Financial Health and Sales Success

(If you’re a financial adviser you might be tempted to not read this post … but think about how you might use some of the content with your own clients in helping them achieve Financial Health.)

In previous posts in this series, I’ve highlighted the importance of being intentional, focused, and engaged on words and actions that demonstrate your commitment to make life better for your customers.

Our conscious mind is finite – and for many of us, the ‘noise’ in our world can include competition, change, competing priorities and financial pressures.

Financial Health Is More Than a Number

Let me ask you this question:

How would you rate your understanding and commitment to aligning your financial decisions and actions with your lifestyle decisions and actions?

Your relationship with money and the choices you make with how you earn, spend, and invest it have a direct impact on your overall sense of life satisfaction and your capacity to flourish.

The more comfortable you are with your financial health, the less distracted, worried and stressed you will be. This means in your sales role you can be more focused on your intention to make life better for your clients … which will result in more sales (and potentially more job security).

How You Use Money Matters

In a major piece of research undertaken by Elizabeth Dunn and Michael Norton, they found using money in the following ways, is more likely to boost your sense of life satisfaction and happiness (which in turn will help you stay focused and engaged in your sales role):

  1. Buy Experiences: spend your money on experiences not just on more ‘stuff’ to keep up with the Joneses (whoever the Joneses are). Their research found material things don’t boost our sense of life satisfaction for long.
  2. Make it a Treat:  If you spend your money on the same thing(s) all the time, you just get used to them. So cut back on some of what you typically buy, and only buy it as a treat or on special occasion.
  3. Buy Time: This is simply spending your money in outsourcing the tasks you don’t enjoy to free up your time to enjoy the things you do.
  4. Pay Now, Consume Later: In a world where most of us use our credit cards to consume now and pay later, this seems counter intuitive. However, consider the joy and positive expectation you get when you’re planning a trip. You pay for the flights, accommodation, and tours often in advance, and their research shows this can almost be as big a boost to your happiness as the trip itself (almost).
  5. Invest in Others: This may not come as much of a surprise, however their research shows spending money on others can provide a bigger happiness boost than spending money on yourself … for example when you give a friend or loved one a gift, or donate to charity.

Key point

Aligning your financial goals with your lifestyle goals means you need to have both. That is, you need to be clear about how you want to live your life, and how much money you will need to financially support that lifestyle.

One of my favorite pieces of advice my mum gave me was to ‘spend less than you earn’.

In one report, it is estimated that 86 per cent of people don’t have a clue about how much they spend.

This week make the commitment to start a budget by tracking every (yes, every) dollar you spend.

You might want to seek professional help from an accountant or financial adviser to get your lifestyle and financial goals aligned.

Knowing How Much Is Enough Matters

What we know from research into money and well-being is that once you’re earning enough to cover the ‘basics of living’, boosts in how much you earn do not equate necessarily with boosts in your well-being.

This is not to say money doesn’t make you happy (despite this being a typical saying).

What is more important, though, as highlighted above by Norton’s and Dunn’s research, is how you spend your money will impact your sense of well-being more than how much money you have.

25 Contributing Elements to Living a Good Life

This topic of Financial Health is just one of 25 contributing elements to living a good life that I write about in my book LIVING in the Light of Day.

If you haven’t got your copy yet (in hardcover, paperback, kindle/ebook or audiobook versions), you can Buy It Here.

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