Invest in Yourself, the Smartest Investment with the Greatest Return
Growing up in a business savvy family, investment is something that I’ve never stopped hearing. You want to be rich? Invest in stock, in a company or focus on start-ups, but what happens to invest in yourself?
I was told that school is the best place to learn, do well in school, get good grades, get a job, work hard and hopefully, you will be promoted and essentially live a good life. Pretty bad advice I would say and sadly most family I know still teach their kids that.
Self-investment is something I believe is the best investment anyone can bet on that guaranteed 100% return and a limitless success in life.
The more you know and the more skills you decide to learn and collect will become valuable information and information is the most desirable commodity anyone can have. Wouldn’t you agree?
With a current net worth of $74 billion, Warren Buffett is one of the wealthiest men in the world but also one of my favorite mentor that I love to read about. He’s also a master of investment. The two go hand in hand, of course: the more you’re ready to give, the more you can expect to receive.
His secret for success is, at the same time, the most precious advice you can receive: “Invest in as much of yourself as you can, you are your own biggest asset by far.”
Here’s why it is the biggest truth of them all, and how to make it a part of your life.The most important investment you can make is yourself. - Warren Buffet Click To Tweet
Why is it Important to Invest in Yourself?
As a general notion, self-investment is subject to many interpretations. Invite a Buddhist to construe it, and the explanation will be a deeply spiritual one. The answer will be different if you ask a careerist, but that’s just another one of many unnecessary disjunctions that the human species cannot seem to do without.
The way successful people like Buffet see it, there’s no disparity between personal and professional investment. Being devoted to physical health means being devoted to mental health too, just the same as investing in personal realization means investing in professional development.
Everything’s connected, after all. The happier you leave your home in the morning, the better you’ll perform in the office; after a long day of achievements, you’ll return to where you’ve started with a genuine smile on your face.
However inseparable, personal and professional investments often appear in a long string of causal sequences. But, what the effect is for some, others recognize as the cause. While a businessman will tell you that hard work brings him the greatest joy, a spiritual man will argue that without joy there’s no hard work at all.
And, the latter seems more tenable, indeed. The people who approach life with this mindset understand that professional accolades and hoarded gold cannot replace inner fulfillment. They are the ones who invest in both body and mind and need no return on investment other than wellness.
Personal investment isn’t more important, but it is a foundation for everything else. It implies continual self-growth and is prompted by nothing more than eagerness to improve. Always being a bit healthier, wiser and understating is what makes you a better person.
Why is it so important? Not only because you can make yourself and others around you happier, but because personal self-investment is the only way of finding your purpose in this
world. It’s how you get to know yourself, recognize your strengths and limitations, and finally, answer the biggest question of all: “What is life, and how to live it to the fullest?”
Professional self-investment is all about continual learning, but consider this: you can’t possibly know everything, which means you need to invest some time in discovering your skills, passions, and interests first. Only once you’ve developed as a person can you lay the groundwork for future advancement.
The same applies to personal branding. By definition, it is the best possible version of yourself, a carefully tailored image that you choose to project to your professional environment. Still, a personal brand isn’t something you can create if you don’t know exactly who you are, to begin with.
Think about yourself in terms of human capital. Wikipedia specifies it as “the stock of competencies, knowledge, social and personality attributes, including creativity, embodied in the ability to perform labor, so as to produce economic value.”
It’s not about what you’re worth though, but how much you can pay back to humanity. In a simpler term, be of service to others without any expectation of getting anything back.
Investing in your professional self-goes way beyond giving money to receive more. Much more importantly, it means perfecting both your hard and soft skills, nurturing traits of a valuable employee and developing characteristics of an inspiring leader. In fewer words: building your human capital one block at a time.
Self-Investment = No Self-Depreciation
As long as you accept them as valuable, there’s nothing wrong with being humble about your accomplishments.
When moderate, modesty makes you graceful and kind to others. But, never confuse it for self-deprecation. Your achievements and abilities are very important, and you shouldn’t treat them as anything less.
If your self-esteem is a bit on a low side, it might help you to know that to invest in yourself means to invest in your confidence too. We build our self-consciousness through a lot of introspection, but investing in what makes you insecure can be just as effective.
