Let’s talk about investments . . . .
No, not that kind – that’s why I hire someone else to manage my meager funds.
But I will admit that I have recently started a subscription to the Wall Street Journal – I remember my dad reading WSJ when I was a kid, so if it was valuable for him, maybe I can benefit, too.
And I always thought of WSJ as primarily a publication about money and investments and financial issues in general. It’s in the name, after all: the journal about Wall Street.
But I see much more than that now, and one recent article particularly struck me.
The article described Tony Robbins’ best and worst financial bets. Ironically, the best financial investment he made cost him the least, although it seemed like a lot, because it cost him almost the equivalent of one week’s salary at the time; but it was an investment in himself. He was young at the time, making $40 per week, and asked his boss about the key to his boss’ success. The boss mentioned lessons learned from a motivation speaker, which piqued Tony Robbins’ interest. Tony then asked if the boss would help him get to the seminar; “pay for it” may have been what Tony was thinking, because the boss said, “You won’t value it if you don’t invest your own money in it.” So that’s what Robbins did, and it was a turning point in his life. In addition to realizing the benefit of making his own investment, the life lesson Robbins took from that event was this: “For things to change for you, you’ve got to change. You can’t play the victim.” That’s right – we are responsible for our own change, and it starts with investing in ourselves. We need to continually invest in our own learning, doing, and more learning, and making the changes needed. No one is going to do it for us. And often our investment journey begins with awareness: awareness of who we are, our styles and preferences for communication, our true values and motivators, and where we want to be. It is important to know where we want to be; as Lewis Carroll wrote, “If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will get you there.”
What self-investment have you made recently? Where have you seen that pay off for you, now or in the future? And that’s another key: as with financial investing, it is important to have a long-term view and strategy. Don’t expect an immediate return; look at how an investment in yourself can provide benefit in the future as well as now, whether the future is a month, a year, five years, or more into the future.
Businesses and organizations need to invest, too. More on that in two weeks – see you then!