Invest in Yourself
By Corey Beasley
Combat sports are rapidly gaining popularity, but many fighters struggle to stay ahead. While, I agree that many athletes are under paid, the truth is, that its your responsibility to take care of yourself. Complaining is a waste of time. Training and paying the bills takes hard work, focus and planning. So its up to you, and only you, to pave the way and make things happen.
Invest in Your Success
Just like a business owner, an combat athletes needs to invest in their own success. Many business owners start from scratch, grind 24-7, put their lives on hold and struggle for years, before they ever succeed. Many combat combat athletes need to adopt this type of mindset. It is going to take years of consistent effort, money and time for you to develop your body and skills. Below are a few simple ways to streamline your plan of attack and avoid common pitfalls.
Eat Like An Adult
Aside from rent/mortgage, food is typically the next highest expense for most people. For many, this hectic lifestyle leads people to find a quick, easy alternative to shopping and cooking at home. Problem is that dining out is expensive and can ruin our health, if you're not careful.
According to an Accounting Principles survey, two-thirds of employed Americans spend $37 a week on lunch or $2,000 a year on lunch and about $1,000 a year on coffee. Not to mention energy drinks, alcohol, deserts, drive thru, snacks, movies and other entertainment.
Go to the grocery store, buy food and prep it at home. Learn a few recipes and package them up in tupperware for the week. This is the most simple way to save a few bucks and get your body on track.
Good food is an investment. You'll perform better, stay lean, recover from workouts faster and be more mentally sharp. So, if you are serious about your goals, this is a great place to start.
Good Coaches Cost Money
If you want help, don't expect it to come for free. Some coaches bill monthly, others bill per camp and some take a percentage of your purse. Whatever the case may be, pay for people's advice and time. You need to support the people that support you.
It takes time, money and a lot of hard work to keep a gym open, so pay your coaches and pay them well. Guidance, support and experience from good coaches will save your butt when times get tough.
If you need chiropractic, massage, ice therapy, meal prep or any other service to support your athletic career, take care of the people that support you. These people are doing their best to build a company, pay the bills and support their families.
If you are lucky enough to get sponsored, work your ass off to promote and refer customers their way. Remember, its a two way street...you get a product/service and they are hoping that your endorsement, social support, testimonials, videos, etc will help drive leads to their store.
How am I going to Afford This?
You don't make enough and/or you spend too much.
You Need to Make Money.
The idea of being a full time combat athletes, should be limited to the top .01% of combat athletes.
Lots of guys fight and compete at a high level, but still don't make enough money to support themselves. So, until things improve, you need to get a job. I don't care if you teach classes, work construction, sell gym memberships, wait tables or something else.
Consistent paychecks make life easier.
You need to hustle, work hard, support yourself, pay your bills and be a responsible adult.
Sure, this might make life a bit hectic, but its better than being broke, asking for favors, depending on others and acting like a victim.
Don't Blow It
Cars, apartments, clothes, dining out, partying, tattoos, trips and other stuff are extra, but when people have a little money, its easy to spend. People love to spend money and get that instant gratification.
Pump the breaks...maybe you gotta ride your bike for awhile, live with friends, eat at home and wear old shoes.
We all have to take a step back, sacrifice and make better choices from time to time.
Sure, I'd like to eat sushi, buy a new truck and take my family on vacation, but it's not a wise decision right now.
Not living the way you want?
Good! Let it motivate you to work harder, stay consistent and keep improving.
Pay yourself first.
When you get paid, put a little aside. Ideally, 20% of your income should get put into savings. Call it 'saving for a rainy day', investing in yourself or whatever. We all need to create a little emergency fund and cushion for life's little obstacles.
Plus, your fight career will not last forever, so you better have a plan B. I can't tell you how many fighters I've seen that made it, spent it and are struggling to stay ahead now.
Be responsible and pay yourself first.
Living within your means is not a new concept. These are simple concepts, but very few people actually apply this stuff to their lives. We over spend, cut corners and wonder why don't achieve the level of success we desire.
While it might not be a popular topic, it is an essential part of any adult's life. Avoid it and you'll continue to struggle, no matter how much money you make. Address it and you'll live a life with a lot less financial drama.
Your success in this world is 100% up to you, so take some time this week, check out your bank account and assess spending habits. Just like training, we need to assess, make a plan, adjust and stay consistent over time. You'll be surprised how much this will help your mindset, career and position you for long term success.