When you invest in yourself it’s like letting the universe see that you know that you’re worth it. But, taking that final step to invest in the future you can’t quite see yet is not easy nor should it be. Good investments should lead to a real change in your business, and change is uncomfortable, scary, and hard.
After episode 07 on my real Q1 numbers, I got questions on how I was able to invest in a $12k course. People weren’t only interested to know how I could afford it, but how I was able to work through such a big decision. How would I know it was “worth it”?
I’ve talked about it before on this podcast, but my mindset around money has been a windy path. But after some trial and error with my own business, I truly believe in the value of investing big in one’s own business.
I like to invest in one bigger program a year that supports my goal for that year (along with a few smaller, self-study courses) For a “bigger program” I search for a group program that is usually a higher investment and has some support. I prefer group programs because you also get the perspective of everyone else in the group. There are times when you may find that you don’t have any questions or aren’t needing any support on anything in particular, but while being in the group you get to hear other’s questions or situations that are going through and it can help in the future.
When I invested in this course, honestly, it was scary and so unknown. I went through the usual thoughts, Will it work? Will it be a total flop? Those feelings are normal and valid. I need to get my feelings out of my head and onto paper. So, I do a lot of journaling to work through my thoughts. For this program, the second I signed up and dug in, I immediately wished I had invested sooner. I expressed interest in the course almost two years prior and for some reason kept holding myself back.
But that’s not to say that every investment I make, works. So even though I have tips on how to make these big decisions just know that I’ve made mistakes in investments for my business and that those mistakes are part of the process of investing too. It helped me learn what types of courses I like, what structures I thrive in, what types of questions to ask the instructor before purchasing, etc.
I don’t take investing in my business lightly. It’s scary and overwhelming to know which are the “right” investments. Which investments are going to lead me to my desired results? Which investments will also lead me to those results most efficiently? How will I know I made my investment back?
When you invest in yourself it’s like letting the universe know that you know that you’re worth it.
There are 3 things I consider when investing in my business.
Now, I don’t know if the cost is directly related to an outcome necessarily but in my experience, when I put down money that makes me slightly nervous, that’s when I pay attention. You’re making an energetic commitment to yourself. Ask yourself, and be brutally honest, Is this course something that I am going to commit fully to? Is this an investment that is going to push me to make real change? Am I invested in this investment?
Have you ever found yourself purchasing a low ticket digital price product (like $27 content calendars, or $49 budget planner, or $59 templates) and then never taking action on them?
It’s because there is no energetic commitment. It’s not stretching you or pushing you. If you never take action on the investment, it won’t hurt you financially too bad. There isn’t too much discomfort.
But when I put down $10K on a program, I will pay attention. I show up for everything. I put in the work. Because, for me, there is no option to not make that investment worth it. It’s committing to myself.
Even though I have made investments where I put down money, I still didn’t follow through 100%. I later realized it was because I wasn’t committed to the outcome. It wasn’t that important to me.
I like to ask myself if I can measure the Return on Investment. This doesn’t have to be a monetary return either. The return could be qualitative or quantitative. Quantitative are things that are measured through numbers. This could be, for example, if I invest $5K in this program, and it helps me book two clients at $10K/each that to me would be a good investment. That $5K helped me make $20K.
Or let’s say it’s a social media course and the $1K course that taught you about marketing on social and you were able to grow your social following by 3k people. That would be worth it to me.
For qualitative returns on investment, this is more around the quality of your life, and it’s feelings-based and not as easy to measure but still very important to consider in investing.
Let’s say that the $5K course brought in those two $10K clients, but it also gave you the confidence to work with those clients. It helped you systemize your business so now you also have more free time to spend with your family and that’s why you started your business in the first place.
Or maybe the $1k social course helped change your relationship with social, so it didn’t feel as draining and like a chore. After that investment, now creating content brings you joy. You’re able to show up in more pieces of your business more energized, creative, and excited.
Another thing I consider is the time I would have lost by trying to figure it out all by myself or doing it by myself.
So take us, designers, as an example, and then think about your clients. Think of all the time they would have lost while trying to figure out how to build their website, trying to figure out how to add custom fonts, adding in code, making sure the website is searchable, and after all of this time it still probably won’t look as good if they had hired you to do it.
