Thursday, March 14, 2013

Maintenance Matters

My 2007 Mazda 6 is approaching a milestone, 100,000 miles. In honor of this occasion,  the dealer sent a notice that it is time for my 100,000 mile maintenance. I've been pretty good (but far from perfect) in maintaining my car. I had a Hyundai a while back that lasted half as long as it should have, not because it was a bad car, but because I was very bad with the maintenance.

I started thinking about it. Like cars, there are a number of things in our lives that require maintenance.

Relationships: Some relationships require constant and consistent maintenance. Children, significant others, even co-workers can require daily care and feeding. Other relationships don't need quite as much but some is required. There are friends and family that you connect with regularly. However, those you communicate with infrequently are important as well. With these relationships, it's all about quality of contact rather than quantity. Neglect in this area can fracture relationships. Marriages can end in divorce and relationships with children, parents and siblings can be irreparably damaged.

Finances: Maintaining or repairing your credit, paying your bills, stashing some money away for savings and putting some aside for retirement are ways that you can maintain a positive relationship with your money. Money matters. When your relationship with money sours, often so does your mood and your relationships.

Home: Even if you aren't a home owner, maintaining your home is important. It doesn't need to be spotless but a livable level of clean and organization can go a long way to making your home comfortable and relaxing. Making small repairs, surrounding yourself with nice and personal decor, and investing in home or renter's insurance are also forms of home maintenance. I firmly believe your home should be a haven, a place where you always feel welcome. You should feel at home in your home!

Health: It should go without saying that you have to maintain yourself. This means regular doctor and dental check-ups but it goes further than that. Taking care of yourself through exercise and eating right counts too. However, 'health' goes further than the physical. You also need to make the effort to maintain your emotional, mental and spiritual health.

I learned my lesson with the Hyundai. Maintenance is important. It might seem inconvenient or like something that can wait, but a little maintenance now can go a long way towards preventing problems later.

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