Investment decisions help you to understand the total costs of poor health, and they help you to re-focus on achieving goals rather than on saving money.
Money is only one factor in the total health story; an important factor, but still only one. Intensity of consequences, long-term change, and total health management help you put a total health value on your actions.
Your portfolio will change value over time. When you are young, you have many more choices for improving your health, and your wealth, and you have more time in which to do it. You hopefully have not developed the aches and pains of arthritis, or high blood pressure; and you have more free time because work does not occupy so much of life-hours, and your children have not been born.
Once you have children, your priorities change. You focus more on their health, and sometimes thatís not the best path for your personal health. A value-based question in this instance could be: can I find time to spend with my kids that will also improve my health? The answer could be a father-daughter softball league, taking the kids for a walk everyday after school, or trading time with friends so that you each get some private workout time. Teaching your children about healthy eating by setting a model for yourselves would be a win-win, as well. Stopping smoking? Do it , and do it now.
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|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|