once you start feeling entitled to succeed, you lose focus and become impatient for victory. Thus, patience is the most desirable virtue in martial arts.
This principle of martial arts teaches us a lot about being patient when it comes to money. A lot of people want their money to grow overnight, and so they aggressively indulge in risky investments that can lead to huge losses.
If you want your money to grow, you must be patient and invest in long-term plans that will not only give you returns, but will keep your money relatively secure. Be patient with your investments and give your money a chance to grow. After all, even Rome was not built in one day.
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- Principle #3: Keep calm and breathe easy
Money Lesson: Financial emergencies can be dealt with by staying calm.
Breathing is essential for life. But, did you know that breathing exercises are vital while practicing martial arts too? Just by breathing in and breathing out, martial art experts manage to calm themselves and focus on sparring with the opponent.
We can use these simple breathing exercises in day to day lives as well, especially when faced with a financial crunch. Whenever a monetary emergency comes knocking at our door, panic and stress set in, which keeps us from thinking straight. By staying calm and taking your time to assess the situation you find yourself in, you will find that you can think more clearly and take rational financial decisions.
Additional Reading: How To Get Over A Financial Crisis The Captain Cool Way
- Principle #4: Pay attention to your surroundings
Money Lesson: Keeping track of your finances, including all your expenses and investments, helps you find out where you are going wrong.
With the advent of mobile phones, internet, technology and social media, it is hard to find a person who does not have his or her face buried in a screen somewhere. We are so immersed in our technology driven lives that we fail to notice our surroundings and often get in trouble because of that.
Martial arts stresses on being aware of one’s surroundings as only the one who knows about the opportunities and dangers of his/her surroundings has greater chances of succeeding. When we apply this principle to our personal finances, we will find that being aware of inflow and outflow of money will help us make the right financial decisions.
By keeping track of our expenses, we can identify where we are overspending and where we can cut down to save more money. Only the person who knows where his money is being spent can prepare a realistic budget and take necessary steps towards saving money.
Additional Reading: 5 Reasons Why You Need A Budget For Your Home
- Principle #5: Learn from your mistakes
Money Lesson: Don’t be afraid of wrong financial decisions. You can learn a lot from bad money moves too.
‘Do not pray for an easy life. Pray for strength to endure a difficult one.’ These words uttered by Bruce Lee speak volumes about the importance of enduring trials and tribulations in order to grow in life. But alas, most of us are afraid of difficulties and try our best to avoid them. It is the fear of failure that keeps us from stepping out of our comfort zone.
When it comes to money matters, we are so afraid to make wrong decisions that we prefer to stagnate financially instead of taking calculated risks. Our fear of losing money holds us back from growing financially.
Let go of the fear of losing and be bold with your financial decisions. Even if you fail, it will be a lesson for you in the future that will make you more knowledgeable about money. Failure is a great teacher, since it will help you take better decisions over the course of time.
Additional Reading: 5 Risks You Should Be Aware Of As An Investor
- Principle #6: Clear your mind
Money Lesson: Only a clear mind can focus on finding a solution to financial troubles.
Controlling our thoughts is one of the most difficult and rewarding exercises. This not only applies to martial arts, but to real life as well. The person who is able to clear his/her mind of all random thoughts can shift their entire focus on the problem at hand and find the correct solution.
Even in the world of finance, only those who can put aside and learn from negative experiences like loss, bankruptcy, debt and failure, can find their way out of future financial crises. So, it is extremely crucial to have a clutter free mind and a clear thought process to succeed financially in life.
- Principle #7: You have greater potential than you think
Money Lesson: Set lofty goals and work towards them.
We are a generation of achievers and go-getters. But, if there’s one thing that holds us back, it is the lack of faith in our own abilities. Martial arts teaches us to let go of self-doubt as it will help us perform better than the pre-conceived standard that we have set for ourselves. When it comes to money, we sometimes tend to play it too safe by doubting our capability to save and earn more money.
We are afraid to take bold financial decisions like buying a house that is slightly over our budget or following a strict budget that could mean giving up your favourite pastimes. Take a leap of faith, believe in your abilities, work hard towards your financial goals and you could be pleasantly surprised at how much you are able to achieve.
Additional Reading: Seven Financial Goals Every Couple Must Set
Now that you have learnt a great deal about money management through principles of martial arts, apply them in real life to reap positive financial results. When you practice these money lessons in real life, be patient and be persistent to achieve the desired goals. As the great Bruce Lee once said, “As you think, so you shall become.”
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