Life Money
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Women are often taught to invest money in our businesses or work, our homes, and in our children and family, but are we ever taught about the importance of investing money in ourselves?

Life coach Ritu Bhasin says that to foster individual growth and development, women have to start by banking on the person staring back at them in the mirror. She shares her tips on how to do just that below.

WHY INVEST IN YOU?

In Ritu’s case, she grew up in an immigrant household where money was tight. Like most people, she learned the importance of making and saving money while spending it rarely and with discretion. But in the professional world, first as lawyer and then as an entrepreneur, Ritu realized the importance of spending money on herself in order to be successful.

To be able to thrive both personally and professionally, you must spend money on yourself!

HOW TO SPEND MONEY ON YOURSELF

There’s nothing wrong with small treats or splurges if it’s within your means. Aside from that, take a step back to reflect on what your ultimate life, financial, or career goal is, and figure out what’s getting in your way. Follow through by landing on the best actions or steps to take to address any problems or changes, and then make it happen.

You may come to see that you’re going to need to invest money into fixing things in your life that are showing up as barriers. For example, if you’re at a moment in your life where you feel lost or down on yourself, think about putting money aside to go on wellness retreat or invest therapy. This can help you find yourself in a better place both personally and professionally.

Or, if you’re unhappy with your career, consider saving up money to return to school and study for a new career path or to start your own business. It can be a scary thought at first and cost a lot of money, but ultimately can be one of the best things you can do for yourself.

RELATED: New poll shows how much money people spend on themselves

SMALL STEPS TO CHANGE

Investing in yourself doesn’t always have to be in broad strokes like continuing education. Smaller baby steps can be just as beneficial. It could be setting aside money to buy a wellness book, or a ticket for an empowerment event. Or if you’re interested in education but don’t have as much time, try taking an online course on something like entrepreneurship. These all work towards a better you and can be easier steps to follow when you’re just starting out.

To be impactful, it never has to be big or expensive! It just has to be important and tie back to your personal goals.

HOW TO MAKE CHANGE

If you’re looking to make a change for the New Year and start investing in yourself, you can even start today. Start by picking a small amount of money – it can be whatever you can afford, even something like $5 or $20. Then choose something that you know will help you to grow a skill, build your confidence, or heal hurt and pain you’ve been experiencing, etc. Spend that money on it and make it happen!

Secondly, choose another amount, whatever you can afford, and save that amount on a monthly basis to invest in yourself for your personal and professional growth. Over time this pot will build, and you can draw from it when you need. However, when you withdraw from it, make sure you remember to keep putting money back in.

Other ways to start small right away don’t even have to include putting money away. You can splurge on something that will pay for itself in the long run. A fun suggestion is self-massagers: for your feet, your arms, your back, etc. They can help you to relax and offset work stress, and it’s cheaper and more practical than going out for a massage on a weekly basis!

WHY DON’T PEOPLE DO THIS?

Investing money in yourself is an important principle for personal and professional success, but most people are hesitant to do it. Basically, we’re socialized to care for others first, which is especially true for women, and we’re socialized to focus on external things. In doing so, we lose sight of the importance of investment in our greatest assets: ourselves!

It’s not selfish to want to invest in yourself. In fact, more of us need to do this in order to build a healthier, happier world with healthier, happier people in it.

RELATED: Why it’s important to share your salary with your friends