I'm a firm believer in personal development. Self-improvement is part of living a rich life. In fact, when I started this blog six years ago, the self-improvement category was one of the first I implemented. Over the years, I've published dozens of articles on the subject, including:
- Getting to now: How to beat the procrastination habit
- The power of yes: A simple way to get more out of life
- Luck is no accident: 10 ways to get more out of work and life
- How to build confidence and destroy fear
- Great lessons from great men
Now that I have solid control of my finances, my personal budget contains a lot of room for self-improvement spending. That includes paying for my monthly gym membership, taking Spanish classes, and more. There are always things I want to spend on to improve my life. (I'd love to be able to sing, for instance. Recently, a friend suggested that I might enjoy voice lessons. Maybe I would. Maybe I would.)
Plus, from time to time, I like to attend lectures and conferences. I like to read self-help books. I often take classes at the community college. I recently bought a set of CDs about improving memory. (And, in a move I find hilarious, I also bought the audio version of The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People — in Spanish! Two types of self improvement in one!)
I guess I'm trying to say two things:
- I believe personal development is important. For me, it's a part of true wealth.
- Because of this, I'm willing to spend a lot of money to be a better me. Right now, in fact, self improvement is my largest non-housing expense. And it's working. I have an awesome life, and I like who I am (and who I'm becoming).
I suspect there are a lot of others in the Get Rich Slowly community who spend money on personal development. There are probably a few of you who think such expenses are silly, but I'd wager most of us find these goals worthwhile.
So today, as part of the ongoing “how much do you spend on?” series, I'd like to know: How much do you spend on self improvement? How much do you spend on classes, lectures, books? How much do you spend on the gym, on language lessons, on learning music? Basically, how much do you spend on becoming a better person? What sorts of things do you use the money for? How do you feel about this spending? Do you regret it? Or, like me, do you think it's some of the best money you spend?