Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Investing in Yourself

If you are interested in personal development it is important you commit to investing in yourself.  No matter what it is you want to improve, no matter what you want to achieve, it will almost certainly require an investment or will be much better and be achieved much quicker with the right investment.

Start by listing the areas of improvement to which you wish to commit.  This can be in a very wide area, and I am not limiting myself at all to one particular niche.  Have a look at my previous article about the Top Ten New Year Resolutions.  All ten are perfectly acceptable self improvement goals, and you can probably add quite a few more to this list.

Take a look around and see what resources are out there which could help you make serious inroads on those improvements you desire.  Examine them carefully.  There are a lot of scams out there, but there are also a lot of diamonds if you look carefully enough.  Try to find at least one for each of the areas on your list.  Don’t worry at this stage about how much money they may cost.  All that should concern you right now is whether you believe they will help you achieve your goals better or faster, or both.

Once you have come up with the list of investments you want to make in yourself and are reasonably comfortable that, at least for now, this is a fairly complete list, the next step is to work out how you will pay for them.

One problem many people have, though, is that after they have paid all their monthly bills there is no money left to invest in themselves.

What may surprise you, though, is that no matter how much you earn you will almost certainly still find there is no money left after paying the bills.  How can this be?

Parkinson’s Second Law

The answer lies in Parkinson’s Second Law.  You have probably heard his First Law – “work expands to fill the available time”.  But perhaps you missed the Second Law – “expenditure rises to meet the available income”.  Parkinson’s Second Law is often applied to bureaucracies and they way they can needlessly spend our money.  But it is equally applicable to personal expenditure.

The corollary of Parkinson’s Second Law is that if you look carefully at your spending you will always find cuts you can make without impacting noticeably on your overall lifestyle.

Your first step should therefore be to examine your budget very carefully.  Pretend you are a business which is not making profit.  Step back and look at that business as if you were the finance director (or maybe the bank manager!).  I think you will be surprised by some of the cuts you could make and still continue to enjoy life just as much.

Pay Yourself First

Once you have done this, regard yourself as your own primary creditor.  You owe yourself a lot of money, so start paying it back.

Pay yourself first.  Before you pay anyone else.  Do not feel guilty about doing this.  Every day of your adult life up to now you have paid everyone except yourself.  Now it is your turn!

How much should you pay yourself?  Well, that depends, of course.  It depends on many factors.  Not least of which is how much you managed to save off your budget – make sure at least half of this goes to you.  Some coaches suggest it should be a minimum of 10% of your gross earnings.  But again I stress this depends on your own circumstances and budget.  Just don’t allow it to be whittled down to almost nothing!

Put it in savings and investments that you resolve not to touch except when investing in yourself.

Create a Second Income

Whether you work for someone else or have your own business you should consider ways of creating a second income.  You can then reserve most of this new income to invest in yourself (well, the profit on it - as there will always be expenses).

One way you can do this is to set up an online marketing business.  There are some major advantages of choosing this route rather than, for example, finding an additional part time job somewhere.

The first advantage is that you will be completely in control.  You can invest as much or as little time as you like.  As your business grows you may decide to give up your "day job" and spend all your working hours moving your internet business forward - but that is entirely up to you.  There will be no boss looking over your shoulder telling you to speed things up or do things differently.  Of course, you should also recognise this can be a disadvantage - you will need to have some good self-discipline to ensure you spend enough time doing the right things.

The second advantage is linked to the first.  You do not have to work on specific days or at specific times.  You can choose when to do this work.  If you wake up in the middle of the night and cannot get back to sleep you can sit at the computer and do something to move your online business forward.

The third advantage is that once you have set up your business properly it will begin to generate profits for you even if you do not put a lot of effort in to grow it.  You will need to continue doing some work in order to maintain it, so I do not believe it is correct to call it "passive income", but it should certainly generate you high profits for not a great deal of work as long as you have built it correctly.

Be aware, though, that as with any other business an online marketing business will require you to invest time and effort.  Do not be misled by claims you will often see that suggest this is a miracle "instant millionaire" formula.  It is not!  You can certainly become very wealthy if you choose to do so, but this will not happen over night.

You will also probably find there will be a few false starts before you get your own formula right.  Ideally you should take advice from an internet marketing coach who has been there and done that and who can stop you needing to re-invent the wheel yourself.  This will not be cheap, but it will save you making costly mistakes and ultimately ensure you reach your goal faster if you choose the right coach.

Invest in Yourself

Once you have started this habit of paying yourself first, and have perhaps additionally created your second income, start to invest with this money.  Not in company shares.  Not in bricks and mortar.  You are going to invest in something far more valuable than that.  You are going to invest in yourself!


  1. This is so amazing I really feel good, is time I pay myself highly!!!!

  2. Like the sound of being your own boss more. Great piece of work. Thanks.

  3. Always believe in yourself Cheers Cheryl Ford Australia 3429

  4. Success is only found when you find what you want in life and the full content of what you have to do to get it Cheers

    1. I concur! ;-) In love & light, Ann@DNA

    2. perfect!! I also concur!!

    3. Wonderful timely info Ty.

    4. I got this information at the right time. Thank you!

  5. Consistency, wait & watch, & awareness is necessary for businss & life.

  6. This really made me realized how much I owed myself.
    Yes, it is about time for me to pay a little attention to my own self.. Thank you so much.

  7. Great News... Keep ♍ε̲̣̣̣̥ informed.

  8. شكرا لك مستر غرهام انه اكتشاف رائع ان استثمر في نفسي بعيدا عن مشاكل المال وصعوبه الحصول عليه شكرا مستر غرهام مهندس حسن

  9. This is absolutely spot-on! Thanks for the enlightenment.

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  15. The statement is very inspiring but the problem is our attitude during implementation. Let us start today doing what we love and rewarding ourselves fairly.

  16. Thank you Graham . That is inspiring.

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  18. Yes,indeed. Yourself is the most important person to you.

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  27. True! I must get back to "paying myself first" again. Thanks Graham

  28. Nice and straight to the fact! Experience they say is the best teacher.I chose to resign my appointment in 2011 as Human Resources Manager then to pursue a Post Graduate Diploma Course (Master International Human Resources Management) in UK. This was necessitated by my quest for knowledge and passion for excellence. After a successful completion of the course I returned back to my place of domicile and landed by dream job just within 2 months. It pays off to empty ones pocket to fill ones brain. “All our dreams can come true – if we have the courage to pursue them.”~ Walt Disney

  29. THANK YOU!!! I feel happy when I read that post. I believe in that there will be always some ways to do something useful for us and for others. I know personal improvement is so important if you are really want to become the best. And I do know that people like you will exist as long as knowledge and improvement exist.

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  31. Thanks for Your post! Investing in yourself is the most profitable investment!