Here’s a simple example: when you’re unconfident about finishing a business project, the only thing you need to do to beat that insecurity is to set some time aside and learn a couple of new tricks. If you are anxious about your appearance, invest in your wardrobe or hit the gym.
It may sound trite, but it can work on a greater scale as well. If you continue to invest in yourself, whatever you do, you’ll progress in every aspect of your life. Not only will you feel better, but the feedback you receive from others will be more positive too.
Together, contentment and appreciation will raise your self-esteem, one day at the time.
How to Invest in Yourself?
There is no particular lifehack or technique you can use to practice self-investment. It’s rather a way of thinking, a change in attitude that envelopes each and every side of your life. You cannot invest in your career and expect to be satisfied on a personal level.
You’d need to invest in your health, social skills and mind as well since they are all equally essential for reaching fulfillment.
With that in mind, here is the list that I personally followed and would love to share with you, my courageous and fierce readers a few tips and meaningful ways of improving yourself.
1. Keep Your Mind and Physical Health on Top of the Game
To invest in yourself means to make healthy habits! Fill your days with activities that nurture your body and mind, but don’t forget about what keeps them going either. We’re talking about your soul and spirit, both of which need beauty, love, and inspiration to stay vigorous and strong.
Begin by establishing a morning ritual and please do not reach out for your devices for social updates or emails, that can wait.
Start with something easy and relaxing, whether you kick-start your day with a bowl of wholesome oatmeal, a yoga class or a jogging session in the park, stay focused on positive actions that can energize your body and soothe your mind, preparing them both for a long day of productive behavior.
Always make time to prepare your own meals – not only is cooking an empowering form of art, but the unprocessed homemade food is incomparably healthier and more nutritious.
The more often you exercise, the better you’ll feel – in case you’re running on a tight schedule, do so in your running shoes. My rule of thumb is, don’t go three days without exercising unless you are recovering from a cold or some sort of illness, make time for activities.
Also, a chapter a day keeps the shrink away, so be sure to grab a smart book and read every day, trust me it’s best to mind food you can ever feed your mind. Nourish your mind and soul with arts and surround yourself with inspiring people – if you want to keep your physical health and mental fitness on top of the game, all of these things are worth investing in.
Remember, when you know better you do better, knowledge doesn’t have expiration dates it can always be re-used many times for your personal growth!
2. Develop the Skills that You Need for Future Advancement
Oh boy! I love this one. Here is one of the things I want you to take away, life happens for us, not to us.
I don’t know what you are up against right now in your life but the things that make you unhappy now is what will make you become stronger and smarter to handle life intelligently.
Don’t ask “why is this happening to me?” rather “what will I learn from it? What this problem is going to teach me?”
Since no skill is useless, successful people like Buffet advise us to learn how to build a handy set of expertise, abilities, and skills that we can bring into play in every occasion, personal and professional alike.
It can be a foreign language, a problem-solving technique or simply, decoupage – whatever way you choose to invest in yourself, it’s important to set a clear goal, sharpen your focus and stay persistent.
You can invest in top-quality resources for learning or not; what really matters is to invest your will.
3. Always Listen and Always Be the Last to Speak
I’ve been in meetings where everyone talks over one another because they think their opinions or solutions are the best one among all else. And at the end, nothing meaningful gets accomplished.
Why not listen to everyone’s opinion and then form your conclusion at the end?
Wouldn’t it be better to have all the information presented before we can lay solutions to the problem? For some, it is hard to do because they’re “know-it-all”.
Valuable skills are certainly a way to build it, but you can also invest in yourself by investing in those around you. Being a great leader is equally about telling and listening, so don’t forget to be kind, patient and collegial to people who follow you.
Save your opinions for later! You can learn way more if you approach the problem from other people’s viewpoints.
It’s one of many beneficial effects of self-investing, after all: lead by your own positive example, and you’ll be able to build a productive environment in which no good thought, idea or suggestion is cast aside.
4. Destroy Your Fear through Confidence
Once you start investing in yourself, much of your limitations will gradually turn into strengths. It’s because we can beat our fears only when we face them, thus maintaining a positive attitude and building our self-confidence.
Take your failures as opportunities to evolve, and you’ll grow fearless.