That’s something that I consider when purchasing a program or hiring a service provider. Could I do this on my own? Yes, I’m scrappy, but how long would it take me to figure out? And how well will I do it without someone’s help that’s either been there and is a professional in this?
Recently I invested in a program that I’ve been eyeing for years, it was a big investment and I needed a lot of nurturing and reminding to finally join. And then once I was in, I was instantly thinking “I wish I had done this so much sooner, I would have already gotten to where I want to go”.
When we don’t leap we’re also choosing to stay in the same place. I think there’s also the cost of not doing anything. It’s important to also think about the money or added joy or freedom whatever it is that you’re looking for that you’re leaning on the table by not taking action.
Investing in ourselves, or making big decisions for our business can be scary. It’s our brain’s way of keeping us safe. Our current selves are keeping us safe from the harm or discomfort that investing may lead us to. We start to tell ourselves the same narrative that got us to this place of feeling stuck in the first place and begin to self-sabotage.
What if instead, we shift our thinking. So take a second and think, what would the flourishing, highly successful you do?
Start thinking of yourself as already in that dream place you’ve been striving for. Think of yourself as if you were already there.
Is there something that you’ve been wanting to do but haven’t yet? Is there a big change that you want to make but haven’t yet out of fear?
Ask what would you do? And then do that.
We can get stuck in this spiral of thinking and worrying “What if this all fails?” but when we start thinking of ourselves as if we have already reached it eliminates that and moves the question to “What if this works out?”
When you think about money, what is your first thought? What goes through your mind when you make a purchasing decision?
I recommend starting thinking about assets as investments instead of costs or purchases. This can be applied to every single thing that you buy in your life. It’s shifting your relationship with money from “spending it” to “using it”.
Money is meant to have a purpose. It’s a tool. It’s not meant to just sit there forever and not be used. Even if your money is sitting in a savings or investment account it still has a purpose or uses applied to it. Maybe it’s for your savings account for retirement, or creating a nest egg, whatever it may be, you’ve applied use to it.
The same goes for the opposite way. If you can’t find a use for something you want to invest in, is it worth putting your money into? Is there somewhere else that would be a better use for your money?
This is a shift that I will always be working on every day.
And honestly, it applies to almost anyone. No matter what kind of income you have, there will be times when what you want doesn’t match with what you have. Even when you reach your idea of a high income, there will be times when you think you don’t have enough.
But this leads to a scarcity mindset and causes us to focus on lack. The shift from a scarcity mindset to an abundance mindset. Begin focusing on what you do have.
Having gratitude for what you have right now will lead to a more abundant mindset. Call it what you want, manifesting, calling in what you want, praying, I don’t know. But I truly believe that if you have gratitude for what you have right now, more will find a way to you.
Start by removing the phrase “I can’t afford it” around investments. Instead, replace it with: “This isn’t a priority for me right now” or “How can I afford it?”
Robert Kiyosaki of “Rich dad, poor dad” says to turn it into a question. “How can I afford it?” One lets you off the hook, and the other forces you to think.”
This subtle shift allows you to not think of your current financial place as permanent. And it pushes you to get curious. Would making a lifestyle change be worth it to you?
With all that being said, there are still times when investing is not a good fit. I think that focusing just on mindset or blaming everything on mindset, can be incredibly toxic. It needs to be said and noted that trauma and privilege are real and it’s not just all in our heads.
My tip is to be wary of people that push you into making investments based on a “scarcity mindset”. No one should ever force you into investing with them. Don’t invest if it doesn’t feel aligned to you, or you aren’t excited about it. And if you’re in a place struggling to make ends meet it might not be a good time to invest.
If you find yourself in a place right now where you feel stuck in your business, your creativity and motivation are dwindling, or you are simply looking for a change, I hope you can take these tips and start thinking about what investing in yourself could look like.
Think about what your end goal is and work backward. What steps could you take today to get there? Could you find a coach, mentor, or program that could get you there? Are you committed to doing the work needed for your desired outcome? Will you get a quantitative or qualitative return on your investment? And what would be the cost of doing nothing? What will future you wish you had done now?
Your path is uniquely yours. We are all so uniquely different and there is no one way to success. Big decisions like these are difficult. Change is difficult. But the truth is if we don’t take the leap we’re choosing to stay in the same place.