Rich and Thin

A phrase I don’t hear much anymore is, “You can never be too rich or too thin.” Perhaps it has fallen out of popular favor, but money and weight are still very common analogies for each other. In fact, this came through on Facebook just the other day.

My friend:  Dieting is a lot like Deficit Reduction: The problem is real. The solution will be painful. There is no easy way out.

Four people actually “Liked” this. And here are the comments that followed.

Comment 1:  Ouch.

Comment 2: …and everyone remains fat.

Comment 3: Nothing is easy.

Comment 4: It’s calorie budgeting. You can spend beyond your means, but you’ll pay for it with interest later.

Comment 5: Indeed. The two concepts have a lot of similarities.

My comment… Have you not read my book yet??  🙂  (Because I know she has a copy.)

This exchange illustrates the fundamental mindset created by the diet and exercise paradigm and how prevalent it is in our culture. Whenever you embark on a “diet and exercise” program you are indeed essentially “calorie budgeting.” This mindset is so prevalent that many financial planners and business moguls use it as well. In order to make whatever points they try to make, they compare money management to weight-loss – specifically, to the need for counting calories and exercising to manage weight.

Money and weight can be useful analogies for each other – but not in the way most people will assume. The first (and only) person I’ve heard speak about money in a way that truly relates to weight-loss is T. Harv Eker. T. Harv Eker is a best-selling author who built an empire from holding financial seminars. Now that I am considered a “weight-loss expert,” I’ve had the opportunity to meet and interact with several “gurus” from many different disciplines and Harv spoke at one of these events.

He spoke about how time and time again, he would witness people amass fortunes only to declare bankruptcy. (How many people have lost weight only to regain it?) He recognized that these people were building this wealth through means that were inconsistent with their emotional, psychological and spiritual centers. They worked long, hard hours, rarely saw their families, didn’t necessarily enjoy the type of work they were doing and were essentially miserable. He saw that these people had associated their misery with the wealth. So finally, when their souls called them forth to release the misery, they consequently released the wealth as well. The only way he ever saw people create and sustain wealth was when the wealth was created from a place of authenticity and congruency within them.

It’s the same thing with our bodies. If we achieve a desired shape or size through unpleasant or painful means and maintaining that shape or size is also unpleasant, the moment our inner self demands that we release the pain, that shape or size we created is released as well. The only way to create and maintain a desired result with respect to our bodies is to align our actions, with respect to food and exercise, with our deepest, authentic selves so that the entire experience can be happy and fulfilling.

That’s the flaw of the diet and exercise paradigm. It suggests that results can be achieved and maintained through the actions alone, regardless of how we feel about them. But we only want the result we want because we think having it will make us happy! So if the experience of the actions is unpleasant or painful, we can never get what we want – it is a contradiction of terms.

Lasting results are achieved by creating them in a way that is congruent with the calling of our deepest selves. That is the true way in which weight-loss and money are related. And relating these subjects can be very helpful. Whenever you’re tempted to fall into the diet and exercise calorie budgeting mindset, you can bring Harv’s millionaires to mind. They achieved and maintain great wealth through congruent work, not “hard” work.