Not ready to confront your obstacles yet? Think confidently! Visualize success, but don’t seek perfection.
There are so many ways to boost your self-esteem, but everything starts with the right perspective. Find the thing that motivates you the most, choose action instead of procrastination, and never dwell on the past.
Fears create self-limitation due to our lack of self-confidence. What happens if there are no fears? What would you do differently? I know my answer, do you?
5. Salvage Something from Every Setback
Let us make things easier for you: everyone from Charles Darwin and Albert Einstein to J. K. Rowling and Oprah experienced a number of difficulties before eventually changing the world. Vincent Van Gogh, Walt Disney, and Winston Churchill were rejected at first too, but they never gave up.
The proverbial lesson is – salvage something from every setback! Ask yourself “Why did I fail?” and “How can I win the next time?” It’s what separates a winner from the runner-up, and what gives you the skills and confidence to turn every defeat into a victory.
6. Dress and Look Right
“There’s little you can’t do if you put your mind to it”, people say. They also say “Fake it ‘til you make it”, and believe it or not, both tips are equally good.
Numerous studies have shown that you can boost your self-esteem by pretending to be more confident than you actually are. Hence the million-dollar business suit that everyone seems to be sporting these days.
We can love it or hate it, but appearances are not insignificant. Looking important makes you feel as if you really were, thus leaving a strong, powerful impression on others.
Since the combination of both allows you to stand up straight and make yourself visible at all times, being in good physical shape and dressing for success are considered the two best ways to invest in yourself.
7. Learn How to Be Patient
If something pushes your buttons, understand why. There might be some deeper frustration that makes you lose your temper and behave unproductively instead of staying calm under pressure, which is why you need to invest in some serious soul-searching. It’s a first step towards becoming a patient person (and all the best ones are).
Why take it? Because patience is a unique virtue that allows you to be less harsh with yourself and appreciate others more.
For me, being patient was next to impossible though it was challenging for me to do so it was worth my daily sanity and I perform better at work and at home. No more crazy lady around.
Because nothing ever comes overnight – being inpatient is the worse thing you can do to yourself. Everything takes time and that is just how life is, so learn to be conscious about your emotional reactions so you can build intimate relationships and advance in your career too, so start practicing now.
8. Blend Persistence with Experimentation for Guaranteed Success
Patience is a sound investment for one more reason: it teaches persistence. In order to prevail over difficulties and stay committed to your goals, you’ll have to keep on trying against all odds.
When you face a challenge that seems impossible to overcome, persistence will urge you to stay strong and drive yourself forward.
This superhero trait can encourage you to get back up after you’ve been knocked down, but it’s even better when combined with an inquiring mind.
Whatever challenge comes your way, don’t hesitate to attack it! Approach it with intellectual curiosity, look at it from different perspectives, and experiment with unique solutions – taken together, persistence and inquisitiveness are a guarantee for success.
9. Develop a Sound Personal Financial Saving
Saving for the future is never easy, regardless of how good with money you actually are. Frugal living requires a change in mindset, but it is the best possible financial investment you can make.
A great number of millionaires live this way, in fact, and that’s exactly what’s keeping them on the “wealthiest people” lists.
As Warren Buffet put it “Don’t save what is left after spending; spend what is left after saving.”
10. Believe that Everything and Anything You Want Can Be Done
Because it really can! Okay, we’re not talking about the things that are still out of our reach, but anything else can be achieved with work. As long as you invest in yourself, set your goals and stay committed to them, absolutely everything is possible.
We’ve seen disabled people piloting airplanes and slumdog millionaires raising empires from scratch, which only goes to show that the human mind knows no limits. That’s why you are your own worthiest asset, and why investing in yourself is never in vain.
You Are Your Greatest AssetThe best investment you can make is spending time taking care of yourself. - Raphael D Love Click To Tweet
Self-investment is not something that everyone understands or think it’s important to focus on because there is no monetize value attach to it. You don’t have to look far to see that those who decide to invest and spend time on personal development, seize great opportunities, and make long-term investments are those that live their dreams.
After all that he’s gone through, Warren Buffett says it’s important to dream big: “I always knew I was going to be rich. I don’t think I ever doubted it for a minute”. Instead, he chooses to believe in himself, spend time on himself.