6 Characteristics of Olympic Athletes That Provide Financial Inspiration

by Gina Blitstein · 0 comments

Olympic athletes are a breed apart. Their dedication to a goal is nothing short of inspirational. While watching the Winter Games recently, I realized that  Olympians display a certain set of characteristics that make for their inspirational personalities. I further realized that those same characteristics could be helpful to those of us aspiring to live more successful financial lives. I’ve identified six characteristics that these athletes utilize in their “quest for the greatness” toward which we could strive to help us become champions over our own money:

  1. Set goals – As George Harrison wisely wrote, “If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will take you there.” As Olympians know, it’s important to set goals so you develop a clear vision of what you want to achieve and can devise a plan to attain it. Financially speaking, it’s better to identify specific goals, like, save for a particular large purchase, reduce debt or cut back on certain expenses, rather than a generalized, “I want to handle money better.”
  2. Devise a training schedule – For athletes, a training schedule is the playbook by which their aspirations become reality. It identifies the individual steps toward fitness, technique and endurance and the actions necessary to attain those goals. Your financial training schedule will identify the steps toward your goal such as, contributing to a savings account regularly, pumping up debt repayment or assessing expenses. The keys to successful training are consistency and perseverance.
  3. Live conscientiously – Athletes don’t take their eyes off the prize, even when it’s difficult and unpleasant. No junk food, sleeping late or partying for them because they’re committed to reaching their goals. Likewise, it will take a lot of discipline on your part to save rather than spend, avoid buying on credit and monitor spending carefully. Impulsiveness is the enemy of a dedicated champion.
  4. Surround yourself with a strong support system – No man is an island, and no athlete can do it alone. Olympians have coaches who are as dedicated to their success as they are themselves. Get as much support as possible to help you reach your financial goals. Bring family and friends on board to help you stay the course and motivate you when you need an extra push. Just like an athlete, they’ll be there to cheer you on and celebrate your success.
  5. Be agile – No one can predict what’s around the next bend, so trust your experience to prepare you for the unexpected. Athletes fall, make mistakes and get injured but they keep on going. Bad luck or unforeseen circumstances may befall you along your financial course, too. When it does, be confident that you can make up some time, pick up some points or recover from a setback, too. The financial savvy you’ll develop along the way will enable you to decide whether to make a gutsy move or to keep with the program in order to come out ahead.
  6. Adopt a winning attitude – Olympians don’t get to the top of their game by being unenthusiastic or easily discouraged. While not everyone wins gold and indeed, not every Olympic athlete gets a medal, the important thing is that they gave their  all, and are better off for the experience. You’ll never know how much you can impact your financial life until you try. You are the boss of your financial resources and you can aspire to greatness.

These characteristics shared by Olympic athletes can help you be triumphant over your finances. Even if you don’t get the gold, the winning is in the whole-hearted attempt.

What financial lessons can you learn from olympic athletes?

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