In business, investing in yourself is one of the most crucial parts of success. People who are successful at what they do invest in themselves in the first place, and keep re-investing once they start making a profit from their hard work.
In life, the same principle applies, except the profit you make from investing in yourself is not financial. You make profits in health, well-being, mindfulness, happiness… You invest in a particular aspect of your life to become better in this one area.
This is not to say that money buys happiness, far from it. A lot of the investments you’ll make in yourself are things, and they need to be put to use to give you some benefits. The simple act of purchasing won’t give you any rewards. If you buy something and don’t use it, you get a thrill out of it for a few days, and then you forget about it. There’s no improvement.
Especially in those times of pandemic and confinement, it’s extremely important to motivate yourself to stay healthy, happy, and strong. You need to treat yourself, because you deserve it. A little gift to yourself can go a long way in creating motivation, and putting that gift to use will also make you happier.
Note: a lot of deliveries are being delayed due to the coronavirus outbreak. From my experience, Amazon is still shipping, so I’ll only share links from this provider. No affiliates included.
1. Rubber Dumbbells
In countries under a strict lockdown, people are only allowed one hour outside per day, if any at all. That’s barely enough to go run some errands, and not much is left to go exercise outside.
A lot of people have had no choice but to move their exercising session indoors. To help you with that, dumbbells are great. Whether you normally use weights for your training or not, you’re going to need them now that you’re locked inside.
Light rubber dumbbells are great to train your core. You don’t need any assistance to work with them, and there are tons of exercises you can do, depending on what part of the body you want to train. Click here for some basics.
2. A yoga mat
I already mentioned this item in a previous article. It’s a really good product. To work with your dumbbells, a yoga mat is better than a hard floor. You may have a carpet already, but a yoga mat is better designed for workouts. Besides, it’s always good to buy something dedicated to 1 or 2 specific activities. You’re more likely to commit when you put your money where your mouth is.
You can also use your yoga mat to stretch. Most of us are now working from home, and your body will inevitably get sore from sitting in a chair all day, with less breaks than during the office routine. So stretch often. Click here for basic stretching exercises to get you started.
Finally, you can use your yoga mat for meditation. In those uncertain and stressful times, it’s really important to practice staying calm and counting your blessings. Be grateful to be in the situation you are in. If you’re reading this article, you’re probably lucky enough to have a roof over your head. Learn to focus on your breathing and nothing else. It can help you go about your day in a calmer way.
3. A HIIT timer
Another fitness item on the list, because it’s so important to take care of your body. HIIT is short for High-Intensity Interval Training. Here is what a HIIT session looks like on paper:
And if you want to see what it looks like in practice, click here. Intervals don’t have to be 30 seconds, they can be any duration you like.
HIIT is great way not only to treat your body right, but also to release energy. It’s intense, fast, you can crunch through it, letting go of stress and negative thoughts in the process. Do that right before your daily meditation session, and you’ll be on your way to a much healthier and happier You!
4. A Rubik’s cube
Learning to solve a Rubik’s cube improves problem solving and dexterity. It won’t take you more than a few days to memorise how to do it without the instructions. Once you know how to do it by heart and start getting tired of it, you have a lot of other options.
You can try bigger cubes. Move up to the 4×4 cube, then 5×5, 6×6, 7×7… It’s the same moves for all of them. It just takes longer than a regular 3×3, which is perfect to kill time.
5. A big nice book
Locked inside all day, we spend even more time than we normally do staring at screens. We use our computer, scroll through Instagram, binge watch Netflix… You might actually be staring at screens from the time you wake up to the time you go to bed, without even noticing it.
Buying a nice book is a great way to switch things up. I usually use my e-reader to read. Although it uses the e-ink technology and doesn’t cause eye strain as much as the other screens do, I still like to take a break from screens altogether.
A nice big book, with photos and a nice layout, is even better. It’s a beautiful item to own, and the photos in it can take you places without being able to leave your couch for now. Taschen is a publishing company that releases nice big books for descent prices (except the fancy ones), so you don’t have to break the bank.
I truly hope these five items will help you deal with the current times and the days ahead. Those investments won’t be useful only during the pandemic, but also after it. You have an opportunity to pick up a few healthy habits and maintain them in the long term. Looking at the bright side of things is important, and investing in yourself will help you do just that.
Stay safe, stay strong.
And look forward to brighter days.