This article was co-authored by Kamal Ravikant and by wikiHow staff writer, Glenn Carreau. Kamal Ravikant is a bestselling author, podcast host, speaker, and a Venture Capitalist. His book Love Yourself Like Your Life Depends On It was a bestseller in the USA. He's had diverse experiences in his life, including meditating with monks in the Himalayas, serving as a US Army Infantry soldier, and cofounded several companies and a Venture Capital firm in Silicon Valley. He is passionate about sharing the common thread through all of these experiences: the importance of loving yourself
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What does it mean to invest in yourself? It's even more valuable than just investing money in profitable ventures. Investing in yourself means making decisions in every aspecting positive, mindful habits that improve every area of your life from your finances to your career, health, and relationships. Read on, and we'll show you how to take action and invest in yourself starting today!
Things You Should Know
- Invest in yourself financially by creating and sticking to a budget. Include a rainy day fund and a retirement fund if possible.
- Invest in yourself emotionally by taking up a new creative hobby, keeping a journal, and nurturing supportive relationships.
- Invest in yourself physically by practicing self care, eating well, and exercising.
1 of 14:Create a budget.
Budgets make it easier to achieve financial stability. Make a list of savings goals, estimated monthly expenses, and income after taxes. Use the 70/20/10 rule to make your budget and allocate money towards expenses, savings and investments. Use 70% of your paycheck for monthly expenses, put 20% in savings and investments, and use 10% to pay off debt or donate. X Research source
- You can use a Google or Excel spreadsheet or a mobile budgeting app like Mint and EveryDollar to keep a log of your expenses and budget.
- Monthly expenses include food, rent, transportation, utilities, insurance — anything you need to survive. It also includes indulgences and fun things, like dining out, entertainment, and travel.
- Savings and investments can include stocks and bonds, real estate, business seed money, or even a separate fund for future purchases.
- If you have debts, use that 10% to steadily pay them off. While donating to a charitable cause is a worthy goal, take care of yourself first! You can give back once you're in a stable financial place.
2 of 14:Put money in a rainy day fund.
Saved money is a lifesaver when you have unexpected expenses. Auto repairs, medical bills, and unemployment can put you in financial trouble. When you have a "rainy day fund," you can handle surprises with minimal stress! Start by opening a separate savings account with your bank, and deposit a small portion of each paycheck into it to slowly accumulate money. X Research source
- Don’t sweat if you can’t afford to put 20% of your paycheck into savings each month. Do what you can, accept that surprise expenses happen, and aim to save at least 10% when possible. Every dollar counts!
- Remember: only dip into your rainy day fund for emergencies. It's there to protect you and give you peace of mind.
- It can be tempting to use a larger part of your paycheck for immediate fun purchases. To keep yourself accountable, try to set up automatic deposits to your savings account through your bank or employer.
3 of 14:Make a retirement fund.
The sooner you start saving, the earlier you'll be able to retire. Many employers offer retirement plans, but you can always save up independently too. Start a retirement savings fund that is separate from your general savings. Invest your money into a savings account that compounds interest and helps you grow your retirement funds even faster. X Trustworthy Source Investor.gov Website maintained by the Securities and Exchange Commision’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy providing free resources about investing. Go to source
- You could start a Roth IRA account, which lets you steadily add money to the retirement fund, and all contributions are tax-free when you eventually withdraw them.
- Traditional IRAs let you make tax-deductible contributions to a retirement account.
- You can also contribute funds to an employer-sponsored 401(k) or 403(b) retirement plan, depending on your employer's offer.
4 of 14:Set short-term and long-term goals.
Specific, realistic goals can motivate you to change your life. Think about where you want to be in a month, 6 months, a year, or even 5 years. Make a list of simple, short-term goals you can accomplish now and another list of long-term goals to achieve over time. The more commitments you make and then keep, the more confident in your abilities you'll feel!
- Short-term goals can be as simple as updating your resumé, taking a walk after work each day, or cleaning out your closet.
- Long-term goals are typically more complex, like paying off all your school loans or getting promoted to a management position at work within a few years.
- Break long-term goals into smaller steps. Creating milestones makes the goal feel more reasonable and helps you see progress at every stage along the way.
- For example, if you have a long-term goal to write a book, you can start with the shorter-term goal of keeping a daily writing journal or writing 1,000 words every day at a scheduled time.
5 of 14:Find a mentor.
A mentor can help you learn new skills and further your career. Figure out your long-term career goals. Where do you want to be, and what skills do you want to improve? Are there people in those fields you look up to? Find a mentor within your existing network, like a manager or coworker, or reach out to them through industry events and online platforms like LinkedIn. X Research source
- Figure out why you want their help and create a list of questions you have or advice you're seeking. For example, a mentor can give constructive advice for your portfolio, or help make a 5-year plan to advance your career.
- Politely ask them to chat and give you some career advice. Have an elevator pitch ready; explain why you admire their work and why they're the right mentor for you.
- Meet with them over a video call or grab some coffee if they're local. You can develop a personal connection with them by chatting face-to-face.
6 of 14:Learn new professional skills.
Keep developing yourself beyond school to get a leg up in your career. Pick a career-related skill that you want to learn more about, whether it relates to your current job or it’s a skill that will help you start a side gig to supplement income. Sign up for a class, workshop, or conference about the skill you want to develop. Commit to lifelong learning and continually build up valuable skills! X Research source
- For example, you might decide to learn about leadership in your long-term goal to become a manager, take a marketing class so you can start your own business, or learn a new language if you work in a multilingual environment.
- It’s not hard to find classes and training guides, even after college! Many universities offer free online courses. You could also take a class at your local community college, or use an online service like Skillshare or MasterClass.
- Set short-term and long-term goals. If you decide to learn a new language, for instance, start with basic greetings and vocabulary before moving up to more advanced phrases and words.
7 of 14:Take up a creative hobby.
Creative thinking is a fun and valuable career skill. It builds problem-solving skills and helps open your mind to new perspectives. X Trustworthy Source HelpGuide Nonprofit organization dedicated to providing free, evidence-based mental health and wellness resources. Go to source Find a creative outlet that you’re passionate about. Have you always wanted to learn an instrument, dance, or maybe paint? Use online tutorials or take a class and set aside time for you to relax and express yourself.
- Having a creative hobby that isn't just about creating an end result removes the pressure of having to succeed or be perfect.
- Your creative hobby could even turn into a side gig. Consider setting up an online store for knitting projects or taking commissions if you're a painter.
- The ability to think outside the box is vital for many jobs. If you can hone it in your daily life, you'll be well-equipped to find creative solutions in the workplace, too! X Research source
8 of 14:Tackle important tasks right away.
Procrastination will only add to your stress. Get started on chores and projects early, especially if you have a history of procrastination. Once you start, any task instantly feels more doable! Break the job down into smaller steps to help it go even faster. This helps you complete the task ahead of time instead of trying to do it in one sitting close to the deadline. X Trustworthy Source HelpGuide Nonprofit organization dedicated to providing free, evidence-based mental health and wellness resources. Go to source
- For example, do your taxes right when you get the information from your employer—and not the day before they're due. You’ll breathe easier knowing that it's done, and you won't have to rush through the process.
9 of 14:Declutter and organize your space.
Knowing where everything is will reduce your stress levels. Clean your home by sorting all your belongings and tossing anything you don't need. Make space for all your belongings and get a system in place so you know where any important documents are, including tax information, birth certificates, and passports. Life is easier to manage when you can find what you need when you need it. X Research source
10 of 14:Care for your physical health.
Eat right, sleep well, and exercise regularly to keep your body energized. Plan your meals and keep track of what you eat to enjoy a nutritious diet. Go on walks or visit a gym to keep your heart pumping and body active. Get at least 8 hours of sleep to boost your immune system and improve mental performance. You'll feel confident and ready to take on life when you're in good physical condition. X Trustworthy Source National Institutes of Health U.S. government agency for biomedical and public health research Go to source
- Eat healthily by filling up your meals with a balanced combination of complex carbs, veggies and fruits, protein, and lots of water.
- Create an exercise routine that works for you, whether you prefer swimming, hiking, dancing, or lifting weights. If you enjoy the exercise, it’s easier to stick with it!
