A large proportion of the world’s wealthiest people are investors. 77 of the Forbes 400 self-made billionaire list made their money through investing. I believe that becoming an investor is an advantageous approach to getting the good life. When I use the word investor in this context, I am not simply talking in terms of finance. An investor is someone who is able to forgo current pleasures for a later reward. There are several areas one can invest in today, in the hopes of reaping the benefits in the future. Here are some areas you should contemplate “investing” in.
1. Your brain – The more you learn, the more you can potentially earn. I suggest for you to adopt a continual learning process for the rest of your life. Read books, attend seminars, go to conference, watch Ted talks, and use online courses from sites like Lynda.com. Spend money on your brain. I would suggest setting aside 20 percent of your income to go towards your education. The way to become a better earner is to provide rare and in demand skills. The more skills you acquire, the more equipped you will be to succeed. Add real tangible skills to your tool belt.
2. Your body – Your health is extremely important to living a good life. The foods you eat are an investment, and so is the amount of exercise you are getting. This one is aimed more specifically to the younger demographic. Your metabolism isn’t going to run high forever, so you should prepare yourself now. Do what’s difficult when it’s easy. There is an epidemic in our country of preventable diseases, that are largely if not solely attributed to lifestyle choices. What you put in your body can literally mean the difference between life and death at some point. Take your health more seriously.
3. Your relationships – Strengthen the ties you have with your close friends and family. Reconnect with your friends that you’ve been meaning to get around to talking to. Invest your time building and solidifying your relationships. You never know when you are going to be in need. You must have a support system when times get rough. You should be there for them and they will be there for you when it counts.
4. Your state of mind – We all agree that it’s important to take care of ourselves physically, but oftentimes I think we forget how important it is to take care of ourselves mentally. Stress is a problem that many of us face on a daily basis. Some of us may even have to deal with states of depression. I like to use yoga and meditation to increase my fulfillment levels and many others find those methods to be helpful as well. Think about the things you’re grateful for. Find someone to talk to if you need to get something off of your chest. Don’t let it get bottled up. Add positivity to your life everyday.
5. Your bank account – Save your money. Stop spending all of it. After you’ve saved some money, try to figure out some ways to make your money work for you by learning more about money (see step 1). I think we all can improve our spending habits. Spending creates wealth. Every time you spend money you create wealth, albeit not necessarily for yourself. Instead of making everyone else rich, begin to shift your philosophy towards figuring out how to improve your financial situation.