A Critical Investment Strategy

Photo by Nick Morrison on Unsplash

Investing well is important as we consider and plan for the future. Most often when we think of investing, we are thinking of our financial investments. We are planning for our children’s college plans, their marriages, hedging against unexpected expenses, and for financial security for our latter years. However, our investment plans often do not consider the non-financial aspects of our lives and when we fail to invest in these areas, the financial investing becomes a moot point.

We are relational beings who are designed for and need strong relationships. The impact of good relationships on our mental, emotional, and even physical health has been well documented. As has often been stated, at the end of our time here on earth, it is not the number of hours we spent at the office or our impressive portfolio that we think about—it is the people in our lives. So, the question is, how is our “investment strategy” when it comes to the key relationships in our lives? Are you investing time and attention into your relationship with your spouse, your children, and your key friendships? Is it a high-quality investment?

What is your investment strategy when it comes to your spiritual, emotional, intellectual, and physical health? The importance of a strong financial investment strategy diminishes quite rapidly when we have invested poorly in these other areas of our lives. Do you have an investment strategy for growing spiritually and emotionally? Are you spending time daily in quiet reflection as well as reading in a way that grows you in these areas? Are you becoming a self-managed person where you manage your emotions versus them controlling you?

How are you investing in your intellectual growth? Are you reading well and often? Do you have a plan for how often you will read and what you will read? Are you reading widely and well beyond your profession? Are you consistently challenging your own thinking and correcting it when you find that your preconceived notions are incorrect or when you realize that your thinking patterns are unhealthy?

Finally, to my favorite part (not really)! How are you investing in your physical health? Do you eat in a way that strengthens you? A friend of mine often remarks that he eats to live versus lives to eat. So, are you eating to live and live well? What about that dreaded word—exercise? Do you exercise on a regular basis? I am not talking about becoming a gym rat, but is reasonable exercise a part of your daily routine?

Investing well in our overall life, not just the financial aspect, is vitally important. It is important to those we love, those we serve, those we lead, and to ourselves. Invest well so that you leave a legacy of hope and changed lives.

BG

how well do you juggle?

Does it seem that in your personal and vocational life that it is a juggling act? We all fill so many different roles that sometimes it is hard to remember “which way is up”!

This article on the Harvard Business Review site has some good recommendations to help you “juggle”.

One of my favorite quotes is also in this article:

“The trick to juggling is determining which balls are made of rubber and which ones are made of glass.”

The bottom line is, do you know what your real priorities are in life and are you living and working in accordance with those priorities?

which wolf do you feed?

blue sky Lauren AUG 2013With what lens do you look at your life? Is life an adventure or is it something to be endured? The thing is, our attitude, the way in which we view life is our choice. Granted, with some of the terribly difficult backgrounds some have or the trying conditions in which they now live, having a spirit of adventure in life may be incredibly difficult, but it still is a choice that can be made.

I mentioned that I am going back through Gary Keller’s The One Thing Book. in the book he tells the following story:

“One evening an elder Cherokee told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside all people. He said, ‘My son, the battle is between two wolves inside us. One is Fear. It carries anxiety, concern, uncertainty, hesitancy, indecision and inaction. The other is Faith. It brings calm, conviction, confidence, enthusiasm, decisiveness, excitement and action.’ The grandson thought about it for a moment and then meekly asked his grandfather: ‘Which wolf wins?’ The old Cherokee replied, ‘The one you feed.'”

Which wolf are you “feeding” each day? Do you dwell on your fears and feed them? Or do you live life with a mindset of gratitude and faith? Do you feed your faith each day?

Stop and listen to your self-talk; that tape that is continually playing in your head. Is it a tape of faith or one of fear?

Have faith and live as God intended you to.

BG

multi-tasking is actually bad for your health

http://www.forbes.com/sites/nextavenue/2013/05/08/why-single-tasking-makes-you-smarter/

developing more energy and becoming more productive

the1thingDo you feel tired most of the time? Is getting out of bed most mornings (especially Monday!) a laborious task?

More and more, people are writing about energy management and priority management and less about time management. The reason being is that the way most of us are working may be productive of efficient in the short term, it is usually detrimental to our long-term health and productivity.

I have been reading The One Thing and Gary Keller talks about a simple rhythm for the day that helped him become healthier and more productive. What he is saying has been said by others in different ways, but the core elements are much the same. Following is a slightly edited version of what he calls “The Highly Productive Person’s Daily Energy Plan”:

  1. Start your day with prayer
  2. Eat right and ensure you start your day with a healthy breakfast
  3. Get 7 -8 hours a sleep every night
  4. Exercise 5 – 6 days a week (just 20 – 30 minutes a day will be life changing!)
  5. Hug, kiss, and laugh with your loved ones
  6. Set your goals, plan, and calendar for the day
  7. Make sure you time block for your most important priority – what he calls the ONE Thing.

Most of this is not new, but I like the way in which he handles the subject. The challenge is that while we know what we should be doing, we aren’t. So, develop the desire, discipline yourself to incorporate healthy habits into your daily life (one thing at a time, you can’t do it all at once!!), and after you start seeing some small wins you will start feeling the motivation to continue. Remember, in this case, motivation follows action!

BG