“I have invested in stocks, mutual funds, PF, FDs, Real Estate, Gold, etc. I thought that was it all. Until I realised the one big missing investment. Guess what, I am not alone.”
Raghavan has been working in software for close to a decade and a half.
When we were discussing his financial goals, the things that he wanted to achieve with his money, he mentioned something unusual.
Vipin, given the way I have been working and the state of the IT industry, I don’t think I will last for more than 10 years here. There is too much pressure and technologies t00 change rapidly.
Well, he is not a lone voice.
One of the participants of the Money Master course mentions,
I already feel burnt out. I see another 5 – max 7 – years in this industry.
Well, for Raghavan, my question was “what are you planning to do?”
“I just want to have enough money to take care of my expenses, once I quit or am asked to leave.”
“That’s great. I am sure with your savings you will be able to do that. But I am also sure you wish to do something after that too. You would not like to stay idle.”
“You are right. But I haven’t thought about it. (pause) May be I will teach!”
That came across to me as casual and a big red flag. Teaching seemed like a last resort, if nothing else worked out.
It is strange to otherwise smart people working to build their wealth not investing in one thing – personal development.
Most of our life moves around work and family.
When it comes to time for self – NetFlix, magazines, newspapers and the internet take over.
There is very little focus on personal development – finding and working with resources and a structured approach to build your own capabilities.
Don’t feel happy that your company trains you.
Your large company trains you for new business demands but that’s mostly for the job at hand. Not for a future that you see for yourself.
While investing your money sensibly towards financial freedom is an absolutely must do, investing in yourself to greater fulfilment and self respect is equally important.
While we strolled through our formal education careers without much awareness, this is the time to take control and work towards that future.
Now, let me tell you why you don’t do it.
I will go back to one of my favourite quotes from Peter Drucker, “what get’s measured, gets managed.”
Unfortunately, you don’t measure personal development.
When you make your personal budget (that is if you do!), you never have the thought to include this item. It is the case of the missing investment.
Look, if you are serious about building your own value, you cannot ignore the investment on personal development.
Here’s what I say.
Let just 2% of your income go towards personal development in areas that will prepare your for the future – for a life that you dream for yourself.
This could be books, courses, certifications, premium newsletters, or buying tools (hardware/software) that will help you build side projects.
Next, spend at least 2% of your waking time learning by doing. There is no alternative to prepping.
The (((1+2%) * (1+2%))^no. of years) can lead to multifold increase in your skills and capability. In fact, the process can fast forward you to the life you want to live now.
Will you do it? Let 2018 not remain the same.
Do you also feel the pinch of this missing investment? Do you have learnings to share? Please do.