Pete’s Path Pt 3: What I learned from rowing – Every little bit counts
This is part three in a series called Pete’s Path where he explains some of the important lessons he learned in sport, and how he applies them everyday with clients.
Rowing is an interesting activity. You’re basically trying your best to turn yourself into a mindless machine to push your way down a course. At its core the sport requires the ability to repeat the same skill over and over again with a whole lot of power. As is the case with most sports, going faster is a law of diminishing returns, and every gain you make is just a little smaller than the last. But, the silver lining is that you can always make gains.
I picked up rowing in high school a year later than most of my friends. They formed a crew and became the fastest group in Ontario. In fact, of the 10 members of my crew, everyone eventually represented Canada internationally, except me. Why did they all get to represent Canada? Because everyday they practiced with focus and intent to better themselves. They took the sport seriously, pushed themselves and each other, and asked for help to get better. And they did it for a long time. If you had looked at that group in Grade 9, to be honest, I was probably the most athletic of the bunch. I was stronger, and more coordinated than most. But those guys started at the right time, put in the work, and reaped the rewards. With the lessons I learned from them I ended up representing Canada, just in a different sport.
The lesson isn’t hard to transfer over but many people get stuck at the first step: they don’t take their savings and investments that seriously. Most people have a sense of their income and how much they pay in taxes, but few people understand how each dollar saved contributes to build their retirement paycheck, and even fewer could tell you how close they are to their goal. To take it seriously you have to understand it and take regular steps for extended periods of time. With our clients we work to understand their goals, and build plans that take them closer to it every single day.
How to take saving seriously? The first step is to build a plan. The standard refrain is to allocate 10% of your paycheck into savings. If you can start with even 5% that's fantastic.
How to push yourself? Once you're committed to regular saving, see if you can increase it by a small amount every year. Going from 5% to 6% will make a minor difference to your bank account, but will make a huge difference when compounded over long periods of time.
How to ask for help? Find an expert that you trust. At Wetherall Wealth Management we work with more than 200 families helping them plan for all aspects of their lives.
Achieving your goals is a little like rowing a boat. You can get there on time pretty easily with a lot of little, focused strokes in the right direction. If you or someone you know could benefit from doing a little bit every day. Please get in touch. We want your team to succeed.