Like most people, I've seen my 401(k) drop in value, the few stocks I own have taken a beating, and the value of my house has surely fallen, although I haven't asked since I don't plan on moving any time soon. None of these investments turn out to be worth what I thought they were and like, everyone else, I'm now skittish about investing. What's the point in saving for retirement if it can all be wiped out? What's the point in investing in your home, if its value could drop below the value of your mortgage?
If you feel the same way, there's one investment you can make that you won't ever regret - an investment in yourself.
Think about it - if you invest in yourself, then the results are up to you. You won't be dependent on banking executives or mortgage brokers or politicians. You'll be dependent on you.
What might that investment look like? That really depends on your circumstances and your dreams.
For me, it means investing in growing my business. For you it might mean investing in professional job search help - a good resume and search strategy can increase both your interviews and the salary offers you get. Or it may mean investing in further education - did you know that unemployment among the college-educated is currently only around 4%, while the average for everyone else is heading for 10%? Maybe you have let some of your technical skills fall behind and classes would help. Maybe you could take classes to shore up areas of weakness, such as public speaking or leadership.
Perhaps you've always wanted your own business but haven't wanted to risk your savings on pursuing that dream. Or maybe you have your own business, but haven't updated your website or marketing materials in years.
And if you're short of money, don't forget that an investment doesn't have to be financial. You can commit to invest time and effort in developing your self or your business instead.
Whatever your situation, this financial crisis offers an opportunity to think about investing in the only person you can really trust to provide solid returns - YOU!