Investing in yourself is something that everyone should do. In this blog, I will outline 5 ways that you can invest in yourself now, because why wait? Education and growth doesn’t end once you cross that stage indicating that high school or college graduation took place. Sure, it does feel good to have completed school requirements and not having to go to school but investing in yourself doesn’t end there. Investing in yourself is pretty much required for you to grow as an individual, professional or in a business setting. The good news is that you are in the driver seat to pick the way or ways to investment. There are many ways to invest in yourself and the costs can range from free to thousands of dollars. The good news about investing in yourself is that you will almost be guaranteed a positive return on investment (ROI). After all, you are betting on yourself!
There are so many ways to invest in yourself so there really isn’t a reason to not jump at this opportunity right now. Truly successfully people are always learning, reading, growing and sharpening their skills.
5 ways to invest in yourself:
Yes, good old-fashioned books which you can purchase from the bookstore, thrift stores (my new favorite place to purchase books for cheap), borrow them out from your local library, purchase from amazon (kindle edition if you like) or even listen on audible. However, you could possibly have a book on your bookcase or kindle/iPad that you haven’t read or could re-read, so start there. Keep in mind, there really isn’t any reason to not read or listen via audible. Just reading 15-30 minutes per day will add up and put you mentally ahead of a lot of people.
According to research from Thomas Crowley, 85 percent of self-made millionaires read two or more books per month.
2. Podcasts – Podcasts are my new favorite way to learn and its free. If you have an apple product then you should have the purple colored apple “podcasts” app already installed on your phone or apple device or you can also listen via stitcher, podmatic or Spotify. Nine times out of ten there is a podcast available on a subject matter that you want to learn about or improve in. Some that come to mind are: personal finances, investing, healthy eating, fitness, career advice, business advice, etc. If you haven’t started listening to podcasts then you are truly missing out and should give it a try…like today!
3. Local Events – There are always events going on but sometimes you have to look for them. For example, the library usually has events or you can search by topic via eventbrite.com. You may find events that are free but then other events may come with a cost.
4. Online – Yes, the good ol’ internet where you find “YouTube University” and Google because Google is truly your friend. Also Instagram and Facebook. There are always free webinars, twitter chats and even live streaming opportunities available online. Yes, some of the free webinars will attempt to upsell you or require your email address but that doesn’t mean you have to buy into the offer or maybe it is truly something that you want to buy. However, definitely don’t sleep on all of the free information being spread on social media and the internet. The internet and social media is a tool, use it to your advantage.
5. Conferences – Last but not least, conferences can be very a good investment and more than likely it will cost to attend a conference. You could possibly find a free conference but it may be filled with sale pitches unless it’s being sponsored by an organization. Also, your job may require you to attend a conference and they will cover the cost but that conference may not be your true interest or passion. Therefore, don’t let having to pay for a conference hinder you from self-improvement. Whatever subject matter that you want to improve in, I can almost guarantee you that there is a conference or a workshop out there for it and you should go! Invest in yourself because so many personal interests that won’t be covered by your employer, Examples: the side hustle that you are working on, photography, fitness instructor, women’s empowerment, sorority or fraternity event, etc.
“To guarantee your lifelong success, make a decision today to invest 3 percent of your income back into yourself” – Brian Tracy
I recently read in the book “No Excuses”, by Brian Tracy that it is recommended that you should invest 3% of your income into self-improvement and the author gave evidence of when successful professionals invested in themselves by learning new skills, meeting new people, etc., how this helped to grow their income. Simply because there will be a lot of people that won’t invest in themselves after traditional school or otherwise what is required for their job. They will come up with excuses like they can’t afford it financially or they can’t take the time off work, and the excuses will go on and on. But, I honestly believe that people find ways and the money to do the things that they truly want to do. And, if you are reading this blog and want to grow your income I believe that investing in yourself should be in your budget.
The Main Excuse: “But Conferences are expensive!”
First of all, everyone’s version of expensive is different and you don’t have to start with a conference or an event that cost $300, $500 or $1000 per ticket but you have to start somewhere. If you know your budget really doesn’t have much wiggle room then I would start searching for conferences or events with Eventbrite. There are a lot of low cost events on Eventbrite and some are even free.
Also follow the people that you are interested in hearing speak at conferences on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and sign up for their mailing list. More times than not, they may offer free events, live streams or webinars. If they also have a paid event then those tickets are often announced to subscribers first.
For example, I went to an event presented by The Finance Bar where Courtney Sanders was a guest and it was FREE. Also look out for early bird tickets. You will save money by purchasing your ticket during the early bird ticket period or see if they have a deal if you buy 2 tickets (of course this only works if you plan to attend with a friend) I have seen where a conference has a discount if you buy 2 tickets. Other discounts that come to mind are student discounts and group discounts.
So, you can’t go to the conference or join the exclusive program being offered because you just don’t have the money. I understand and I have been there before. One simple action will get you there next year, PLANNING. Yes, start planning now even if the conference is a year away. Calculate what it will cost to make sure you can attend or join next year. Be sure to consider: ticket price, hotel room, hotel parking, gas and meals that you will be responsible for.
Be quick but not too quick!
Think carefully about which event that you want to attend because there are conferences going on ALL.THE. TIME, All year long. At one time this year, I had 4 conferences that I was choosing from, 3 in driving distance and 1 that would require a flight. Think about it in detail which one would really give you the most impact and also consider your budget because you don’t want to come back home with a bill or financial regret.
Make it happen!
Lastly, If and when you decide on a conference, cash flowed It and ready to go – it’s time to enjoy! Soak up all of the gems and lessons you can learn to make yourself a better person. Meet new people, network and then come back home and get to work with implementing what you have learned. The implementation part is going to be when you are doing the work from what you learned and next will be the Return on Investment. After all, you can’t lose when you invest in yourself.
Yes, I went on a tangent about conferences but I believe that a good conference can make a great impact on you. However, attending a conference isn’t the only avenue. Keep in mind, I listed 4 more options to invest in yourself that range from being free to $100 or less: reading a book, listening to podcasts, attending local events and taking advantage of online content.
So, let me know in the comments, do you have a book that you already have or have in mind that can be used to invest in yourself or what’s a conference or webinar that you would like to invest in?