You have limited time, money, and energy to invest at any given moment. In order to get the absolute best return on these resources you must invest in yourself. For most people I know, there are many demands of daily life. The siren calls of texts, email, and social media are a major time suck. The work day no longer ends when you walk out of your office (if you even work in an office). Trying to have an engaging social life, maintain your physical health, and possibly develop new skills can seem impossible with the demands of our current society. Life demands so much of you and that is precisely why it is important to always invest in yourself.
I realize this may sound incredibly selfish – that’s because it is. You must put yourself first in this world. If you don’t, you are bound for a life filled with disappointment and regret. You only have one life (as far as we know), make the most of it.
The possibilities are endless, but I am going to share three ways you should be investing in yourself. If you start investing in these areas today, I guarantee you will thank yourself one year from now – and for years to come.
Continuing education doesn’t have to be grad school, a formal class or a workshop. For years I dreamed of being able to take better photos, write consistently, and share my thoughts with the world. As you may have guessed, I am now pursuing those dreams on Nothing Needs to Be Done. It has taken a lot of time and energy, and yes some money, to create the blog you are currently reading. I spend almost all of my time practicing these skill, I also took online courses to help me along the way from A Beautiful Mess, Creative Live, and Lynda. Since starting the blog I feel more confident in my ability to learn new skills and transform abstract ideas into reality. The satisfaction I feel on a day to day basis from this work assures me that the time, money, and energy I invested in this blog were well worth it.
Maybe you want to develop your yoga practice, why not get your instructor certification? Or you want to learn more about social media, there are endless blogs, posts, and free resources to help you. Maybe you want to be able to make a delicious meal for yourself, take cooking lessons. Or maybe you are interested in something else entirely, but you are undoubtedly interested in something. Once you identify what it is you want to improve on or learn more about,you will find a plethora of ways to develop these new skills. Investing your resources in continuing education could lead to a pay raise, a new career, a side income, and/or a better quality of life.
Health is more than just the absence of illness, it is the level of vitality you have at your disposal.
Rather than the numbers on a scale or inches on your waistline, health is how well you feel physically moment-to-moment and day-to-day. The areas that influence your health most are exercise and diet.
You don’t need to be a fitness guru to care about your health. Take stock of how your health is right now and go from there. If you sit at a desk all day, eat mostly processed food, and don’t get enough sleep, start small. Try going for a walk around the block every day at work, eating one fresh item a day, and going to bed half an hour earlier. If you already eat relatively well and get plenty of exercise, consider if there is some other way you can improve. Maybe you strength train but rarely do cardio. If you eat well, consider talking to a nutritionist, ayurvedic practitioner, naturopath, etc. to create a more personalized diet and get the most out of every meal. Incremental changes are the best way to invest in you health. For most people taking on too much at once will only cause frustration and burnout. These small changes will build up over time for big pay off, that’s why I call it investing. 😉
Wellness is everything beyond diet and nutrition in regards to well-being. For me, investing in my wellness involves: eating chocolate everyday, allowing myself time for meditation, creating regularly, getting massages, and plenty more. For you, it may look completely different. To get the most return out of your wellness investment, it is important to know yourself well. What pleasures and experiences make you feel the best? It might be seeing live music, hiking regularly, or reading daily, there’s so much you can do! Take a moment to think about what things make your heart a little warmer and find a way to build them into your schedule.
The big take away
Life is meant to be enjoyed, I believe that sometimes the greatest pleasures are obtained through hard work. And occasionally we must sacrifice momentary satisfaction for long term self-fulfillment. Know that money is not your only resource; money is renewable, your time is not. Always invest your time, energy and money wisely and know your worth (hint: it’s priceless).