Hi y’all! I hope everyone is having a wonderful day! For today’s blog post I want to write about how investing in yourself makes such an impact on your life. When I say “invest in yourself”, I mean a variety of different things.
Throughout my elementary school years and into my first two years of college, I was ridiculously insecure and hypercritical of myself. I had anxious thoughts running through my mind, at all hours of the day, fixating on what others thought of me and worrying about how I was perceived.
A friend in college saw these tendencies in me and literally told me to just “fake it until you make it”. Initially, I thought that was so silly and easier said than done, but I had nothing to lose, so I decided to pretend that I was the most confident person wherever I went. Shoulders back, chin up, and every time I entered a room, I went in with the knowledge that I am a child of God, and a gift to every situation I am a part of. After doing this for months, I started to not even think about it and I truly felt confident in my own skin. I find this concept so interesting because the past few weeks, several of my friends have told me that I radiate confidence, which I have never felt before. I literally “faked it until I made it”.
These actions and mindset, accompanied with doing things for myself, allow me to feel my best physically, emotionally, and mentally.
Now here’s where I mean “investing in yourself” literally/ financially:
The past three years, I have gotten serious about taking care of myself, as this time has been where I have started my healing journey. An example of this practice that shows how I am financially ‘investing’ in myself, is that I have implemented getting my nails done once a month into my monthly budget. This may seem like an unnecessary expense, but it has done wonders for my confidence. I love how I can get a different look every month and express myself through my nails. Not only that, but the biggest thing for me is that it helps me simply feel more put together and appealing. Adding a little confidence booster like this into my monthly routine makes me feel like I am treating myself and “investing” in not only my physical appearance but how I view myself mentally.
Another thing that I think is so important is investing in your physical health. Everyone is aware of the ‘Freshman 15’, where it’s common for people to gain fifteen pounds within their first year of college. Well for me, I didn’t think I would have a problem with this, as I was super skinny and fit in high school, but boy, was I wrong…
My freshman year was mainly online due to Covid-19. This meant no walking to and from classes, which normally would be at least a little bit of daily activity. But because of Covid, I took my classes from the comfort of my bed, slept all the time, and rarely worked out. Not to mention, going to school in the South, there aren't a lot of healthy food options, so I was eating my fair share of fried and fast foods. With that being said, I ended up gaining about 20 pounds my freshman year. I felt so gross in my own body and I didn’t even recognize myself.
My mom, who has degrees in both nursing and psychology, has always been an advocate for physical activity, as she knows the benefits not only on one's physical health, but also one’s mental health. Growing up, whenever I was sick, sad, angry, or literally depressed, my mom would always just tell me, “Go work out, you need to get your endorphins!”
Now here I am, realizing of course, mother is always right.
This year, I decided to be dedicated to getting back into shape. The road to get there was intimidating though because I didn’t really know where to start. I’m going to sound like a crazy, spiritual Christian here, but I’m just speaking my truth; I literally prayed to God that He would give me the motivation to go to the gym everyday and become a ‘gym rat’. Lo and behold, I kid you not, that week, I got myself out of bed and started going to the gym every day. I got into a routine where I did the same exercises daily and started to see real results. Not only was my body starting to get more toned, but I started to have more energy, I was more focused, I was less stressed, my grades started to go up, and I simply felt happier overall.
I know some people don’t have access to a gym but let me tell you, you really don’t need one to get in shape or work out. Go for walks or runs. Stretch or do yoga. What I’ve even been doing this summer is laying down a yoga mat in my living room and putting on YouTube workout videos that I can follow along with. There are short videos that are easily accessible, and you’ll feel so accomplished by completing even a five minute ab workout.
Investing in your physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing is an absolute game-changer and will help you to become your best self. I think this practice is crucial to implement in your twenties, as these years are your ‘selfish’ years, meant for you to find yourself and learn to truly take care of and love yourself.
So there you have it; my recommendation is to invest you time, money, and energy into yourself, however you see fit. Fake it until you make it, and go make yourself proud!