Rio Olympics: A Lesson in Commitment

Contributed by: Nick Defenthaler, CFP® Nick Defenthaler

If you’re like me, you spent the majority of your nights this month tuning into the Summer Olympics held in Rio de Janerio, Brazil. I’m more of a football and hockey type of guy but I must admit, watching some of the best athletes in the entire world compete for their respective countries, even in sports I wouldn’t consider myself a die had fan in, was captivating. The level of competition was incredible and you could truly feel the passion each athlete had as they competed for gold. 

While watching the actual games and being engaged in the competition is very entertaining, what hit home the most to me was the level of commitment each athlete had, especially those who are dominant in their respective sport. Athletes like Usain Bolt, Michael Phelps, Katie Ledecky, and Simone Biles are in a league of their own when it comes to training, execution, and their overall commitment to their goals. Training is rigorous and is often times 6 – 8 hours per day 5 – 6 days a week for nearly 4 years in preparation for a 2 week competition. Just think about that for a moment. That’s over 1,000 days of hard work, persistence, consistency and probably ten additional adjectives necessary to describe what it takes to be an elite Olympic athlete. 

As you hopefully already know, setting and committing to goals are at the core of what we help clients with here at The Center. We need to know what’s important to you and what you want to accomplish to help you with your own unique situation to ensure your financial plan is aligned with what’s important to you. Often times, some might perceive this as too “touchy feely” or you might ask yourself, “Why do they want to know this stuff? They’re financial planners, aren’t they just concerned about the numbers?” Simple answer – absolutely not. Committing to goals, whether they are for your family, career, personal life or financial well-being, are critical for your success, just as they are for Olympic athletes. 

As you start to think about the goals you might have, keep in mind what Michael Phelps had to say about them – “Goals should never be easy; they should force you to work, even if they are uncomfortable at the time.” If goals were simple, they wouldn’t be fulfilling. Personally, watching the Olympics re-energized me to better commit to my own goals. Do you have a clear vision of what your goals look like? If so, are they challenging? Commit to the things that bring real value to your life and work hard to make them a reality. Life is too short not to. As always, feel free to contact your financial planner to help prioritize and strategize when it comes to these goals. 

Nick Defenthaler, CFP® is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ at Center for Financial Planning, Inc.® Nick is a member of The Center’s financial planning department and also works closely with Center clients. In addition, Nick is a frequent contributor to the firm’s blogs.