- The benefits are more than physical, too. Poor physical health can worsen mental health effects like depression or anxiety. You'll feel less fatigued and more focused by prioritizing your physical well-being.
11 of 14:Practice self-care.
Prioritize your mental health to avoid burnout and keep your spirits high. Your job mental health and job performance are connected; the better you feel, the more you can do! Take breaks when you feel drained, and forgive yourself when you make a mistake. Do something you enjoy every day, and try relaxing activities like meditation, yoga, taking walks, or even just taking a warm bath. X Research source
- Understand that progress takes time. Rather than stewing in dark thoughts when you feel like you're not where you should be in life, say, "It's okay," and focus on the light. You'll get where you want to go!
- Try talking to a therapist who can help you manage stress and understand your feelings. Anyone can benefit from therapy; it's not just for people who are struggling. A site like BetterHelp can make it easy to find a therapist.
12 of 14:Set boundaries for yourself.
Work-life boundaries allow you more time for relaxation and fun. Plan out your daily work schedule and set a time definitive time to stop working for the day. When that time rolls around, disconnect from work and enjoy your personal time. Working late at night (at the cost of downtime and sleep) will only cause more stress and impact the quality of your work. You deserve time for yourself! X Research source
- Whether you’re a freelancer or work a steady 9 to 5 job, it can be tempting to "take work home with you" and keep late hours when you have a heavy workload. Resist the urge and make time to decompress each day.
13 of 14:Keep a journal.
Journaling is a great way to reflect and practice daily gratitude. Write in a journal regularly. Use it to keep track of your goals, celebrate milestones, and remind yourself of past accomplishments. X Research source Jot down everything you're grateful for, no matter how small! Practicing gratitude allows you to reflect on all the good things in your life and feel more comfortable about where you are now.
- Remember to write down new goals each time you cross one out. That way, you'll stay motivated to make progress and keep reaching for the stars.
- You can also use your journal as a tool to break bad habits! Write down what you want to change and why. Then, list the steps you’ll take to reverse that habit and track your progress in the journal.
- There's no wrong way to write about the things you're grateful for. Whether it's a supportive friend, a significant other, or the simple pleasure of fresh air on a spring day, you'll find many things to love in life.
14 of 14:Nurture your relationships.
Friendships and work relationships contribute to a more fulfilling life. They encourage and motivate you on your self-improvement journey! X Trustworthy Source HelpGuide Nonprofit organization dedicated to providing free, evidence-based mental health and wellness resources. Go to source The key to maintaining good relationships is to keep communication going. Don't be afraid to be the first to text. Let them know you're thinking of them. Make time to spend together or do an activity you both enjoy. Support them as much as they do you.
- Isolating yourself only worsens your negative attitudes about yourself and keeps you isolated from the world. It's important to have a support system you can rely on to help you through the hard times.
- You can also rely on friends and family to reinforce healthy habits. They can help you maintain your goal to take a daily walk, for example, by sending you a friendly reminder text—or even joining you.
- ↑ https://www.thepennyhoarder.com/budgeting/70-20-10-budget/
- ↑ https://www.tcdrs.org/library/how-and-why-to-build-a-rainy-day-fund/
- ↑ https://www.investor.gov/additional-resources/retirement-toolkit/self-directed-plans-individual-retirement-accounts-iras
- ↑ https://www.npr.org/2019/10/25/773158390/how-to-find-a-mentor-and-make-it-work
- ↑ https://www.wgu.edu/blog/6-reasons-continuing-education-important1904.html
- ↑ https://www.helpguide.org/articles/stress/stress-management.htm
- ↑ https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/articles/200911/everyday-creativity
- ↑ https://www.helpguide.org/articles/stress/stress-management.htm
- ↑ https://www.cleaninginstitute.org/cleaning-tips/home/de-clutter
- ↑ https://www.nih.gov/health-information/physical-wellness-toolkit
- ↑ https://mhanational.org/taking-good-care-yourself
- ↑ https://psychcentral.com/blog/tips-for-setting-boundaries-at-work
- ↑ https://mhanational.org/taking-good-care-yourself
- ↑ https://www.helpguide.org/articles/stress/social-support-for-stress-relief.htm