Living a meaningful and well-lived life requires focus. It also requires you to invest in yourself.
If you have goals and aspirations you will need to develop the ability to focus intently on one and then refocus to another.
Multitasking is a fallacy. Instead aim to develop the skills to be multifocal. Focus on one task and once complete refocus to another.
To grow in life you have to invest in yourself and apply a multifocal approach. You also have to take a multi-pronged approach to individual investments. Focusing on one area can unbalance you.
Look at how unbalanced fitness freaks are. They are all about looking good and being healthy to the point of diminishing returns. Worse still they become obsessive about health to a point where it’s unhealthy. Other parts of their lives are a mess.
You have to tend to and monitor them like you would with a financial investment. Focus on one investment to a point where you’re in a good place and then refocus on another.
Here are seven ways you should invest in yourself
1. Invest in your health
Your body is one of your two greatest assets. It’s the vessel that carries you through life. It gives you the ability to run, jump, lift, walk, climb, fight, trek and many other pleasurable things.
The body begins to fade over time. The muscles become weaker, bones more brittle, joints less flexible, endocrine system produces fewer hormones, neurons die out and cells stop dividing.
You can’t stop ageing from happening but you can fight it. Lift weights, move, eat well, fast and implement lifestyle habits to improve your longevity. Take care of your skin, have your eyes checked, visit the dentist and get your blood work done twice a year.
Investing in your health could add ten years to your life and maybe 20 years to your productive life.
2. Invest in your mindset
Your other greatest asset is your mindset. It’s the operating system that helps you overcome difficult situations in life. With a powerful mindset you can achieve more than the average person. You can stay on track when the going gets tough.
Like the body, a powerful mindset develops over time. The human brain is not fixed. Its neuroplasticity means that it can grow and change even as you get older.
The mind is like a muscle. It needs to be worked for it to grow. That requires stimulus and sometimes pain. It also requires awareness of when your ego is talking so you can create new neural pathways.
Invest in your mindset and it can mean the difference to living a mediocre life and leading a full rich one.
3. Invest in your personal presentation
We live in a visual and judgemental world. People like you more if you are good looking. You command more respect when you’re dressed in a well-fitted suit. That’s just the way it is. If you were born beautiful, good for you. But know that looks fade so your personality better compensate when they do.
Whether you are good looking or average you should be working on your looks and presentation. Health is key. Work on point 1 and that’s fifty percent covered. Dress smartly and for your age, get your haircut regularly and whiten your teeth. People laugh when you’re a 50-year-old dressing like you’re in your twenties.
Invest in how you present yourself to the world and in turn see how the world reacts to you.
4. Invest in your communication skills
There has never been a greater time to develop your communication skills. Social media has given everyone a platform to share their (usually mundane and pointless) thoughts. The sea of voices is deafening.
Invest in how to write and speak well. Learn non-verbal communication and how to persuade when communicating. How to lose the monotone and project your voice. Learn the technical side of communication in today’s digital world. It will allow you to become an effective communicator both online and in real life.
Invest in your communication skills to convey your message, persuade and find new allegiances.
5. Invest in gaining knowledge and wisdom
In the Information age you have no excuse not to self-educate. In our connected world you have more opportunities to learn than ever before. Each year you should be smarter and wiser than the previous year. Smarter because you’ve continued educating yourself. Wiser because you’ve tried new things and learnt from your mistakes.
Knowledge comes from educating yourself and wisdom comes from experiences. One will earn you a living and the other will earn you a life.
Invest in gaining knowledge and wisdom and watch the returns come back tenfold.
6. Invest in working for yourself
Working for yourself puts you in charge of your own destiny. Working for someone else means you’re subject to their needs and demands. The latter is the easiest to do. All you have to do is show up and the worry keeping the cogs moving is someone else’s.
Setting up on your own in business is more of a risk but the awards are greater. Become a freelance consultant and trade your time and expertise. Not only can the financial rewards be greater but you’ll have more freedom and that you can’t put a price on.
Invest in working for yourself for more freedom and control over your life.
7. Invest your time wisely
A common phrase among people who realise the importance of time is, “you can always earn more money but you can never get the time back” and it is deadly true.
Treat time with the utmost importance. Time is precious and you should use it wisely to invest in yourself. That includes who you spend your time with and the activities you involve yourself with.
If each day is a routine of monotony then you are not investing your time wisely. If you look back on the previous 12 months and nothing has changed you’ve wasted it. You’ve poured time down the drain.
Invest the finite time you have on this planet doing meaningful activities and pursuits.
Investing in yourself is the greatest investment you will ever make.
Like all good investments the payoff won’t be immediate. They require constant nurturing and time to mature but stick with them and they will pay dividends. And the earlier you start the better.