Financial Freedom Series: Best Ways To Invest In Yourself
We’ve voyaged through larger financial terrains. Reducing expenses, increasing passive income, active income, and even wealth protection. It appears that the conquest of financial freedom is almost at hand.
Now, we’re approaching New Land… Which is all about reinvesting.
Perhaps you’re thinking it means to do more of what works. You’re generating good active and passive income. Plus, you have been continuing to use that amount to reinvest. This cycle results in your wealth growing steadily.
That is all good. That’s also why we will be looking beyond monetary gains in this article.
You’ll understand why this piece of territory is named New Land.
#1 Reinvesting For Non-Monetary Gain
Upon Googling the word “reinvest”, the following dictionary snippet comes up:
To put the profit on a previous investment back into the same scheme.
In the context of this article, we are not looking at financial reinvestment. By now, you should already have a good idea of how to make your money work hard for you. (If not, do check out the earlier parts of this series, especially on increasing passive income and active income.)
Specifically, this article looks at a reinvestment in yourself. It means to use your financial gains to enrich your life.
In this case, let’s not define “profit” in monetary terms. Rather, let’s define it in terms of how enriched life is. Think about the quality of life, and how valuable you are as a person.
When it comes to measuring these aspects, imagine a recruiter looking for an ideal candidate. Before granting the candidates an interview, how does the recruiter measure the candidates against one another?
Indeed, the two most common sorting criteria would be by experience and education/skills. While these do not dictate your worth and potential contributions, it is a means by which others can evaluate what you are able to bring to the table. By the way, the intent here is not to measure yourself against others.
Rather, the competition should be within, so that you constantly bring forth the best version of yourself.
#2 Reinvesting In Education Is The Best Leverage
If there is at least one thing that I can commend you on, it would be that you are reading this article. (If you’ve been following this series on the Road to Financial Freedom, that is even more praiseworthy. Well done!)
This is because you are taking the time to educate yourself. You’re developing understanding and gaining insight.
Knowing what it is that you do not yet know provides you with an advantage. Imagine if you had no clue on what it is that you could work on – then, how would you be able to improve?
Perhaps what is of essence here, is also our perception towards education.
Education Is More Than A Paper Chase
In a meritocratic society like Singapore, the word “education” undoubtedly brings to mind the formal education system. Which is our school days, chasing after paper qualifications. For the most part, a stressful, high-pressured environment to get good grades to get into good schools and subsequently a good job.
You can just imagine the sighs of relief, and the many “I’m done with school!” cries.
Those were the days when you had to deal with grueling memory work, tight assignment deadlines and ever-so-challenging assessments.
You thought you’ve graduated and left it all behind… And that a rosy future awaits.
Needless to say, life isn’t always that straightforward. It’s also the prime time when quarter-life crises strike.
There is a myriad of possibilities, but I will just list the common few:
- You pursued work in a related field and are happy developing yourself in that area.
- Your current job has nothing to do with your field of educational expertise.
- You’ve ditched the corporate world and decided to pursue your hobbies/work freelance.
- You’re dissatisfied with your current life, and devoted to learning how to trade for a living.
- You diligently purchase the lottery ticket and pray for a breakthrough.
Aside from the fifth route, have you noticed a similarity among the top four?
Continuous Learning And Upskilling
Even though you’re done with school, it doesn’t mean that you’re done with learning.
Whether it is a related field, unrelated industry, hobby, or trading – all of them involve some kind of upskilling or re-skilling.
In doing so, you are developing a new and improved version of yourself.
And while that in itself is a valuable outcome, it is also the never-say-die attitude which attracts like-minded people. Opportunities seem to find their way to you.
It matters less whether these learning areas are your personal interests, or professional development. The important thing is that no learning is ever wasted, and you would be able to connect the dots that no one else can do in the same way.
In that unique mix of skills, knowledge, and perception lies your contribution to society.
Reinvest in your education, and you will find that it gives you the best form of leverage. Even in trading, there is a saying that you can learn through paying the market, or paying for an education first.
