The Safest Investment In Any Economy
No matter how bad the stock market is, or how high gas prices are, or what the unemployment rate stands at, there is one solid investment that can only increase your chances for exponential financial gain; you! This is a very serious topic, and if you are able to adopt the perspective it teaches, your life will be enriched in the most profound and appealing ways. There are several different ways to "invest" in yourself, all of which will be outlined in the following paragraphs. If you have ever collapsed on your bed after a long day of being over-worked and under-paid, and just thought to yourself; "Man, what's the point? I'm just spinning my wheels..." then I sincerely hope you read through this article completely and carefully, because I know and sympathize with that feeling. So let's get started with all the different ways to invest in you!
Your Physical Investment
There is a reason I chose this category first. If you give more time, money, and attention to your car than you do to maintaining your body, then you really need to re-think your priorities. A car can be returned, refunded, traded-in, and replaced, but your body? Not so much... It is your one and only vehicle through this thing we call life. And just like a car, a well-tuned body will make for a pleasant journey, and a poorly-tuned body will make for a miserable one. So eat right, develop good sleeping habits, take the stairs now and then, don't miss your check-up appointments, and avoid unhealthy habits. "But Taylor, it's harder for me to stay healthy, I have so-and-so health problems!" Oh boo-hoo, the worst thing you can do for your life is victimize yourself. Just remember that there is always someone worse off than you. Yes, some of us have more advantages than others when it comes to staying healthy, unfortunately such is life. The simple fact is that you only get one body, and it is your responsibility to maintain it to the best of your ability. I can promise you that if you do so, your quality of life will grow immeasurably, which is what makes your body a sound investment!
Here's the book I was talking about.
Your Educational Investment
This topic should just be common sense. Everyone knows the phrase "Knowledge is Power," and no statement has ever been more true. Except for maybe "Redheads have a mean temper," but I digress. Although it is always good to be learning and growing, you really do have to be careful with this investment as there are possibilities to make poor educational investments. You only want to make educational investments into things that will ....a.) have a positive effect, and b.) have a practical application on your life.
Good educational investments are based solely on the individual and what they want out of life, however there are a few good educational investments that can help increase the value of a member of society no matter what career path they have chosen for themselves. They are as follows:
1.) Medical- Something small, like basic CPR or even an EMT-Basic course. Having this minimal medical training makes you a valuable asset in emergency situations, preventative care, and makes for great resume glitter!
2.) Foreign Language- If you live in the U.S., learn Spanish, and do it quick. It's a very easy language and you will be pleasantly surprised at the number of employers that will gladly hire you right on the spot just because you are bilingual. I'm not exagherating! So go to your local community college and sign up for two semesters of basic Spanish and watch the employers fight over you! Some areas might have more demand for a different language, but the point is you should know at least one language other than English, don't underestimate the power of this investment!
3.) Sun Tsu's "The Art of War"- This book was written long ago by the Chinese general Sun Tsu. It is full of war stories and battle strategies. The lessons you can learn from this book can be applied to every single aspect of life because it teaches you a train of thought that will inspire confidence, determination, leadership, and respect. You can probably find a cheap copy at your local book store, it is very common and very inexpensive. If you want to be successful at anything, read this book!
4.) Computer Literacy- The world is becoming more and more digital by the second. It would be incredibly arrogant of someone who wants to be a contributing member of society to choose not to become familiar with the thing that now runs our society; modern technology. Basic keyboard skills are a must, take a one semester typing class and you'll be set. Be as ambitious as you want with this one, because in this day and age everything is done on computers, and just remember that knowledge is power.
Just remember though, you can learn anywhere, not just in a classroom setting. If there is a skill you wish to learn but do not have the resources to attend school right away, think outside the box! We have so many wonderful tools in our modern world today, like the internet, that provide us with easy access to unlimited amounts of infinite knowledge! Don't limit yourself to one form of education, start trying to turn everything that happens to you into a lesson, and see what you can learn from it. It will completely boggle-fy your mind!
Your Social Investment
"It's not what you know, it's who you know."
Ever heard that quote before? Well, unfortunately it's true 99.9% of the time. Humans are inherently social creatures, drawn to one another through the things with which they can commonly relate. Why do you have to be a hater when you could just as easily be a player though? The most important thing in this life is the relationships we make. I noticed this fact clearly last year when I was trying to find a better job. I was putting in resumes day and night to literally hundreds of places, most of which I was even over qualified for, but I didn't care, I just needed a job. I called to follow up with several of them more than once, only got about 3 interviews out of it, and I'm sure if I had continued for another couple months I would have undoubtedly found something, but that's not what happened. In the end, it was a friend of mine that got me a job. I got a call from his boss to come in for an interview, began orientation for a job I was extremely under-qualified for, and got a sign-on bonus all in the same day, all thanks to nothing else but the referral of a friend. Social networking is an amazing tool, and it is available to everyone, why would you choose not to take advantage of it? Network yourself, get your name out in the mix, mingle with your friends, go to all the parties, even the lame ones, be kind and courteous to everyone you ever come in contact with. Being social can be hard, it requires quite a bit of selflessness on your behalf, but the returns from this investment are exponential. Most of the time you can see and feel the results right away!
Your Emotional Investment
Human beings, in our natural state, are healthy and happy. Stress, anger, fear, doubt, guilt, remorse, sorrow, pain, and anxiety are all symptoms, symptoms of something that is out of place. Think of them like the warning lights you see in the dashboard of a car. And like cars, we as people come in many different makes and models. Our emotional reactions to our environment are completely individual, and vary from person to person. Some of us may be like Chevrolets, and a dash light will only come on when it's really important. Some of us may be like Hyundais, and our dash lights may come on all the time for no apparent reason. Some of us may be like Fords, and our dash lights might not turn on until after the problem has already seized our engine. The point being that you can't hold yourself to a "normal" standard, you may be a little more sensitive than the next person, don't let anyone ever tell you that you are "over-reacting." Instead, take more personal responsibility in managing your emotions. When you feel angry, upset, stressed, guilty, sorrowful, or afraid, that is your body saying "Um...something's not right...fix it please." Think about what caused the emotion, and consciously work to control your reaction to that kind of thing in the future. One sure fire thing that can help aleviate most of these symptoms is what I talked about in the last paragraph, being social. Keep your body at it's optimum performance capabilities by exploring ways to maintain your emotional health, this is a very powerful investment!
It Will Never Let You Down
Investing in yourself is solid. You can increase your knowledge, capabilities, determination, resilience, and skills. You can do all of this by not just investing money, but also time, patience, hard work, love, trust, and other resources you may have. The point of an "investment" is for you to sacrifice something in the "here and now" that will give you returns or profit in the long run. And there is nothing more assured to yield a great return in any economy or career field, than Yourself!