You can have excellent savings, a rewarding career, a healthy retirement account, and a well-rounded portfolio and still feel trapped. If you’re working hard on growing in your job, or investing time in your relationships with loved ones, it can be easy to forget about the most beneficial thing to invest in: you.
You are your greatest asset. If you should lose your job, or suffer a serious financial loss, you might not be able to fall back on your savings. You would have to rely on your own skills and experiences, whether your career is in the business, IT, or medical arena. So if you’re stuck in a rut or feel like you need to brush up on your human capital, here’s how to start investing in yourself:
Too many people focus on their job without thinking about their career, or consider today’s money without planning for tomorrow. If you’re feeling bogged down by day-to-day tasks and demands, it’s a good idea to take yourself out of that zone. Have you ever noticed how attending a seminar or a class can make you feel re-energized about your career or future plans? That’s because it gives you the time and headspace to think about the big picture. Education is a critical part of investing in yourself, but the investment doesn’t have to be in the form of a degree. Buy yourself a new finance book, attend a local speaker event or spend an hour learning about that new program you’ve been excited to use. Taking time out of your everyday tasks to focus on learning something new will help you stay focused and motivated in the future.
Determine Your Strengths and Weaknesses
Self-awareness is vital to development, but you don’t need to shell out for a soul-searching retreat to find it (unless you want to.) You might have brushed up on your strengths and weaknesses before a job interview, but beyond that, people tend to struggle with actually knowing where they shine and falter. This becomes a lifeline when you’re in one of those “where do I go from here?” moments, because you should build your life around your innate strengths. You might need to invest significant time into honing your best skills and building up your weak ones, but it is an incredibly powerful exercise to go through – one that could make you a lot of money down the road.
Take Care of Your Health
If you’re working hard to build your brand or rise through the ranks, personal health is one of the first sacrifices people make. But the truly successful know how critical it is to take care of yourself. Eating well, exercising and getting enough sleep are the most important ingredients for your energy and creativity, so they are well worth the time and money. Running yourself into the ground leads to burnout, illness and a host of other problems, so avoid it at all costs. If you’re running on empty, you won’t have anything to give to others. Treat your wellbeing like it’s another non-negotiable aspect of your job, because that’s exactly what it is.
Invest in Vacations
Take. A. Vacation. Do you know people who brag about how little time off they take, like it’s a testament to their dedication? Are you one of those people? Plenty of research has come out recently about how effective it actually is to take some time off. If you need proof, take a look at Project Time Off and Entrepreneur Magazine’s article on the topic. Investing in travel and a little relaxation works wonders for the brain, and just being in a new setting is like hitting a reset button on an overworked mind. It allows you think differently about your situation and find solutions you otherwise might not have thought of. Exploring a new place and experiencing other people and cultures is an added bonus.
Challenges are key to personal growth and development, and setting goals helps to introduce constructive challenges. If you’re not setting goals for yourself, then you’re not mapping out your next moves. That’s a surefire way to feel lost. Goal setting is a time investment that can lead to massive payoffs in every area of your life. Even if you don’t hit every goal you set, you are training yourself to consider tomorrow, next week and next year. It reminds you of your direction. Goals are fantastic for budgets, career development and even your personal life, so if you’re not setting them, you should be. Just remember to keep them S.M.A.R.T. – Specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-bound.
About Your Richest Life
At Your Richest Life, Katie Brewer, CFP®, believes you too should have access to financial resources and coaching. For more information on the services offered, contact Katie today.