Whatever amount of time and money you put into it will reap a great harvest. Even if not now, the returns will manifest eventually.
So put aside the negativity concerning education. Being able to learn is a privilege, for there are societies and situations which deny one of an education.
Seek it, embrace it, and widen your horizons.
#3 Reinvesting In Experiences To Be Richer
Speaking of horizons, many of us are desperately craving for this.
That’s right – travelling.
Unlike some of the resistance towards education, travelling is by and large a well-loved activity. So many of us cannot wait to “revenge-travel” when it is safe to do so once more.
Just check out the response on Todayonline.com from the recent air travel bubble announcement with Hong Kong. Flights sell out despite prices nearly doubling. Perhaps in the coming days we will hear updates on the other potential arrangements to destinations like Australia, New Zealand, Brunei, China and Taiwan.
Aside from a halt in the air travel bubble(s), there is really nothing stopping us from going on that holiday overseas.
As with the case of education, there is again a myriad of reasons why we travel:
- Unwind from the hectic city life.
- Visit loved ones in different parts of the globe.
- Explore the unknown – there is yet so much more to experience.
Regardless of your reasons, you would be unable to deny that travelling gifts you with inspiration. Also, an additional lens to view the world.
Perhaps it is the change of environment which stimulates your senses… Or it could also be the encounters that you’ve had which provokes thought.
It is little wonder that there is a saying which esteems travel as an expense that makes you richer.
The larger principle here is that you are buying into an experience. You could read about it, look up photos and videos, but none of that will be able to surpass an actual experience with your senses.
Scuba-diving vs Watching Documentaries
I remember when I first experienced scuba-diving. It was like a raw, unedited footage of a documentary… Except that it was an upgraded experience with additional senses. I could see marine life in its natural habitat, feel the ocean’s current against me, and hear the buzzing of the motorboats passing on the water’s surface. The saltiness of the seawater along with the ocean’s scent was memorable as well.
On subsequent dive trips, I also witnessed coral bleaching first-hand, and spotted unfitting trash on the seabed. It was a sobering reminder of real pressing issues that we face. An impression that no lecture, book or documentary could replicate.
Unlike knowledge, such experiences cannot simply be imparted. Much like owning a skill, they can only be earned through personal encounters.
Just like how no learning is ever a waste, no experience is too insignificant to mention.
After all, it is what we have experienced in the past that makes us who we are today.
By the way, while travelling is a prominent example, it is by no means the only way to gain experience. Venturing into our own backyards might prove to have hidden gems too. Since travelling is still largely restrictive, it is the perfect opportunity to think twice about what local offerings are available.
Investing In Yourself And Financial Freedom
You might ask – how is all this related to financial freedom?
Recall that back in the game plan, we laid out that the financial freedom game involves a process of levelling up?
This is about wanting to retire well, not just a basic retirement. It’s also about a dream retirement, not just retiring well. It’s also about having more money than you could ever spend, not just a dream retirement.
But is that all?
When you have levelled up and seemingly reached the limit – recall the reasons why you were on this journey to financial freedom.
Ultimately, money is a tool. It is up to you, the steward of your finances, to use it well.
The beauty of New Land lies in this process of discovery and progress. On that note, you don’t have to achieve any form of retirement before starting on the journey of reinvesting in yourself.
Reinvesting in education and experiences also equips you with new tools to reap better outcomes. It could be a progression in your job, or a leap into a brand new industry. Perhaps trading gives you the freedom to pursue other passions and contributions. Plus, you would also be in better stead to advise others who could use some of your unique insights.
The message here is to continuously reinvest in yourself. Be it in terms of your education or experiences, in personal or professional areas.
Develop yourself, and you will reap the fruits of your investment. In the process of doing so, you will discover that your life, and potentially those around you, will be enriched as well.
Stay tuned to the next part of this series as we forge ahead into the final terrain. As always, having a focus on practical, actionable steps which you can take.
If you’d like to learn more about systematic trading to better time your trade entries, click the banner below: