Message from the CEO: Summertime
Summertime is officially upon us and there are a few things I would like to communicate.
1) I Take Vacation VERY Seriously
Until last year, we closed the Gym for one week in the summertime which was easier when we just had 400 clients and 8 full-time employees. This summer, we’re fast approaching 2,500 clients with 22 full-time employees so closing the Gym is no longer an option.
Instead, I directed the team to take at least one full week of vacation this summer season. I also made it very clear that they’re supposed to completely unplug from work and plug into the things outside of work that bring them joy.
I honor and respect my team’s vacation time. I refrain from sending emails, and if anyone is ever copied on an email chain, he or she knows that I don’t expect them to respond. If you get an out-of-office response from someone on my team over these next few weeks, I hope that you’ll respect their vacation time as well. Every Financial Gym teammate has a back-up buddy who’ll be indicated in their out of office reply, and we’re all here to help out, but it’s important to me that my team rests.
As I said in last year’s summer email, The Financial Gym is run by a team of human beings, not robots. People cannot run for days, weeks, and months at a time without getting time to recharge and refuel their energy.
I finally discovered the beauty in this last year. Despite the fact that we were gearing up to raise money and had a number of initiatives going on, I made the executive decision (for myself) to set an out-of-office reply and not check my email for an entire week. The last time I “indulged” like this was in 2007 when I had to mandatorily do so for compliance purposes while working at Bank of America. And let me tell you, it was fantastic. The world did not end, my company did not implode, but I let my brain focus on something else for a week and I enjoyed every minute of it. I have always found vacation important for my team, and now I’ve discovered it’s importance for me as well.
So while I know you’ll have some pressing matters over the next few months, please have patience with us while we recharge, reboot, and come back as better versions of ourselves for taking the time away.
2) You Will Spend Money
In the seven years I’ve been a financial planner, I’ve learned many truths and one of them is that we collectively spend more money in the summertime than any other time of year. Between wedding season, vacation season, camp season, beach season, rosé season, etc., the warm weather makes us less mindful of our money. And I would just advise you to be mindful of your spending this summer. I won’t tell you to stop because I truly believe that you work hard for your money and you should enjoy it, but within limits.
We shared a number of resources on our blog to help you get through summer without breaking the bank, and the best advice I can give is to choose your activities wisely. If you have a number of weddings, then you need to find cheap activities to do when you’re home. If you have the kids home, what are the free resources available around you? Growing up, we had a sprinkler in our yard that provided countless hours of activity for my siblings and I. Instead of rosé out, what about rosé in? Every time your credit card or debit card comes out of your wallet, in true Marie Kondo fashion, ask yourself if the expense will bring you joy.
3) If You Spent Money, Don’t Avoid Your Trainer in September
Many Financial Gym clients have travel and fun savings accounts specifically so they can live their best lives in the summertime; however, inevitability, overspending happens and they head into the Fall with some sticky credit card debt or lower than expected savings balances.
If this is you, and your trainer reaches out for your quarterly review, don’t shame yourself and try to “fix it” before coming in. We’re expecting these types of situations, and we’re ready to tackle them with you. We want you to have a fun summer, we just want the ability to get you back on track when it’s over. We are here to cheer on your successes, but also help you figure your way out of the setbacks.
And if you’re not a client of The Gym and your summer spending leaves you with a financial hangover, reach out to us and I guarantee you that we’ll get you back into shape and ready for next summer.
Enjoy your family, your friends, the warm weather, the rooftop rosés and have a safe, healthy and financially fit summer season, FinGym Family!!