Personal Finance

‘American Ninja Warrior’ host Akbar Gbajabiamila’s top strategy for overcoming fear

Is fear getting in your way when it comes to saving and investing?

If so, you aren’t alone, according to Akbar Gbajabiamila, co-host of NBC’s “American Ninja Warrior.” And there is a way to overcome it, he said.

“My No. 1 strategy for overcoming fear is purpose,” said Gbajabiamila, who also once played football for the Miami Dolphins, San Diego Chargers and Oakland Raiders.

Akbar Gbajabiamila, co-host of American Ninja Warrior.

Bill McCay | NBCUniversal

“Purpose always defeats fear, especially when you think about getting to your destination.”

In the case of investing, the destination can be a goal such as saving for retirement, building an emergency stash or buying a home.

“Think about it like putting in a destination into your navigation system,” said Gbajabiamila, a member of CNBC’s Financial Wellness Advisory Council. “If you put that destination in, it eliminates fear of getting lost.

“Same thing in life,” he added. “It eliminates you from feeling the fear of getting lost.”

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When it comes to saving, many people aren’t putting enough aside. And 21% of working Americans aren’t saving anything, according to a recent survey by BankRate. Additionally, 25% of Americans have no retirement savings or pensions, the Federal Reserve found.

Gbajabiamila believes many people are afraid because when they get emotional about the investment process, it’s hard to trust it.

That can be understandable when there are wild swings in the stock market, but unless you are a trader, experts always advise to think long term.

Purpose always defeats fear, especially when you think about getting to your destination.

Akbar Gbajabiamila

“American Ninja Warrior” co-host

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