Appearances matter, but how important are they to you?
If you were given the opportunity to get rid of all your debt but have to gain 25 pounds, would you take it? Or would you keep your current debt and stay the same weight?
A recent study by Credit Karma showed that 72% of respondents would rather keep their current debt than gain 25 pounds and be completely debt free.
That may sound like a high percentage to some people, but let’s break this down a little more:
- In almost all cases, we earned the debt. It seems like cheating to get rid of all the debt, so maybe there is some guilt involved with getting rid of it all at once.
- 25 pounds is a lot of weight. It can be pretty life-changing and it happening all at once can be a lot to deal with.
- Nobody sees your debt balance but everyone sees your weight.
- We have no idea how much debt the people who were polled are in. Maybe it’s not that much?
Lauren and I have about $50,000 in student loans left. While I would love to get rid of it, would I be willing to gain 25 pounds to get rid of it? I don’t think so. That would change my life in a few ways:
- I wouldn’t be able to run as fast and that would affect my performance while playing basketball, something I really enjoy doing. Straight up, I would be worse
- I’d never look good in anything I wore and would have to get a completely new wardrobe.
- My wife would definitely be less attracted to me.
If I could lose the weight quickly, then yes, I’d be inclined to do it. But I don’t think that I deserve to have the debt forgiven, even if I have to pay the price of added weight. The reality I live with isn’t so bad now, so why change it? The risk of changing my way of life might be worse than the debt we currently have.
I posed this question to Lauren, who is smarter than I am, and this is how she responded:
Of course I would gain the 25 pounds to get rid of the debt. Then I’d hire a personal trainer to lose the weight.
While this isn’t a perfect study and isn’t representative of Americans (it was an online study that wasn’t truly random), it does provide an inside look to how many people think.
If you were given the choice, what would you do?