Netflix has a new documentary out on Centenarians (Live to 100: Secrets of the Blue Zones) – individuals who live to 100+ years old – and areas of the world with there are high density clusters of centenarians, called Blue Zones. The host of the film, Dan Buettner is author of the book “The Blue Zones Secrets for Living Longer: Lessons From the Healthiest Places on Earth”. Buettner identifies a handful of regions around the world where these Blue Zones exist: Okinawa, Japan; Sardinia, Italy; Ikaria, Greece; Nicoya, Costa Rica; and Loma Linda, California. Even though these are highly differentiated cultures, geographies and lifestyles, there appears to be a common set of qualities, routines and habits found in these Blue Zones.
While Blue Zones offer us a glimpse into the art of living well, perhaps some of these principles can be related to optimize your wealth creation over time. The purpose of this article is to explore how adopting the principles observed in Blue Zones can relate to successful long-term savings, investing and wealth creation.
🍀 Blue Zone Core Four
In the pursuit of longevity and well-being, the residents of Blue Zones have honed a set of principles and traditions that shape their daily lives. These overarching principles, and how many of these are accomplished in their daily lives over long periods of time, are bulleted out below and in the pie chart.
- Movement: Blue zone residents incorporate physical activity into their daily lives without the need for expensive gym memberships. Activities like handcrafts, gardening, and walking are common.
- Connect: Blue zone inhabitants are deeply connected to their communities and often have a strong sense of purpose in life, whether it’s through religious beliefs or other philosophies like “ikigai”, which is the Japanese phase which gives your life “reason for being” or purpose.
- Eating Wisely: Blue zone diets are primarily plant-based, consisting of vegetables, beans, nuts, and minimal meat consumption. Moderate consumption, not overeating, and small amounts of wine drinking is also common.
- Outlook: Blue zone residents maintain a calm and positive outlook on life, which contributes to lower stress levels. They unwind through socializing, dancing, and other community activities.
➡️ From Blue Zones to Wealth Zones
Now, let’s correlate these to long-term investing and wealth creation parallels.
🏃 Move Naturally – Consistency in Saving and Investing
Much like the residents of Blue Zones who incorporate physical activity into their daily lives, successful investors make saving and investing a consistent habit. Rather than relying on sporadic windfalls or market timing, they regularly set aside a portion of their income for investments (especially if you are younger). By moving naturally towards financial goals all throughout life, individuals can accumulate wealth steadily over time.
🔭 Outlook – Patience, Resilience & Purpose Driven
Maintaining a positive outlook on your financial future is essential for successful wealth creation. Just as Blue Zone inhabitants cultivate peace of mind, investors should remain calm and patient in the face of market fluctuations. Successful investors understand that markets have their ups and downs, but a long-term perspective allows investments to grow over time, even in challenging economic environments. Blue Zoners often have a clear sense of purpose in life, and the same principle applies to successful investors. Define your financial goals and objectives, whether it’s retirement planning, buying a home, or funding your child’s education. Having a purpose-driven approach to investing provides direction and motivation, helping you stay on course.
🥝Eat Wisely – Diversify, Monitor Your Inputs & Moderation
Just as Blue Zone diets are largely made up of a variety of healthy foods, including a plant-based diet in Okinawa and healthy carbohydrates in Sardinia. Just like a healthy diet, successful investors understand the importance diversification in their investment portfolio. Diversification involves spreading your investments across different asset classes, such as stocks, bonds, real estate, and even alternative investments. This strategy helps mitigate risk and can lead to more stable, long-term returns. Eating in moderation is also a quality exhibited by Blue Zone territories. With investing, this is equivalent to avoiding the temptation of high-risk speculative investments that promise quick riches but come with significant downside potential. Maintaining a balanced and measured approach to investing, just like the diets of those in Blue Zones, is the best for most people over time.
🔗Connect – Seek Financial Guidance and Build a Support Network
In Blue Zones, forming genuine connections with the community is a key factor in longevity. Similarly, in the world of investing, seeking financial guidance and building a support network can make a significant difference. Consult with financial advisors, connect with investment groups, learn from experienced investors and understand the importance of family resources. Surrounding yourself with a supportive community can provide valuable insights and help you stay disciplined in your financial journey.
🔍 Finding Inspiration from Blue Zones
While the residents of Blue Zones have discovered the secrets to long and healthy lives, individuals seeking to optimize their wealth creation over time can draw inspiration from these principles. Consistency, patience, purpose, diversification, moderation, and community are not only keys to a fulfilling life but also to successful long-term investing and savings.