I touched about investing your money in my previous post. I talked about how you should never take a student loan for a degree which you don’t know for sure is the right one for yourself. Today I want to talk about, how you should invest in yourself first. It’s the most important investment you can make. Both forms of investment are connected, when you invest in yourself, you invest in your potential of making money. A big mistake people make today is they chase the money first. When I go on the internet, many people ask should I go get a tech degree because of the good income. That’s the wrong mindset to have.
Where do you start ?
We live in a world that values money over everything. People think getting a good degree equals to making more money, especially older people. That is not always the case. For specific professions you need a degree (Doctors, Lawyers, Pharmacy), for other professions having a degree is nice but not necessary (Computer science, IT)
As long as you know how algorithms and code works, how to code your own programs, maybe you have some applications and solutions already on your résumé. You are way ahead of someone with zero practical skills with a great degree.
If you have no idea what you want to do in life, that’s great because many people don’t, including me. I will give you advice that I wished I could get as a young guy finishing high school. Find out what you want to do in life. Do you have any hobbies you enjoy… Do you like helping people? Try volunteering or the service industry. Are you good with numbers? Try a course in accounting. Do you enjoy spending time in front of the computer? Try a coding boot camp. No idea where to start? Start working in manual labor, restaurants, farming etc.
The point I am trying to make is, try different things, so you see if you enjoy them. The more things you try, the more you will know a certain direction you want to go. This is much better than going for a degree you think you like, you waste your time, and money on it. At the end you end up with a degree you don’t like, or worst case scenario you drop out with no degree. Imagine using 1-2 years trying out things, going for boot camps, courses and at the end you are: “I find this fun, I want to get a degree in this.”
Asking yourself the right questions
As I mentioned before, reading threads on the internet, people are asking the wrong questions. “Is this and this field lucrative? Should I study this and this coding language, because the demand is high?” This is the wrong mindset to have. You should always ask yourself: “What do I want to do in life, if money wasn’t an issue.” I once read the best way to find your passion is to ask yourself what would I do for a living, even if I don’t get paid anything.
You don’t want to work a job you don’t enjoy at all, you can do that for a few years, but in the long run you will end up miserable.
Pursuing your passion
Now, the biggest hurdle while pursuing your passion is making profit out of it. The good thing about the modern world is you can make money out of everything. Restoring products, reselling, collector items, streaming, handcrafting, writing… Certain hobbies like restoring products or handcrafting, repair, are much easier to make profit out of it, because people will always pay for vintage items or repairs.
Finding the proper balance
A common mistake people make is following. I enjoy writing, I find it fun, and it comes easy to me. So that is my passion. Many people say, I am going to be a writer, quit their miserable job and start writing. Or write a book put it on Amazon, and it doesn’t sell, you get bad reviews, so they think they are just not fit to be a writer. The point I am trying to make is, your passion doesn’t have to be your job. Sometimes your passion is very hard to pursue or make money out of it. Nothing wrong with that. You can still have it as a hobby and find it fun. Who knows, maybe in a few years, you put out another book, and it gets great reviews.
Take your time
This is the most important point I am trying to make. Take your time after you finish high school to find out what you want to do. Don’t let your family, friends push you into choosing something that is lucrative, but you have no idea if you enjoy or not. Sit down with your parents and explain to them that you are unsure of what you want to do in life, and that you want to try things first. You want to try a few courses, boot camps, jobs to see what direction you want to go on. This doesn’t mean you get to sit at home and party at the weekends. You should use the time to really try out things, so when it’s time to make a decision, you will make the best one for yourself.